Whenever a sports franchise is looking to change their fortunes in the off-season, they hunker down and hone in on their recruiting efforts. They look at the gaps they have on the team and attempt to find available talent to plug those holes and make themselves more viable and successful in the next season. The same should be true in the business world. Both are organizations looking to fill roles with individuals who possess particular skills, and both can use similar approaches to find talent. In the world of business, benchmarks help paint the picture of success or failure in overall recruiting efforts. We want to examine some of those recruiting benchmarks today and explain why they are important to include.

Time to Hire

Many of the most useful metrics in recruiting revolve around the amount of time spent acquiring new talent. Time spent getting talent is time that cannot be spent on other initiatives. It is a helpful gauge to see just how quickly a particular strategy does or does not work.

Time to hire simply refers to the length of time between when a prospective hire is first approached and when they sign the paperwork to accept the job. The shorter this time frame is the better obviously, but there should be some consideration for the fact that some hires may have personal scheduling conflicts that prevent them from immediately sitting for an interview. This number should be respected, but there should be some leeway to explain certain deviations from the norm.

Source of Hire

Which program or method is funneling in the most recruits who are brought on board? This question is best answered by reviewing the source of hire metric. Analyticsinhr.com explains that this is among the most popular of metrics to track:

Tracking the sources which attract new hires to your organization is one of the most popular recruiting metrics. This metric also helps to keep track of the effectiveness of different recruiting channels. A few examples are job boards, the company’s career page, social media, and sourcing agencies.

This may boil down to the basic human desire to know what is working and what isn’t. Some people even have a competitive streak about them and want to know that their method or program is working best.

Applicants Per Opening

Some jobs are massively more appealing to potential candidates than others, and this is fairly easily reflected in the number of applicants that a job attracts. Applicants per opening is an important recruiting metric to track as it shows which jobs appeal to the broadest patch of potential job-seekers available.

Corporate jobs are among the most popular with each job opening attracting up to 250 applicants. People tend to rush to place their resume in for a job that can potentially offer reasonable pay, good benefits, and a nice work/life balance. Corporate jobs often meet all three of those criteria, and thus the applicants per opening on this type of job may be sky-high. There are some other factors to consider as well that may juice the number of applicants per job including:

  • The advertised pay rate for the job (the higher rate offered, the more applicants)

  • Benefits offered such as health care insurance and 401(k)

  • Desirable hours

  • Respected brand name

  • The overall state of the economy

All of these factors must be calculated into the applicants per opening metric as well. When the state of the economy is difficult for example, it is not unreasonable that more applicants would apply for any and all jobs offered. This could skew the numbers at least temporarily.

Candidate Experience Level

Everyone has their own favorite recruiting benchmarks, but there is a good argument that candidate experience is one of the most valuable benchmarks that is often overlooked. So much focus goes into the easily quantifiable metrics that some forget to look at the quality of candidates being received. Those looking to fill low-wage jobs in high turnover industries may have a preference for quantity of candidates interviewed, but most companies should prefer to hire quality employees that they can retain for the long run.

Candidate experience is a critical component of hiring someone who can hit the ground running from day one, and for retaining that employee for a long time. Those with previous experience in a related job are obviously better equipped to handle the challenges that come with the job you have to offer. Thus, resumes ought to be given a critical examination to uncover those who have the necessary skills to be successful in the job.

Applicant Completion Rate

This recruiting benchmark falls entirely at the feet of those who design job applications for the company. Applicant completion rate measures the percentage of people who begin a job application versus those who actually complete the application. It may seem strange that people would bother to start an application if they did not intend to finish it, but application drop off happens all the time.

There are a lot of employers who require their employees to enter their entire resume or CV into an online application system even if they require them to attach said CV in the first place. This redundancy is supposed to make it easier for the recruiter to filter out those who do not meet the job’s minimum requirements, and perhaps it does help with that, but it also deters would-be applicants from finishing the process.

It is incredibly frustrating from the perspective of the job-seeker to have to re-enter all of his or her information a second time on job application after job application. The extra effort makes it more likely than not that he or she will simply throw in the towel and not complete the application at all. Cutting away some of that extra paperwork is a great way to improve the applicant completion rate.

Recruiting Benchmarks, Tools & More

Each of these recruiting benchmarks features a small piece of the puzzle that makes up the entire recruiting landscape. They are figures and statistics that make analysis of recruiting efforts a lot easier to explain to internal stakeholders. These are just five of the most important figures that people can look at, but there are many more available. Please contact us for additional details about how to use these benchmarks and about what other metrics may prove valuable to you. Application of the facts discovered as a result of reviewing this data could help improve overall recruiting results and make finding the right candidate a lot easier.