Good Things Come to Those Who Wait

We’ve been taught since childhood that patience is a virtue; that patience will be rewarded. Yet we live in a world of smart phones, delivery pizza, and instant gratification.

This often plays out in the business world, particularly when it comes to filling a position. The workforce has been downsized due to economic conditions, yet the deadlines and workloads haven’t changed. Management expects fewer people to do the same amount of work as before, often at the same or less pay. In this already strained environment, one (voluntarily) empty position can create a huge backlog and stress for those left.

Hiring managers, stressed by the additional workload, listening to complaints from their reports (and hoping to keep them too!) are in a hurry to fill that empty position with the first qualified person to walk through the door. If they’re fortunate enough to be able to refill the position at all.

But first there are all these HR hoops to jump through! Approvals, screenings, required interviews…that’s right. We, in HR, like to create unnecessary processes for things like interviewing and bringing on a new person.

So the hiring manager rushes through the process, only partially following the recommendations of HR and justifying the rush to management with the clock that’s ticking down on all those deadlines. They bring someone on; someone they think is going to be their savior from all this extra work.

What happens when 3 months… 6 months… 9 months down the road they find out that person they thought was the answer to all their problems…isn’t? When it becomes apparent that there is division in a team that used to be united, that they aren’t making progress toward those deadlines, when management is concerned by the decisions this person is making? Eventually they decide to move on, or the company asks them to.

Now the department is back where they started, only a year later and with lower morale and confidence than before that person started.

The screening process is important for more reasons that just ensuring a candidate is capable of doing the job. Culture fit is important and the damage caused by a candidate who isn’t a fit can be serious and long-lasting. Sure, it takes a little longer to find the right person for the job, but in the long run it helps to build a team united in their goals.

So before you accuse HR of creating hoops, think about it.