If you feel you can kick back after handing employment papers to a new employee, then think again. As the recruiter, it would help if you know you made a bad hire so that you could avoid the same mistakes before hiring the next candidate in line.
Unfortunately, knowing whether you picked the right candidate can be quite tricky, as the effects of a bad hiring decision don’t show up until after months, sometimes years, into recruitment. By this time, your company would have wasted precious time training and retraining the newbie.
From there, a domino effect happens, which then disrupts the workforce production and schedule of deliverables to clients and customers. Meanwhile, the monetary cost of a bad hire is another thing. Some data show that companies lose anywhere from three to five times the annual salary paid to that employee.
And then the inevitable happens: you finally come to terms that the candidate is not the right fit for your company. Although there’s really no foolproof hiring strategy when it comes to recruiting a team of people, you can, fortunately, turn things around.
Here are some steps you could do to help you control the damage and put you – or the candidate – back on track:
Making a bad hire, while costly and frustrating, is not the end of the world. Rather, an opportunity to make things right.
Admit that you made a mistake instead of blaming others. When you take full responsibility for what happened, you also develop the proper mindset that there’s a pressing situation you need to deal with head-on. In contrast, when you blame somebody else, your emotions could get the better of you and affect your judgment as you decide what to do next.
For your next move, do you give the underperforming candidate another shot or do you find a replacement right away? Before firing a problem employee, think of other options first.
What are the chances of coaching the employee to success? Review the skill set of that individual and check which project or department could make use of it. Whether you choose to reassign or replace the employee, don’t waste any time doing it.
Identify the source of the problem
At this point, you need to ponder what factors resulted in the bad hire in the first place. Go back to your hiring history and check if the applicant slipped through an important stage in the recruitment process.
Was the candidate informed of every bit of detail regarding nature of work, job responsibilities, rules and policies, performance assessment, and such other expectations? If so, determine what causes the employee’s poor performance. Is it personal issues, culture fit mismatch, or lack of skills?
The answers to these questions can then help you see and address any loopholes in your organization’s screening or recruitment SOPs. Perhaps you need a recruitment consultant, or you have to update your hiring tools? Make a list of all problems you discover and come up with an action plan for each of those problem areas.
Discuss the situation
After doing all those checks and balances, take the time to meet with the employee and discuss his or her status with the company. Discuss the pending reassignment thoroughly if applicable. Otherwise, apologize that things didn’t work out well and credit the employee’s hard work and contributions to the company.
In the same way, you should also let the other members of the team know what’s going on and the necessary actions you will be taking to resolve the issue with the employee concerned. You could also ask for their feedback and encourage them to cooperate with your decision.
Finally, look for the right hire!
Now that you got everything sorted out, it’s time to make the right hire with these strategies:
Hire for growth
Your end goal for hiring should always be the growth, progress, and success of the company. That said, your hiring decisions should be guided by the highest standards of excellence.
You need to rely on recruitment specialists to do all the necessary legwork, invest in the right tools and resources, and stick to every hiring policy and procedure you have in place.
Be very specific about your needs for the position
Don’t be surprised how much of a difference it makes to specify all the nitty-gritty of the job position you’re trying to fill.
Describe every single duty and identify the special skills you need for a particular role to the dot so that when candidates recognize that there’s at least one part of the job description that does not fall under their qualifications, you immediately get every potential bad hire out of the way.
Ask for referrals
If your company hasn’t launched an employee referral program yet, this might be the right time to have one right now. Your current employees can never be happy enough to think of the possibility of working with someone they know and trust very well.
In the same manner, referred candidates are more likely to warm up more easily to a work environment where they can have a strong social support.
Partner with the right recruitment agency
One of the best strategies to get the perfect employee for your company is to partner with a high-performing recruitment firm. This allows your company to get qualified, in-demand skilled candidates in a shorter period without breaking the bank.
Lessons to Learn
Bad hires are not unique to any one organization, but it’s not a welcome one either. It’s a costly mistake involving time, money, productivity, and continuity that your business cannot afford much.
You need to understand though that everyone goes through this slump, thinking they were pretty sure when they made that decision that they had the right candidate in front of them.
Hopefully, you learn a valuable lesson or two and find your way out of making bad hires for good.
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