Small companies took an average of 25 days to fill a vacant position in 2014. Companies with 5,000 or more workers took 58 days to hire last year too. According to the Dice-DFH Vacancy Duration Measure, these numbers come as a 13-year high.
Today’s employers are picky and non-comital. While they’re feeling some confidence in the economy— enough to post 4.8 million job openings in October of this year, the highest number since 2001 according to the Wall Street Journal— they’re still fearful to commit to hiring.
For the biggest, most well known companies— think Google, Amazon, Ernst & Young— this slow-going approach will still work. But for everyone else? Well, they’re going to have to speed things up.
If it’s taken you some 58 days to make an offer, the best candidates very well might have interviewed and received offers from two, three or more other companies. Assuming they haven’t accepted another offer and are even still interested in your company, you now have much more competition to sign-on your top prospect.
While it’s important to ensure a good fit in the hiring process, a drawn-out process unnecessarily wastes both time and money in an employee-driven market. Slow hiring typically doesn’t result in better hires, either because the best quality employees will receive offers and accept new positions very quickly.
Remember when NBA star LeBron James opted out of his contract with the Miami Heat last summer? He was on the market for only 12 days before signing a contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers. A 58-day hiring process wouldn’t have worked with LeBron, who is arguably one of the best players ever in the NBA, and it likely won’t work with the best players in your industry either.
Tips for Speeding Up The Process
- Create a plan. A long-term talent plan might include outsourcing parts of your hiring, or holding regular informational interviews to help build a pipeline of talent.
- Know what you’re looking for. Write a clear job description with all of the details about what you’re looking for. Candidates will have a better sense of whether or not they’re qualified to apply for a job, and you’ll be more likely to notice when someone meets all of your requirements.
- Be more selective. Trust your gut— only bring in the people with the most impressive resumes. Consider using phone screens to really narrow down who you actually bring in to the office for an interview.