Hiring’s too important to be left to chance. And in an industry as skill-specific as the oil and gas business, line managers can directly affect the success of their staff members… and of the company itself.
As a manager, however, you probably weren’t hired for your hiring abilities. Your job is much more expansive than that. You will, though, be evaluated on the outcome of your hiring decisions – how effective an employee is, how each one contributes to revenue (or cost control), how well he or she fits the culture of the firm and your department, how quickly they’ve developed and applied new abilities, and how long they stay with the company.
To help you be as good at assessing your manpower needs and finding the very best person to fill each position as you are at doing your primary job, this 7-Point Hiring Manager’s Checklist will guide you through the best practices that professional recruiters rely on.
Seven Points of Right
People aren’t hired to do a job. They’re employed to solve a problem. So determine exactly what the problem is, the best ways to solve it, which human skills and characteristics will contribute to the most effective solution, what tools will be required for maximum employee effectiveness, and what training may be needed to help ensure employees’ success.
The methodology you use can be as unique as you are, but it must be comprehensive. It must help you analyse whether you need to add to your headcount or, instead, make an investment in robotics or remote operations; whether you need one person with multiple skills or several with specific abilities; and whether a new employee has to fit into an existing team, contribute to a new one, and function independently.
The more detailed your analysis, the more likely you are to come up with a realistic assessment of what you must have, would like to have, and don’t require at all.
Many people look good on paper. They may have every relevant credential and degree, proven experience, a long list of successes, and glowing recommendations from colleagues and managers. They may also be completely wrong for the way your department or projects are run.
You need to look deeper when everything seems to be right. Whether you search online and check social media, ask candidates to describe what they’ve done (or think they would do) in particular situations, or use the sort of questions that reveal how someone approaches problems (HR may prove to a be a good resource for these).
The objective is to get a truer perspective on someone’s “chemistry” and a better sense of how they’ll complement their colleagues and succeed in their position, as a member of a team, and within the company’s culture.
Trust is crucial. If anything in a person’s CV veers from the facts, it may be a sign of trouble.
Whether it’s taking credit for someone else’s accomplishments, misrepresenting education or training, claiming honours that were never bestowed, or assigning testimonials to people who didn’t provide them doesn’t matter. It’s the implication that the work they’ll do for you and with colleagues might be compromised.
So check with every reference and, if you suspect that individual is glossing over anything, check with others in the organization, including other managers. Depending on local rules and company policies, the responses may be more matter-of-fact than you’d like, but there may be ways of asking questions in particular ways that give you the insights you need, and your HR department may be able to offer suggestions.
If someone claims a typing speed of 80 words a minute, that’s easy to check. If they say they’re accomplished at deep well analysis, underwater stabilisation to prevent blowouts, or pipeline engineering, there’s more work to do to make sure their assertions are valid.
Checking with the education and training institutions the individual attended only tells you if the coursework was completed. It doesn’t guarantee they’re very good at what they studied. So figure out what tests can validate competency: existing team members may be willing to develop them, since they’ll want to know that a new employee is qualified just as much as you will.
If the only reliable method is to have a candidate do actual work, consider paying them to do it (while they still hold their present job if they’re currently employed). It gives them an added incentive to prove their worth, and it’s a small investment that could head off a future disaster.
Somebody who’s qualified and suitable still might not fit. They may have worked effectively as part of a team, as a specialist who works independently, or as a link in a coordinated process, but if they seem subdued and your group is very lively, that could compromise everybody’s overall effectiveness.
There are numerous effective personality tests and character assessments, which the HR department can handle, but you might ask a candidate to join a departmental lunch to gauge their interaction and level of comfort or have them spend some time with the people they’ll be working with and see how all of them respond. The tests and assessments may be valid, but inter-personal activities may reveal the kind of nuances that don’t come out on paper.
After so much analysis – in steps 1-5 – you’ll have gained a perspective on a person’s prowess… and potential. A pattern of consistent improvement, on-going education, greater responsibility, or countless other indicators will give you a sense of where a candidate may (or should be) headed.
Your organisation may have a formalised programme for job-related training, university study, and the mentoring by senior staff of promising employees. Yet, within your own division or department or group, you’re in the best position to see what talents you’ll need as the years go by… and who’s best suited to provide them.
That requires you to expand your hiring criteria beyond what someone can do for the team and the company now. You must consider how they’ll contribute in a year, in five years, or in a decade.
Modern Human Resources departments grew out of industrial and labour relations management and today focus on everything from benefits and performance appraisals to succession planning and regulatory compliance. They may help bring candidates to your office, but they almost certainly won’t have the depth of knowledge that you have when it comes to selecting the most promising applicants. That takes a specialized approach.
Consultancies can help you on multiple levels by
Bolaji Olagunju is the Lead Consultant/CEO of Workforce Group, a Management Consulting Firm that offers diverse services in the areas of Learning, Research & Development, HR and Business Consulting, People & Task Outsourcing and Recruitment Services.
“This article was originally published via http://businessdayonline.com/2015/11/right-reasons-right-position-right-person/”
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