The goal of every company when it comes to hiring is to bring on board the best candidates in the marketplace.
However, doing so involves a certain level of complexity for a number of different reasons. One of those reasons is this: the best candidates in the market don’t stick around for long.
What exactly does that mean?
It means that passive superstar candidates who make the decision to change jobs and pursue other employment opportunities have plenty of options. Specifically, they’re likely to interview with more than one company. As a result, chances are good that more than one company will make an offer to them.
What it comes down to is time. The longer a company’s hiring process lasts, the less likely that company will be able to hire a top candidate.
So what exactly is the timeframe that we’re talking about?
Let’s make the starting point not when the job is being advertised and/or given to an executive recruiting firm. The starting point should be when the best candidates are officially part of the hiring process (i.e., their resume comes across the hiring manager’s desk and they’re under consideration).
When that happens, the time it takes to make a hiring decision should be between two and three weeks.
Does that seem to be a little too fast? It might to you, but to the candidates who are part of the process, it does not. And let’s face it: if you want to hire one of the best candidates, then you must view the process from their point of view.
Once these candidates are part of the hiring process, if a decision has not been made by the fourth (and especially by the fifth) week, chances are extremely good that they’ll be gone.
Keep in mind that they’re not going to call you and say, “You guys took too long. You don’t have to consider me anymore.”
That’s not the way it works. They’re simply going to mentally “check out” of your hiring process. To their way of thinking, if your company isn’t in the habit of moving quickly and confidently when looking to fill important positions, then perhaps it isn’t in the habit of moving quickly and confidently when it comes to other matters.
You could be in the sixth or seventh week, thinking about bringing them back for a final interview or perhaps even about making them an offer, and they’re already interviewing with other companies or have even accepted an offer from your competition.
A long, drawn-out hiring process does NOT make a good impression on superstar candidates. It’s not engaging enough to convince them that your organization is the one they should ultimately choose. When A-players “check out” of the process, then only B-players and C-players remain.
How long is your hiring process? Is it tailored to attract and engage the best candidates? Speed-to-hire is one of the most crucial elements in talent acquisition, and if your organization is lacking in this area, it could be lacking in the quality of people it’s bringing on board.
We help support careers in one of two ways: 1. By helping to find the right opportunity when the time is right, and 2. By helping to recruit top talent for the critical needs of organizations. If this is something you would like to explore further, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.