Some clients we speak with here at GeneCoda® already have a front-runner candidate before their search launches. Often, companies find a prospect early on in the search process, which has come through advertisements or employee referrals.
Having a solid prospect is often welcome news because it ensures a quicker start. However, to ensure your company has located the best talent the market has to offer, it’s helpful to consider performing additional research to find more potential hires rather than go with the candidate who walks through the door first.
Admittedly, if a top prospect is active in their job search, companies can run into timing issues where said candidate finds a better offer, or worse, they may already have an offer on the table.
Therefore, in some situations, it is better to act on an N-of-1 rather than work through a more comprehensive search. Nevertheless, there can be downsides to not conducting a research-driven recruitment plan.
The most significant ramification of hiring the first person in can be an impact on your career. If you get it wrong, investors, a board, or other key executives may inquire about the diligence you conducted regarding the search.
Backing up your decision with sound research, just as you would with experimental or scientific data, is a good idea.
Also, consider that you may adversely impact your organization’s diversity and equity initiatives by only talking to one top prospect.
There is a pool of possible talent for any given search focused on highly experienced or specialized professionals. One way to contemplate how thorough you’ve been is to ask yourself – “Out of this possible talent pool, how many people have we contacted?”
If your answer is at least 75% of potentially qualified applicants, you can feel reasonably assured that you are making a good choice. But what if that number is less than 10%?
We’re conducting a search for a client in the imaging space right now. We’ve contacted about 200 people, looked at most – if not all – potential competitors, and are reasonably confident we’ve touched more than 75% of the market.
We are interviewing three qualified prospects and are reasonably confident we have a solid group to pursue. These numbers give our client the confidence they need to make an affirmative hiring decision, as they are reviewing candidates among the top percentile of professionals who are qualified for their open role.
Are you confident in your current top candidates? If you’d like some help with this and to understand how you can overcome some of these issues, please contact us.