Time kills all deals! The same is true in recruiting. The longer you wait the greater the likelihood that the candidate will have found another job or lost interest…because they figure you have lost interest. The key is to get the candidates in as soon as possible to start interviewing. Taking your time to get candidates into the interview process kills their enthusiasm and makes it harder for you to SELL the organization. Most organizations take forever to interview candidates after they are identified. How long does it take you to start interviewing after you identify a viable candidate? (Seriously: Look at your last two hires and calculate the time!)
The selection process MUST move to the top of the priority list when vacancies occur…short of getting the job done for your customers. Normally hiring is viewed as an annoyance because we “have a job to do” and hiring creates “extra work.” Yes you do have a job to do…but then you better do whatever it takes to get those candidates in quickly and move them through the process…even if it means weekend or evening interviews. Besides, candidates love evenings and weekends because they do not have to take off of work and you can still get your job done. Often, candidates can’t do phone screens during the day anyway because we have moved to a cubicle environment and it is impossible for them to talk.
Keep this in mind…the sooner you hire someone the sooner you will have the people needed so you don’t have to kill yourself working excessive hours. It’s a question of “pay me now or pay me later.” Candidates will love you if you do evening and weekend interviews. They will see you as flexible, pragmatic and accommodating. All traits you want project to candidates when selling your organization.
If you chose not to do weekend or evening interviews, you need to clear schedules during the day to get candidates in. Don’t delay because certain people are traveling or out for a day…find substitutes! Bunch your interviews so candidates are coming in to meet with you relatively close together. Get your interviews completed and avoid that distraction. It also enables you to better compare your candidates.
The key is SPEED. Days can turn into weeks and weeks turn into months very quickly. While time passes your spot sits open with nobody doing the job AND you look indecisive or inept to the candidate. Traits that clearly don’t help you sell the organization!