Blog Recruitment Performance How to Improve Your Time-to-Hire Metric
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Your business wants top talent. Yet, your hiring process can inadvertently hamper your ability to stir up interest from quality candidates. But, with the right approach, you can improve and optimise your time-to-hire metric.


What is Time-to-Hire?

Time-to-hire refers to the amount of time it takes your business to fill a vacancy. To calculate your average hiring time, take the number of days required to fill vacancies across your organisation during a specific time frame. You can then divide the total number of days by the total number of vacancies to get your average time-to-hire.


Why the Time-to-Hire Metric Is Key

Research indicates the average hiring process takes 25 to 46 days, depending on the industry. Ideally, your business’ time-to-hire should be minimal. The longer it takes to complete your hiring process, the less likely it becomes that quality job candidates will want to join your company.


For example, a long, arduous hiring process can hamper the candidate experience. The result: your company can miss out on opportunities to add outstanding candidates to your team now and in the future.


Let’s not forget about the cost of a lengthy and complex hiring process, either. Each day a vacancy goes unfilled can cause your business to lose money. This is because a first-rate candidate who fills this vacancy can hit the ground running and contribute to your business’ success starting on day one.


Group of people sat in an interview waiting room


What Can You Do to Reduce Your Time-to-Hire?

Don’t wait to improve your hiring process. Now, let’s look at five tips to help you speed up your hiring process, and improve your time-to-hire metric.


1. Assess Your Hiring Processes

Audit your hiring processes. In addition to evaluating your time-to-hire, look at other talent recruitment metrics, such as:


  • Cost Per Hire: The amount of money you invest in your hiring processes divided by the number of employees you hire in a designated time frame.
  • Candidates Per Hire: Number of candidates interviewed before a position is filled.
  • Source of Hire: Where candidates are coming from.


As you conduct your audit, you may find weaknesses in your hiring processes. And, you can use your data and insights to uncover ways to transform these weaknesses into strengths.


2. Establish a Talent Pipeline

Create a talent pipeline, a pool of candidates who can fill roles across your company at any time. Your pipeline can provide you with convenient access to outstanding candidates. Plus, it ensures you won’t have to start from scratch to identify top talent as soon as a role with your business becomes available.


To put together a talent pipeline, here’s what you’ll need to do:

  • Establish hiring goals. Determine your short- and long-term business goals and how hiring top talent can help you achieve them.


  • Build a sourcing plan. Use networking events, employee referrals, social media, and other sources to identify candidates to add to your talent pool.


  • Reach out to candidates. Get in touch with candidates and encourage them to apply for jobs at your company.


  • Evaluate your talent pool. Review your talent pool and ensure it includes candidates who align with your company’s needs.


  • Nurture your talent pool. Provide candidates in your talent pool with updates regarding any new positions with your company that match their skills and career goals.


  • Offer training and development opportunities. Give candidates in your talent pool opportunities to engage in training and development programs and further improve their skill sets.


Your talent pipeline remains a work in progress. Over time, you can expand your pipeline, to the point where you can use it to quickly and effortlessly find quality candidates to fill entry- and senior-level roles right away. At the same time, you can improve your time-to-hire metric.


Two people interviewing a person


3. Foster Intercultural Communication

Promote intercultural communication so you can build and maintain a diverse talent base, and avoid drop-offs throughout the hiring process.


Effective intercultural communication enables you to engage with candidates across a wide range of cultures and backgrounds in a respectful manner. To foster intercultural communication with a candidate, you should:


  • Learn about a candidate’s history, customs, languages, and norms.
  • Be an active listener in any conversation with a candidate; to do so, maintain good eye contact, a positive tone, and respond appropriately to anything a candidate says.
  • Practice the “Golden Rule” and treat a candidate in the same way you would want him or her to treat you.


Gif of a man sat in a call center


Effective intercultural communication can be a difference-maker during the hiring process. If you strive to constantly improve your intercultural communication skills, you can boost the likelihood of adding talent from around the world to your team.


4. Enhance the Candidate Experience

Enhance the candidate experience by simplifying it. In doing so, you can show candidates why they should consistently keep an eye out for new jobs at your company.


Oftentimes, it helps to collect feedback from candidates who are currently in the midst of your hiring process or recently joined your business. You can use questionnaires and surveys to gain insights into the candidate experience. Next, you can leverage these insights to bolster your hiring process and candidate experience.


There are many other things you can do to provide an amazing candidate experience, regardless of vacancy. These include:

  • Write clear job descriptions.
  • Share information about the hiring process with candidates.
  • Communicate with candidates throughout the hiring process.


Consider the candidate’s perspective, too. Ultimately, you should make it easy for candidates to submit their application materials without delay via desktop or laptop computer, smartphone, or tablet.


Also, you should allow candidates to receive regular updates regarding your vacancies. That way, you can ensure candidates enjoy a positive experience, reduce the likelihood of them dropping out of the process, and ultimately improve your time-to-hire metric as a result.


5. Research Job Candidates

Conduct research to identify and vet candidates. Start with an online search of a candidate’s first and last name, and you may find a wealth of information about him or her.


Of course, you can use LinkedIn as part of your candidate research, too. If you connect with a candidate on LinkedIn, they likely take professional networking quite seriously. Show him or her the value of pursuing both connections and jobs at your business.


Then, provide the candidate with LinkedIn updates regarding jobs at your company that meet their expectations. This can help you grow your talent pool via LinkedIn and help the candidate grow his or her network if the job doesn’t work out.


Review the different types of business risks relative to your candidate research as well. For instance, a job can expose workers to fire, chemicals, and similar risks that cause physical harm, which may disqualify certain candidates from this role.


By conducting a risk assessment across your workplace, you can identify on-the-job dangers and how they relate to various roles. You can next use this information to narrow your search for quality candidates to fill your vacancies.


6. Use recruitment technology

Finally, using modern recruitment technology can really help improve your hiring process, and ultimately your time-to-hire metric. There are now plenty of tools and services that automate vital parts of the hiring process, as well as improve the candidate experience to avoid drop-offs.


A man stood on an ipad with a city view in the background


Automated screening

Make your initial candidate screening process as quick and efficient and possible by using automation software. This includes tools like CV parsing software, which automatically reads CVs and ranks applicants on their suitability for your role, making identifying and hiring the best candidates easier.


Additionally, using software that automatically sends pre-screening questionnaires to candidates immediately after their application is received is invaluable for saving time.


Interview scheduling tools

Scheduling interviews can often complicate and lengthen the hiring process, as you struggle to find a time and date that suits both parties. Interview scheduling tools avoid this predicament, allowing candidates to pick their own interview slot and automatically block out your digital calendar.


Keep track of your pipeline

Losing track of candidates naturally causes issues for your time-to-hire metric. A good recruitment management software avoids the chance of this happening, by giving you an overview of each candidate and where they are in your hiring process.


Everyone on your team can also have access to this, so any miscommunications about candidates can be avoided.


Optimise Your Hiring Time

The aforementioned tips can help you get the most value out of your time-to-hire metric. Use these tips, and you’ll be well-equipped to lower your hiring time and add top talent across your business.


Of course, time-to-hire is just one of the vital recruitment metrics you’ll want to improve to maximise your recruitment process. Build on this by downloading our 10 Ways to Maximise the Recruitment Process eBook, and make your entire process effective from start to finish.


Luke Smith

August 31, 2021

Luke Smith is a writer and researcher turned blogger. Since finishing college he is trying his hand at being a freelance writer. When he isn't writing you can find him travelling, hiking, or gaming.

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