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How Do You Know if you are Hiring the Right People?

Are you measuring Quality of Hire?

“How do you know if you are hiring the right people?” asks Tim Brennan, founder and Chief Visionary Officer of HiringSmart Inc.

“You most likely spend a lot of time and effort to hire the best and the brightest you can afford,” he says. You may be looking for people who were in the top 20% of their class, or those who had success working with your competitors… but are they the right people for your organization? How do you know?

When Tim is speaking to groups, he says he is often asked by the leaders in the room whether they measure “quality of hire”. Typically only a handful raises their hands. Even fewer can explain how they track it, or what criteria they use.

It’s a deceptively simple concept, and a much better measure than many of the other metrics applied to candidate recruitment because this tracks the outcome of the process and its impact to the business. Basically, “quality of hire” refers to the success of your new hires as they progress in their careers in your organization. It’s not about what their performance was elsewhere, how ‘desirable’ they were when you met them, how many other employers wanted them, how well they interviewed, or other assets they demonstrated during the recruiting process. Quality of hire measures whether or not they deliver value to your organization, get promoted and fit well enough with your culture to want to stay long enough to deliver a great return on your investment.

In fact, your metrics may be entirely misleading. Perhaps you should be doubling the value you attribute to your candidates’ extra-curricular activities; perhaps those who interview well are your worst performers. How do you know?

Most employers have failed to design and implement a process to determine whether or not the students and graduates they are hiring are actually the right fit for their organization – and therefore likely to be promoted and make a meaningful impact. Many have no idea how long their new hires stay in the organization or how well they perform in the long term.

But it is quite possible that your “top picks” are failing miserably on the job, or succeeding wonderfully but leaving quickly when they find the work isn’t what they were looking for. Meanwhile, the “second tier” candidates you are hiring may be staying for the long term and excelling on the job. Obviously you’d like to re-vamp your hiring process so that those you have been considering “second tier” become identified quickly as your top candidates. You simply can’t learn this without tracking your quality of hire.

Tracking cost-per-hire, time-to-hire, job offer acceptance rates, and other data helps to measure whether or not HR is “filling seats” efficiently. But these common HR metrics say nothing about whether or not you are actually hiring the right people.

According to Brennan, “Without measuring the quality of hire – the true success of your process – you can’t demonstrate your effectiveness nor learn how to make improvements to your talent attraction and management. To help you hire right, there are employee assessment tools that use science-based predictive human analytics that have proven to be much more successful than simply hiring based on experience and resume."

For more information on tools to help you hire the right people, contact us at

Tim Brennan is Founder and Chief Visionary Officer of HiringSmart Inc. with clients across North America, South America, Europe and South Africa.

HiringSmart gives companies a competitive edge by installing a unique hiring system that helps them attract and engage the RIGHT people.

Bagel Company Making Dough

chartA leading bakery in the North East changed their hiring process and found themselves increasing employee engagement, improving productivity and reducing turnover.

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