Art of Hiring Smart

Independent Banker, April 1998 | Go to article overview
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Art of Hiring Smart


Match the right person to the job and save thousands of dollars

Hiring employees is undoubtedly one of management's greatest challenges. Successful hiring can propel a bank into greatness, while hiring mistakes may cause a lot of headaches. As hotel magnate J.W. Marriott once said: "Start with good people who are right for the job, train them and motivate them, give them an opportunity for advancement, and your organization will succeed." Ironically, however, most hiring decisions are made in the first four minutes of the interview, and most are made instinctively on "gut feel" alone. With th, cost of turnover pegged at some $10,000 per incident, as determined by the Saratoga Institute of Los Angeles, businesses want to make sure they hire right.

Many community banks employ a flawed "post selection system" in hiring employees. Finding the right employees for these companies can be difficult. Traditionally, companies hire on competent individuals, then fire because a person's skills don't fit their job. Much of this is due to faulty information-employees with exaggerated resumes, poor reference checks, hiring based on instinct and poor job matching.

To improve hiring practices, companies should employ a strategy using winning interview techniques, in-depth background checking and professional assessment of applicants.

Often when the wrong person gets hired, the interviewer did not get the whole picture. Applicant resumes, references, education, past employment records and interviews provide good but limited information, but this is only the tip of the iceberg. To improve hiring decisions you must look beneath the surface by adding a solid assessment program, says Chuck Russell, author of Right Person--Right Job, Guess or Know?

To evaluate a candidate's job fitness, the prospective employer must evaluate the total person. This challenge comprises three important categories: the candidate's mental abilities, motivation and interests, and personal characteristics as they relate to the job.

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