The job of a recruitment officer is not as easy as it looks. It takes skills to dig through a resume and filter out what the company needs and doesn’t need. It takes a keen eye to spot inconsistencies with what was written down in the application and what the applicant is saying. Lastly, it takes experience in reading body language and other physical cues that show during the interview.
If you’re a small business owner moonlighting as human resources, here are a few tips on how to successfully hire the best people for the job.
1. Know the Role
What does the job entail? Is there an existing job description or did you just wing it in the past? When a position in your company opens up, having a clearly defined job description will help you get the best person for it. List down all the duties and responsibilities of the position so applicants will know more or less if they’re fit for the job. You also have to know the subtle differences of various jobs, such as the difference between a technical writer and a blog writer or the distinction between sound engineer and audio technician.
2. Dissect the Resume
Many people pad their resumes, hoping human resources won’t practice due diligence to check it. Take the time to scrutinize every detail and check all available resources. Call past employers, but don’t call references with mobile phone numbers listed. Instead, call the head office or the HR department to check the applicant’s bonafides. If all checks out, schedule an interview.
3. The Picture Test
Many HR practitioners make the mistake of judging applicants based on what photo they attach. It’s just human nature. Try not to judge, because attached photos don’t really say much about someone because these are “posed” shots that often go through post processing software. Also, be wary of photos that are more than a year old. Resume photos should be recent, not college graduation photos.
4. Get Help From Social Media
If a picture is worth a thousand words, social media pictures are worth millions. Don’t be afraid to use social media to cross check the backgrounds of people you want working for you. Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn often give you a window to their lives that resumes can’t. Here, you will see any red flags in the attitude of prospective employees. If what you see and read doesn’t align with your company’s core values, move on.
5. The Phone Interview
You can learn a lot about a prospect just by talking on the phone. It’s hard to fake enthusiasm, and you may be able to detect subtle shifts in tone if people are interested in the job or not. Just like the actual interview, you must prepare a set of introductory and probing questions to filter out candidates you want to invite for a face-to-face interview.
6. The Sit Down
The moment will come when you have to sit down with shortlisted candidates. before scheduling an interview, you must have a set of questions ready and write down all responses for your evaluation. You should also have a set of criteria written down, such as professionalism, enthusiasm, personal hygiene, etc. It’s all up to what you want in an employee, so the more check marks the candidate has, the better his/her chances are at landing the job.
7. Body Language
Body language says a lot about prospective candidates, their reaction to a question and what they feel. Crossed arms are a defensive gesture. Leaning back can mean he/she isn’t that interested. Leaning forward shows over eagerness. Tapping of toes, drumming fingers or twirling hair are signs of nervous energy. Maintaining eye contact is a good sign.
Choosing the best people for your company is always a challenge, and sometimes, even the best recruitment officers won’t be able to tell slackers from superstars. Hopefully, the tips above can help you find the perfect candidate. Good luck!