Bringing new employees into an organization should be exciting and something to look forward to. If this is the case, then why does the thought of recruiting and hiring invoke stress for many people? Oftentimes, hiring is a rushed process, only occurring because there was no backup plan for a surprise resignation, or your team didn’t realize you would need an extra resource for a project. What if there was a way to avoid the last minute scramble that comes with recruitment? In this blog, we outline the importance of developing and sticking to your hiring schedule.
What is a Hiring Schedule?
A hiring schedule is a long term strategy that helps your organization stay ahead of the curve when it comes to recruitment. It flips the switch on reactive hiring and pivots to taking a proactive approach so that you know what positions you need to hire for and when you need to begin the hiring process. Hiring schedules utilize talent forecasting to strategically plan headcount for the future growth of your business.
The Importance of Sticking to a Hiring Schedule
One of the main benefits of using a hiring schedule is uninterrupted, increased productivity. Since hiring needs are planned in advance, usually on a yearly basis, stakeholders are prepared in advance when it comes time to begin interviewing. When developing the hiring schedule, you create a clear timeline so pre-recruitment tasks can be completed; writing or updating job descriptions, creating interview questions, and setting up a hiring budget for future positions. This leads to a less rushed hiring process, allowing you more time to make the perfect hiring decision.
In addition to increasing efficiency for your organization, leveraging a hiring schedule creates a more positive experience for applicants. Since you’re bringing jobs to market with intentionality and planning and not scrambling to post them last minute, you are able to first post an open position internally, allowing current employees a chance to apply. This can create a more equitable experience for your tenured employees by showing them that you value their career growth. For external candidates, a hiring schedule leads to a more seamless interview experience, which may be the reason they accept an offer from you versus a competitor.
How to Set Up a Hiring Schedule
The first step in setting up a hiring schedule is to meet with key teams throughout the organization to assess their potential hiring needs. Asking the right questions, such as “What projects are planned for the year?” and “What skill gaps are on the current team?” is important in understanding what positions you need to plan for. Next, you begin looking at your company’s business strategy. If you are projecting a large amount of growth in the coming years, you will need to assess what additional people resources will be needed to support that growth. Depending on the size of your organization, these discussions can either be held in person or through a company-wide survey.
After assessing the business and compiling a list of roles you want to fill for the year, you develop a hiring budget. To determine what your hiring plan will cost in terms of salary, you complete an internal analysis of your current salaries to understand company pay philosophy and determine if you are paying your people equitably. Then, you complete external benchmarking to understand where your pay philosophy compares to current market rates. Working with your HR partner, department heads, and executive leadership to create a competitive but realistic budget will be key to the success of your hiring schedule. At this stage, you can also begin to evaluate the hiring process. Identify where your jobs will be posted, if you are going to rely on active candidates or hunt for passive candidates, and what Applicant Tracking Systems or recruiting software will be used are all things you should consider before you begin the hiring process.
Once your hiring schedule is finalized, communicate it across the organization. The extent to which your organization is able to establish buy-in with a new process is dependent on your ability to be transparent and engage everyone at all levels of the organization in the process. Notify anyone who will be part of the interviewing process about their responsibilities and the timeline in which the interviews will take place throughout the year. Managers will then be able to make arrangements so the productivity of their teams is not affected when it comes time to conduct interviews.
Who Can Help Establish a Consistent Hiring Schedule?
Creating a hiring schedule is a team effort that should involve multiple stakeholders throughout your business. Collaboration between Human Resources, executive leadership, and hiring managers will be needed in order to successfully establish your plan and stick to it. Working with an outsourced HR partner can help fill in the missing pieces that might be holding you back from hitting your recruitment goals. At Red Clover, we have extensive experience supporting large-scale recruitment efforts. From providing an unbiased evaluation of businesses to Recruitment Process Outsourcing, setting up compensation structures, and more. If you’re looking to scale your business and need help finding the right talent to support your growth, contact us to get the conversation started!