If you’ve ever recruited food & beverage professionals, you know how much time, expense and effort goes into sourcing, screening, interviewing and vetting them.

And if you’ve ever lost a top candidate – after investing all that time and effort – you know how demoralizing the loss can be.

What causes candidate drop-off? Several factors may contribute:

  • More options. In today’s employment market, top food & beverage professionals can afford to be picky. Better offers sometimes DO come around.
  • A lengthy hiring process. Ask a candidate to “jump through too many hoops,” and he may decide to jump ship instead.
  • Outright poaching. When talent becomes scarce, some companies become desperate and snap up great people right when you’re ready to hire.

What should you do to survive in this new normal?

Protect What’s Yours!

Be proactive – and go on the offense. Use these ideas from our Vice President, Laurie Hyllberg to minimize drop-off, prevent poaching, and convert more promising candidates into employees:

Accelerate your hiring process. Turn a critical eye to every aspect – from the moment a candidate learns about your opportunity through to the offer acceptance. Where are the roadblocks? Stalls? Black holes? Identify the stages at which you’re most vulnerable to losing candidates, and then look for ways to simplify and speed up the process – without sacrificing quality. Consider one or more of these options to maintain momentum:

  • Committing to a 24 or 48-hour response time to job applicants.
  • Using video screening in lieu of phone.
  • Conducting panel interviews.
  • Clustering interviews (i.e., combining first- and second-round interviews into a single event).
  • Limiting the total number of interviews you conduct. Not only will this minimize stalls due to scheduling conflicts; it will also reduce the number of non-decision-maker opinions you have to consider.

Treat candidates exceptionally well. Throughout your recruiting cycle, provide the timely, accurate feedback candidates crave. Educate them about your process, timelines and next steps, so they know what to expect and won’t feel “hung out to dry.” Read this earlier post for more tips on improving your candidate experience.

Neutralize poachers. Don’t shy away from broaching the subject with your candidate. If you believe he’s being actively pursued by a competitor, ask him if he’s entertaining offers. Then, be ready to sell the upsides of your opportunity (immediately and over the long-term) and your organization as a whole. Show him what you and your team are really made of, and he’ll feel confident about joining you.

Recognize when drop-off is a good thing. Sometimes during the recruiting process, a candidate realizes that he’s just not a good fit – either for the position or for your culture. In this case, a candidate who opts out is a blessing in disguise. By removing himself from consideration (instead of taking the job and then quitting weeks or months later), he saves you the time and cost associated with onboarding, training and starting the recruiting process all over again.

Accelerate. Streamline. Succeed with Kinsa.

Experts in national executive food & beverage recruiting, our team has the resources, proven process and talent network to make every search shorter – and more successful. There’s an ideal out there; let Kinsa help you find it.

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