5 Top Worst Recruitment Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

By Tim Jarrett on Apr 01, 2019

All good recruiters should know that the people within a business are the most important assets to it. Today, it is more critical than ever to hire the right people for the right roles and one of the biggest advantages a recruiter can have is the ability to determine how to attract these valuable candidates.

Some of the biggest mistakes made in recruitment can be those that are delicate in nature, made often without knowing they’re mistakes – let’s take a look at five of the worst and see how to avoid them.

1.      Hiring the right person for the wrong job

This common mistake recruiters make is a frustrating one that can go horribly wrong for both the company and the candidate. Sometimes, a great candidate can be hard to let go. Placing this great candidate in a position that they didn’t apply for just because you didn’t want to let them go can interfere with the expectations of both them and the business.

This isn’t going to bode well for your reputation as a recruiter. The rule of thumb should dictate that you put more effort into finding a great candidate for the specific role and the right role for your great candidate, not hire them on-the-spot for the wrong job because you like them.

Recruiting takes effort and the best recruiters spend time getting to know both the roles they’re recruiting and the candidates they have for them. Remember that not all candidates are fully truthful on their CVs and it takes time and patience to accurately assess each one.

2.      Not defining the position accurately

This is a common mistake made in HR departments and recruiting agencies all over the country. Roles need to be defined clearly and accurately to avoid attracting the wrong candidates. Another result of this mistake is that it creates frustration for the successful candidate starting the position with another set of expectations.

Clear and precise definition of role and associated responsibilities is far more likely to attract the type of candidate suited to the role and likely to stay in it . It doesn’t have to be complex, but the job role should be clearly laid out. Some recruiters add to this mistake and make it worse by flowering the position and making it sound better than it is. This leads to high expectations that in reality may never be fulfilled.

3.      Not asking the right questions during the interview

There are traditional, stock questions that many interviewers stick to, rinse and repeat – time and again. This also gives candidates the chance to have a neat stock response to fire back. Then, the interviewer is left only with his set of stock answers and his instincts to select the right candidate.

Changing the interview tactic is vital. Questions that incorporate company insights and role specifics can invite greater thought from the candidate and offer a different perspective to the interviewer of the candidate’s suitability for a particular role. This might include the ability to think on their feet, for example, which is a handy insight to have during an interview situation for a role that requires quick thinking.

4.      Failing to properly follow up

Candidates (especially the great ones) aren’t going to wait around for weeks for your contact. Recruitment agencies surprisingly make this common mistake and lose candidates fast.

If you don’t have a proper follow-up process, this will happen to the best candidates, as they’ll likely be on the books of other agencies too. Staying in touch with candidates throughout the recruitment journey is vital to keep up momentum, even if there’s little to tell at that stage. Encouraging candidates to talk and engaging them in ordinary conversation can build a relationship that offers genuine, useful insights into their personalities and previous employment experiences.

5.      Recruiting against your instincts

Every recruiter has made this mistake, of that there is little doubt. A candidate may be exactly the right fit for the job on paper, but if something doesn’t feel right at the interview – go with it and find out why before you make this crucial decision.

It may be that the candidate could do the job but won’t fit in with the rest of your staff in that department. Getting the right person for the job for the long-term is critical. It’s never a given that a team will get along, but a good recruiter takes that aspect into account. Trust your instincts and don’t ignore the gut feeling that a candidate isn’t right for the role, no matter how urgently you need it filled.

How can you avoid making recruitment mistakes?

Recruitment is about looking at the whole picture – the company, the current staff, the role, the candidates and their qualifications, experience and personality. Matching candidates to roles is the core focus in the recruitment industry and creating an experience that is smooth, efficient and effective for both candidates and employers is the key to success.

With the competition hot in the recruitment industry today, many agencies and HR departments are turning to automation to help keep track of their burgeoning books. Using recruitment software can make the day-to-day administration much lighter and offer more time to spend with candidates and employers to gain the vital insights (and avoid making the mistakes) we’ve talked about here.

Talk to Vacancy Lab today about how we can help you to avoid these common recruitment mistakes in your company.

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