Improve quality of hire with these 3 tips

10 Mar 2020

Improve Quality of Hire with these 3 tips for enhancing your job adverts

There are many factors that influence Quality of Hire, from your interview process to your email communications. One factor that’s often overlooked is your job advert, so in this article, we’ll explore how your job post can be your secret weapon in increasing your Quality of Hire.

What is Quality of Hire?

Quality of hire is a way of measuring hiring effectiveness. It’s a broad term for a variety of metrics that show how well the company has attracted the right people for the right roles.

One of the tricky things about measuring Quality of Hire is that ‘quality’ is a pretty woolly term. Reliable measurements need quantitative data and a standardised formula, and it’s not always easy to find standard ways of tracking quality.

Because of this, the best way to measure Quality of Hire is to track a range of metrics that are indicators of quality. Here are some of the most common ones:

  • Performance appraisal scores
  • 360 feedback
  • Retention rate
  • Rate of salary increase
  • Customer service score
  • Talent Scorecard
  • Employee Lifetime Value

Quality of hire can only be measured in hindsight. Interviews, pre-hire assessments and psychometric testing are all ways of trying to predict and improve Quality of Hire, but they are not accurate indicators of quality.

Given that there’s no ‘right’ way to measure quality of hire, it’s no surprise that most companies don’t feel entirely confident about the way they measure it. According to LinkedIn’s Global Trends report, only 33% of companies felt happy with their Quality of Hire reporting.

Chart showing 33% of companies feel happy with their Quality of Hire reporting

Why is Quality of Hire important?

You might be wondering why bother? Well, Quality of Hire is the single most important and influential metric you can track.

Compared to efficiency metrics, like cost of hire and time to hire, Quality of Hire provides a fuller, more accurate picture of Talent Acquisition’s impact on company strategy. Rather than focusing on hiring quickly and cheaply, which can drive false economies and cost-cutting, Quality of Hire emphasises finding the right person for the right role. It will help you:

  • Measure your assessment accuracy
  • Demonstrate the impact of the TA team on a company’s ability achieve business goals
  • Show how recruitment activity benefits other functions of the business
  • Improve your candidate selection and assessment
  • Understand your best sources of hire
  • Increase staff retention

The results of this are significant. Companies measuring and improving their quality of hire can see increased revenue generation, higher productivity and improved morale. So yeah, it’s worth the effort.

How to improve Quality of Hire by enhancing your job adverts

Your job adverts are your shop window. They sit at the top of your recruitment funnel and affect the quality and the quantity of candidates you attract.

But when everyone in your team has approximately 6,000 open reqs at any one time and the only feedback from your Hiring Manager is ‘they’re just not the right fit’, job adverts can feel like the last thing on your priority list.

So you copy and paste the last job ad you used or publish an internal job spec without batting an eyelid. We get it.

But your job advert has the power to directly influence the quality of candidates in your pipeline. A high-performing, inclusive advert can transform your candidate attraction strategy from the very top and send your Quality of Hire through the roof.

Here are our tips for writing top-quality job ads that attract top-quality candidates.

Make your adverts more appealing to neurodiverse talent

Neurodiversity refers to the different ways our brains process information. It highlights that everyone thinks differently – we have different interests, skills and motivations.

According to Acas, 1 in 7 people in the UK have a neurodiverse condition, like ADHD, Autism or Dyslexia.

The way we write job adverts can cause problems for neurodiverse talent. Jargon and figures of speech, for example, are particularly hard for people with Autism to understand.

Qualities such as ‘good team player’ or ‘excellent communication skills’ are often included in job adverts as standard, without real thought as to whether they’re required. This can mean that suitable candidates may assume they’re not right for the role, when in fact they’re highly qualified.

Writing more inclusive job adverts will make your recruitment postings more engaging to everyone, including neurodiverse people. Here are our top tops:

  • Reduce your advert’s reading age to between 11 and 14
  • Prioritise clarity and plain English
  • Remove jargon
  • Review your requirements and make sure you only list skills that are absolutely necessary for the role
  • State explicitly that you welcome applications from neurodiverse candidates

Be honest about the role and the organisation

I’m not a massive fan of the word ‘authentic’. In fact, I hate it. It’s the marketer’s naff word-of-the-moment and it’s been bandied around so much by lifestyle brands, advertising execs and influencers that it’s become pretty much meaningless.

But when it comes to improving your Quality of Hire, it’s crucial that your recruitment advertising is *shudder* authentic. By that I mean that your adverts should be:

  • Honest – about the role and the organisation
  • Self-aware – be conscious of your organisation’s strengths and weaknesses
  • Verifiable – could someone walk into your company today and get exactly what they expect

The further you stray from these three pillars of authentic job advertising, the less likely you are to find high-quality candidates that are right for your business.

Now, I know how tempting it is to elaborate. As a recruiter, it’s your job to sell the company and the role. But embellish your advert too much and it’s only a matter of time before you get caught out.

Yes, you might attract qualified jobseekers, but any candidate that’s worth your time is more likely to drop out at interview or early into the role. Basically, whenever they realise your ad was a load of nonsense. All you’re doing is kicking the problem up the road and impacting your Quality of Hire.

Here are a few tips for ensuring your recruitment ads are honest, self-aware and verifiable:

  • Avoid stock photography. It doesn’t help jobseekers get an accurate picture of their future workplace and research has shown that users are becoming ‘blind’ to stock images, in a similar way to banner blindness.
  • When creating your job spec, ask your Hiring Manager to describe the core tasks the new hire will be expected to do. Build your job advert around these to make sure it gives an accurate description of the role.
  • Tell it like it is. If KPIs and sales targets are an important part of your company culture, say that.

Tailor your adverts to your ideal candidate for maximum creative impact

The key to improving Quality of Hire is hypertargeting – delivering highly-relevant messages to jobseekers when they’re most likely to see it.

It’s not enough to send in-demand candidates to a bland and irrelevant careers page, you need to wow them with a job advert that’s literally written for them.

For example, if you’re sourcing a candidate for a senior development role, send them to an advert with a testimonial from a future colleague. Add videos of your CTO or other influential team members speaking at industry events. Describe their career progression path. Tailor your content to the needs and wants of that specific senior developer.

To do this, you’ll need an understanding of your jobseeker personas. A persona is a “semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers.”

Personas should be detailed and distinct. You need enough personas to cover most of your jobseekers but not so many that you lose the specificity or distinctness that sets that persona apart from the rest.

Once you have your personas defined, you can set about customising your job adverts with engaging, rich and super-relevant content.

However you choose to measure Quality of Hire, improving your job adverts will have an impact on the quantity and quality of candidates you receive.