Aug 02, 2021

Best Hiring Practices Entail Prioritization Strategies

Balancing multiple hires with the ever-important speed to hire

Jeremy EskenaziBy Jeremy Eskenazi

Sometimes hiring is crazy busy, with a multitude of job vacancies and a frantic need to fill positions immediately. Sometimes, the pace is slower and you can work with the team as is. Regardless of what drives the volume of hiring, your company needs a plan of attack to bring talent into the organization and maintain a reasonable speed to hire against the expectations that have been set with your teams. There can be unexpected highs and lows in recruiting, and one challenge is that it is hard to turn the hiring engines back on to full speed.

When external factors change, it often means your industry or employers in your region all change at the same time. If you all slow down and then restart hiring at the same time, there will be more options for the candidates. This makes attracting the best talent to build your company tougher.

New hire being trained by senior staffWhen you are hiring for multiple positions, do they all take up equal amounts of your time? If so, you are missing out on the most important element of strategic recruiting: not every job is equally important. Evaluate each job and spend your time accordingly.

Not everyone is willing to admit that, but it’s true. Yes, every candidate is important and should be treated with the same talent acquisition process you have developed to leave a positive feeling about your employer brand. Not every job, though, takes the same amount of effort or has the same number of specialists in the market to warrant spreading your time evenly to find them.

So, what kind of jobs need to be prioritized? As an expert on your business, you need to adopt the mindset of the recruiting consultant. Start with the question, “How valuable is this role compared to others?” Here are four ways to assess job value and hiring prioritization.

  • The job delivers on customer requirements and is usually customer-facing. This is important because it affects your bottom line. Your business would be in trouble if you were to leave this role open for too long.
  • The job drives direct revenue or pipeline for the company. This affects the bottom line too. Driving revenue is not the same as saving cost. This role directly brings in revenue and helps drive demand for more revenue-generating activities.
  • The job is innovative or directly influences your products or services. If the roles that make or deliver your products or services are vacant, this is a direct hit to your company’s potential to earn revenue.
  • The difficulty of finding the job in the market. Some roles are much harder than others for which find talent. Maybe the skills are very new or they are very specific for your industry. It may be that you want to hire in locations that don’t have many local people who do that type of work or would be willing to leave their current role to consider joining your company. Do this research up front to know where to start.

Now that you’ve had a chance to think through these four top drivers, your hiring prioritization list is headed in the right direction.

Roles that help you eventually lower operating costs are important too. But not as important as feeding growth, so more time should be spent on the roles that affect the bottom line. Every company will have different titles and levels working on these tasks, so customizing your plan is important. The activity of looking at all your open jobs and deciding where to spend your time is the strategic part of ramping up hiring and making the best use of your time.

With the top and toughest-to-find jobs identified, you can then move on to the action plan. Knowing how to find the talent is important too. Not all searches are created equally. Your efforts may include using a search firm, placing an ad, using referrals, leveraging social media, etc. Knowing where your biggest priorities are will help you decide what to approach first.

Prioritizing jobs sounds simple, and it can be if you and your team are taking this step. For those hard-to-find roles, make sure your team is prepared for the search. Take the time to train hiring managers, investigate improvements to the human resources process, and invest in training for recruiters and those who touch your candidate experience in any way. Having an optimized recruiting function that knows which roles to focus on first, how to engage candidates for a consistent experience, and sets realistic expectations on the effort each role might take to bring into your organization will set you and your team up for success, no matter the hiring volume.

Jeremy Eskenazi is the founder of Riviera Advisors in Long Beach, Calif., a talent acquisition optimization consulting firm specializing in recruitment training and strategy consulting.

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Statements of fact and opinion are the authors’ responsibility alone and do not imply an opinion on the part of PICPA officers or members. The information contained in herein does not constitute accounting, legal, or professional advice. For professional advice, please engage or consult a qualified professional.