November 20, 2015

Why You Should “Test” Your Potential Hires



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Finding trustworthy employees is hard. Now, I’m not saying that everyone is a flake or is out to steal your ideas. That’s an entirely different topic. What I mean to say is, most of the time we don’t know who we’re investing in when take on a new hire.

Hear me out. I’m not doubting your judgement, I’m challenging the system. Interviews and hiring processes don’t allow you to fully understand the capabilities of the person you’re hiring. Most of what you base your decision on is word of mouth, a feeling, and a couple of references. But are they actually proficient in Excel? Do they really know Photoshop?

Truth be told, no one really knows. And you won’t know if they can provide results until you’ve already hired them. And by that point, it’s already too late.

The good news? There is another way to figure out if someone is the right fit for the job. Here at AcceleratingCFO, we like to call these “test runs” (also known as hiring simulations). Hiring simulations can range from assessments, presentations, assignments, and more—it’s really up to you.

Why are hiring simulations a good idea? In a nutshell, they test if a person will be able to perform on the job. Not only that, but you can customize your simulation to the specific position that you’re looking to fill. For example, if you’re hiring for a social media-marketing manager, give them a couple of scenarios that allow you to see what they can bring to the table. Or, even better, give them a project you’re working on to figure out if they can handle what you deal with on a daily basis. That way, you’ll get a sense of how they come up with solutions, tackle problems, and, most importantly, if they can deliver results. Plus, you get to see their work before it really matters (i.e. sending off to a client).

In addition, you’ll learn which candidates are serious about the opportunity. Giving several potential hires outside work will let you know which ones are willing to put in the effort and which ones are not. Basically, hiring simulations create a self-selecting weeding out process. Which makes your job that much easier.

Not only that, but hiring simulations give the potential hire a glimpse of some of the projects they’ll be doing on the job. This will also help them understand if they want to pursue the opportunity further. Remember, you’re trying to hire for the long-term and have an engaged workforce. You don’t want to blindside an employee with work they weren’t prepared for or weren’t expecting, especially millennials.

While nothing is guaranteed, hiring simulations make it easier to find the right fit for your bourgeoning business. Knowing what a person can produce before you invest in them and knowing that the person is interested in the work (and, as a result, invested in your company) is invaluable.

So what do you think? In our minds, it’s a clear-cut answer. Hiring simulations make sense.

Are you prepared to handle the biggest challenges faced by business owners?

Don’t get blindsided by problems that other talented leaders have already solved.

We’ve teamed up with Dr. Hector Lozada, Professor of Economics at Seton Hall to survey business owners ranging from start-up founders to seasoned CEOs. What came out of it is a cheat sheet for sidestepping the roadblocks, bottlenecks, and challenges that plague your colleagues and competitors.

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