Create a simple screening form listing the required and recommended knowledge, skills, and abilities from the job description. If you check resumes or applications for the requirements right away, you can screen out a lot of applicants quickly and fairly. Leave space for notes on the screening form and use it to write things you want to remember later about each candidate.
Be equitable and fair with all applicants, be aware of your rights as a hiring supervisor, and apply the same expectations and requirements to all applicants.
Take your time with the process. Mistakes can be costly in both time and money and good candidates can be lost. Carefully project a timeline – then add a few days at various points based on possible bottlenecks. For example, reference checks should be quick, but time zones difference and schedules can cause delays. Even scheduling interviews can be more time consuming than expected based on the “back-and-forth” of requests, modifications, etc.Be patient, be focused, and do it right the first time.
Keep information flowing to applicants about the status of the process. If candidates don’t meet the minimum criteria, let them know that right away through an e-mail or letter. It creates a favorable impression of the organization and helps you determine who is still an available candidate.
If the position requires a certain level of a given skill, consider testing to measure the level of skill the candidate has. (Sometimes people exaggerate their skill level in the interview process.) Check with your supervisor to see if a test already exists before creating one.
Every step in the hiring process should be documented. Ask your supervisor or the human resources department which documents you need to fill out (interview notes, screening checklists, communications with candidates, etc.), to whom they should be submitted, and where they should be filed.
Only hire if you have a good candidate. It is not fair to you, the applicant, or the organization to hire someone who is not qualified for the position. If you have no qualified candidates, revisit your steps and try to figure out what went wrong and fix it before re-starting a search.
Do not try to hire during a holiday season. Many people stop looking for jobs at this point due to family demands and even those who apply become hard to track down to schedule for interviews. Waiting a couple of weeks is more effective in the long run than failing a search and having to start it all over again.
Schedule and describe the new employee’s orientation in their letter of hire. It is important that employees understand their job, the organization, and expectations up front.