A bad hire: Here’s why it’s not the hiring managers fault

A bad hire_ Here’s why it’s not the hiring managers fault

When a new hire turns out to be a unicorn employee, the hiring manager can pat themselves on the back for their brilliant choice. Yet, when a bad hire happens – it raises some questions. Whose fault is it for selecting the wrong candidate? Or to put it differently – should the hiring manager improve the recruitment tactics for next time? All in all, eventually, it just turns into a blame game. (Because finding someone to blame is always the easiest way to go.)

We all know that the role of a hiring manager is an extremely impactful one. After all – they are the ones that have the final say on who gets hired. That is also why most times they are the ones blamed for causing hiccups in the recruitment process. In this blog, I’ll tell you why it is not their fault and how to help them out in making hiring decisions that are future proof!

What does it mean to be responsible for hiring

It’s not necessarily about the process, but more of the hiring outcome. It is the recruiter’s responsibility to manage the hiring process. Whereas, the job of a hiring manager is to make a final decision in terms of which candidate ends up being chosen for the job. Long story short – they are the decision-makers, so if a bad hire happens, then they are the ones who need to investigate all the why’s. 

While both recruiters and hiring managers are involved in the hiring process, their tasks are more complimentary than overlapping. So, let me first clarify what are the differences in terms of responsibilities between a hiring manager and a recruiter.

The difference between a recruiter & a hiring manager

A recruiter does more than simply find people for jobs. They are responsible for building a strong, diverse pool of candidates, reviewing candidate applications. The role of the recruiter is also to enable the hiring manager to make the right decision. Hiring managers are responsible for identifying and hiring the most qualified applicant from the final pool of candidates. For example, if the hiring manager states that none of the candidates selected by the recruiter fit with the expectations for the open job position, then it is the job of the recruiter to embark on a search for new applicants.

Being responsible does not imply being blamed for a wrong hiring decision

Now that you know that difference between a hiring manager and a recruiter, I want to tell you a little bit more about why is it that often hiring managers are the ones that make mishires. In many young companies, hiring managers also tend to be younger and less experienced. I’d like to clarify that not having experience does not automatically mean that the individual is not capable of being in such a managerial position. Instead, it just means that this person has not yet figured out all the ins and outs of their position.

Yet, as with everything in life – decisions have consequences, and the same goes for making mishires in a company. Everyone makes mistakes, it’s an entirely human thing to do. We make mistakes so we could learn from them and prevent the same mistakes occurring in the future. The more we help hiring managers, the better hiring decisions they will end up making. Read on to find out how!

A little help goes a long way

What often goes wrong with hiring managers is the following. As they need to make an assumption based on a resume, they enter a job interview with zero objective insights. Or even worse: they reject people even before the interview based on their assumptions, while objective insights could have saved the same candidate from being rejected. So, we have two problems:

  • Lacking objective insights prior to the interview;
  • Ways to prevent the interview itself from being gut-driven and biased.

Now, there are two main ways it is possible to help hiring managers make hiring decisions that are future proof.

Provide them with the right (objective) insights prior to the interview 

We tend to hire people based on what we can see, while a person’s fit depends on what we can’t see. That is exactly why human-based screening is extremely biased. By changing the position of assessments to the start of your hiring funnel, hiring managers will be given insights that actually determine someone’s success within the company. Best thing about it? Nobody will be distracted by insights such as demographic details, which are in no way predictive of hiring success. Curious how changing the position of assessments in your hiring funnel will help you gather objective insights and remove bias from your hiring process? Check out the blog we wrote about when and how companies should make use of job assessments.

Eliminate bias by standardizing the interview process

Job interviews can be just like first dates. First impressions count, the outcomes are unpredictable. And sometimes our unconscious bias gets in the way of us making the right decisions. That’s why it’s important to conduct job interviews in such a way that it actually removes bias. Make sure to follow these 3 steps and get an objective first impression of candidates right away:

  1. Standardize the interview process as that will make it easier to avoid bias because every interview is much easier to evaluate objectively
  2. Have a diverse interview panel or simply have two company representatives doing the interviews
  3. Use interview scorecards with clear scoring criteria

Take a look at the blog we wrote about how job interviews can actually help you remove bias to find out more!

To conclude

When a hiring manager makes a hiring decision that ends up being a mishire – it is not about pointing fingers at someone or finding someone to blame. In fact, I’m absolutely certain that each and every hiring manager knows the level of responsibility they carry within a company.

Instead of pointing out the mistakes someone has made, make their lives less stressful by giving them the right information so they can create a hiring process that is smooth and mishire-free!

Want to find out how using neuroscientific games as a pre-assessment tool can help gather valuable insights about candidates? Get in touch with us ! We are more than happy to share all the ins and outs of it with you!

Cheers, Anete

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