Someone once told me the reason McDonald’s is so successful. They said it’s because when you order a hamburger from the Golden Arches, it’s the same in Erie, Pennsylvania; Los Angeles; Seoul, South Korea; and everywhere else they have a restaurant. You know what to expect and they know exactly how to deliver it.
But how does this correlate to recruiting? The answer: In many ways. And I am excited to explain it to you. When recruiting, you should stick to the same process every time. This process should consist of easily repeatable processes that you or your recruiter execute. When you carry out the same process with every candidate, you will start noticing that evaluating them gets easier.
Moreover, as you complete the process a few times, you will start to see what can be added or subtracted out of the process to make it more efficient. Once you start hiring people that stick with you, the process that works best will be very clear.
Here’s an easily repeatable recipe I recommend you follow for hiring a new sales representative at your agency:
Step 1: Post your job ad 60-90 days before you want to actually hire—this may depend on whether you are looking for commercial or experienced sales representatives—and send an assessment to all who apply to find out more about each person who applies.
Step 2: Regardless of the position, keep your location, company history and why you are a great company to work for as brief as possible in all of your ads.
Step 3: Once an applicant applies to a position, reach out within 24 hours via email or over the phone to thank them for applying and let them know your timeline for reviewing their resume.
Step 4: Within 24 hours of application, review the resume and assessment results and decide if you want to phone screen candidates. Notify those who do not qualify with a boilerplate email thanking them for applying, but they have not been selected.
Step 5: Schedule a phone screen to discuss the opportunity. Note: step one to five should be completed within 24-48 hours.
Step 6: Once you have them on the phone, keep this call under 10 minutes and ask the same questions of each applicant. For example, ask: Why are you interested in working for our agency? What do you know about the agency? What makes you a great insurance sales representative?
Step 7: Decide within one hour after the phone screen if you want to do a face-to-face interview and schedule it with selected candidates.
Step 8: Conduct a face-to-face interview with the exact same questions and explanation of the job for every candidate.
Step 9: Wait 24 hours.
Step 10: Offer the best candidate the job or reject their candidacy.
You will notice that the best candidates will appreciate your process and respond to it in a positive way. I’ve been doing the same process for the last 10 months and have had zero people leave the hiring process voluntarily and added 6 new salespeople. The McDonald’s hamburger just became so much more enjoyable.
John Hill is director of sales at Ideal Traits, a Big “I” Hires partner.