Why your vacancy has been open for so long?

With competition for candidates in all disciplines and at all levels so intense I hear and see numerous companies and their hiring managers struggling to fill their vacancies.

Naturally, they are frustrated with a lack of potential candidates and, in many cases, find recruitment a distraction from their core activity. The lack of progress only serves to demotivate the hiring manager in terms of tackling the recruitment problem. 

And this is at the root of the long-standing vacancy.

With the perception of very few candidates, a common tendency is to hone in one candidate and become entirely reliant on successfully hiring that person. 

It feels like the right thing to do. It doesn’t take too much time away from core activity. And there aren’t any other candidates anyway. Or so the narrative goes!

But the underlying problem is that you aren’t exploring other candidates simultaneously

So when the person you have initially engaged with withdraws from the process, declines your offer, takes another position, or is successfully counter-offered by their present employer you are back to square one. And in a hot candidate market, all four of those negative outcomes are more likely.

The time lost in an unsuccessful recruitment process is usually vastly underestimated. Three months is fairly typical. So if you go through this process twice in succession you may well have had a vacancy for six months or more and be no closer to recruiting than you were on day one.

So what’s the alternative?

Play the numbers game. From my extensive experience around 1 in 7 people approached will be seriously interested in your vacancy (assuming they are carefully targeted). So if you want to be choosing between a shortlist of three you need to approach 21 people initially. Or put it another way: if you approach and engage just one candidate you have a 1 in 7 chance of hiring them. 

This level of intensity of multiple approaches will be demanding but vastly improves your chances of recruiting a quality candidate in a sensible amount of time. You will have a far greater sense of control and be more confident your recruitment is heading towards a positive conclusion.

If you need some help with this approach feel free to call me on +44 (0)7946 577145.