Remember in school when Five F's would be your demise? Here are Five F's that separate successful search processes and high acceptance of offers from those that drag on and where offers are rejected.

In the last post,  "The Real Meaning of Hire Slow Fire Fast", we suggested that you look at time to hire in terms of number and depth of touch points with a candidate rather than an absolute clock measure. We suggested that you figure out your hiring process or "system" steps. No amount of detail would be too much really.

An early system step is assessing whether the candidate has a strong probability to WANT to do the job. The "WANT" to do pool is much much smaller than the "CAN" do pool in a tight labor market. It's true for the A Player market in any economy. I remember clearly my over/under miscalculation as a hiring manager. I overestimated how attractive it would be to work for me and the company and I underestimated how challenging it would be to land the right hire. 

Use "the five F's" to separate the WANTS pool. Find out as early as possible how the candidate values these F’s, both in absolute terms and relative to other F's.

Candidates who are active in the job market frequently tell us about offers they turned down. Really? Our clients rarely offer a job that isn't accepted. Because we are experts at making only offers on behalf of our clients that will be accepted.

One of our early process steps to make sure the candidate has a high chance of WANTING to do the job is to learn how the candidate values these Five F's: (from Geoff Smart and Randy Street's Who: The A Method for Hiring.)

  • Fortune – How important is total compensation, including benefits and benefits providers in the decision. What are the candidate’s expectations?

  • Fit – How the individual candidate defines this and whether it’s consistent with your organization's definition
  • Fun – Is “fun” a component? How does the candidate define it?
  • Family – While you can’t ask this question directly (do you have kids, are you married?) you can ask the candidate generally how they will evaluate a new opportunity and if anyone else will be part of their decision process.  How family considerations will affect their decision will nearly always be offered.
  • Flexibility – How the candidate defines this

As a hiring manager, I knew there were many details in ensuring a successful hire. I was always aspirational, though, in thinking I had time to make sure ALL the details needed to carry out a “system” of hiring actually happened quickly, given everything else on my plate. Not to mention stress on the team from vacant positions.

Consider engaging an executive search consultant to project manage the hire, even if you have a strong flow of candidates and don’t feel you need the recruiter for candidate sourcing. Talk to us about what critical steps you might add to your system to reduce the risk of a bad hire.  Accumulate information through many diverse touch points.  “Slow” and without a strategy will hurt you in hiring A Players.