Fit or Flop - Hiring the Right Candidate

Anytime you hire a new employee, you are taking a chance. Risk is there for this person to be the right fit, or to flop. Hiring someone is an investment — financially, time wise, and regarding employee retention and employer appeal. In any company, there are successes and failures at hiring. A lot of times we roll the dice on a candidate and hope that we played our cards right when we make our selection.

We’d be lying if we said we didn’t have any hiring failures here at Evia, but those disappointments are very rare. We have been increasingly successful at hiring employees that are the ‘right fit’ and last.

Evia has been in business for 24 years and is still considered a small business, with less than 50 employees. We have experienced most of our growth in the last few years. At a time when job hopping has become the norm, we are proud of our employee retention. The number of employees has more than doubled in the past 5 years, and in that time, we have learned a few things:

53% of our employees have been with us for 2 years or more

57% of the employees that have been here less than 2 years were hired on as a new role within in the company (they did not replace anyone)

23% of our employees have been with us for 5 years or more

At Evia, we have found that a comprehensive process to hire the right fit has greatly increased employee retention. When we have hired who we felt was the very best candidate for the role, we have been less likely to let them go for poor performance/behavior or have them quit due to unhappiness. Finding the right candidate from the beginning is extremely important to us, so our hiring process is thorough:

Interview process

We have three rounds in our interview process: a phone screening interview, an in-person multi-round interview, and a final interview with leadership. Each phase of the process requires the candidate to meet with different employees that sit at different levels within the company.

If we are not completely confident in our pool of contenders, we are not afraid to start the entire process over until we find the absolute best fit.

Hiring team

The is no ‘recruiter’ here. We hand-select an internal hiring team that is directly involved with the role. It’s a mix of people — anyone from another team member in the same role currently to someone who may collaborate with this person on a project. Our team gets to interview and select the candidate they, themselves, want to work with.

Behavioral Assessment tool

We evaluate how potential employees will get along in our work culture using an assessment tool called Predictive Index. This tool helps the hiring team predict the drives and motivations of candidates to find the best fit for management style and to understand how they best communicate. Each candidate that passes through the phone interview is sent the assessment to complete. We compare the candidate’s results to assessments of others in that role and to the job description created by the hiring team.

Culture, culture, culture

Work culture fit is one thing that wasn’t always a priority at Evia. We just recently started making this a higher priority as part of our decision making. We have found over the years that those employees that fit our culture last longer and are more successful. The first thing we now ask our hiring team — “are they a culture fit?”

Onboarding

Each new hire that is selected goes through a 90-day onboarding process. Every employee is required to complete a list of onboarding tasks in addition to job specific training. All employees learn the same information about us, and in order to get an introduction to everyone in the company, we schedule a 30-minute one-on-one meeting between the new team member and each employee.

Our hiring process is not necessarily quick. In the long run, we feel that it is more beneficial to fill a role with the right candidate as opposed to hiring someone as fast as possible just to fill a gap. The overall process takes about six to eight weeks to complete, and we are okay with that. We aren’t afraid to even ‘go back to the drawing board’ and start all over if we aren’t super excited about our choices. After all, if hiring is in fact an investment, you definitely want to invest the time into making sure it’s going to be a successful one.