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The Bad Hire Blues

Admit it—bad hires come back to haunt you. You may have a well-organized and rigorous interview process, but once that new hire signs on the line, it’s out of your hands.

In a year where unemployment has ebbed and flowed around the 9.5 percent mark, many companies were bitten by the “bad hire” bug and it cost them. CareerBuilder’s recent survey found that two-thirds of companies were adversely affected by a bad hire in 2010. Although the qualified candidates are indeed out there, often it’s the lack of resources, time and other factors that can lead to a poor hire. In fact, the urgent need to fill an open position was the most-cited reason for a poor hiring decision. And that’s not a good thing when 58 percent of the surveyed employers have an average cost per hire exceeding $1,000.

Bad hires have a significant impact on overall employee turnover in companies and can also have a negative effect on employee morale and productivity throughout the office. And as you prepare for the visit from the in-laws and that ball to drop on December 31st, what better time to shift your focus to improving your hiring practices for 2011? With the aid of TLNT.com, here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Put more time into the job opening itself. Often companies (especially larger ones) will create a basic job description, add the requirements, and then pass it on without thinking twice. This year, take the additional time to analyze all elements of the open position. Discuss it with the respective department—what the previous employee did right, what can be fixed, and what specific talents and attributes the incoming hire should have.

Channel your inner “detective”. It may be viewed as more relevant for positions involving financial or confidential information, but conducting background checks should be a priority for hiring moving forward. The cost of a poor hire with a less-than-ideal background can be a financial step backwards for you and your company and can be avoided with strict background check standards.

Put candidates on the hot seat. Don’t ask them what animal they would be. Or why. When you have a short amount of time to get to know a candidate, focus on the questions that will help you gauge their critical thinking skills, teamwork mentality, and creativity. They’ll be forced to answer quickly but you will surely get a better idea of how they approach obstacles and how they handle working in various situations.

And finally, have a happy holiday from all of us at Burchard & Associates! Enjoy your time with family, friends and loved ones!

Burchard & Associates provides a personal approach to accounting and tax recruitment for St. Louis and beyond. We are ready to listen to YOU.

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