HR teams in the UK spend almost a month recruiting for each position within their organisation, according to research from Robert Half UK.
The average hiring process took 27.59 days, with reference checking taking up the largest proportion of that time at 5.19 days. Screening the CVs of all job applicants took an average of 4.77 days, and interviews lasted 4.75 days. Negotiating and confirming the job offer usually took 4.3 days.
Half (49%) of HR directors believe the recruitment process takes longer now than it did three years ago, and only 8% thought the length of time had decreased.
Six in 10 (59%) of those who saw an increase blamed the challenge of finding the right candidates, and 52% cited an increase in number of CVs received.
A third (33%) had noticed a change in what candidates were expecting from a role, and a further third (32%) have added more interview rounds to their hiring process to find the right candidate. One in fifty (2%) admitted there had been a lack of internal agreement about which candidate was preferred.
These delays come at a cost for some, as more than half (54%) of those polled claimed to have lost a qualified candidate to another opportunity because their hiring process was too lengthy.
Phil Sheridan, senior managing director at Robert Half UK, UAE and South America, warned of the dangers of taking too long to select a hire. “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,” he said. “To ensure a robust streamlined recruitment process it is essential that the job description and budget allocation are approved ahead of time.”