Since the height of the coronavirus pandemic, there has been a shortage of skilled workers across all industries in the country.
You’ve likely experienced this shortage within your own organization — usually it’s a scarcity of frontline employees needed to man the registers, prepare food and keep shelves stocked. And if you’re a business owner, you’ve no doubt undergone an extensive selection processes to find the perfect candidates. This is a process repeated over and over at chains throughout the industry. However, while you may assume the skills shortage is to blame for the high number of open jobs, hiring expert Scott Wintrip, founder of Wintrip Consulting Group, said the real problem is businesses believe a dangerous set of myths around hiring, and these myths could be hurting your recruiting and hiring processes.
“In both good times and bad, there have never been enough qualified job candidates to go around,” said Wintrip, who is also the author of “High Velocity Hiring: How to Hire Top Talent in an Instant.” “But this talent shortage hasn’t stopped some companies from filling their jobs quickly and keeping them filled. These businesses aren’t just lucky. Rather, they have rejected the old ideas of hiring that continue to slow down many organizations today.”
Wintrip outlined four myths that hiring managers need to overcome to attract top talent.
The skills shortage is the cause of hiring delays.
Hiring delays indicate a problem with the selection process, not a talent flow issue. Since there are never enough qualified candidates, savvy leaders have realized they can’t engage in the old way of hiring that involves keeping a job open until the right person shows up. Instead, these leaders have made fast, accurate hiring a strategic imperative. They require managers to engage in the new way of hiring: actively cultivating top talent and then waiting for the right job to become available. A job becoming available is a when situation — not an if situation.
Hiring is exclusively an HR function.
While HR plays a vital role in hiring, retailers that fill jobs quickly understand hiring is a team sport. Instead of treating hiring as an HR function exclusively, the most successful companies view employee selection as a leadership function supported by HR (and the talent acquisition team, if there is one). Everyone has a role, and under this framing, hiring managers communicate and make hiring decisions swiftly, while HR and the talent acquisition team supply talent and facilitate the process. Everyone, from the top down, generates talent through networking and requesting referrals.
You must hire slowly and fire quickly.
This business cliché is almost always bad advice, Wintrip said. Chains that are slow to hire operate out of fear of making a bad choice. They have experienced the consequences of poor hiring. To avoid this mistake, they slow down the hiring process, believing speed and accuracy are mutually exclusive.
As a result, talented candidates move on, and open jobs remain open. To counter this myth, progressive leaders have adopted a new mantra: Be fast to hire and quick to inspire. They mandate a hiring process that promotes rapid decision-making and the nurturing of employee relationships.
This is how it’s always been done, so it must be right.
Many organizations keep doing things the same way, even if that way is ineffective.
For example, some companies have unwritten rules, such as reviewing a slate of eight to 10 candidates before hiring, even when a highly qualified candidate is identified among the first few candidates.
“Be willing to change and evolve because you may get impressive results by trying something new,” Wintrip said. “The skilled worker shortage will only become more noticeable in the future. As globalization increases, borders will matter less, creating a talent competition unlike anything we’ve ever seen. It’s crucial to disengage from those myths around hiring that prevent you from efficiently finding good employees.”
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