ROI on recruitment: start as you mean to go on

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Are high turnover and low productivity affecting company returns? It might be time to go back to the start and assess your recruitment practices.

While it might seem like you need to deal with turnover or productivity where the problem appears, but many common, and expensive HR issues can be traced all the way back to problems in the hiring process.

 “Recruiting can filter into a whole bunch of other things,” Toronto HR consultant Lynn Brown said. “It’s quite expensive to replace a person and when organizations either don’t do a lot of recruiting or don’t have enough HR staff to help them, bad recruiting decisions can really impact on the bottom line.”

From the cost of getting a new person in and training them, to the effect on productivity and the performance of others if they’re not working out that can affect productivity and the performance of others, the long term ramifications of poor recruitment can be significant. Then the time required to rectify that situation – whether it’s through performance measures or termination or starting over again.

“One of the key things I see time and time again is that people don’t take the time up front to figure out what they want,” Brown said. She emphasised the importance of having a job description that is clearly reflective of the job required.

Often positions develop with the person who held the role for a number of years so when they leave it seems like you need those specific skills – an office manager who can use html to develop a website or a graphic designer who is bilingual in Chinese.

“Nine times out of 10 you won’t find that person because those skill sets were built around the incumbent,” Brown said. “So it’s important to take a step back and sit down and map out what it is you want from the job, what are the requirements to meet the needs of the company and what are the skill sets you need.”

Another issue is that those doing the hiring are often under-trained. Rather than having a consistent process and set questions you might hear things like “I liked the person and went with my gut.” While fit is an important aspect of hiring, going on instinct is not necessarily the best approach to finding a good candidate.

“Then you hire someone that’s not appropriate for the job and that’s when you get into higher turnover and lower productivity,” Brown said. “Training is key. I think a lot of people don’t think interviewing is a specific skill. Training is important for all levels of people who are making hiring decisions.”

What’s more, without that training your organization could end up in hot water if the interviewer asks inappropriate and illegal questions, such as whether someone has children.

“They might just be being friendly, but that candidate could come back and say ‘I didn’t get the job because they asked me if I was having children.’” Brown warned.

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  • Joanne C. Picavet on 2013-04-24 12:15:49 PM

    What are some the KPI's that are being used at present to indicate the ROI of Staffing (Recruitment and Selection)?
    How effective are these performance indicators?
    Love to hear what people are doing.

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