A businessman stands in front of a painting of a claw machine, selecting a red silhouette of a person over four black silhouettes, representing a professional being hired.

Trouble Finding Team Members? The Problem Might Be Your Hiring Process

In a tight labor market with record-low unemployment and a massive increase in fall job listings, finding the best candidates is harder than ever. Unfortunately, difficult-to-manage hiring practices make the process even more difficult by creating poor-quality job listings, setting unreasonable expectations, or not providing training for seamless interviews. 

In this article, we’ll explore the five major mistakes a hiring manager can make in the current market and how businesses can create successful hiring practices that give the best chance of finding the perfect match for new openings.

5 Common Hiring Practices That Lose Qualified Candidates

Even though a hiring practice is commonplace, it may not be the most effective way to attract and retain skilled talent. In fact, some of these popular, unquestioned hiring methods may be costing businesses qualified candidates. 

From ghost job listings to secret disqualifiers, here are five common practices every hiring manager should avoid, plus how to fix them.   

Creating Bad Job Listings

Often, the hiring process begins with a job listing. A job listing is an opportunity to give professionals a better understanding of your company’s culture, the position’s duties, and the compensatory benefits — enticing a candidate to apply. 

Yet, a shocking 76% of hiring managers find that attracting the right applicants is their biggest challenge. The reason? Job openings that withhold compensatory benefits, lack the company’s cultural personality, and do not accurately convey the position’s requirements are bound to have fewer candidates with relevant experience. 

When optimizing job postings, remember they are a form of marketing, especially when targeting highly sought-after talent. When potential applicants come across your opening, they ask themselves, why this company? Beyond compensation and benefits, giving candidates a feel for the company culture is essential. 

A job posting that blends the team’s personality, includes easy-to-read qualifications, and gives valuable insights into the business’ mission statement and values can quickly give prospective applicants a solid idea of the culture. Finding culturally fit applicants can help attract new members with higher employee retention

Finally, when crafting a job post, don’t forget the basics. Keep these postings error-free, filled with relevant information, and easy to understand so that a candidate can easily understand your requirements and self-assess their suitability, helping to increase the number of qualified submissions.  

Ghost Job Listings

In addition to creating great job listings, hiring managers should avoid the trend of ghost job listings. A ghost job listing is a posting where managers have no intention of filling the position. 43% of hiring managers admitted to using ghost listings to create a perception of company growth, build an applicant pool for future positions in hopes of an irresistible candidate coming along, or keep current employees motivated. 

The problem with ghost listings for employers is they hurt brand reputation. Many ghost listings look like scams or raise questions as to why the company cannot fill a role. After wasting time on a dummy job post, great talent may also be turned off from applying to future company openings.

Ultimately, the solution to ghost job listings is not to post them at all. Ensure a workflow where the correct HR Managers are informed of all job listings and remove any accidental ghost listings from previous roles or closed jobs. Keeping on top of a strict hiring workflow with multiple touchpoints and periodic reviews will ensure that pointless listings become a thing of the past, keeping your company’s reputation on job sites secure.

A female professional looks confused while navigating poor job listings. Arrows swirl above her head to represent confusion.

Secret Disqualifications

A reliable job listing should have all the information applicants need to apply for a job successfully. However, some hiring managers have secret disqualifications or submission requirements that are withheld from interested job seekers.

A controversial example was when one hiring manager automatically disqualified 95% of the applicants who used the “easy apply” option on LinkedIn and did not follow up in addition to their application. “Easy apply” is optional for employers to add, so ultimately, this hiring manager disqualified 95% of applicants for following the application instructions. 

These sorts of secret disqualifications can eliminate qualified candidates. The hiring workflow does not need to involve “tricks” to find your next best team member. Be upfront with what you are looking for and your requirements, and ensure these expectations are clearly laid out in your job description.

Unreasonable Requirements

Having specific, realistic, and relevant job requirements is integral to attracting and retaining skilled employees, yet 40% of job seekers feel most job requirements are unrealistic. When the job requirements are literally unmeetable, such as having eight years of experience in software invented two years ago, one of two things can happen. 

The first is having a small applicant pool. Either more inexperienced candidates could automatically rule themselves out, or very experienced candidates may think the company is ignorant about the field. 

The other problem, most likely contributed to the “apply anyways” trend earlier this year, is an oversaturation of unqualified candidates. If the norm is to expect unrealistic job requirements, then professionals may be more likely to ignore legitimate needs. 

When cultivating requirements for a job post, it is beneficial to collaborate closely with a subject matter expert in the position’s department. Since 36% of executives believe the leading factor behind new hires failing to meet a position’s demands is poor skills match, consulting with department heads appears to be a frequently overlooked step. 

Separating the requirements into must-haves, nice-to-haves, and bonuses during the initial application process is a great way to encourage more applicants, especially those with transferable skills. It also conveys to prospective applicants that there is room to grow within the company.

A hiring manager scratches her head, trying to prepare an interview for positions she does not understand

Unprepared Hiring Managers

Hiring process mistakes go beyond the application phase. Unfortunately, some hiring managers are not well versed in the positions they are interviewing candidates for and do not always prepare, losing businesses skilled prospects. A study from SNL found that 42% of candidates have declined offers specifically because of a bad interview. 

Interviewing and procuring talent is a skill. When given the proper interview training, 99% of hiring managers felt they benefited greatly. Adequate training is also advantageous for brand reputation and may be critical for regulatory compliance. One study found that 20% of hiring teams still ask illegal questions during interviews – opening a company to expensive and damaging legal action. 

Ensuring hiring teams have the proper training and role education will increase the hiring process’ efficiency, helping businesses find the best possible talent.

A happy hiring manager interviews a highly qualified candidate who’s perfect for the position.

Bridging the Knowledge Gap

While the job market has been challenging to navigate the past year, the reality is many companies are compounding the issue by not executing effective hiring workflows. 

Yet these issues are easily remedied: understanding the perspective of job seekers will help teams craft alluring job posts with relevant and valuable information to attract the right professionals for the role. Supporting hiring teams with better training and resources can help refine request credentials, lock in those perfect prospects, and protect the company’s reputation. 

Consider working with professional recruiters who can create an effective and smooth hiring process from the job post to onboarding. Book a consultation with one of our experts to see if a recruiting agency is the right fit for you.  

Fill out the form to get your guide

Billing Address
Please check if you have activated a Stripe feed for your form.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Fill out the form to get your guide

Billing Address