Well, the “Summer” vacation is just about over and it’s back to earning a living. Hopefully, you are fired up and ready to reach for the stars. This issue is focusing on how prospective employers should treat and respect “star” candidates. Hopefully you are one of them.
Hiring Stars – What not to do
There’s a big difference in the pace of life between a developed country and a developing Caribbean country. T&T wants to reach developed status by the year 2020 and Jamaica has a deadline of 2030. One area that will probably be hardest to bring to developed status is the speed of doing business. Any business professional who has ever worked in North America or the UK/Europe will tell you that it is frustrating when Caribbean clients take a long time to make decisions (and it makes it hard to plan cash flow).
An example of this slow responsiveness can be seen in the hiring of staff. While I have not been a recruiter outside of Trinidad, I have experienced being a candidate in the UK. Over there, the recruiters in the agencies that I signed up with worked very fast (as we aim to do at CRS) and employers made their hiring decisions very quickly. This was necessary as good candidates would receive a choice of job offers with corresponding pressure to accept by a short deadline. I can remember trying to delay decisions or having to reject offers because the company I wanted to work with took longer than the rest to make their offer (it worked out in the end).
In the Caribbean as elsewhere, it’s always hard to find great candidates with a strong track record. Yet there are employers who appear to believe that they can take their time and that these “star” candidates will still be happily waiting around for them. The feedback we get from these top talents is that they feel ignored and disrespected, and this is a turn-off. So much so that even if they have not secured another job, they will turn down the offer from the slow moving company as this tardy response reflects badly on how the company operates.
Another huge turn-off to candidates is having to do repeated interviews. Two interviews is normal, three is OK for more senior people, but four or more and the recruiter has to bring all her persuasive powers to bear to get that candidate to turn up. So many interviews suggests that the employer does not value the candidate’s time or that they can’t make up their minds about them. Either way, it comes across as offensive, and believe me, it makes people ANGRY.
The final no-no in hiring top people is to make a lower offer than what was originally advertised. There was a case many years ago of a highly-skilled foreign yachtsman who CRS submitted for a position for which no locals had the qualifications. We told him the salary range given to us was very reasonable by local standards, though clearly much lower than what he was accustomed to earning. Anyway, after much persuasion he attended an interview. The hiring team were very excited as they had little prospect of seeing anyone else to fit their requirement. They made him an offer on the spot – about $2,000 below the minimum they had given us. Well, my man just got up, walked out, jumped on his yacht and sailed away, never to be seen again! That time, we were also the angry ones as we felt undermined and made to look unprofessional. Everyone lost!
When you are trying to woo rare talent (or any kind of talent) please respect their time and their sense of worth. It’s always an employee’s market when it comes to star candidates. Once insulted, they will never take the job and the company’s reputation will be put in question. Good luck with your head hunting!
Tell Us What You Think
(Referring to our last newsletter “Hiring Friends”)
A well written article, and should help reinforce that the correct process of recruitment could save much time and money over the long term. After all, if you recommend the person and they do not perform – who’s reputation is going to suffer??! … Susan
Appreciated the article, so relevant to my region, where someone is always a “good” friend or a distant relative who really needs a “job”. HR personnel have a hard time dissuading Department Managers etc to step back and allow the Company’s hiring policies and guidelines to run its course to enable the “best” person for the job to get the job. In a highly technical company HR personnel seems almost limited at times to push for transparency since they rely on the advice of the technical mangers to recommend the best candidate for the job, and they unfortunately are also often the same ones pushing for their “friends” etc to get the job… Tricia
Have you had an experience where hiring someone’s friend has turned out to be a disaster? Please tell us about it…. Susan
We would love to hear what you think of this issue of CRS News. And of course, if you have any suggestions for upcoming issues that you would like to share with us, please send those too.