Are you looking to improve your hiring process? Looking to move beyond the traditional approach? Well, consider this an anti-guide of what not to do. Don’t do anything on this list, and you’re well on your way to running a modern, ethical hiring process.
Here’s how to make it painfully difficult to hire someone, in 15 easy steps!
Don't plan the hiring process or get your ducks in a row - just make it up as you go along. What are the steps of the process? What are they measuring? Who is responsible for them? How long will they take? What’s the cost? What feedback will the candidate receive? Don’t figure any of this - just wing it.
Create a generic job description that is just a laundry list of tools, many of which aren't needed and you don't even have. Ideally, dig up an ad that the last hiring manager used 4 years ago and just recycle that. For the love of God, do NOT put the salary on the job ad. Pay transparency? No Way José
Add old school requirements to your job ad like a bachelors degree (yes, that ACCY101 subject from 2008 is going to be essential for this senior product manager role). No in fact, let’s make that minimum ‘masters’ degree.
Don't give candidates any actual information they want to know before applying (who's in their team, day in the life of the role, how they'll be measured etc.). Keep your cards close to your chest and gradually reveal it as you go.
Get someone with no experience in the role to scan the CVs for a few seconds looking for buzzwords, and then reject anyone who doesn't fit what they were looking for
Blame the market conditions when you struggle to get candidates. ‘Unemployment is too low’, ‘Candidates are too picky’, ‘Big tech has moved in so they’re getting all the best candidates’. Yes it’s definitely those things, and it’s not your crap job.
If 6. fails, blame your recruiter for not delivering good candidates. ‘I just can’t understand why the 5 agencies we have on contingency just aren’t delivering.’
Do unstructured interviews where each candidate is asked random different things, most of which have nothing really to do with the job, no right answer, no scoring rubric and the candidate performance is incomparable. +1 if the person asking the questions also has no idea themselves.
Don't like a candidate, but can't really say why? Just some vague notion that you don’t like them? Don't worry - just play your ultimate get-out-jail-card: 'Sorry, they're just not the right cultural fit'.
Ghost candidates post-interview without any feedback, especially if you have already promised to get ‘back to them by close of business at the latest’.
Finally get a candidate to offer-stage and lowball them. Go so, so low, because ‘negotiation’, that’s why.
Then ask them for a bunch of references as a tick-and-flick exercise - yes, it’s really important to know what their boss from 5 years ago at their part-time McDonalds job thought about their ‘ability to work in a team environment’.
Automate nothing - make sure every step is as manual as possible. Screening, interview scheduling, following up candidates, testing etc. Automation is evil - it’s much better to get that non-existent, nice, human touch.
Measure NOTHING - just use your gut and wing it, especially if your organisation is 'data-driven'. Please, please ignore all training you've had on bias - other people are biased, but not you.
Wrap it up by posting the ad on LinkedIn after 1 month of failure and say 'No recruiters please' because you definitely know best!
I wouldn't dream of hiring somebody in a technical role without doing that technical assessment because the number of times where I've had candidates either on paper on the CV, say, I'm a SQL expert or in an interview, saying, I'm brilliant at Excel, I'm brilliant at this. And you actually put them in front of a computer, say, do this task. And some people really struggle. So you have to have that technical assessment.
Mike Yates, The British Psychological Society (Head of Data & Analytics)