Embrace HR Aylesbury Time to Hire

Tracking how long it takes to hire new employees in the care sector can help you focus on where you can improve efficiency in your business processes…

Focusing on your recruitment metrics can really help you to streamline your processes and, in the long run to save time and money. We explain why, and how you can improve your ‘time to hire’.

According to a white paper by The Access Group [The Access Group: The evolving world of candidate screening and compliance] around 11% of workers change jobs in the UK – to put that figure into perspective this equates to around 3.5 million people. Furthermore, employers and recruitment services undertook a massive 6 million DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) checks in 2019/2020. That is a lot of processing!

The time to hire equation

There are three parts to the ‘time to hire’ equation. The first is the length of time it takes to actually identify the right person for your vacancy. The second is how long it takes for the new person to be hired – which includes how long it takes to move them from application to phone interview, from phone interview to in-person interview and so on.

Finally, you must look at anything that is delaying the recruitment process – such as the ratio of good and poor applications you receive. To improve this ratio you may wish to look at where you are advertising, as a more targeted approach may reap dividends, and consider introducing an incentive scheme for existing staff to propose possible candidates.

You may ask why it matters so much:

  1. If you are slow to hire, you could lose your candidate to another organisation – and then have to start the whole recruitment process all over again, costing more time and money.
  2. The care sector, along with many others, is struggling to find care staff to fit with service users’ needs. It’s important to review pay scales so that they are competitive, not only in the sector, but with industries such as retail.
  3. Another thing to consider is that the care industry has more transient or casual employees at the lower end of the pay scale. When searching for jobs, they are likely to use their mobiles, so make it easy for them to apply. After all, every day they are not working is a day they are not earning.
  4. If you have a member of staff away for too long, work may not be completed to the standard you require, if at all.

Days until hiring

According to Glassdoor [Glassdoor: How Long It Takes to Go Through the Interview Process & Find a Job 04/05/2020], it can take an average of 27.3 days to take a candidate through the hiring process. It varies by sector as the report highlights – we estimate the care sector is somewhere between the 16 days in retail and the 10 days for hospitality candidates.

Now that so much of the hiring process can be done online and through virtual interviews, it is possible that your candidate has interviewed at a number of other rival organisations.

To avoid losing your ideal candidate to another organisation, it is vital to keep your process as short as possible. So how can you do that?

First, ensure that any screening for eligibility to work can be done speedily and simply. If your candidates have multiple offers, they are likely to abandon any that are complicated and take up a lot of time. You should be able to conduct much of the screening process online and do remember it should be mobile friendly – as we have said, many of your candidates may only have access online via a smartphone or tablet.

Identifying delays

When you collect together all of the data, you will be able to identify if there are any hold-ups or delays that can be fixed easily. For example, if there is a gap between getting candidates’ details and your reply, you will need to address why that hold-up is occurring. If screening takes a long time, then you need to think about whether that process could be automated.

If your hiring process appears to be long and drawn out, take the time to sketch it out – even if it is only on a piece of paper. See who does what and when, and make sure everyone is clear about their place in the timeline.

Another very obvious thing to do is to keep a list of prospective candidates – if they have previously been screened and interviewed but were not chosen for the position. There is no reason why you cannot approach them if a similar vacancy arises – by doing that you can skip out several parts of the hiring process. Of course, consideration should be given to the data protection laws in this country – how long you can retain data, and what it should be used for. Ask for the applicants’ permission to retain their details on file for future positions and to introduce them to other prospective service users.

Finally, consider bringing in an independent HR consultant to streamline your sourcing and hiring process for you. It will have a cost attached, but by speeding up your process, and freeing up your time, it could save you both time and money.

Further reading

BABICM (the British Association of Brain Injury and Complex Case Management) recently carried out its own survey regarding recruitment and retention of support work staff. View the initial summary [BABICM:Perfect Storm Survey results 03/02/2022].

If you would like to discuss this subject further, please contact Cecily Lalloo at Embrace HR Limited.

T: 01296 761288 or contact us here.

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Based in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, Embrace HR Limited provide a specialised HR service to the care sector, from recruitment through to exit.