As the CEO of a growing company, prioritizing your time and energy becomes almost a full-time job in itself. Smart and successful CEOs learn early on that building a qualified team you can trust and delegating as much as you can to them are the keys to building a business without killing yourself.
So, when the title of an article claims you need to devote more of your precious time to a particular aspect of running your business, like the hiring process, your immediate thought is likely, “that’s why I have an HR manager.” And rightfully so.
But there are actually compelling reasons why you, as the CEO, may want to take a more involved role in hiring. After all, the hiring process isn’t just a matter of throwing people at tasks that need doing. It’s really the backbone of sustainable growth for your business, and it’s how you maintain high quality and profitability while scaling the business effectively.
Here are four specific reasons CEOs should probably get more involved in the hiring process:
- Avoid legal issues in the future
- Avoid employee scandals
- Maintain quality control with quality workers
- Maintain timeliness and stay cost-effective
Let’s look at each a little closer, then we’ll consider how you can realistically devote the needed time to hiring even with your overpacked schedule.
Effective hiring helps avoid future legal issues
Lawsuits filed against companies as a direct or indirect result of their hiring process are probably more common than you realize. Large corporations like Wal-Mart and Wells Fargo have been in the news repeatedly as legal battles rage across the nation over charges ranging from discrimination to unlawful termination.
In addition, courts have consistently held that companies are responsible for their employees’ action while on the clock, especially if prosecutors can prove some level of negligence or a failure on the employer’s part to effectively predict that any illegal or harmful activity by that employee was likely to occur.
That’s why 90 percent of companies perform some sort of background screening as a routine part of their hiring process. Of course, the quality and effectiveness of that screening can have a huge impact on the protection it affords against future lawsuits.
As CEO, protecting your company’s budget and reputation from lawsuits should be high on your priority list. It provides solid justification for getting more involved in the hiring process right at the start so these risks can be effectively mitigated.
Hiring can limit or eliminate employee scandals
As noted above, lawsuits and other unflattering publicity involving your company’s employees are not only a concern from a financial perspective. Your company’s reputation is also very much in danger if an employee’s actions drag its name through the mud. If the courts — of law and of public opinion — have any reason to believe negligence on the company’s part is to blame for whatever occurred, this damage can escalate quickly and even become irreparable.
Once again, nipping this problem in the bud involves instituting a hiring process that’s strategically set up to mitigate the risk of bringing on potential problem employees as much as humanly possible.
Cursory background checks and bare bones interview techniques aren’t good enough. As CEO, you should be personally involved in making sure your company’s hiring process involves a more robust and reliable means of mitigating that risk.
Hiring the best employees improves quality
Beyond just avoiding negative outcomes, an effective hiring process also goes a long way toward maintaining and even improving your company’s quality control.
It only makes sense that better employees — more experienced, better educated, more qualified, and more ambitious — are less likely to make simple mistakes, will care more about the end result of their work, and are more likely to take a proprietary interest in the good of the company.
If you’re like most chief executives, you can probably name a handful of employees working for you right now who are effectively worth ten lower-quality employees in their combination of skills, experience, and work ethic. Imagine how your company could benefit from a hiring process that more effectively sought out and nurtured those types of employees rather than continually working on a trial-and-error basis. Statistically speaking, you’re bound to hire far more mediocre or poor employees if there’s no method in place for identifying and encouraging the great ones.
Lending your personal experience and recommendations to the company’s hiring strategy can help hone that process to optimize its results, with profound effects on the company’s future production.
A quality hiring strategy saves time and money
As you know, it’s far easier, faster, and less expensive to nurture a returning customer than it is to find and convert a new one. Likewise, it’s far more time- and cost-effective to train and develop a long-time employee than it is to be constantly hiring and training newbies who are not already experienced with the company’s culture, products, and methods.
As noted above, investing in optimizing the hiring process will eventually lead to a higher number of high-quality employees who want (and deserve) to stay with the company for longer periods.
In the long run, then, improving the hiring process will lead to lower attrition rates, allowing you to reallocate valuable time and funds to strategic growth and development rather than continually throwing it at a never-ending line of new hires.
So, as a busy CEO, how can you devote more time to hiring?
Like most busy executives, if you’ve gotten this far in the article, you’re probably thinking, “sure, these are compelling reasons to focus more of my attention on improving our hiring process, but how can I possibly do that when I’m already juggling so many other priorities?”
Fortunately, there’s a simple answer. And it’s one you already know.
As noted earlier, building a trustworthy team and delegating vital tasks to them with complete trust in their ability to handle them in the way that’s best for the company is a hallmark of effective leadership.
Meet with your HR manager and other members of the leadership team who are directly involved in the company’s hiring, training, and development practices. Share with them your desire to place special emphasis on optimizing the hiring process, starting immediately. Outline your recommendations and encourage them to brainstorm their own as well. Then, get the ball rolling to locate individuals and/or outside vendors who can be trusted to handle the necessary tasks without requiring your direct supervision or micromanagement.
Here’s a head start that can help you cover the first two reasons outlined above:
NationSearch is an FCRA-compliant background screening service dedicated to providing compliant, simplified, and timely employee background check procedures that are designed with peace of mind for applicants and employers. We provide the necessary background checks with results that are specific and relevant to your company needs.
We know that the employee background screening process can be confusing, stressful, and time-consuming. We make the process as seamless as possible, with an efficient, timely process and critically accurate results.
Once the ball is rolling, simply keep your finger on the pulse of the initiative with monthly status updates from those charged with running the program. That way, you’ll be able to witness the positive results of devoting more time to the hiring process without having to add another few hours to your own workday.