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If you’ve ever hunted for a job or for someone to hire, especially in a sizable organization, you know that often the most suitable people don’t get the job. The usual pattern is:

A human-resources person, a hiring manager, or both sift through a tornado of resumes, often with computer assistance.
The HR person does phone interviews with promising candidates to choose the best ones.
The hiring manager conducts in-person interviews with the top candidates and picks a winner.

As a job-seeker, a friend of job-seekers and an employee who’s seen new hires enter the workplace, I can testify that this process doesn’t always deliver the best employees.

It’s not necessarily the fault of the HR person and hiring manager. Job candidates are often too numerous for them to sift through by themselves, even with computerized help. And often HR people (and even hiring managers) haven’t done the job that they have to fill, so they don’t have thorough knowledge of it.

I’d expand the process to involve the people who would have to live with the new hire every day: his or her prospective peers and direct reports (if any). Bring them into resume-sifting and interviewing.

The hiring manager would make the final decision, just as he does now. But involving the employees would have multiple advantages:

A lot of time-consuming and frankly boring work would be off of the manager’s shoulders.
He’d get the perspective of multiple people who know the workplace as well as he does.
The process would reduce the natural concern (and even distrust) that arises in employees when management suddenly implants someone they’ve never heard of.
And lower-level employees would gain some insight into the hiring process, which can only help them as they advance in their careers.

Am I wrong?