By the time you realize you need to expand your sales force – whether it’s due to growth or departures – it’s already costing you money. You want to move fast to avoid the costs that come with missed opportunities but hiring is a time-intensive process. That’s why I’ve come up with six steps you can take to speed up sales hiring.
1. Write Better Postings
Writing a good job posting requires an understanding of what the job entails and what’s required to accomplish it effectively. Before you start collecting resumes make sure you – and any other decision makers – know your assets from your requirements.
2. Screen Aggressively
It may feel odd to be tossing out resumes when you need to find someone ASAP but interviews that don’t go anywhere are simply wasted time. You should have a solid job description as your guideline, so stick to it and steer clear of one of the biggest time sinks in the hiring process.
3. Do Fewer Interviews
If you screen aggressively this will come naturally but it goes beyond the number of candidates you interview. Build a shortlist of three – five candidates for first interviews and plan to bring half of them back from a second. After a second interview you should be ready to extend an offer or start fresh.
4. Reference Check Early
Confidentiality is key when conducting reference checks, but you should be checking them as early as possible. There’s no sense moving forward if you detect any inconsistencies or the candidate doesn’t get a solid endorsement. On the flip side, if you get great feedback from people you trust you can put a candidate on the fast-track.
In either case, early reference checks can give you something to discuss in the second interview and they position you well to take our next piece of advice.
5. Don’t ‘Sleep On It’
Choosing the right candidate is a big decision but it won’t be easier tomorrow or next Monday. Once you’ve wrapped up the interviews you should be ready to extend an offer within a day or two. (Or go back to square one.) Skip the waiting. It’s stressful for you and the candidate
6. Get Help
Recruiters love a deadline because it means you’re motivated to hire. If you haven’t had any luck on your own, or simply can’t afford to come up empty-handed, a partner with the right connections can really speed up the process.