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Time-to-Hire: The Golden Metric for Recruitment Teams

Bryan Herijanto

Recruiting the right talent is crucial for any organisation's success. However, the process can often be time-consuming and costly. This is where time-to-hire emerges as the golden metric for recruitment teams. Understanding the concept of time-to-hire and its significance can streamline the recruitment process, resulting in numerous benefits for both employers and candidates.

What is the time-to-hire?

Time-to-hire refers to the duration it takes for a candidate to go from being an applicant to becoming an employee. It encompasses all stages of the recruitment process, including sourcing candidates, conducting interviews, and finalizing job offers.

When it comes to finding the right candidate for a position, time is of the essence. The faster a company can identify, evaluate, and hire a candidate, the better. This is where time-to-hire comes into play. It serves as a crucial metric for organizations to measure the efficiency of their recruitment process.

The importance of time-to-hire in recruitment

A swift time-to-hire is essential for several reasons.

  1. Firstly, it allows organizations to secure top talent before their competitors. In today's competitive job market, top candidates are often also being pursued by other companies. A lengthy recruitment process can result in losing out on these highly skilled individuals.
  2. Secondly, a shorter time-to-hire benefits the candidate experience. Job seekers invest time and effort into the application and interview process, and a speedy hiring process shows respect for their time and commitment. It also enhances the employer's brand reputation, making them an employer of choice.

How to calculate time-to-hire

Calculating time-to-hire involves considering various stages in the hiring process and measuring the time spent at each stage. The following steps outline a simplified calculation method:

  1. Start by defining the beginning and ending points of the hiring process. For instance, the process could start when the job opening is posted and end when the offer is accepted.
  2. Consider the time spent on each stage, including sourcing and screening, interviews, background checks, and offer negotiations.
  3. Calculate the total time spent on all stages and divide it by the number of successfully filled positions during the specified period.
  4. The result will be the average time-to-hire.

While this is a basic calculation method, businesses can customize it to suit their specific needs and include additional factors like the number of applications received or the quality of candidates sourced.

The impact of a short time-to-hire

Organisations that prioritize a short time-to-hire experience a range of benefits, both for the organisation and the candidate.

Benefits for the organisation

  • Reduced cost per hire: A shorter recruitment process means less time spent on administrative tasks and fewer resources allocated to interviewing multiple candidates.
  • Increased productivity: Hiring managers can quickly fill vacant positions, ensuring continuity in workflow and preventing overburdening other team members.
  • Enhanced team morale: A shorter time-to-hire minimizes disruption, allowing teams to focus on their goals rather than struggling to manage workload gaps left by vacancies.

Advantages for the candidate

  • Positive candidate experience: Candidates appreciate efficient hiring processes, which demonstrate respect for their time and efforts.
  • Decreased job search stress: A quicker hiring process means less time spent in job search limbo, reducing anxiety and uncertainty.
  • Opportunity for early integration: With a shorter time-to-hire, candidates can join the organisation and begin contributing to their role and the company sooner.

The consequences of a long time-to-hire

While a short time-to-hire offers numerous benefits, a long time-to-hire can have adverse effects on both employers and candidates.

Potential loss of top candidates

Top candidates have multiple opportunities available to them. If the recruitment process drags on for too long, these candidates may accept offers from other companies, leaving employers with less qualified applicants. This can lead to a loss of talent and potentially impact the organisation's growth and success.

The cost implications for the business

A lengthy recruitment process can be financially burdensome for organisations. Extended job vacancies place additional strain on existing employees who must take on extra responsibilities, potentially resulting in decreased productivity. Additionally, delayed hires can necessitate external resources, such as consultants or temporary staff, further adding to recruitment costs.

How to reduce your time-to-hire

Reducing time-to-hire requires a strategic approach and the implementation of effective practices. Here are some strategies to consider:

  • Streamline your processes: Evaluate each stage of the hiring process and identify areas where unnecessary delays or duplications occur. Simplify and automate these processes wherever possible to reduce the overall time required.
  • Improve candidate sourcing: Utilize online platforms, social media, and other recruitment channels to attract a wide pool of high-quality candidates. This will help expedite the initial stages of the hiring process.
  • Implement pre-employment assessments: Utilize pre-employment assessments or tests to assess candidate skills and fit early in the hiring process. This can help identify top candidates more efficiently and decrease the time spent on unnecessary interviews.
  • Promote clear communication: Establish effective communication channels with candidates and provide regular updates on the progress of their application. Clear communication helps maintain candidate engagement and prevents them from losing interest.
  • Invest in technology: Leverage applicant tracking systems and other recruitment technologies to automate administrative tasks, track applicant data, and streamline the hiring process. This can significantly reduce time and effort for the recruitment team.

Deskless employees, who make up a significant portion of the workforce, are not to be overlooked when considering time-to-hire. It is important for recruitment teams to adapt their processes to cater to the unique needs of deskless employees, ensuring a seamless and efficient hiring experience.

A high-volume hiring experience that your recruiters and candidates will thank you for.

Mercu Hire automates repetitive and time-consuming tasks when hiring frontline staff: Interview scheduling, interview reminders, and candidate questions. All while delivering the most engaging candidate experience available on the market.