Four Strategies to Measure Quality of Hire Effectively

If you’re concerned you’re not measuring quality of hire effectively, you’re not alone. Although quality of hire was the most important metric to recruiters in a recent study conducted by LinkedIn, only 33 percent feel they do a good job of measuring it.

Quality of hire is an elusive metric. We want to know if the hiring process is actually selecting the right talent, but there are a lot of subjective factors involved. What’s more, there’s no magic recipe or industry standard with which to measure—that varies from organization to organization depending on what is most important to them.

Although there’s no one-size-fits-all approach, there are steps you can take to improve the way you measure quality of hire. Use these strategies to tailor the metric to your organization and measure quality of hire with confidence:

  1. Set performance objectives

Measuring quality of hire begins at the start of the hiring process. That’s right — you need to be thinking about the metric as you draft the job description. Develop the main performance objectives for the job to describe the position. These performance objectives are a critical part of measuring.

Your performance objectives need to be specific, so there is a clear and concrete way to measure them. A typical job description may list communication skills as a key requirement for the position. But how will those communication skills be used in the job and to what end? Will the employee need to write certain content? Deliver presentations? Communicate regularly with clients?

Layout the specific performance objectives of the job, so you know what to look for in a candidate and how to measure their success in the position.

  1. Predict quality of hire

Using the performance objectives, estimate before their first day how well you expect your new hire to perform based on their past performance and qualifications. How will their experience and current skills help them succeed?

After the new hire starts in their position, measure their actual success in achieving the performance objectives. Did they meet your expectations? Exceed them? If new hire performance falls below your expectations, it may signal problems with your hiring process.

Depending on where the new hire is faltering, low performance could mean their skills didn’t match the performance objectives closely enough, the hiring process failed to account for working styles and company culture, or the process needs a more effective screening and evaluation process.

  1. Talk to employees

Quality of hire doesn’t solely rely on quality of work — cultural fit and employee satisfaction are just as important.

If you’re just looking at performance, you may think top-performing new hires are happy and engaged, and that’s not always the case. In a 2013 report conducted by Leadership IQ, low performers at the organization studied were much more likely to say they were motivated to give 100 percent at work than high-performing employees.

This means your high-performing new employees aren’t necessarily engaged, and when employees aren’t engaged, it’s only a matter of time before they look for opportunities they find more exciting.

Ask employees to rate their engagement and satisfaction with the position to understand if they are truly a great fit. New hire feedback can point you to weaknesses in the hiring process and help determine how to better select candidates who fit the culture and are passionate about the work the organization does.

  1. Look at the big picture

When looking at quality of hire, it’s easy to get caught up in the little details. The cost of hire, amount of hires, and time to fill look at the recruiting process but don’t effectively measure the quality of hire. These metrics are more focused on speed and quantity, not quality.

Instead, look at quality of hire in terms of meeting larger company goals. How are your new hires impacting the overall success of the company? Are they improving processes, increasing productivity, fixing inefficiencies?

This approach requires you to look at the big picture goals of the organization, and the overall quality of hires, not just individual performance. After analyzing each new employee, view them as a whole to find the overall success of your hiring process.

To get a real sense of the effectiveness of your hiring process, you need to rethink the way you measure quality of hire. Focus on specific objectives to better evaluate the quality of candidates you bring in and to improve your hiring process.

What is most important to your organization when measuring quality of hire? Share in the comments below!

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