Transform Hiring with Effective Kick-off Meetings

The one thing that can change your hiring outcomes this year!

Whenever we start an assignment with a new client, whether it’s a single role or a project covering multiple roles, we spend time understanding their current hiring process. For the most part, they’re generally pretty good and fit for purpose. However the one thing that few organisations do well is the kick off meeting. 

This is a ~30 minute call with the hiring team to clarify the role, the desired outcomes, the interview process and each persons responsibility within that process. 

There are multiple benefits to doing this outside of the pure hiring itself, and it’s probably the last point that is the most important.

  • It contributes to developing a hiring culture.
  • It empowers team members.
  • It upskills the less experienced interviewers.
  • It starts to embed replicable processes. 

Generally, the TA person would run this but in organisations that don’t have dedicated TA, it should probably be the hiring managers task. The ideal format should probably be:

  • TA/Hiring manager describes the purpose of the meeting. “I’d like us to al leave this meeting with clarity about the role, the skills and competencies required of the new hire, how we’re going to interview for these and how we’ll make our hiring decisions”
  • TA/Hiring manager shares the hiring guide that they have completed – use the draft one attached as a template. 
  • Hiring manager clarifies the role. Is it new or replacing someone? What are the deliverables for the role, what are the skills and competencies needed?
  • For roles in a cross functional team, you may want a cross section of people involved. E.g For a Product Manager you may want representation from engineering, design or even sales.
  • Each team member talks through their part of the process – clarifying the questions they’ll be asking and what they’re looking to achieve from their specific interview.
  • The hiring team talk through and come to an agreement on the process. 
  • Hiring manager documents any changes that need to be made to the hiring guide.
  • This plan is then locked in. Changes can be made of course, but starting with an agreed plan and everyone understanding their part in that plan is a good place to be.

Post hiring, running a debrief of some kind is also a great idea. Did the plan work? What could we improve? What worked well? What didn’t work so well and should be changed? 

This activity is common to the best hiring teams we’ve worked with, you’ll find info on some of the other things here

Try it for yourself, yes it’s an investment of time. But it’s better to spend this time up front than the time you burn on replacing a mis-hire that could have been avoided.

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