Latest numbers from the Department of Labor (DOL) reveal a strong, steady job market. Unemployment is holding firm at a remarkable 4.9 percent with modest wage gains thrown in for good measure. It’s enough to make most Americans breathe a sigh of relief. But, perhaps, not hiring managers.
Over the years, we’ve discussed several ways to improve your chances of attracting the best job candidates in a competitive job market. Working on your company brand, improving your recruiting tactics and perfecting your interview skills are some. But what about your time-to-hire? Are your competitors beating you to the punchline?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) recently revealed the time-to-hire has increased. Today, the average employer takes 27 days to hire a new employee, which is 3.5 days more than last year. A separate Glassdoor study finds, not surprisingly, more complex jobs are taking longer to fill. Industry and size of company tend to play a role, too—private companies hire faster than public companies and both trump government time to hire; and big companies take longer to hire than smaller companies.
The Glassdoor study highlights an interesting phenomenon in the tech industry, though. Upper-level jobs like software engineers take 35 days to hire, well above the general average. But equally critical—yet specialized—positions like iOS developers, .NET developers and Java developers are hired, usually, in two weeks or less. Why?
“Employers face a tradeoff: The longer they take to screen candidates, the better matches they get,” study author Dr. Andrew Chamberlain told ITWORLD. “But that’s at the cost of possibly losing candidates to other employers if those delays drag on too long. Java, .NET and iOS developers are among the tightest labor markets in the nation today, and that likely explains the shorter hiring times reported for these candidates. Although these are highly skilled positions that usually take longer to hire, it’s likely employers are moving quickly to avoid losing top candidates to their competitors.”
This lesson can be applied across many different industries. When hiring for a high-demand position, time is of the essence. Here are some of the top trends when it comes to reducing time-to-hire.
- Understanding ban the box and fair chance hiring: Increasing laws against discrimination of those with criminal backgrounds has shifted background screening to the end of the hiring In order to not hold up the process, it’s important to know how these changing laws affect you (to start, you can download this resource guide).
- Ripping a page from the “hackathon” playbook: To qualify or eliminate a group of candidates at one time, some traditional organizations are creating competitions or tests like those common among startups hiring Hackathons are sessions with specifically designed job-related challenges to test candidates and fill in crucial tech positions on a company’s roster quickly.
- Pre-recorded video interviews: GreenJobInterview points out this interesting alternative to the often-dreaded phone interview process, stating, “In the time a recruiter would normally take to screen one candidate, they can view 10 recorded video interviews [with candidates answering questions submitted by the hiring manager] and share them with their colleagues.” Software specifically designed for video interviewing can help take the kinks out of the process.
- Employee referrals: According to a recent Jobvite survey, job candidates found through referrals are hired 55 percent faster than those who come through career sites. What’s more, these new employees start their new position sooner than their counterparts, and they’re more likely to stay at an organization longer than three years.
- Enlisting help: Consider this—Nearly 60 percent of recruiters use social media to find candidates Do you have time to scour Twitter? Didn’t think so. Find out where in the hiring process you are falling behind and enlist help in that area. Outside recruiters can help find and screen candidates, for instance, while application processes and resume software can help you get organized.
What is the biggest time-killer in your hiring process? Do you think you’d conduct more hires if you could be quicker to the draw? Let us know your thoughts!
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