Niche roles? Don’t hesitate to hire

Author Adam Jasnikowski

Don't Hesitate (2)

They say that running a business is easy – finding the staff is where the difficulty lies.

Now, I may be biased, but the service of a decent recruitment company couldn’t be more valuable in my opinion – so much of a valuable service it appears to be that recruitment companies even hire OTHER recruitment companies to do their own recruitment.

Try saying that three times fast.

Hiring is hard. Knowing how to ensure your company’s outward image is on brand, on point and on trend; how to write a decent ad and get that ad in front of your target audience; enticing them to apply or entertain a conversation after a direct approach; arranging interviews around busy work schedules; subsequently conducting said interviews and moreover actually getting out of them what you need to know; managing the offer process, dodging counter-offers and negotiating salaries, then keeping that (sometimes) tenuous line of contact in place until they start…

It’s exhausting – a task that few business leaders look forward to doing. But it’s the absolute most necessary of evils.

Particularly if the skillset you’re looking for is niche – a more narrow candidate pool means less applicants, less talent to go after – recruiting can seem like a never-ending cycle of resourcing, until you finally find someone who fits the bill. It’s more exciting yet, not to mention a relief, when you find that they tick all the boxes. They have the skills you want, the experience you need and they come across well.

Sounds like it’s time to put that offer in writing, no?

…Wait – no?

You’ve spent days and weeks sourcing and interviewing; you’ve found someone who you really like, believe could do the job and has bought in to your process thus far. But you’d like to see ‘what else might be out there’, right?

Unfortunately, this is something we recruiters do sometimes see. And it simply doesn’t work.

Why, you ask?

Imagine the entire process you’ve just read about above, but from the perspective of a job seeker.

You’ve put time, effort and sometimes finances into researching a company, understanding their business and how you could be a part of it. You’ve gone in for at least two, maybe three interviews, have spent hours of your day discussing this job with many people internally, and both parties are in agreeance: this is a good fit.

To then be told that, despite acing the entire process, the company would like to first ensure there’s no better fit out there… Speaking from experience, 9 times out of 10 you, the employer, end up selling yourself out of a great candidate, and end up losing someone who could have been a fantastic addition to the team.

In essence, it doesn’t look good for you.

To put it into perspective, simply, consider how you would feel if, after the arduous recruitment process, you offered your chosen candidate a job… And they responded by saying they’d like a few more weeks to see what else is out there and make sure it’s the best they can do.

Disclaimer: I am by no means saying that a candidate, when offered a job, should have to cancel all other interviews or should accept immediately despite other processes happening – or should even accept at all, for that matter. Nor am I saying that as an employer you should ‘settle’ or offer the job to someone you believe to be less than great for the job.

But what I am saying is, if you’ve gotten this far through the process already, you should be armed and ready to pull the trigger. If you’ve only interviewed one person and you know they could be an asset, it’s time to press Go. If you’ve interviewed five people already and this is the only one to meet standards, you should have the information you need to understand whether they’re right or not.

Seeing if there’s “better” out there, in today’s candidate driven market, simply isn’t an option. Not a fair one, anyway, and one which will rarely bring about the result you’re hoping for. If you’re still wanting to test the market, chances are your gut is telling you this person isn’t right after all – so be open and honest, and respectful to their situation and job search.

Hiring is hard; hiring for a niche role, even more so. I’d be lying to say that there are no egos involved. The fact is, when dealing in recruitment, we help people make decisions which are going to affect more than just how long they have to commute in the morning – this role could make this person’s career, change their life. It could change yours, the business owner; the direction, productivity, success of your business.

So, treat each and every person you meet with respect. With anything in life, ambition is important; but don’t spend so much time looking ahead to the next best thing that you fail to see what’s right in front of you. When your vacancy is very specific, don’t hesitate to hire.

If you’re struggling to resource top talent or have faced any of the problems above in hiring, starting and retaining staff, we’d love to help. We’re experts in recruitment, but also experts in people; we consult with our clients, exploring all options to ensure the forward progress of your business. Get in touch today.