Top 7 Employee Selection Mistakes And How To Deal With Them

Selecting the right employee is not easy and during selection processes, many mistakes are being made, often resulting in a mishire. Here are our top 7 employee selection mistakes and how you can avoid them for your next selection process:

  1. Not having clear what you´re looking for

If you don´t know what you´re looking for, it is definitely difficult to make a great hire. If you´re not clear on what you need, you will never find the right fit for the job. Therefore, it is important to be very clear to define the profile you are looking for and prioritize the critical points a candidate needs to tick off in advance. It might take some time to set-up a clear job description but this time will definitely be worth it.

  1. Talk too much

If you´re talking more than you´re listening during the interviews, it will be hard to assess if this candidate could be a good hire for your company. To be actually screening the candidate, you should listen more than talk.

  1. Hire people because you know them

It´s a common mistake to hire people just because you know them well. Your friend´s son or your cousin is not necessarily a good fit for your business. Of course, you shouldn´t have a policy of not having people you know entering the selection process but they should follow the regular process and not have a head start just because they have a good contact in the business. So if your friend wants you to consider his son, go for it but make sure a real selection process is followed.

  1. Not asking for examples

Candidates can tell whatever they want but a common hiring mistake is to settle with vague or very general responses just to be polite. You are on a mission to investigate whether this candidate is a good fit for the job so you will have to dig deeper. Therefore, always ask for specific examples of certain situations where the candidate demonstrated what they are claiming to have done. Use behavioral questioning in your interviews to make sure you always get examples of what candidates tell you.

  1. Focus too much on gut feeling

Chances are that you will have managers of different experience levels conducting interviews in your process. It is possible that managers that have already participated in many selection processes, start trusting more on their gut than on the official interview process. Although experience and gut are important, they should never be the only deciding factor because other guidelines of your selection process are important as well.

  1. Get nervous about market or time pressure

In a tight labour market where certain profiles are very scarce, many managers hire too quickly (and fire too slowly). Interviewing the candidate once and making an offer because you´re nervous you might not find another profile due to talent scarcity is not uncommon. Or, the same can happen because of lack of time, managers being too busy and therefore deciding too quickly so they can go on with their day-to-day. However, of course, making offers after just a single interaction should be avoided at all times.

  1. Selling the job

This one is related to the point above, in a tight labour market it can be a common mistake to sell the job and the company very strongly to the candidate because they are afraid the candidate has other offers as well. Make sure to always keep the focus on the long-term objective to hire the best fit for the job.


What other employee selection mistakes have you made? How do you try to avoid them in the future?

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