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Spotlight on Top Recruiting Questions:

Mark Bohdanyk
Mark Bohdanyk
Mark Bohdanyk
September 28, 2018
(Reposted with permission from
Last week, I invited my 21,000 subscribers to email me their biggest recruiting question.

And (ever the overachiever) I promised a personal reply to each one that wrote me.

Whew... Just finished.

And for kicks, I tallied them by category & thought you might like to know what they were.

By far, the questions fell into 3 buckets. 

#1: "In today's ultra-tight job market, where should I look for great candidates?"

#2: "It takes me far too long to recruit. How can I do it faster?"

#3: "How do I figure out if the candidate will fit our unique culture?"

Since they came up so often, I'll share a couple of thoughts on each.

#1. These days, 'post & pray' on the online job boards isn't working. We actually have to dig a bit. Fortunately, great candidates are everywhere. They're right under your nose. To find them, start here:

- Remove all those BS "must-have" requirements that aren't predictive of anything. They're keeping away amazing candidates, and forcing you to spend months looking for a "perfect" candidate. 

There is no perfect candidate. When you find one who has the right DNA match with your company, and the right competencies, hire them. Slash the list of "must-haves" to just the stuff that matters.

- 50% of your hires should come from your Employee Referral Program. 

Research shows that it doesn't matter how much you pay. What does matter is how often you talk about it & promote it with your staff. Twice a month for starters.

- Here's my PDF of the 38 secret places to look for candidates. Download it here.

#2. In 25 years of hiring, I've only found two ways to slash the time in half. I wish I could say they're sexy, but they work:

- Build the pipeline ahead of when you need it. Just-in-time hiring doesn't work in a record-low-unemployment labor market. You're rushed, pressured, and make mistakes. And it takes forever. 

And I'm not suggesting you take 2 informational lunches each week with candidates.That's a slow boat to nowhere.

Instead, build your company's employer brand (to make it unique & compelling, get your VP Marketing involved), identify your target candidates, and go after them. Before you have a specific job opening. Build an email list, give them useful content (about their profession & industry, not just your job openings). Invite them to monthly 5pm open houses at your office.

- Run. A. Process. In fact, I start by kissing 150 frogs to wind up with one hire (plus a strong backup, in case our first-choice candidate declines.) You can't expect to reliably find a top 5% candidate if you're only starting with 4 or 5 in the top of the funnel.

#3. Culture fit is a sham. It's time to take the cult out of culture. 

Some people think that culture is about integrity & leadership & speed. I have news... those are now table-stakes for every business in every industry. 

Other people think that culture is beer bashes & ping pong tables. No. Those are office perks.


Truth is... I still haven't found a reliable way to interview for culture fit. And besides, I want to find culture add (as my friend Brad Feld explains here).


So instead, identify the DNA of your current Rockstars. Those are the 4 or 5 non-negotiable characteristics, typically hard-wired by age 8. And then assess all future candidates to see if their DNA matches. No matter how amazing their competencies or skills, don't settle for lousy DNA match. Because they won't last long.

Thanks for all your questions. Keep 'em coming. I promise to reply with a personal answer (I never learn...)

Never settle,

p.s. Your co-workers may have questions. Even your boss or Board. They can sign up to my daily emails right here:

Topics: MojoBlog, Hiring Hacks

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