May 2024 – 3 Tips To Improve Your Hiring Process + Changes In Employee Restraint Clauses & More

Pointers for the Hiring Process in the current Market

Having just crossed the 17-year milestone at Autorecruit, I can genuinely attest to having encountered a vast array of individuals. The age-old suggestion of “you should write a book” often surfaces, albeit such a book would likely emerge as a fusion of the unusual and the remarkable.

These interactions have spanned a spectrum of individuals beyond imagination, from local departmental heads to national figures, from business proprietors to visionary entrepreneurs, from traders to individuals embodying various roles and personas.

There isn’t a singular “type” of individual naturally adept at the art of hiring. Occasionally, even seasoned entrepreneurs find themselves grappling with uncertainty, either unsure of their requirements or second-guessing their decisions.

Regarding recruitment and its encompassing activities such as job descriptions, employment policies, conducting interviews, drafting contracts, and facilitating onboarding, much of what we’ve witnessed could, at best, be described as average.

Nevertheless, some organisations have streamlined their hiring processes meticulously. They possess a clear understanding of their needs, compensation structures, and the intricacies of each role, actively seeking the right fit rather than passively waiting for solutions to present themselves.

Throughout our professional journey, we accumulate fragments of wisdom. Some evolve into steadfast beliefs that shape our actions. In the domain of recruitment, three principles emerge as indispensable guidelines that every hiring professional would benefit from embracing:

1. If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.

Understanding what you’re searching for is crucially simple, yet often overlooked. How do you determine what fits the bill if you don’t have clear criteria? How do you measure, evaluate, and compare candidates against one another? This is where having both a comprehensive job description and a detailed person specification becomes indispensable. While these documents are sometimes combined, many job descriptions focus solely on the role itself, neglecting to outline the qualities required in the ideal candidate, beyond the basic requirements like prior experience.

Unfortunately, this lack of specificity is not uncommon. Exceptional employers, however, recognise the importance of providing detailed guidance. The more information they provide, the more targeted our search efforts can be.

In contrast, we once encountered a dealership whose idea of a job brief was a weekly email listing vacancies with just job titles. They were reluctant to engage in further discussions or provide additional details, expecting us to intuit their needs. Despite our best efforts, when we submitted ten candidates for a senior management position, we were chastised for not sending more. They expressed a desire for candidates who understood their dealership’s operations, yet failed to provide the necessary insights. Such inefficient recruitment practices likely contribute to their high staff turnover rate, where vacancies are simply patched with any, rather than the right person.

2. Time kills all deals.

The early bird gets the worm, and now there are less worms, and a lot more birds.

The surprising lack of urgency among many hiring managers is remarkable. We often receive requests for assistance with roles that are already challenging to fill, often in remote locations, with an immediate need for candidates. When urgency is emphasized, we prioritize the search accordingly. However, despite our efforts to swiftly identify suitable candidates and present them to the client, it’s alarming how frequently these applications are left untouched.

Quality applicants cannot be left waiting! Gone are the days when you could post a job ad and leisurely sift through incoming applications. Nowadays, candidates are actively engaging with multiple opportunities. For technical roles, the window of opportunity may be mere hours, while for mid-level management positions, it’s typically no more than a week before their interest wanes. Timeliness is key, and candidates now expect a prompt response. If you identify a promising candidate, act swiftly and pick up the phone.

Remember, your employer brand is on display during the hiring process. Neglecting to communicate with applicants damages your reputation. Whether it’s acknowledging applications, scheduling interviews, or extending job offers, delays reflect poorly on your organisation. Waiting weeks to invite a candidate for a second interview or to send a formal offer letter only gives them more time to consider other options. If they start questioning your timeliness, it’s challenging to regain their trust and interest.

Sadly, we have seen all of this. But, if you have read this far and can proudly say that nothing we’ve said reflects on you, well that brings us to my final point.

3. The best time to fix the roof is when the sun is shining.

Your recruitment process is running smoothly—it’s quick, responsive, and well-structured. But maintaining excellence requires ongoing effort. When your practices have momentum, it’s easier to guide them in the desired direction than to start anew.

So, if your process is good, how can you make it great? And if it’s already great, how can you elevate it to exceptional? One strategy is to redefine your expectations and eliminate inefficiencies. Often, we wait for adversity to strike before addressing areas we perceive as functioning adequately. The Global Financial Crisis serves as a poignant example—many businesses that were seemingly doing well were blindsided. Complacency had set in, allowing minor flaws in their operations or processes to go unaddressed. When circumstances shifted, these small weaknesses snowballed into significant problems.

Therefore, continuously reassessing and refining your recruitment practices is crucial. Don’t wait for setbacks to prompt improvement; strive for excellence proactively.


Non-compete clauses are in the spotlight following significant legal developments in Australia and abroad.
Non-com­pete claus­es are currently under scrutiny from var­i­ous quarters.

Broad­ly speak­ing, non-com­pete claus­es are a form of post-employ­ment restraint that pro­hib­it an employ­ee from work­ing for a com­peti­tor of their pre­vi­ous employ­er for a spec­i­fied peri­od in a defined geo­graph­ic area.

The ratio­nale for non-com­pete claus­es being imposed on depart­ing employ­ees is to pro­tect the legit­i­mate busi­ness inter­ests of the for­mer employ­er, usu­al­ly con­fi­den­tial infor­ma­tion and cus­tomer rela­tion­ships. This pro­tec­tion, how­ev­er, needs to be bal­anced against the right and need of the for­mer employ­ee to ply their trade or pro­fes­sion and earn a liv­ing.

This bal­ance is why there is a ques­tion as to the enforce­abil­i­ty of non-com­pete restraints, with courts called upon to adju­di­cate as to whether a non-com­pete restraint should be enforced against a for­mer employ­ee and, if so, to what extent (in terms of time peri­od and geo­graph­ic scope).

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Managers have more influence on employees’ mental health than their doctors or therapists, according to a new study.
New research has revealed that managers have more influence on employee mental health (69 per cent) than doctors (51 per cent) or therapists (41 per cent), and the same level of impact as their spouses and partners.

The report, recently published by UKG, also found one in three employees say their manager fails to recognise the impact they have on their team’s wellbeing, and the majority (68 per cent) say they would like their manager to do more to support their mental health.

Since last year’s introduction of a new Code of Practice to manage psychosocial hazards at work, HR has placed a renewed focus on employee mental health as a critical point of compliance. While it’s important for HR professionals themselves to understand psychosocial safety guidelines, these findings are an important reminder that, in many instances, mental health management hinges on the behaviour and capabilities of middle managers.

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