It is a cliché, yet a true one nonetheless: time is both a precious commodity and of the essence when it comes to recruitment. Competition between organisations is ferocious right now, and any delays in making the right offer to the right applicant will likely result in you losing that candidate to another employer. But how long is too long, and what is the optimal time to hire?
According to LinkedIn, the average time to hire across all functions is 41 days. That’s the period from when a role goes live and interviews are scheduled, to when an offer is formally offered and accepted. For some employers, however, the hiring process is a lot longer than this, with many organisations taking as long as three or more months to complete an executive hire.
Whilst a protracted hiring process was once seen as the norm when it comes to executive hiring given the very nature of the roles being recruited for, such practices today leave employers in a vulnerable position.
This approach does of course have its merits. It could be argued that more time is necessary to conduct an in-depth, methodical search to ensure the organisation finds the right person and mitigates the risk of making a poor hiring decision that could prove costly.
That said, a longer time to hire process can actually do more harm than good to the bottom line. An overly complex assessment stage and interview process that typically involves multiple stakeholders at different times can be exhausting both for the candidate and the hiring team themselves. Not to mention putting the reputation of the organisation as an employer of choice on the line.
Indeed, the longer the hiring process the greater the chances of an individual becoming disengaged and frustrated with the organisation. This in turn increases the chances of them either pro-actively seeking or being open to opportunities elsewhere.
As the so-called Great Resignation still lingers in the air coupled with executive hiring levels currently being higher than they were during the pre-pandemic boom, organisations are increasingly recognising the need to move quickly to secure the talent they really need. Streamlining the hiring process is more than possible and is best achieved when hiring managers carefully define the key competencies required for the role and structure interviews and assessments around those criteria.
This is where executive search firms have really come into their own in recent years and part of the reason why there has been significant growth of the executive search marketplace, which has more than doubled in size since 2015 according to Statista.
Executive search firms take a strategic approach to each new assignment. They set clearly defined timelines with a robust communications strategy that expedites the entire hiring process and accomplishes two major objectives.
First, all candidates have a positive experience and will regard the organisation as such irrespective of whether they are successful in securing the position or not. Second, the employer reduces their time to hire and improves their chances of hiring the best candidate whilst maintaining or even enhancing their employer brand. And that can give the organisation that all-important advantage in an increasingly competitive market place.
For over 20 years, Maranello has supported organisations with their most important hires and ensuring they secure the right people for the right roles and, crucially, at the right time. Get in touch to discuss your next hire.
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