Running an Effective Recruitment Process

Two people shaking hands over a table

Hamilton Forth’s Rachel Sim, shares top tips for running the most effective recruitment process in a talent-scarce market.

The tech industry continues to flourish across Scotland. With more tech jobs than ever before, demand for tech talent far outweighs the supply. This means that if you are in the market for a technologist, it is highly likely that they will have a plethora of opportunities to select from and will often end up with multiple offers to compare as they seek to decide their next career move.

We often focus on hints and tips for candidates as they prepare for interviews, however, with balance of power very much on the side of the candidates, it is imperative that HR, TA and hiring managers have a robust recruitment process to ensure they can attract the right talent in a timely manner.

Here we look at the key elements to ensure your hiring process is the best it can be.

The Application Process

Keep it simple.  You will lose candidates right at the start if you have a laborious process which requires filling in forms and doing tech tests before they have even had a chance to have a conversation with you.

Pre-Interview Screener

Many organisations are keen on an initial 20 – 30 mins conversation with all applicants. However, this can end up wasting time on both sides if the candidate doesn’t meet initial criteria.

Hold your TA team or your agency partner accountable to ONLY put candidates in front of you who meet your basic expectations in terms of cultural fit to avoid needing to do a screener which ends up wasting both your and the candidate’s time if they aren’t going to go any further in the hiring process.

Interview Stages

It is important to be thorough with interviews to ensure that both parties have the relevant information required to make an informed decision. However, we see some organisations stretching out interviews over three or four separate stages spanning over four weeks.

Our experience tells us that you are more likely to lose candidates if your process takes longer than two weeks to conclude (aside from executive and senior leadership roles which can take longer). Combining stages and having two thorough stages (two to four hours of overall interview time) should suffice.

Interview Format

Gone are the days where interviews were a one-way traffic with five or ten minutes at the end for candidate questions.

The best interviews are engaging, discussion based, and should be an opportunity for both parties to get to know each other. As a hiring manager or interviewer, you should be prepared to ‘sell’ the opportunity as much as you expect the candidate to ‘sell’ their skills to you.

Decision and Feedback

Make your offer quickly.  After an investment of time and effort to get to this stage, it can be very disappointing to lose out on candidates because you have not moved quick enough to make an offer after interview.

Feedback should be provided 24-48 hours after a final interview. There is nothing like demonstrating to a candidate that you value them than putting an offer in front of them as quickly as possible. It shows precision in decision making and a desire to work with the prospective candidate.

The same principal applies for those who are rejected. Be sincere with your feedback so that those candidates leave with a positive impression and are encouraged to apply again in future or encourage others to apply.


Be specific and concise with the timeframes for completing the onboarding process and ensure you keep open lines of communication throughout the process.


To discuss your hiring practices, or to find out more about how Hamilton Forth can help you secure top tech talent for your team, contact [email protected]

Can we help?

If you are looking for IT recruitment support, please get in touch with our team of experts.

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