There are many times when a company finds itself with an urgent need to hire a key employee. Their current staff may be overextended, a new client or project may require new talent, or a key employee leaves unexpectedly and a critical hole in the organization needs to be filled quickly. This is when the most costly hiring mistakes can occur. Too often, hiring managers are so anxious to put a body in the vacant chair that they overlook the flaws in potential candidates and end up hiring someone who really doesn’t fill the bill.
One of our clients had a critical role to fill and they hired John. John seemed savvy and negotiated an excellent compensation package (partly by overstating his qualifications). The hiring manager didn’t have him take the standard personality or skills tests; from his resume he seemed to have all the right work experience and seemed able to “do everything we need him to do.” They didn’t even bother to check his references – he was with his last company for five years, so he must have been successful, right?
Note that during this screening process, they overlooked another candidate who would have been perfect for the position, but who was snatched up by another company.
Following the hire, the company spent the next three months using company resources to train and integrate this new employee. In fact, their investment was growing by the day. The thought of cutting their losses and terminating this new strategic hire was unpalatable. Management became committed to making this new hire work, dumping more resources into this employee while good employees recognized this new manager was a bad hire and began to feel alienated, underappreciated, and overlooked.
After 12 months, senior management finally decided it was time to terminate this senior hire. However, by this time the new hire had bonded with a number of clients and created a divisive, “side-taking” environment with staff members. Firing him upset both employees and clients, many of whom opted to follow him to his next job.
The result of this one bad hire was extremely costly. Not only did the company lose the cost of his salary and the resources to train him, but in the end it cost those employees and clients as well.
The PCG Solution:
By seeking outside resources like PCG to help with recruiting, a client can substantially cut the time and effort required to identify and hire the right candidate. We worked with this client to define the criteria needed to fill this strategic role, determine the type of candidate who would best fit the corporate culture, and what the company’s expectations were regarding this specific role. We also implemented a number of checks and balances to vet potential candidates to make sure that he or she would be a good match for the job. As part of our service, Pacific Crest Group also was able to identify a handful of likely candidates that seemed to be a good fit for this key position.
When it came time to fill this position again, we had already laid the foundation for a successful hire. Now it was just a matter of finding candidates with the right credentials and truly vetting them through the processes we already had established.
Where PCG Created Value:
• Worked with the client to define the criteria for making a strategic hire.
• Created systems to vet the candidate to determine if he or she had the right credentials and would be a good fit for the organization.
• Identified a number of potential candidates who would meet the immediate needs of the company and could grow with their changing needs.
• Documented the criteria, screening process, policies and procedures to simplify the hiring process to fill the role again.