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Keep Score: 5 KPIs to Measure Recruiting Success

Are you measuring your recruiting success correctly? 

It's crucial to continuously measure if your hiring process is working and where it needs improvement.

Think about it like training for a marathon. Most people only see the runner step up to the starting line to go the 26.2-mile distance (kind of like making a hire). 

But for weeks, maybe months, the runner closely monitors key metrics like mile pace, distance, heart rate, and recovery time. If those things are dialed in, the runner knows the finish line is within reach.

If you want to win at finding top candidates and making great hires, measuring your efforts and making adjustments to improve is a best practice.

So how do we measure recruiting success here? 

We closely monitor 5 key performance indicators (KPIs):

1. Number of candidates in the pipeline

As soon as a job posting goes live or we reach out to a pool of potential candidates, data starts coming in for this KPI. 

For example:

  • If the job description is well written and appeals to the right people, quality candidates will start applying.
  • Depending on the role, how many candidates does it take to find the right person to hire? This KPI, combined with several other data points, provides this information.

It’s a great starting point to begin measuring recruiting success. Even at this early stage of the hiring process, this KPI provides insight to make adjustments if necessary. We want to look at all the stages and aim to recruit a certain number of candidates per role.

2. Source quality

Do you know what it takes to run a marathon? Lots of quality training runs, workouts, and even rest days. When a runner stacks those up, they’re going to run a great race. But if they skip workouts or train half-heartedly the results won’t be as good.

Recruiting success is kind of like this. It’s tough to make a good hire if you’re filling up the candidate pipeline with people who don’t have the right combination of skills and experience. The process drags on. It takes longer to make a hire. And that’s not what you want.

To make sure we’re using the right methods to attract great candidates we measure and track the sources candidates are coming from things like:

  • Job boards
  • Online applications
  • Email outreach
  • Internal job listings or promotions
  • Employee referrals
  • Job fairs
  • Networking meetings

The data helps us see which sources produce the best results for recruiting success. When we look at the overall hiring process, high-quality candidates are the people who get far in the interview process. 

3. Time to hire

You know the performance metric runners typically pay the most attention to: time, their mile pace, or their finish time at a race. Measuring the time it takes to hire the right person or fill a position is another important KPI we pay close attention to. Why? When you have a position to fill, typically that role is part of a team. And your team can’t function at peak performance without all the right people in place. 

Being able to measure and predict the time it takes to make the right hire helps create a timeline or another way to measure recruiting success.

What’s the ‘time to hire’ KPI really looking at? It’s the speed at which a candidate moves through the hiring pipeline after they have applied or been recruited. This KPI answers one important question: 

  • How long does it take a candidate to sign an offer?

This is critically important for a number of different reasons:

  • Candidates are usually being courted by other companies, and we want to speed up the process. 
  • A more senior role takes a longer time to hire versus an entry-level role. 
  • We need this KPI data so we can do our best to move fast, schedule interviews quickly, reach out quickly and get feedback from candidates. 
  • Plus, during the holidays, the availability of candidates can make scheduling trickier or delay the hiring process.

We know moving quickly makes a difference. It’s why we try to schedule next-day interviews after we connect with candidates. It’s important to minimize time on our end to make sure the process keeps moving forward.

4. Offer-acceptance rates

You push through a batch of interviews, and you can almost see the finish line. A few candidates rise to the top, and you make an offer. What happens next is an important KPI to measure. Not everyone is going to accept an offer, but we can learn a lot from this part of the recruiting process.

  • - What was the reason for declining the offer?
  • - Was it a higher salary somewhere else?
  • - Is something missing from the interview process?
  • - Did benefits and perks play a role in their decision?
  • - Was another role or project at another company more appealing?

It would be easy to just make an offer to the next qualified candidate, but paying attention to this KPI helps us understand why some candidates reject an offer. It provides intel we can use to improve recruiting success.

5. Candidate satisfaction surveys

Win or lose, the smart marathon runner evaluates every performance. What went right? What didn’t go as planned? Where are the opportunities for improvement? We evaluate the recruiting process in a similar way by inviting candidates to complete a survey. This is for both candidates who accept an offer or reject an offer. And we learn things:

  • What can we do better? 
  • What stood out to them? 
  • What wasn’t so ideal? 

Paying attention to this KPI helps us improve recruiting success and create a better experience for the next round of candidates that go through the hiring process.

Measure KPIs to improve recruiting success

There’s a lot of variables in the recruiting process, and every organization is a little bit different. But chances are pretty good, you’re going to have an open position and need to hire someone at some point. When you know what works to help you hire the best candidates, the process becomes a lot easier, less stressful, and more efficient.

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