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A How-to Guide for Improving Your Quality of Hire

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The quality of hires can be improved with the implementation of some changes to the recruitment process. It is essential for talent acquisition teams to understand the skills and characteristics required to perform the role successfully. When the right actions are taken to source the right talent the quality of hires improves.

Recent mistakes in hiring

The emphasis on reducing the time and cost involved in the recruitment strategy has meant that some recruitment practices have not evolved since what seems like the beginning of recruitment itself. 

Poorly-managed hiring processes lead to loss of talent. A lack of insight (into the role and the candidate’s employment history) can result in bad placement. 

We cannot underestimate the impact these mistakes have on the business in the long term, nor can we ignore the detrimental effect it can have on you as a professional in the Human Resources space. These mistakes have a great impact on the quality of hires.

Here are 6 steps to improve the quality of your hires:

1. Think outside the jobseeker box 

2. Understand the who, why and what 

3. Sell your employer value proposition 

4. Aim to hire the best team, not just the best talent 

5. Make the process simple and fast but effective 

6. Measure your hiring success 

Read on to discover each step in detail…

Graphic: 6 step checklist for better hires.

Step One

Think outside the jobseeker box

With online job boards and professional social networks offering perfect platforms for job postings and to identify active job seekers, it can be tempting not to venture beyond them. However, some of the best candidates will not be looking, and their current employer will be doing everything they can to hold onto the best possible job applicants. Great candidates could not pay attention to your offers and they may never join you for a job interview. 

Consider re-hiring 

Never underestimate the value of rehiring a past employee - these so called “boomerang hires” will save you a wealth of time, money and resources when it comes to onboarding and training. If you know someone great is out there, their previous past job performance is what you need, you could be offering them their perfect position. Don’t be afraid of rejection, reach out and show them the new job description. These great candidates might be ready to come back! 

Attract passive candidates 

Ensure you have a passive candidate attraction strategy in place. Identify and build communication channels with the best individuals in the market through social networks, existing employees and marketing efforts, and don’t leave it until you need to fill a role or the need to bring job candidates to the interview process. Implement an ongoing program that puts you front of mind with the market’s greatest recruits. Conduct regular activities to show more of your company culture.

Step Two

Understand the who, why and what

Until you assess the existing situation and the need for a new recruit, you will not be in a position to hire better candidates. Before you even write the job ad, consider the following: 

  • Who - what type of person are you looking for? Speak to the team; what are the characteristics of their perfect colleague? What would make them a perfect fit? 
  • Why - what impact is the new hire going to have on the team and the business as a whole and what is the long-term goal of hiring this person? This can help guide the screening process, help you develop more meaningful interview questions and, in communicating the bigger picture, could inspire the candidate to join the team. 
  • What - as obvious as it sounds, before you make a new hire, you must understand what makes a successful hire. You need to really understand and explain what they will be doing. You will stand little chance of positioning the role in the best light if you don’t understand the details of it yourself, and the wider impact it has on the business’ success.

Step Three

Sell your employer value proposition

Recruitment is a two-way street. While you’re scrutinising the resumes of applicants, they too are finding out as much as they can about your organisation and the type of workplace you offer. 

Ensure you are aware of the perception of your employer brand online by checking social media sites and recruitment forums, and proactively “sell” your value proposition with well-crafted job ads and your own content that will create the best first impression with candidates. 

Step Four

Aim to hire the best team, not the best talent

We are all constantly on the lookout for the best individuals to fill the roles we have on offer. However, you must not lose sight of the team you are ultimately aiming to grow. 

One individual hire is not going to mark the success to your entire business, but making those individual hires based on the fact that they complement and add to a like-minded team, will. 

While diversity is essential and provides new perspectives and ideas, ensuring that each individual is operating towards the same goals and has the same drive and passion for the business and industry is critical to success. 

Again, speak to your team before you embark on the hiring journey. What type of person do they think would add value to the business and support the work that they do? 

Step Five

Make the process simple and fast, but effective

When you are trying to hire not just to fulfil an immediate need, but for ongoing business success, it’s critical that you bring on the best people, first time, every time. 

With active candidates applying for multiple roles at one time - and passive candidates on the radar of all your competitors - being able to get them through the door before they’re attracted by another offer is key. 

Here are some useful tips to hire better quality candidates:

  • Don’t over-complicate the process with unnecessary tests and assessments, keep it simple and focused on the details you need to make a confident hire and guide your management and training of them after they join. 
  • Ensure you implement processes that are fast, simple but also effective requires smart solutions and approaches. 
  • Look beyond traditional hiring processes and adopt new, tech-solutions that offer you the efficiency and peace of mind you need to make informed hiring decisions, quickly.
  • Check references and conduct any other relevant employment check required for the role.

Step Six

Measure your hiring success

As with any program, campaign or strategy, understanding its success requires measurement. And hiring should be no different. The process doesn’t end after you’ve successfully fought to bring in who you believe will be the best new recruit. 

Revisiting the metrics you set out to hit - including time and money spent on the process, the performance of the individual doing the hiring, and the tenure and performance of the new hire - will be extremely valuable in informing future recruitment drives and benchmarking future candidates, as well as managing the performance of each new hire. 

Image of hiring success graphs

Your six-step checklist for better hires:

Use the template below to help you implement this checklist for your next hire. If you tick every box, you will be well on your way to implementing a great hiring strategy that sees you beyond your immediate need and helps you build the team you need for future success.

  1. Think outside the jobseeker box: Have you considered other alternative avenues for finding the right candidate
  2. Understand the who, why and what: What drives the need for this position and who would be the ideal match for the team
  3. Sell your employer value proposition: How will your business appeal to potential candidates? Is this represented in your website and elsewhere?
  4. Aim to hire the best team, not just the best talent: What characteristics will make the candidate a good fit for the team?
  5. Make the process simple and fast but effective: How can we hire quickly and effectively for this role? What essential steps are included and what isn’t needed
  6. Measure your hiring success: How and when can we revisit this placement to measure success? What will we measure?

With Xref, clients make smarter, more confident hiring decisions. Xref helps HR and recruitment professionals across the globe make smarter and faster hiring decisions. Through our innovative automated reference checking platform, our customers collect 60% more feedback from referees, gain insightful analytics and can detect referencing fraud, giving them more confidence in recruitment decisions they make. To learn how Xref works, send us an enquiry at Xref.com

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