Master the Summer Hiring Game


It’s a sad fact that many critical positions that are open in early summer remain unfilled until the fall. I like to think of summer as excuse season. The time when lazy managers, HR, and Talent Acquisition can come up with a large number of excuses for why the position still isn’t filled.

Despite this bleak outlook, summer can actually be one of the best times to hire. Competition for talent slows as your competitors make excuses or can’t move quick and opportunity opens up. In addition to the easing of competition, relocation becomes a great option for many candidates. With kids out of school and not starting until the fall, this is the time to make the relocation happen.

Four Ideas to Avoid a Summer Hiring Slump:

Increasing Your Sourcing Activity – This is the exact time where you need to get your job in front of as many candidates as possible. Call HR now and make sure your job is a priority. Hire a headhunter or get on LinkedIn yourself and start reaching out. August can actually be a tough time to source, so fill the pipeline now. June and July are great times to engage with career minded candidates. Bonuses are paid, kids are out of school, and schedules free up so there is time to explore new opportunities.

Streamline Hiring Operations – The toughest part of summer hiring is weaving in interviews with the right people around vacations. Identify your interview team and pick alternates that can be around. Consider designating a day per week or pre arranging interview dates where all hands can be on deck. Trust me, if you have open interview slots HR will fill them; if they can’t, call a professional recruiter and they will.

Consider Relocating a Candidate – Many mangers shy away from relocation because of budget or timing concerns. However, in this competitive candidate driven market considering relocation candidates could be a wise choice. If you consider that each month your open position is saving you thousands of dollars in salary and costing you in workload and impacting your life, relocation can become cheap. The average cost of an individual contributor relocating in the neighborhood is $20,000; this is around two months’ salary. It’s kind of a wash and opens up a wide range of candidates you would not normally consider.

Don’t Accept Excuses – The single biggest thing you can do as a leader to get your job filled is to take accountability. Part of this is identifying those excuses you make to yourself and others make to you. Don’t blow off that recruitment status meeting or reschedule that phone interview to go play a round of golf. Keep working every day at hiring top talent and you will achieve your goal.

As you can see, the solutions to avoiding a summer hiring slump are pretty straightforward. Don’t let the summer heat and the workload from being shorthanded melt your team.