If you don’t know how to stay ahead of the competition, you can fall behind and find candidates that only partially meet your requirements. There is only one way to remain competitive and get that top talent on your payroll – identify and properly overcome the main challenges in the selection process. To help you out, we’ve put together a cheat sheet of the common challenges and how to properly address them.  Before we start, let’s make one important thing clear.

The common recruitment and selection mixup

Many organizations use recruitment and selection terms interchangeably. While there are some overlaps, the recruitment and selection processes are quite different. Recruitment includes various actions that range from defining job profiles and making a list of job position requirements. It also includes posting job ads and inviting applicants. The selection process, on the other hand, refers to narrowing down the list of job applicants and finally selecting a perfect candidate for the job. Now that we’ve gotten this common mixup out of our way, let’s see what challenges lay ahead of you.

Matching a perfect candidate with job requirements

A couple of decades ago, the selection process was so much simpler. All an organization had to do was match the appropriate skill set with the job requirements. However, today the situation is quite different. There are many more variables in the selection equation, including personality traits, subspecializations, a candidate’s personal aspirations in terms of professional growth and development, and other factors.  That made finding and hiring a perfect candidate became quite challenging. The answer lies in taking a step back and refinancing your recruitment process, transforming it into data-driven recruitment.  But what is data-driven recruitment?  Data-driven recruitment refers to leveraging data to streamline relevant top talent acquisition. Instead of casting a wide net, data will enable you to more efficiently and accurately match your company with professionals. Almost 80% of recruiters report that data significantly improved the quality of candidates they hire.

Not enough brand coverage

Many companies don’t invest that much in building a brand image that appeals to people in the job market. They are more focused on building a brand image that facilitates connections with potential customers. On the other hand, modern job seekers tend to research the employer’s brand before applying for the job.  If there is no content on your blog or your official social media profile that caters to job seekers, you risk attracting only a few job applicants. It can make the selection process impossible or force you to wait longer for job seekers to apply. Before you can select top talent, you first need to attract it. There is an easy way to overcome this challenge, though – you can leverage your blog to kickstart a career section. You should use it to highlight what is working at your company all about, share behind-the-scenes photos, and feature employees’ stories.

Losing candidates during the selection process

As we’ve previously stated, the competition is fierce, and everyone is looking to get the best job seekers in the job market, especially if they are hiring for senior roles. Attracting relevant job seekers only to lose them during the selection process happens more than you know. In fact, over 60% of candidates reject the job offer even if they end up selected for the role. It happens because companies don’t respect the job candidates’ time and effort during the selection process. The solution is simple – improve the way you treat candidates. There are a couple of ways to do it. First of all, you should consider revisiting your job descriptions, making them as precise as possible. Respecting the candidates’ time falls into this category too. Make sure to be swift when it comes to letting candidates go or sending them a job offer. 

Poor candidate relationship

The relationship between your company and the candidate starts the moment they apply for the job. The quality of the experience they have with your recruiters and brand, in general, will contribute to whether they stay till the end of the selection process and accept the job offer. If you just leave the experience to chance, you risk losing the candidates. The best way to create great relationships with candidates and provide a delightful experience is to be honest. Provide feedback to the candidates as soon as possible. Some of them are eagerly waiting for your response as it lets them know whether they stand a chance or should apply to other openings.  Plus, if you establish good relationships with candidates, you will have your own talent pool. LinkedIn can help you facilitate establishing professional relationships too. It’s a great strategy that can help you with the selection process for future job openings. 

Biased selection decisions

Humans are prone to making biased decisions. It often happens during the selection process. Even professional HRs sometimes let their previous experiences, gut feeling, and personal impressions guide their choices. Biased selection decisions can create poor outcomes. You can end up hiring poor candidates while letting the top talent go. The best way to overcome this challenge is to standardize your selection process and include several people in the decision-making process. When it comes to selection process standardization, you can start with ensuring that you ask the same questions to all the candidates with no exceptions. If you decide to include several people in the interviewing process, include diverse people. You can even go one step further and provide your recruiters with diversity training opportunities. The standardized interviews eliminate the conscious bias, while the diversity training eliminates unconscious bias.  That’s how you eliminate or at least minimize all bias-related risks.

Data security legislation

During the recruitment and selection processes, you will end up with personal and sensitive job applicants’ data. Given how frequent cyberattacks are on companies, securing the data has become quite challenging. On top of that, you have to ensure that you are compliant with data security legislation. It has become increasingly complex to do so when hiring from abroad, such as hiring EU candidates. To address the cybersecurity risks, you should implement all the cybersecurity solutions in your power. It includes device management solutions, firewalls, and antivirus software. Cybersecurity training for your staff will also help.  When it comes to complying with data security legislation, you will have to get informed about relevant laws and regulations. The last thing you want on your hands is to be responsible for leaking sensitive job candidates’ data, as it can cost you both money and the reputation you’ve been building so hard. These are the top six challenges in the selection process. Whether you are a small, medium-sized company, or HR firm, the chances are that you will personally experience at least a couple of these challenges.  Knowing how to overcome them with solutions such as data-driven recruitment, improving the candidates’ experience during the selection process, and building long-lasting relationships with them will help you hire and retain top talent in your organization.


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