A Definitive Guide To Hiring New Staff

For businesses, hiring can be one of the hardest things to get right. You need to attract the right talent and create a streamlined onboarding process for them. Get it wrong, and your hiring process can cost you thousands in wasted investment. Get it right, and your business will thrive. Here’s the definitive guide to hiring new staff.

What are your processes for hiring?  

Having a well-defined hiring process is essential to having successful hires. The process should include when you post the job, how long it takes for the interview cycle, the stages in an interview, and any external help with assessments or character references. By setting out your process upfront, you’ll save time down the line and build trust with your applicants, making them feel valued and more likely to accept the role. This will also help you keep on task so that you can avoid falling down any potential hiring rabbit holes.

The six stages of hiring:  

Planning – Do you need to hire? Is this the right time? How many staff will we need and when?

Search – Where will we find the right candidate(s)? What skills, knowledge, and experience do they need? What is our company culture like, and what type of person fits in best with that culture? (Cultural fit can be more important than experience in some cases.)

Screening – Which candidates are you going to interview? You will probably be inundated with applications, and you won’t have time to interview them all.

Interviewing – This is where you’ll ask them necessary questions about their knowledge, skills, and experience. You may also want to give them a test or quiz at this stage.

Evaluating – This is where you’ll decide who the best candidate is and then, if necessary, negotiate a package with them.

Onboarding – Once on board, new staff needs to know what they’re doing, how they’re doing it, and why they’re doing it. They also need to be comfortable with the social aspects of working here, including their team and the company culture.


Compare the benefits of internal and external candidates

Internal candidates are likely to already know the culture and how things work around here, while external candidates will need to adapt. Internal hires can take their time getting up to speed because they’re familiar with the company processes, but you may be taking on more risk by hiring someone who has an established position elsewhere.

Plan your onboarding processes

You’ll need to plan how you’re going to integrate new hires into your business. What is the timeline for getting them comfortable with the processes and approach in your company? Will they come on a two-week training course, or will they be thrown into the fire? You should also think about what role mentors could play, especially if the team-joining candidate is younger or has less experience.

Decide on a budget for new hires

Think about what you can afford per month, how many people you are looking to hire and for what roles. Make sure that your budget accounts for the recruitment process, onboarding time, and training costs. That way, you’ll be able to accurately predict when this new money is going to come in and therefore meet any financial goals you have.

Work out how much time is needed for integration

How much time should your new hire spend in the hiring process? Also, how long will you need to get them up to speed and working solidly? Make sure that these two things add up and don’t leave you short on either one.

Plan flexibility for remote candidates

In an ideal world, you’ll want all your new staff in the same place to make it easier for integration and collaboration. However, if you do need to hire remotely, make sure that there is a plan in place. Some companies use Skype calls for interviews and meetings, while others ask their applicants to complete an assignment before they get an in-person interview.

Know your costs

You will need to know all of the costs involved in the hiring process. Here are some of the most common costs to look out for:

  • HR salaries
  • Previous turnover costs
  • Recruiter commissions and agency fees
  • Employee referral bonuses
  • Digital and physical advertising costs
  • SaaS tools
  • Background check and pre-employment services
  • Lost productivity for company staff
  • Signing incentives
  • Onboarding costs

Understand the job markets

If you’re looking to find good candidates, then you will need to be one step ahead of the game. What are hot skills right now? Where are they located geographically? Who are the stellar companies in your area that you should reach out to first?

Writing the job description and requirements

While it may seem like a no-brainer, your job description will need to be well written and detailed. Make sure that you cover all of the necessary bases by including:

  • Role requirements – this includes skills, experience, and qualifications. For example, if you’re looking for someone with an executive master of health administration, this is the section to include that information.
  • Personality traits – this is where you should include behavioral descriptions that reflect the culture of your company. For example, if collaborative working is a key value, then you’ll want to state this in your job description
  • Any mandatory requirements – there may be certain things that need to go on a candidate’s CV before they can even be considered. For example, ‘must have a university degree’ or ‘must have three years experience in a similar role.’
  • Compensation and benefits – Can you afford to offer remote work options? Is your company willing to pay relocation fees? How much notice is your new hire required to give their current employer? What are the average salaries in their role in your area? All of these questions should be considered when you’re making a job offer.


Use your own resources

Why not use your network of contacts to find potential candidates? If you have an existing workforce, then there’s a good chance that they will know someone who would be perfect for the role. Keep an eye on social media channels and let people know that you are hiring.

Consult with a professional recruiter

There are a lot of great reasons to use a recruitment agency but, in some cases, they can be expensive. Many agencies will charge 25-30% of the candidate’s first-year salary, while others may want to get paid per hour. This is why it’s important to weigh up all of your options and get a feel for what you can afford.

Use job posting websites

Several job posting sites online allow you to post your ad for free or at a low cost. It’s important to regularly check the website as they remove ads once they expire.


Interviewing every candidate that applies could take weeks. Instead, it’s better to screen applicants and pick out the best ones for an interview. To complete this process, you should answer these four questions:

  • Do they meet the minimum qualifications?
  • Do they meet the preferred qualifications?
  • Do they give off the right general impressions?
  • Are you using an applicant tracking system? 


Consider video interviews

The goal of an interview isn’t only to ask questions and evaluate the candidate’s responses but also their body language and interactions with you and other members of your team. Video interviews allow you to do this without having to bear the cost of flying them in for a face-to-face meeting.

Plan your interview questions and techniques

You’ll need to plan your questions ahead of time to ensure that you cover everything. In some cases, you may need to do more than one interview with the candidate. For example, you could start with a behavioral-based chat and then move on to technical questioning if they impress.

Tailor questions to the candidate’s resume

If a candidate has worked in a similar role to the one you’re recruiting for, then it makes sense that their previous achievements will have been fairly transferable. You’ll want to tailor your questions, so they cover exactly what was listed on their resume.

Take notes during the interview

Take notes in real-time so that you don’t forget anything. Ask for clarification on any areas that are still unclear to you when they finish an answer.


During your interviews, you’ll be asked a lot of questions and spoken to by many different candidates. How do you decide which applicants will make the cut? There are three main factors that you should focus on:

Cultural fit – would this person feel at home in the company’s working environment?

Positive impression – did they impress you throughout the interview process?

Technical skills – are they qualified to do the job?


Once you’ve decided on a candidate, you can get started with the negotiating process. This is especially relevant if the candidate was recruited through an agency. They will have negotiated their own fee, so it needs to be adjusted to fit your budget.

Once a candidate has been hired, they need to be onboarded into the company. This includes tasks such as:

  • Introducing them to the team members with whom they’ll be working on a regular basis
  • Training them in how work gets done so they can start producing results from day one
  • Giving them a tour of the office
  • Providing them with everything they need to be able to do their job. This includes access to information, support from IT and HR, and any other tools or equipment that are necessary for the role