Good talent is difficult to find whether the economy is strong or the economy is less than stellar. The notion that a bad economy allows a hiring manager to slow the process is false. In the famous words of Sheldon Cooper from the Big Bang Theory…Relativity was a great idea. This is a notion and a rather sucky one at that.
There are several negative consequences of a slow hiring processes. Here are a few.
You could possibly lose top candidates during the late stages of your recruitment process — when gainfully employed top candidates decide to explore opportunities, they are likely to be quickly contacted with prospects and offers, which means that often they will only be on the job market for a matter of weeks or less.
An extended hiring process does not improve the quality of the hire — One could think that taking more time to make a hiring decision would result in better hires...because you had more time to gather information, to gather feedback, and to mull over the finalists. Unfortunately, slow hiring has the opposite effect. The longer you take, often the lower the quality will be. The primary reason for this drop off, as mentioned in the first section, is that with an extended hiring process, all of the top candidates will likely drop out.
You will lose revenue and productivity because vacant positions are open for too long — a stretched-out hiring processes means that vacant positions go unfilled for months. Each day a position is vacant has a significant dollar impact on productivity, innovation, and revenue generation.
You potentially may have to pay new hires more in salary because they will have other offers — If you have an extended hiring process, there will be ample time for other firms to recruit these same top candidates. And once multiple firms start fighting over and literally bidding on one of your candidates, their salary demands will invariably increase once they realize their true market value.
Your image of being slow decision-makers will cause you to lose many top prospects —The appearance of slow decision-making will damage your hiring results. This is because many top candidates view the long time it takes a firm to reach a hiring decision as a reflection of the corporate culture and what business decision-making is actually like.
Your employees will also feel the negative impacts of slow hiring —Your employees will be asked to do double duty and/or overtime, which will negatively impact their morale and retention rates. Employees who came from other faster-hiring firms will get frustrated because they know that these extended vacancies aren’t necessary.
If you are targeting “passive candidates,” realize that slow hiring may result instead in the hiring of actives — The passive candidate may take a longer time to decide whether to explore your opportunity, but hiring managers must realize that once they indicate even a potential interest in your opportunity you have to move fast to keep the momentum and interest rolling. An extended hiring processes will give you a low probability of securing these highly desirable passive candidates. Because slow recruiting processes are not capable of hiring these targeted passives, firms with slow hiring processes typically end up with most of their hires coming from the active job seeker pool. But even then, slow hiring decisions means that you will likely lose the best from among these active job seekers.