Top 5 Rules for Hiring in 2016

Here at CFW Careers, we’ve been reflecting on the most notable trends and takeaways in the hiring process as we rapidly approach 2016. From marketing an attractive employer brand (and yes, that extends beyond unlimited snacks and ping pong tables!) to offering competitive salaries and career advancement, we’ve noticed a number of factors that impact the hiring process.

Below are our top 5 rules to know about hiring going into the New Year:

Photo by Rawpixel Ltd/iStock / Getty Images
Photo by Rawpixel Ltd/iStock / Getty Images

1.      Know what you’re looking for, and be ready to hire when the right one walks in the door.

One of the biggest challenges we’ve noticed is that the job market is moving faster than ever. How efficient is your interview process? Great candidates are frequently interviewing at several companies, and employers are making offers on the spot or shortly after. What are the KPIs? What are the metrics of success? It’s important to know what you’re looking for before you start interviewing so that as soon as you find it you are prepared to act. Otherwise you run the risk of other companies hiring away your candidates before you even extend the offer.

Pro Tip: “When you find the right person, don’t let go.  Even if it’s the first person you interview, if you are blown away don’t overthink it!” –Eugenia Neri, Executive Recruiter


2.      Know your employer brand (and how to convey it!).

Employer Brand was one of the most talked about topics of 2015. With increased transparency into company culture thanks to websites like Glassdoor, candidates are vetting the companies they interview with as much as hiring managers are vetting candidates. Be aware of your company’s brand: if you’re happy with it, know how to market it. If you aren’t, figure out what needs to change and make that your company’s New Year’s resolution!

Pro Tip: “In addition to Glassdoor reviews, keep in mind that what a candidate experiences through the interview process can powerfully impact word on the street. Being courteous and respectful not only to star candidates but to everyone isn’t just nice to do, it’s smart business.” –Cynnie King, President


3.      Know the salary range in advance.

Flexibility with compensation expands the range of candidates you’ll see. Candidates want to see that you can either match or exceed what they’re currently earning; an additional 2 or 3k can go a long way! At the same time, be realistic about your budget. Nobody wants to get to the end of the interview process only to learn that the company cannot, in fact, offer what was initially presented (talk about a negative for employer brand!). And no hiring manager wants to spend that much time interviewing candidates only to have them drop off due to a salary miscommunication.

Pro Tip: “Remember that if your candidates drive a hard bargain for themselves, they’ll be able to do the same for the company. Ultimately, the flexibility up front will pay off in the end.” –Stephanie Kronenberg, Executive Recruiter


4.      Know what’s trainable (versus a "must have").

We explored this idea in one of our first blogs of the year. While every hiring manager’s dream is to hire someone doing the exact same job at a similar company, the reality is that by identifying what is trainable and translatable from similar jobs or industries, you can vastly increase your talent pool. The important thing is to know what skills are required to be successful and what can be learned on the job. A realistic understanding of essential requirements (vs. nice-to-haves) can save a lot of time in the hiring process, and—especially in sales—time is money!

Pro Tip: “When getting to know a candidate, think about talent, but also trainability. Look for characteristics like curiosity and resourcefulness—both good indicators of an eagerness to learn and immerse oneself in a new industry.” –Charlie Russell, Senior Executive Recruiter


5.      Know who this is a good opportunity for.

One of the first questions we ask clients when we do an initial intake is, “Who is this a good opportunity for?” In answering this question, you’re identifying who can do this job, what is trainable versus required (see above), and most importantly—who will be excited to step into the role. Assuming you want to hire people who will be active, engaged, contributing members of your company, it would serve you well to start asking this question when you start hiring from now on.

Pro Tip: “Expecting someone to want to take the risk of making a career move for the exact position they are currently doing just isn’t realistic. Think about who this is a step up for, and set your sights on that person.” –Rachel Fagnant-Fassler, Vice President


For more tips on hiring, or to work with us on a current or upcoming search, email us at: