Questions to Define Your Need to Hire

Posted by Terri Cohen

Young female business woman in the office

The first step in developing a strong recruitment process is defining the actual need for talent. Identifying recruitment needs helps align recruitment efforts and ultimately guides recruiters and hiring managers to find the most qualified candidate for the position.

We compiled a list of critical questions to define your need to hire to start targeting candidates that fit your requirements, values, and culture.

1. Why do you need to add a position?

Work with the team lead throughout this process to ensure this position is needed. If someone has recently left the team, evaluate if they left on their own or were asked to leave. Is the manager looking to expand the team's responsibilities? Maybe, the team has been working on overdrive and is looking for a specialist to take a portion of work off the team's plate. Understanding the motive behind the role is the foundation for the entire process.

2. How will this position benefit the company?

Tying into the above, see if there is a retention issue with this position. If it is, that may point to more significant issues within the team that needs to be addressed. If not, you can look for a star player to bring the team to the next level.

3. What are the required skills and expertise?

Is the team looking for a specialist or a generalist position? Think about the missing puzzle piece you're looking for. Do you need to hire a specific skill set, or is it a high-touchpoint position where culture fit is most important?

4. Are there gaps on the team, or are you looking to backfill?

Backfilling a position can simply mean passing on previous responsibilities. Filling a gap in a team will need a more dynamic candidate who can take the initiative to become what the team needs. After creating a candidate persona, you can better understand exactly who you are looking for in your search.

5. How much experience should the ideal candidate have?

Is this an entry-level position or a manager role? Will the team have time to train them, or will they need to hit the ground running? In the current job market, many candidates are making upward moves based on their learned skills, not their education. Be open to considering first-time leaders; it's likely their current company has not had an opportunity to give them. Historical patterns of job discrimination are also front and center in upward transitions. Women and people of color will be eager and hungry to make an impact when given the chance!

7. What are the certification requirements?

Will the team require certain industry certifications? Ask the team lead if on-the-job training can be provided or if they have the budget and time to pay for certification. Hiring non-certified candidates can widen your search. It's possible that many candidates have never been afforded the chance to attain certifications within their field. You can also find unique hires in candidates that are changing industries.

8. Who will manage this employee?

What type of leader will manage this employee? Have a sit-down with the leader to understand what they are looking for in a direct report. What soft skills do they appreciate in an employee? You want to set the professional relationship up for success with a culture fit. Otherwise, you risk turnover.

9. Who, if anyone, will report to this employee?

Speak to them, ask what they need from a new leader. They will be the go-to resource when it comes to company knowledge and business as usual for the incoming hire.

Taking the time to understand what is needed and expected of a new hire will make your company stronger.

Interested in learning more information about best hiring practices? Download our latest eBook, The World-Class Recruitment Guide, for everything you need to know.

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Topics: Recruitment Strategy