Should You Hold Out for a Better Candidate?

October 30th, 2015

Most management decision making is about making tradeoffs: comparing the risk to the reward and deciding which direction you should move in — or whether you should move at all. This is true of hiring decisions, too. There are costs to hiring the wrong person, as well as costs to leaving a position unfilled too long while you search for a better candidate. We’ve previously talked about why you should avoid the “perfect hire” mentality and “settle” for the best candidate you’ve seen. Most of the time, that’s a sensible decision. But sometimes it really does make sense to hold off on hiring, and continue to look for someone even better.

  1. Your need isn’t urgent. If you’re ramping up staffing for a project that hasn’t started yet, or are looking for a replacement for someone who’s announced they’re retiring in six months, you have time on your side. Because there isn’t pressure to just bring in a warm body already, you can continue looking to find the ideal employee. Just keep the project start or retirement date in mind. It’s easy to lose track of time and find yourself in a crunch — even if the search wasn’t urgent when you started.
  1. There isn’t time for the candidate to grow into the position. There are times when you can’t find someone with all the skills you need, and you hire someone you hope will grow into the position. Not all projects offer the luxury of time for someone to grow; there are times when someone just has to hit the ground running. In those situations, you can’t afford to hire a candidate who doesn’t clearly demonstrate that they’re currently capable of doing the job.
  1. You can’t handle the consequences of a bad hiring decision. If you hire the wrong individual, you’ll have to deal with the impact of that on your team and your project. At some companies, the internal procedures for terminating an employee are complex and time consuming. If the candidate doesn’t work out, you might be stuck with them for months before you can even start to look for another new hire. There may be less impact on the project if you wait for a better candidate to come along.

InReach IT Solutions wants to help you find the best candidate for your open positions. Contact us to find out how our services can help meet your staffing needs.