Mass Hiring: How to Get it Right?

See also: Interviewing Skills

Business growth is always welcomed, but it will necessitate some pivoting to bring your business structures up to scale to meet increased demand and commercial expansion.

A sector like retail, for example, usually begins mass hiring for roles like cashiers and stockers before the holiday season begins to meet the anticipated increase in business from customers buying presents. Or perhaps your business is opening up a new branch, requiring you to recruit a whole new team in time for opening day. If your business is enjoying enough growth to open in more than one location, you need to ensure that you're prepared to mass hire.

Of course, mass hiring does have its downsides. One issue is that bringing in a lot of new staff can dilute your established company culture and make it harder to tailor new hires to your business. However, with the right strategies in place, you can reduce the chances of these factors negatively impacting your business’s performance.

So, let’s look at some core strategies that will enable you to put together an effective mass hiring campaign that won’t sacrifice quality for quantity.

1. Start with a Plan

If you're anticipating a sudden surge in staff requirements, it's not enough to just carpet bomb job boards with listings for new positions. While some businesses find recruitment agencies useful for finding and screening staff, you need your in-house team to analyze the employee profiles and workloads that must be satisfied to support increased growth.

Start with:

  • Analyzing the requirements, you'll need to meet in terms of what and how many positions need filling. This allows you to establish a goal to work towards for your mass hiring campaign.

  • Understanding the landscape of the current job market. You need to consider whether the immediate local labor pool can supply you with enough staff to hire effectively. You also need to consider whether your competitors are offering better employment terms for similar positions.

  • Clarifying the requirements for a position. Start by asking some of your current staff members who excel in the positions you want to hire for about the specific experience and competencies to look for in an effective candidate. These insights can then inform your candidate that selection is moving forward.

  • Scheduling a timeline that organizes the whole mass hiring campaign into individual stages.

  • Budgeting to ensure that your operating costs scale to adequately cover the increased cost of mass recruitment.

Interviewer taking notes during and interview.

2. Broaden Your Candidate Sources

The more effort you put into targeting your mass hiring campaign, the more likely you are to attract candidates whose skillsets best align with the role. There’s a range of different digital media channels you can employ to ensure your job postings get the maximum visibility:

  • Employee referrals: Existing employees who are competent and satisfied in their roles make compelling arguments for your company’s work culture. Consider encouraging your best talent to recruit from within their personal and professional circles for a new position. You could even offer incentives to encourage employees to refer more candidates.

  • Social media: Social media lets you tap into a variety of professional networks to target your recruitment and engage the most valuable prospects. Your marketing and recruitment departments can collaborate to produce social media channels dedicated to your mass hiring campaign, which can help engage prospects and market your brand culture.

  • Online recruitment tools: Why wait for candidates to come to you when online recruitment tools allow you to source and approach the best candidates directly. Many different tools are available, but a good individual example of these recruitment solutions is SignalHire. This tool can be used as a browser extension for email extraction, but it also serves as a candidate search engine, allowing you to search by skills, current or past employers, and even location. The service searches through over 600 million profiles on major social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to return results, and when you've found the right candidate, SignalHire provides their verified contact information. Thanks to batch searches, these tools are excellent for mass hiring purposes and can save you a lot of time and money looking for the right candidates.

3. Optimize Your Screening Process

If the earlier stages of your mass hiring campaign are proving successful, you should be receiving an abundance of applications. This is where you need to be careful, as it’s easy to get bogged down searching through applications in an inefficient manner that will make your hiring process more costly and long-winded.

To speed things up, automate the more binary elements of your screening process with recruitment technology like AI chatbots and automated surveys. By getting candidates to enter certain details, you’ll be able to skip the time-consuming elements of preliminary screening, giving you more time to devote to face-to-face interviews and other processes that can’t be automated.

4. Take a Candidate-Centric Approach to Interviews

From your job listing to your interview technique, every interaction you have with a candidate is an opportunity to express your company's culture. A conscientious interviewer who makes an effort to keep candidates appraised of the recruitment process broadcasts that their company puts its employees first. Develop a structure for your interviews with a similar set of core talking points that you'll put to every candidate. This helps keep the interview fair and can mitigate any unconscious bias you might display towards prospects. Additionally, a uniform interview structure will make it easier for you to narrow applicants down to a useful shortlist, which can be critical to a successful mass hiring campaign.

Handshake after successful interview.

5. Follow Up for Extra Professionalism

Any candidate will be familiar with the unpleasant feeling of leaving an interview only to be left in the dark about the status of their applications for weeks or even months afterward. You can mitigate this by establishing a follow-up process that keeps candidates informed about their progress in the recruitment funnel. Do this by:

  • Providing candidates with a time window for hearing back on the outcome of the interview.

  • Directing them to the appropriate social media accounts where they can receive updates about the progress of the mass hiring drive, or include updates in mass emails.

  • Sending unsuccessful candidates a respectful email informing them that you’ve chosen not to hire them.

In any mass hiring campaign, you're also likely to come across several candidates who aren't quite right for your current recruitment drive but nonetheless might show promise in other potential areas. Let these candidates know that you're keeping their details on file and may be contacting them about future opportunities. Not only does this keep valuable prospects on good terms, but it could also save you significant time and effort spent on future recruitment initiatives.

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The Bottom Line

Mass hiring can feel like a race against the clock when you’re hurriedly trying to scale up your business to take advantage of an increase in demand. However, if you follow these steps, you can stay ahead of the process with effective and timely execution. Modern recruitment solutions have made it easier than ever for even small and medium-sized enterprises to conduct successful mass hiring rounds, but it’s also important that you maintain a personal touch in your recruitment processes.

About the Author

Maria Kot is SignalHire chief HR expert, so she knows everything about recruiting. Her profound understanding of managing human talent, along with a keen eye for human psychology, make her recruiting-related blog posts such an exciting read. And, even though Maria did not choose writing as her profession, she gladly shares her talent with us.