When you think of business investments, what comes to mind? Most of the time, it’s physical assets or financial holdings. But people are investments, too. And if you want to onboard the right people, it begins with an efficient recruiting process.

Simple Ways to Streamline Recruiting and Hiring

The cost of making a bad hire goes much deeper than you think. It’s expensive, frustrating, and extremely damaging to your business’s health and culture.

“The cost of a bad hire is always extensive,” HR expert Arte Nathan says. “Most companies don’t know the full cost of the turnover, so they don’t apply the resources upfront to avoid it. If you make a bad hire, there is a ripple effect among all who work for you, your product and your product quality.”

Research suggests that a mistake in this area can actually cost you as much as $240,000 per bad hire. Because it’s never just the salary – you have to think about costs like recruiting fees and staff time, the negative impact on team performance, the disruption to incomplete projects, outplacement services, lost customers, weakened employer brand, and possibly even litigation fees. To put it mildly, it’s a mess!

While bad hires can blindside even the most proactive business owner or HR manager, most can be prevented before any paperwork is signed. And streamlining the recruiting process is one of the most important steps you can take.

Here are some tips that will allow you to reduce friction, save time, and promote greater clarity throughout the recruitment and hiring process.

Use SMS Outreach

In the business world, we often treat email as the king of communication. But if we’re honest with ourselves, email is terrible. It’s inefficient, full of distractions, and has a long lead time between the time you hit “send” and get a reply.

While there’s a time and place for using email in recruiting, there are superior options for quick communication and updates. SMS is one of them. Whether it’s sending links to HR forms, sharing internal job postings with your employees, or keeping candidates updated, a few well-timed text messages will provide massive time savings.

Improve Pre-Screening Procedures

Your pre-screening procedures play a fundamental role in how the rest of the recruitment and hiring process unfolds. With the right pre-screening techniques in place, you instantly give yourself a more qualified pool of candidates.

Certain pre-screening methods can be implemented manually by support staff. But there are also ways to streamline even further.

“You can automate part of the pre-screening process by having candidates take an online survey framed around those skill sets, knowledge, and experience you need. Include questions to determine whether candidates mesh with your company culture,” Mac’s List suggests. By pre-screening, you’ll avoid the frustration of scheduling interviews with candidates who ultimately wind up being ill-suited for the position.”

You won’t find your candidate with pre-screening, but you can prevent the wrong hire from slipping through the cracks and finding their way into your final group of candidates.

Use an Applicant Tracking System

An applicant tracking system is a critical piece of the puzzle. Not only does it let you keep tabs on candidates, organize them based on potential, and streamline the entire vetting process, but it can also tell you what’s working.

For example, advanced applicant tracking systems help you monitor how many views your job ad is getting, conversion rates, etc. Based on this feedback, you can tweak your listing to generate better results.

Give Better Feedback

Recruitment is an ongoing process. Treat your final pool of candidates as if each one will eventually be hired. In other words, don’t burn bridges by fumbling the final step.

Any candidate who has gone through multiple rounds of interviews and impressed you enough to be considered is someone who will likely be a good candidate in another six months or two years. Provide constructive feedback, let them know why they weren’t chosen, and stay in touch. This can reduce a significant amount of your future workload. 

Create a Brand New Approach

It may be time to rethink your approach to recruiting and hiring. Your current process might be “okay,” but do you really want to risk making a bad hire? (All it takes is one mistake and it could cripple your business for several years.) Hopefully this article gives you a solid foundation to build on!

Jenna Cyprus is a freelance writer from Renton, WA who is particularly interested in travel, nature, and parenting. Follow her on Twitter.

Recruiting stock photo by Sudtawee Thepsuponkul/Shutterstock