I really liked him, but I'd like to talk to a few more people before I make my decision . . .
Such is the feedback commonly heard in the recruiting world after the first interview takes place. There's something about human nature that makes us want to "shop around" and compare our options. The problem with this, when dealing with people, is that the more time that passes between each contact with a candidate (time we’re spending shopping around), the more doubts will tend to arise within that candidate’s mind.
Frequently, this is the only candidate in the process at a given moment, and while a client is looking for additional candidates with whom to talk, this one may be lost to another company with which he or she is interviewing. Keep in mind, if he or she is interviewing with you, chances are high that he or she is also interviewing elsewhere. So, how do you prevent this from happening? Have three to five candidates to talk with in a very short timeframe. This way you can interview simultaneously, rule out the weakest, move forward with your top two, and eventually hire the best fit for you. Having done your due diligence, you know what the market has to offer, and you’re confident that you’ve made a great hire.
In order to do this, you must have an effective sourcing strategy in place. Where will you get your candidates? Will you engage a recruiting firm? Multiple recruiting firms? Do you have an internal HR team that actively recruits talent for your organization? Do you have your own professional network of potential candidates? Do you get referrals from internal employees? These are all good options.
My advice is to use whatever strategy delivers qualified candidates. But do not start the process with one candidate until you have multiple people with whom to talk. This way you can make your comparisons while also keeping your hiring process moving forward in a timely manner.
If you’re using a recruiting firm, make sure that they’re aware of your desire to speak with multiple candidates within the same timeframe. If you’re referred to someone or find someone on your own, let them know that you are very early in your search process and put off an initial interview until you have multiple people with whom to talk. Once you have one qualified candidate, use all available resources to get a couple more. All too often, we’ve seen clients lose that first candidate due to their desire to speak with others — only to realize that the first candidate was the one they should have hired all along.
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