Mistakes we should avoid in recruitment

Onboarding the right people into the team is key to success. Now more than ever, talent is scarce, so it’s imperative to avoid the following mistakes in recruitment.

In recent months we have seen a drastic change in the labour market. This translates into a lack of talent in the face of growing demand from SaaS startups.

In this sense, having a good recruitment process is more important than ever. For this reason, we cannot afford to make mistakes that can be easily avoided. This can cost us losing star candidates and, in some cases, leave a bad impression of our company.

After working with several SaaS companies, we have created a list of recruitment mistakes to avoid –

Overlooking internal promotion

It is not uncommon for some startups to start an external recruitment process only to realise that there is a qualified person internally for the position. This usually happens after contacting and interviewing external candidates.

Not determining the profiles clearly

Having a clear definition of the profile we want to hire is key for the selection process to be successful.

Throughout the process there may be clarifications in the profile. This is not unusual and will not affect the success of the process. However, we must avoid making substantial changes, as this creates uncertainty and a bad image towards the candidates. Not only this, but we will have also lost the resources invested.

Another point worth mentioning is that it is essential that all the people taking part in this process are aligned with the profile they are looking for. And I would like to emphasise this point because it is not an unusual error. As an HR consultancy, we have worked with companies where the different agents that took part in the recruitment process differed in the definition of the profile. How? HR provided us with completely different feedback from that we received from the head of the department (sales department, in this case), prioritising different aspects of the role.

Obsessing with finding the unicorn

Focus on what is really important. What does the company need? What does the team need? We cannot avoid looking for the ideal profile, our unicorn, but the chances of finding a candidate who absolutely meets all the requirements are low.

So, select your priorities – 2 or 3 requirements – and consider the rest as a “nice to have”.

We have seen companies lose very good candidates because they have not been able to step back and see the big picture in time. Some teams are so focused on meeting certain secondary requirements that by the time they realise the value that candidate can bring, another company has jumped in and the candidate has already accepted the offer. This is one of the most common recruitment mistakes.

Inefficient recruitment process

To avoid recruitment mistakes, it is essential to have a structured process, with clear objectives and a good strategy.

In order to make sure we get a good candidate experience, we must avoid:

Lack of planning of the stages in the selection process

What does this person need to accomplish and when does this person need to be onboarded to achieve these goals? If we fail at this point, we will end up performing the process in a hurry and it is possible that we won’t achieve the objectives set.

Overextended selection processes

A very common mistake is creating selection processes that are too long. We will have to adapt based on the responsibility of the position. If we are talking about hiring an SDR (Sales Development Representative), for example, we should adopt a process no longer than 2-3 interviews.

You should be flexible and efficient. If it’s possible to do two interviews in one, do it! And if the candidate you have interviewed is your unicorn, do not hesitate and move forward ASAP. In fact, we recently presented a candidate to a Fintech. He received an offer after the first interview!

Wanting to see more candidates

It is understandable that we want to see what else is on the market. But it is a luxury that we cannot afford, even less so when we find a good candidate. In recruitment, time is money. We have seen on several occasions how startups have lost candidates due to a lack of speed in the final decision.

Focus only on active candidates

In my opinion, being a recruiter has many similarities to being a salesperson. One of the similarities is that we must not be satisfied with receiving applications, but we must also headhunt.

It is true that headhunting takes time, and in this regard it can be very useful to turn to an HR consultant such as Outbound People.

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Want to read more fresh content about the role of an SDR and sales teams? Check out more articles.