13 essential etiquette tips for today’s hiring managers
Every company has its own unique hiring process. Sometimes, even individual departments within the same organization can have differing steps and procedures.
Despite these differences, there are some crucial pieces of etiquette that every hiring manager should keep in mind when recruiting new talent. Members of Forbes Human Resources Council shared a few for your consideration.
- Make the candidate feel welcome
All candidates should leave an interview thinking the company is a nice place to work. Even if they are not suitable, they should be given enough time to feel they have demonstrated their skills and obtained information about the company. Interviewers who treat it as a one-way process only need to be trained on the benefits of creating a good candidate experience. – Karla Reffold, BeecherMadden
- Just reply
Too often, even for more senior positions, HR departments fail in terms of simple follow-up with unsuccessful candidates. We would never treat a paying customer this way. – Matt Burns, JYSK
- Prepare for the interview
There is nothing that derails the interview process more than a manager who isn’t prepared. When a manager fumbles through the conversation because they don’t know what they want to ask or they ask inappropriate — or worse, illegal — questions, the interview will be a waste of time for your company and the candidate. Good people are hard to find. Don’t blow the opportunity due to lack of preparation. – Tracy Bittner, SPHR, Ionic Security Inc.
- Exhibit gracious professionalism
Recruiting etiquette impacts employer brand, so it affects both current and future talent acquisition efforts. The one custom that rises above all for me is professionalism. In this case, professionalism means being responsive, honest and thankful for the candidate’s time. Doing so makes your company an employer of choice, which has long-standing implications for the candidate and company alike. – Dr. Timothy J. Giardino, Cantata Health, LLC
- Treat a candidate like a customer
If a candidate doesn’t feel good about how they’re engaged during the hiring process, then they may lose interest or enthusiasm about the opportunity. It just takes a little courtesy, preparation, care and punctuality to create a good experience. After all, candidates are customers, too. – Candice McGlen, The Rinker Group
- Involve the stakeholders
Although hiring managers assume ultimate responsibility for a new hire, it is likely that this new person will be interacting with other departments and team members. To increase the chances that a team will embrace a new hire and feel confident in them, hiring managers should get the biggest stakeholders involved with the on-site or in-person interviews and take their feedback into consideration. – Angela Nguyen, Ad Exchange Group
- Remember that you’re being interviewed, too
I once interviewed a phenomenal candidate and forwarded her to the hiring team. After two weeks, the hiring manager indicated that they wanted to extend an offer to her. She politely declined and said we were not the right environment. From irrelevant questions to uncompromising scheduling conflicts, we did not do our best. Candidates are interviewing us as much as we are them. – Lucy Rivas-Enriquez, Union Rescue Mission – Los Angeles
- Model what you expect
Hiring managers should never overlook that their actions model the acceptable behavior in the workplace to the potential employee. If a hiring manager is not knowledgeable of the job they are hiring for, demonstrates poor communication skills in the interview and fails to follow-up post-interview, they should not be surprised if a new hire demonstrates similar behavior. – Bridgette Wilder, Wilder HR Management & EEO Consulting
- Uphold the organization’s brand and communicate its value
Hiring managers should uphold the organization’s brand and communicate the value it delivers to its target audiences. That way, they can put into perspective how candidates will help fulfill the organization’s brand promise through their role. Helping candidates feel like part of “something larger” will differentiate the organization and aid the overall negotiation process. – Genine Wilson, Kelly Services
- Lean on your recruiter
Recruiters are professionals at recruiting while hiring managers are professionals in their respective areas. Regardless of recruiting processes, one thing will always remain a constant: your recruiter. Lean on your recruiter, trust them, accept their consultation and advice. They are there for one purpose — to hire the best possible candidate while keeping the hiring manager and company safe. – Adam Mellor, ONE Gas, Inc.
- Attract, evaluate and inspire
We first need to attract candidates to consider our opportunity, then we have to evaluate their experience and skills to determine a fit. But then we need to inspire them, regardless of the fit. If you do this right, candidates will always remember the opportunity and talk very highly of your company. They will want to keep in touch and become your external sales/reviewers to attract more. – Abhijeet Narvekar, The FerVID Group
- Get beyond the transactional mindset
Get beyond the transactional mindset of job, candidate and filling the role. Engage talent in dynamic conversations and high-touch relationship cultivation that reveals company culture through behavior and attitudes. High performers don’t want to be treated like motivated candidates. – Julie Choi, Pointr
- Set clear communication expectations
For job candidates, the most frustrating piece in the hiring puzzle is waiting for a response from the company. In some instances, they can wait for weeks before hearing back from a hiring manager. Be clear by communicating with job candidates that they are still in the running for the position, or if you have decided to move forward with other candidates. – Michele Markey, SkillPath
Originally published on Forbes