Common hiring mistakes to avoid

3 min readOct 16, 2022


We have talked to many startups and SMBs and here are the common mistakes they make in a recruitment and selection process that prevent them from getting qualified candidates:

1.Over complicating the job description

Candidates spend on average 14 seconds deciding whether to apply after reading a job post. By making the ad lengthy, complicated and throwing in unnecessary requirements, you’d scare away many candidates that may not apply because they feel like they do not meet the requirements.

2. Not having a structured process

We often see companies over relying on referrals, asking random and irrelevant interview questions or making a decision based on the first impression. They do not have a proper method on how to evaluate applicants, assess their skills and competencies and determine whether they are suitable for the hiring position. By not having a structured and thorough process, you’ll increase your risk of hiring the wrong person.

3. Not prepared to set aside time for the process

Hiring and selection takes time. Many do not realise that it takes time to screen applications, interview candidates, provide them feedback and follow up. If you do not properly follow through your hiring process, you’ll be most likely to create a bad experience for the candidates and a poor impression of your company.

What you as a hiring manager can do:

1.Conduct a thorough analysis of the position you are hiring

Before you take a decision on hiring a new person and making a job ad, take a look at the following questions:

  • What is the purpose of the role and which goals will the new role achieve?
  • What are the tasks and responsibilities required in order to reach these goals?
  • Which skills, competencies, knowledge and personal qualifications are required in order to be successful in this new role?
  • Can the new role be filled already internally by upskilling or reskilling your existing employees?

2. Prepare how you would measure and evaluate candidates

Once you are clear on the skills, competencies, knowledge and personal qualifications required in order to be successful in the role, see how you can evaluate to make sure candidates meet these requirements. There are several methods — the most reliable methods are structured interviews (asking the same questions to all candidates) and job knowledge tests. Number of years of experience has little indication of future job success, as research has shown.

3. Block a time only for the recruitment and selection process

If you decide to hire a new person, be prepared to spend time on the recruitment and selection process. Decide whom in your team will participate and block out the time you and your team would spend during this process. If you don’t have enough time, consider outsourcing part of the process to someone else.

Last but not least, treat candidates as potential talent investors! You want to attract the best people to invest their talents into your company.

Need help with the process? propL helps you with the job analysis and screening process so you can save your time while ensuring candidates get the best experience. Visit our website to find out more.

Written by Mai Phan, Founder of propL and a certified recruiting personnel




Virtual work experience for effective and fair recruitment