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5 Pre-Employment Best Practice Steps to Avoid Hiring a Scaramucci
July 31, 2017 8:00:00 PM EDT   By Shoa Appelman

Anthony Scaramucci set the record for shortest time employed as a White House Communications Director: 6 days. His tenure was brief and eventful. While the White House will recover from what historians might call a “hiring snafu,” a similar hiring mistake could have negative repercussions if it had occurred in a small, medium, or large business.

Fortunately, there are proven best-practices any organization can use to avoid hiring a Scaramucci.

1. Create and Use a Job Description.

Job descriptions help you define what you need, so you can objectively determine if the person has the skills necessary to complete the role.

Some organizations already have their job roles defined, including a description of tasks, experience necessary, and skills that will help a person achieve success in the role. If you are lucky enough to already have the job role defined, that is great! Use it. This helps create a standard, so you can determine whether your applicants meet the standard.

If you do not have a description yet, that is okay. There are resources available, such as O*Net’s database of thousands of job roles:https://www.onetonline.org/find/quick?s=job+descriptions You can search and find a description that you can use as a starting point. You can tailor the position to your organization.

2. Cast a Wide Net, Past Your Friend Circle.

The more people who apply, the better your chances of finding a good candidate. Spread the word that you are hiring in your networks, and ask employees to share the job description as well. Also consider posting on forums, such as sub-reddits for the industry, so people who have an interest in the space can learn about the role as well and share it with their friends. Don’t feel compelled to give the job to the first friend who walks through the door.

3. Have a Consistent Hiring Process, and Put All of Your Applicants through the Same Process.

It’s important to make your hiring process fair. Everyone should have to go through the same steps so that you have enough information to make a hiring decision. If one applicant provides a portfolio of sample work, or completes a pre-employment assessment, and the other applicant only completes an interview, you are using different standards to measure the applicants. This is like trying to select a cabinet, and using a ruler to measure the length of one cabinet, and then using a scale to measure the weight of a different cabinet. You have information on each, but you cannot compare the two.

The ideal standard for a hiring process includes:

  • A pre-employment assessment or screen,
  • A structured interview, and
  • A workplace simulation, job sample, or trial period.
  • .

4. Try to Measure the Whole Person.

When you are hiring someone who is going to be spending eight hours or more every day with you and your team, it’s important to determine that they have the skills to get the job done. It’s also helpful to know about their personality: Do they like to develop relationships? Do they enjoy problem solving? Are they adaptable? Do they want the company to succeed, and are they a team player?

HR Avatar pre-employment tests measure analytical thinking and attention to detail skills, communication, personality, and past behavior, in one test. You have information in one report that can help you make an informed hiring decision.

5. Remember that Past Behavior is the Best Predictor of Future Behavior.

If someone has a pattern of questionable language, frequent job changes, and conflicts with colleagues, then the odds that they will continue this behavior is very high. Conversely, if they have a history of positive reviews, accomplishments, and staying with organizations, they are more likely to continue their pattern of dedication.

Not everyone has their histories available for review on Page 6. For the lesser known candidates, pre-employment tests can provide insight into a person's past behavior, and a structured interview will also help you ask questions about how an applicant behaved in a past situation, to determine how they might behave in a future situation.

Hiring decisions are important. By using the best practices above, no matter the size of your organization, you can help ensure you are making a hiring decision you can feel proud of.

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