Recruiting is a challenging job and like any challenge one is bound to make mistakes in recruiting which can unlock patterns of other errors. Any recruiting exercise conducted by you or your firm that has no efficient outcomes but harmful consequences must be prevented. Tiny blunders can be forgiven and forgotten, because recruiter is a human being and not a certified perfect being. However some mistakes have harsh consequences for you and your firm ranging from wrecked recruiter reputation to becoming known a company that has got none of any top talent. Which is why these mistakes are rightly called deadly sins of recruiting. To dodge from committing such sins one must know the various challenges in selection and recruitment process.

deadly sins of recruiting

Problems in Recruitment and Selection Process:

1. Fierce negotiation:

It is a great sin to negotiate with the candidates for a job position about salary. If you offer them a remuneration that is similar to or less than what they are currently earning you are likely to lose the candidate on that spot. Remember when you negotiate to something lower than the candidate presently earns the candidate feels undervalued and disrespected and rather than saving your company some money from negotiation, it can result into decrease in company’s brand status.

2. Hunting only for active candidates:

This is a recruiting strategy where your firm only looks for resumes that flood in and interviews them. However these active candidates constitute only 30% of the total employee market and so overlooking the passive candidates can be a mistake. When you also seek for passive candidates, you hunt a much wider crowd and moreover a more capable one.

3. Treating rejected candidates inadequately:

It is evidently seen that the recruiters treat the rejected applicants poorly and forget about them completely. Always remember you have to maintain your reputation as a hiring brand all along. When you make this blunder it will kill your entire recruiter brand and harm your sales eventually. You need to reach out to the eliminated candidates to make them know that they are out of the run and giving them little feedback through which they can improve their attitudes towards your company.

4. Believing in massive budgets:

For the recruiting process you really do not require a giant budget, but it is always beneficial if you already got one. To improve the process and efforts you can simply make sure that interviewing and onboarding events are strong and even contact every candidate irrespective of whether they were selected or not to let them know what is their status in your deliberation procedure.

5. Believing that your company has got the best applicants lining up:

Never ever make the mistake on believing that you have got efficient applicants and retire from improvising the recruiting process. Even the big and popular firms invest a lot of time and efforts in attracting candidates. It doesn’t really matter how immense your company is and therefore constant focus must be given to your company’s recruiting brand and image. The moment you stop attracting candidates, they turn to other numerous companies available, with vacancies.

6. Rejecting the overqualified candidates:

This is an error made out of short-sightedness. Recruiters think that these overqualified entrants can become expensive, may turn bored or will not stick for the long run. You have to consider that these proficient candidates can lead to increased businesses and bring evident growth to the company in very less time.

7. Having unaccountable recruiters:

The recruiters mostly focus for the short term benefits and hire accordingly. They must be held responsible for hiring individuals for long term advantages. You will find best results when hiring managers are held responsible to maintain this standard.

8. Relying highly on past behavior:

In a recruiting interview you surely learn more about the candidate’s personality and traits. However leaning more towards candidates past behavior and predicting the same in the future can be a huge mistake. The past behavior of one cannot predict how he or she will execute themselves in the future.

9. Utilizing team of recruiters:

When there are group of recruiters, they choose candidates who are popular over the qualified and efficient ones. This can even be because a candidate was not considered attractive by few of the hirers and failed to impress them. But note that he could have been the best employee due to his qualifications. How impressive a person is to the mass will not bring the firm successful prospect.

10. Hiring based on first impressions:

There arise lots of troubles when you judge based on likeness for a particular candidate and ignore competence. It is very thoughtless when you appoint someone because you like them or eliminate a person because you dislike him. You have to remind yourself you are not running a popularity race.

11. Employing a ‘like image’ candidate:

It is not wrong when you hire someone that depicts the same image as the already employed people in your organization. However you must strive to hunt for people with different thoughts and ideas as well as fresh perspectives so that the company remains fresh and innovative.

12. Insisting for standard skills:

You only duplicate the kind of employees you have got already when you insist in an interview for certain basic skills from a candidate. You are obstructing your firm from having diverse competencies and hinder its efforts to develop your firm.

13. Eliminating the less qualified candidates without care:

From those who are qualified more, the less qualified ones prove to be more proficient. The reason for this is because they function vigorously to meet deadlines and to increase the overall outcome as well as provide high quality with efficiency that is determined to acquire promotions. You must hire determining the potential of the candidate and not just metrics.

14. Depending on weak marketing tactics:

Sourcing applicants from job boards or forums can be considered as weak tactics for marketing. The top talents mostly find their jobs through recommendations. Thus try hard to earn recommendations for clever recruitment.

15. Occupying extra time:

Time is precious and you must seize all the time that a candidate has to offer. When you do not respond quickly to a candidate and let them linger, they utilize the opportunity to seek for more job openings or get a raise at the place where they currently work. When you come across an appropriate candidate you must not let go and reply to them immediately.

16. Searching for the ideal employee:

It is not possible for anyone to find a gem of an employee. So begin considering a candidate with a fresh perspective and do not judge them with a viewpoint where you wish to hire the perfect one. Gauge what capabilities the candidate has to offer and contemplate whether how his skills will be beneficial for you and the company in the long run.

17. Hiring speedily:

This is very challenging approach at the same time packed with errors. The prominent reason behind it is that the firm appears as desperate and impulsive and the candidate will ultimately deny to work for such a company altogether.

18. Going for the first preference or no one:

Remember that you need to have contingency plan because in the recruitment process there can be chances where you might just lose a candidate who was your first preference. A contingency plan should be to have a second place of preference. There can even be chances where you do not find the qualities of your first preference in any of the applicants and so it will be smart to have a second consideration.

19. Not being able to promote well:

The recruitment process is actually equal to selling a job position to candidates. A hiring manager must turn a job position into something desirable so that he can attract the top talents for that position. In some cases the recruiters scare a candidate by describing about all the hardships and negativity of a position and ultimately find out that the candidate is no more interested to stay even for the good parts. You surely need to hint about negatives however focus on the benefits of the job positions more.

20. Unrehearsed recruiter:

When an interviewer is not prepared evidently by thorough scan of resumes and is not equipped with significant questions, the interviewee feels demoralized and disrespected. When the recruiter is disorganized the candidate feels annoyed, dissatisfied and will ultimately choose against such a job.

21. Having less knowledge:

When you do not have a structure that is visible for an interview and are incapable to demonstrate the duties of the job position and describe the company’s plans, motives, processes and salary arrangements and more, then you do not influence any confidence over the candidate and eventually lose the candidate.

22. Being the Talker:

Remember you are not giving a lecture or presenting anything when you are interviewing. With the interview you need to get some details about the candidate and the candidate expects some details from you. And so you must be doing more on the listening part and less of the talking. You must not go on with a speech about how immense your firm is or what is the situation in your career.

23. Not providing adequate feedback:

After an interview you must keep a habit of giving the candidates feedback irrespective of whether they are being selected or not. A candidate invests notable time and efforts for preparation and nothing can drop his spirits other than lack of feedback. People generally like and want to know where they stand.

24. Being unexcited about the process:

As a recruiter you must have become prone to predicting answers from interviewees and thus might stop listening to them abruptly. You must not be assertive to predict the outcome of an interview. This has damaging consequences. Thus treat each candidate with utter focus and attend to each of their responses with concentration.

25. Interrupting a candidate:

You must carefully pay attention to each candidate and listen to what they have to say. Be sure to not interrupt a candidate even when you know that a candidate is not going to respond you with a pleasing answer. As a recruiter you must follow the ethics of a good listener.

26. Believing that you are a ‘know it all’:

Everyone knows that the business world keeps evolving every day. So do not hold an ego that you know well what is going around during interviews. Always be willing to learn and approach things with broad mind.

27. Relying too much on emails:

Rather than depending too much on emails, call a candidate to inform your considerations. This is especially good when you think a candidate is great and want to immediately get hold of them. Mailing someone is a good secondary mode of communication but calling them will help you reach them much quickly and the conversation proves to be effective always.

28. Inadequate background check:

With the conventional method of background checking such as calling referrals, you must even begin with modern methods of background check. Going through a candidate’s social media profile to understand their life patterns, interests and motives as well as spot any inconsistencies concerning what one claims on their resume and what you located online.

29. Appointing less motivated candidates:

During the entire process of recruiting you focus on a candidate’s competency and experiences. Most recruiters fail to understand the motivating factors that keep the candidates stimulated. They keep judging ones skills and efficiency and neglect to see whether they are adequately stimulated to achieve higher goals.

30. Failing to involve the HR department in the process:

The recruiting managers can without doubt judge a person’s education, skills and proficiency but an HR manager will scrutinize whether a particular candidate will be able to comply with company’s future proceedings and whether the candidate is a best fit for your firm considering his personality. .

If as a recruiter you are committing any of the above sins then it is time to rectify and prevent any future blunders instantly. By just avoiding falling prey to any of the above mistakes can prove beneficial and result into efficient recruitment process.




  1. Overall good article. Point number -8 is not right.
    99% cases past behavior predicts future performance.
    Somnath Roy.

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