How to Hire Employees: The Ultimate Guide (With Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 21 January 2023

Published 27 September 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Learning how to hire employees is essential if you're managing a team or working in a human resource (HR) role. An effective hiring process may rely on factors like where to post job advertisements, how to find candidates and how to conduct interviews. As a candidate, you may also benefit from learning how this process works because you can use this information to optimise your applications. In this article, we provide a step-by-step guide on how to hire employees, followed by top tips to help you hire the best employees.

How to hire employees

Team leaders, managers and HR professionals typically hire new employees when positions become vacant or when creating new roles at the company. The best employees usually have a skill set and experience that allows them to succeed in the job role, alongside any qualifications that might be necessary. HR professionals might also look for candidates who fit in well with existing team members and bring new ideas to the company.

Related: HR Skills: Definition, Examples and Ways to Improve

You can use the step-by-step guide below to help decide the best ways to hire employees to join your team:

1. Decide which jobs need filling

The hiring process may aim to fill each vacant position effectively. Therefore, hiring managers may wish to identify gaps in each department to determine which roles are available.

In some circumstances, it may be obvious which jobs need filling. For example, a team leader in the sales department may have retired, and you may seek to find a skilled replacement in a short amount of time. Alternatively, a company may be experiencing rapid growth, meaning there is a demand for new roles.

2. Define the job role

After deciding which roles might need filling, the next step is to define the job clearly. It can be helpful to define the job's duties and responsibilities, the necessary skillset and any qualifications and experience you might expect an applicant to have.

You can start by stating which department the role is in. Next, you can consider the level of competency the position may require, as this can help you determine whether prior qualifications and experience are necessary. You might also carry out competitor analysis on the job role at other companies to gauge which responsibilities these professionals may have. You can also ask current coworkers to determine which area of a department may benefit from additional help. This can help you decide whether the position requires full-time or part-time attention.

Related: What Is a Job Profile? (With Benefits and How to Write One)

3. Write a job description

The next step is to produce a detailed job description for the new vacancy. A job description is an excellent way to convey expectations and attract suitable candidates. In the job description, you may detail qualification expectations, the required skills and desirable experience. If you're advertising a technical role, you may include proficiency with particular software or specialised knowledge.

Potential candidates may also read the job description to gauge which responsibilities and duties the role might entail. Additionally, candidates might also look for information about the company's core values, the expected salary and location and a closing date for the application.

Related: How to Write Job Descriptions (With Template and Examples)

4. Advertise the job

You may choose to initially advertise the job internally before posting an external notification. Like many job advertisements, you may publish the vacancy online on the company website, third-party job boards or social media. If you post the role online, you may include instructions on applying in the job description.

You may also consider extending the vacancy to your internal community. These may include people such as loyal customers, followers or external members by sending a newsletter detailing the position.

Related: 10 Recruitment Tools to Streamline Hiring Processes

5. Select the best candidates to interview

To contain the number of applications you receive, you may set a deadline. Once the deadline has passed, you can start short-listing appealing applications. A short-list is a focused list of the most qualified candidates you may ask to interview. Try to take your time to read through each application carefully. Once you're satisfied with your short-listed candidates, you can invite them for an interview.

Related: Short-Listing Candidates: How to Complete the Process

6. Interview short-listed applicants

The interview process is an opportunity for you to talk to the applicants over the phone, via video conferencing software or in person. You may want to ask candidates about their knowledge of specific subjects, experience in similar roles and future ambitions. You might also ask what the candidate intends to bring to the position. With the candidates' consent, you might consider recording the interview so you can refer back to it when comparing candidates.

If you're still undecided after the first round of interviews, then it may be beneficial to invite candidates for the second round of interviews. You can use this opportunity to ask more specific questions, such as how the candidate may react in a certain situation.

Related: How to Manage Interview Fatigue in 7 Ways (With Tips)

7. Offer the best candidate a job

Once the interviews are complete, you can assess each candidate's skills, level of education and experience. This can help you determine which individual might best suit the role. You might also consider how well each candidate may fit in with the company's existing team. With the team in mind, you may also ask team leads or other trusted colleagues for their opinion.

Once you've decided on the best candidate, you can provide an official job offer and a deadline for acceptance. Consider including your professional contact details so the candidate can reach out with questions that may relate to an expected salary, start date or work schedule. You might also wish to have one or two suitable candidates in mind if the current candidate declines your offer.

Related: How to Write an Acceptance Email for a Job Offer

8. Onboard the successful candidate

The final step of the hiring process is to onboard the successful candidate. The onboarding process varies from one company to the next, as it depends on company policy. Larger companies commonly have a dedicated human resources department to work through the final stages of the hiring process, including signing contracts and adding the new employee to the payroll.

You might consider employee inductions, employee training and a probation period. These factors can help your new team member settle into their new role.

Related: Recruitment Process Steps: What Is Involved?

Tips for hiring employees

Here are a few helpful to help you hire the best employees:

Develop a recruitment strategy

Developing a recruitment strategy may help you to streamline the hiring process and find the best candidates for the job. A good recruitment strategy outlines the recruitment process itself, including important information, such as where you post job advertisements, how many candidates you interview and who might conduct the interviews.

As companies grow, they might outsource the whole process to a professional recruitment company, or they may consider developing their own human resources departments to handle employee hiring.

Related: What Is Human Resources? Guide to Roles and Duties

Conduct skills tests

If the job that needs filling requires technical skills or knowledge, including skills tests as part of the recruitment process may streamline the procedure.

Tests provide a useful pre-screening element during the recruitment process, allowing you to quickly select candidates with the best skill set and knowledge for the role. You may also see which candidates are serious about the role because undertaking a test demonstrates a commitment to the recruitment process on their part.

Related: Skills Test (Definition and Examples)

Consider group interviews

Consider conducting group interviews to narrow down the best candidates for the job. This is particularly helpful if you have lots of applicants for a role or are looking to fill multiple positions at the same time.

Group interviews are an effective way for you to see how candidates perform in team-based tasks, how they treat their colleagues and if they might have leadership potential.

Related: How to Succeed at a Group Interview

Prepare creative interview questions

It's often useful for interviewers to ask candidates creative questions that encourage them to think outside their normal thought processes. Candidates often prepare responses to questions that they believe are likely to come up during the interview. Asking them a creative, unexpected question often helps you to learn more about the candidate as they're encouraged to think quickly.

Examples of creative questions to ask during interviews include the following:

  • What animal would you be, if you could be any animal in the world?

  • Which three historical figures would you invite to a dinner party, and why?

  • When was the last time you had a new adventure?

  • In your opinion, what is your best quality?

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