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How to Build an Ethical and Effective Hiring Process

Over my 20 years in Human Resources, I've seen many organizations unwilling to commit to a consistent hiring process.

Hiring Process - The Interview

Over my 20 years in Human Resources, I’ve seen many organizations unwilling to commit to a consistent hiring process, which translates as an unwillingness to commit to fairness and equity. A lack of a consistent, fair process, leaves room for discrimination, hiring close connections (who may not be qualified), and a lack of diversity.

Now as the Director of Human Resources and Culture at TTI Success Insights, I have been able to help develop our internal hiring process that is both consistent and effective. I wanted to share what I’ve learned in my career to help your organization create an ethical and effective hiring process. Let’s break it down into measurable steps!

Writing the content to attract top talent happens in two steps. First, start with a job description written by the manager of the potential hire. This is a description of the role and the scope of responsibilities. Then we work on it together to make sure it’s accurate and thorough.

After that, I take it and edit it for clarity and length and then take that job description to create a job ad. The job ad will have more energy, highlighting what’s unique about the role, the team, and the organization. I include company information and benefits as well - if your company offers unique or highly desired benefits such as maternity leave or hybrid schedules, be sure to highlight them here.

Create A Job Benchmark

It’s time to create a job benchmark to use as a measurement tool with applicants. This process can include SMEs, hiring managers, HR, and team members. Read more about the benchmarking process here.

We learn a lot about the job in the benchmarking process by focusing on what’s most important to the job, which helps with the following steps and interviews.

  • Perform Pre-Screenings: I perform pre-screen calls, which allows me to get a sense of who candidates are and how they will potentially fit in the organization. I also share information about TTI SI, compensation, benefits, hours, and company culture. After the pre-screen, I share my findings with the candidate’s potential manager and together we determine who is fit for the next step.

  • Ask Candidates to Take an Assessment and Measure Candidates Against the Benchmark: This step eliminates more people than you might think! It can be difficult to convince a candidate that taking the assessment is worth their time, but the people interested in the position will take that step. (A compelling prescreen call will help pique their interest!) The benchmarking report can’t be the determining factor in hiring, but it adds valuable information that can be used in the interview or when you’re narrowing it down to the final candidates.

  • Perform the Next Round of Interviews: Now it’s time to meet the team! The next round of interviews can be with anyone who helped create the benchmark but I recommend three people at the most to prevent discomfort from the candidates. Make sure that everyone involved in the interview process is versed in proper interview techniques. Our team almost always performs one round of in-person interviews. If this process is thorough, asks the right questions, and has the right people present, that can be all you need. If you decide to conduct multiple in-person interviews, make sure that they bring value to the candidate as well— don’t draw the process out.

  • Discuss the Candidates with the People Involved: This step of the interview process is crucial— don’t rely on just one discussion after interviews. It’s time to meet with your SMEs and dig into the data and the conversations they had with the job candidates. I focus on poking holes— I ask a lot of questions to discover why the people involved liked or disliked a candidate. Going off of feelings alone is a mistake, so I thoroughly question strong feelings. I want people to be excited about their candidates but for the right reasons, so we have to ask if their opinions are relevant. It’s crucial that everyone involved in hiring interrogates their feelings and works to understand where they are coming from and how they are affecting judgment.

About the Author

Jennifer Lopez is our Director of Human Resources and Culture. She supports the team in all ways possible, from finding talent to conflict resolution. She is focused on aligning policies with TTI Success Insights’ goals and values.

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