Hire And Retain – Eliminate The Pain

By Gregg Goodmanson

What’s the cost of a bad hire? Each company I work with quantifies that differently. I would encourage you to calculate this for your company. Some studies suggest the certain positions cost anywhere from 1 – 1.5 times the annual salary. That’s painful.

Having a good hiring and onboarding/retention process won’t eliminate every bad hire. But without it, you are more likely to fail. As we work with companies to maximize their return on human capital, there are 5 vital pieces elements for success.


1.    Clearly Defined Role. Without clarity, you will not be able to identify if your candidates fit the ideal. Define the following to build your Ideal New Hire Profile:

  • Purpose of the role – In a paragraph, define the role in objective terms.
  • Key results – For someone to be successful in that role what 4-6 results do you need them to achieve?
  • Job Values – Define what someone would need to value to fill that role. Fast paced and complex or something more linear; be clear.
  • Skills and Abilities – What skills have they demonstrated in past positions? Do they align with your needs?
  • Culture – What are we looking for culturally and do they meet cultural expectations?

2.    Hire From Want, Not Need – Don’t scramble in an emergency. This can lead to desperation and bad decisions.

Build an Ongoing Pipeline – The best organizations treat hiring like a sales pipeline. They are always looking. Having a bullpen of prospective employees always a good thing.

3.    Clear and Consistent Process – Organizations that struggle with hiring top talent lack a consistent interview process. What should consistency look like?

  • Same Interview Process – interviewing differently makes it very difficult to compare and contrast candidates. Develop a clear process and make it consistent.

Retaining After the Hire

4.    Formalized Onboarding Process – Gallup’s research shows that the average employee becomes disengaged after 60 days. Here is what should be included in the on-boarding process:

  • Organizational values – Knowing the values of the organization will equip the new hire to make better decisions
  • Beliefs and behaviors of the organization – Knowing this will allow for alignment of beliefs and behaviors to improve culture
  • Resources available to the new hire – The right resources make all the difference is employee success.  
  • Formalize mentorship – One of the things we hear the most is, I’m not sure who to go to for help.

5.    Ongoing Engagement Strategy – Don’t lose the employees you have.

  • Create Clear performance objectives with key metrics for success
  • Ongoing training and development to help the individual
  • Regular feedback

In the work that I do with organizations, we help them maximize their return on human capital in numerous ways. If you like to understand this more fully, contact me at 239-281-6358.

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