Why not Hiring is Better than Hiring the Wrong Person for the Job

Chris Young
January 7, 2008 — 2,092 views  
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In a tight labor market everybody is searching for the right talent. Often times during a labor “crunch” I commonly hear comments such as “We just need to get someone in that position” or “Can we just hire somebody…Please!” When a client comes to me with statements like these, my response is always... "You need to hire the right employee for the job. Don't destroy possibility by hiring the wrong person and paying for it later." Keeping a position open until the right candidate is identified is one of the most strategically important moves an organization can make. Simply put: not hiring is better than hiring the wrong person for the job. While it can be tempting to hire somebody to “fill in” until the right candidate is identified, hiring the wrong employee for the job will invariable create the following problems and headaches… Employee Morale – An individual who can’t do the job well will quickly create performance “gaps” within an organization. Top performers will quickly notice these gaps and feel that they are being held to a different performance standard. Eventually these high performers will feel that they are not being fairly compensated and will seek better remuneration elsewhere. If your organization can’t provide better pay, be sure to wave goodbye to your top performers as they head for “greener pastures” Employee Turnover – Assuming your organization doesn’t provide the pay increase your high performers feel they deserve, they will seek employment elsewhere. They will likely be hired by high performing organizations such as Southwest Airlines where personal accountability is a critical part of the organization’s Mission, Vision, and Values. This leaves you with underperforming team members and yet another search for candidates to fill the open positions in your organization. Customer Goodwill - The wrong hire will destroy customer goodwill. The wrong hire won't take care of your customers the way the right person for the job will. Operational Costs – Hiring the wrong person for the job will invariably drive up operational costs. Their productivity will never be equal to that of your high performance team members. While it can be tempting to hire almost “anybody” to fill an open position that you just can’t seem to get filled, hiring the wrong person for the job can wreak havoc in your organization. The best employee selection strategy is to hire the right employee for the job the first time, every time. Over the long term this strategy will save your organization considerable resources and countless headaches. There are several options for improving your chances of hiring the right employee the first time around. One which I always recommend to my clients is the use of a personality assessment and the establishment of a job benchmark that will identify the unique personality traits that are likely to correlate to success in the open position. Hiring managers can then use the results of a candidate’s assessment to “score” them against the job benchmark to determine the candidate’s “fit” for the job. A job benchmark and personality assessment should never be the sole criteria for hiring an employee. However, when used in addition to traditional hiring methods such as interviews, reference checks, and background checks, a job benchmark and personality assessment can greatly improve your chances of hiring the right individual for the job. Remember… Not hiring is better than hiring the wrong person for the job! If you’d like more information about the use of job benchmarking and personality assessments in the employee selection process, please contact Chris Young at [email protected]

Chris Young


The Rainmaker Group is a human talent maximization company specializing in helping organization maximize their bottom lines by improving employee retention, hiring the best talent possible, and strategic talent management and coaching services. From the Fortune 50 corporation to the small medical office, The Rainmaker Group guarantees lasting organizational change via a unique blend of energy, insight, and science to maximize talent, transform organizational culture, and provide strategic intervention.