Finding Mr Right*
23 August 2019

Recruitment – sourcing talent – selection testing

Many employers complain that the shortage of good quality candidates hinders business growth, so a good strategy at an early stage can help you.

A client for whom I do a good deal of work uses skilled machine handlers. These machine operators are not only core to the business, they are incredibly difficult to find and there have been times when the shortage has caused some real problems. Some have been truly dreadful, but my client put up with them because it was so short-staffed.

During the last 12 months we have reviewed and amended our recruitment process, introducing a pre-interview pen and paper test to find out if a prospective employee can work out how to get the best yield from a piece of metal and a short screening interview.

Successful applicants are invited onto site to take part in more tests administered by different team members and a competency-based interview carried out by the team leader and Operations Manager. The team enjoy participating in the recruitment process and involving them has provided some useful feedback. It also reinforces the strong tam culture we have there for prospective recruits.

The testing improved the quality of the recruitment process, but it didn’t help us to generate more applicants.

We started recruiting all the time. I don’t mean that we appointed people when we didn’t have a vacancy. I mean that we just keep looking. The best people are already employed and probably aren’t looking for work.

If you look for suitable candidates when you’re not actively recruiting (there are a variety of ways of doing this) you should be able to lay hands on two or three really good candidates when you do have a gap.

I am also trying to encourage them to start to develop more skills internally. It doesn’t have to be very expensive. It just takes a bit of thought and planning. We haven’t got very far with this yet, but I hope to get to a stage when we have a decent learning process. Watch this space.

* Or Miss Right of course …. 

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Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this blog, nothing herein should be construed as giving advice and no responsibility will be taken for inaccuracies or errors.

Copyright © 2023 all rights reserved. You may copy or distribute this blog as long as this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author are attached. The author is Kate Russell of Russell HR Consulting Ltd.