Is the quest for talent too time consuming for in-house HR?

Internal recruitment process becoming more and more time intensive for HR directors, finds Robert Half UK  

New research from Robert Half UK has found that HR directors are spending an average of one month (27.59 days) recruiting for positions within their organisations.
The recruitment firm, which has offices throughout the UK, including in Edinburgh, says the recruitment process can be broken down into six key stages, all of which take more than four days on average to complete when using in-house resources to manage.
It says checking job applicants’ references and interviewing candidates take up the most time at 5.19 and 4.77 days respectively, while skills testing is the least time-intensive at 4.18 days.
Table one:  Average amount of time spent when hiring for an open position
Recruitment step
Average amount of time spent when hiring for an open position (days)
Screening CVS of all job applicants
Interviewing job applicants
Checking references
Candidate skills testing
Collaborating / selecting the candidate for hire
Negotiating / confirming a job offer with the candidate
Source: Robert Half, 2016
Robert Half says the time taken on the internal recruitment process has increased over the last three years according to nearly half (49%) of HR directors. Less than one in 10 (8%) said the duration had decreased. The challenge to find qualified candidates (59%) was listed as the main reason for the increased time taken during the hiring process, followed by the increase in number of CVs per job opening (52%) and the increase in expectation of the desired candidates (33%).
Table two:  Reasons for the increased duration of the hiring process over the last three years
Reasons for the increased duration of the hiring process compared to three years ago
Percentage of HR Directors
Finding qualified candidates has become more challenging
Number of CVs per job opening has increased
Expectations of the desired candidate have increased
Number of interview rounds has increased
More candidates have accepted other job offers
More internal stakeholders are involved
No internal agreement about the desired candidate
Source: Robert Half, 2016
According to Robert Half, the length of time taken to recruit for a position within their organisation is resulting in some HR directors losing out on talented candidates, who accept jobs from other companies who are able to make hiring decisions more quickly. More than half (54%) of HR directors have lost a qualified candidate to another opportunity because their in-house hiring process was too lengthy, partly because they receive too many unsuitable CVs that all need to be waded through.
Phil Sheridan, senior managing director at Robert Half UK, UAE and South America, said: “While there is no denying the importance of finding the candidate with the right expertise and cultural fit, as the demand for highly skilled professionals grows, taking too long to decide may see you miss out on your preferred candidate.
“To ensure a robust, streamlined recruitment process, it is essential that the job description and budget allocation are approved ahead of time. A specialist recruitment consultancy can support by leveraging insight into current hiring trends and having access to an established pool of talent that may not be actively searching.
“Recruitment consultants can manage the process – from sourcing skilled candidates, filtering CVs and arranging interviews through reference checks – allowing the hiring manager to remain focused on their day-to-day responsibilities.”


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