While the number of job openings continues to rise, companies are taking increasingly longer to extend offers to applicants. The Wall Street Journal reports that U.S. employers are taking an average of 25 days to fill vacant positions. Large companies with 5,000 or more employees report taking nearly 60 days to fill job vacancies.
So what’s behind this lagging hiring pace?
One reason behind this trend is intensified pre-hire screening. Organizations are spending more time checking up on applicants' skills and references, and these deeper checks often take a considerable amount of time.
So what can you do to speed up the talent acquisition and hiring process?
Consider Your ApproachReference checks are an essential part of the hiring process, but the traditional method of calling each reference for an interview uses up a lot of time and resources. Many human resources professionals report spending days to reach certain candidate’s references. Fortunately, technology has helped pave a new approach that speeds up these pre-hire checkups.
Automated reference checking is one solution that can drastically cut your hire time. Instead of wasting days on reference checking each candidate, hiring managers or recruiters can spend as little as a couple of minutes on each applicant. Survey links are emailed to the candidate who then emails his or her references a survey link. References can then provide their feedback at their convenience.
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Devote More Time to Your Job DescriptionsBefore you ever begin advertising an open position, spend some time carefully crafting an accurate job description. What sort of person are you looking for? What type of skills should they have? U.S. News and World Report suggests that the high number of job openings available and lower hiring numbers indicate a skills mismatch. Employers have jobs available, but they are not finding the right people for those positions.
One reason for this mismatch is that employers are sometimes advertising positions without being very clear about what they are looking for in job applicants. Rather than sift through piles of resumes from unqualified candidates, take the time to develop a solid description of what the position requires and the knowledge and skills a candidate must have. By developing a highly specific description of the position, you will be more likely to get applications from high-quality candidates.
Streamline Your Pre-Hire ScreeningIf the job requires some type of clear qualification, certification or experience, you can dramatically lower your hiring time by streamlining the qualification process. Rather than having to review all candidates’ resumes one-by-one, take advantage of most ATS technologies that allows you to screen many applicants at once. Pre-hire screening software allows employers to save much time by administering an online screen that can even be completed off-site. Such software also allows hiring managers to create quick and easy-to-read profiles of each candidate to determine who would be best suited to the position.
What strategies do you use to speed up your hiring process?