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How to find and hire the right person for your organisation

Finding the right people really allows an organisation to flourish. It’s vital to have quality employees who want to contribute to an organisation's success, allowing it to grow, evolve and make the industry better than it was yesterday.

But finding the right people is far from easy.

You have to look beyond the impressive cover letters/CVs and get an insight into who that candidate really is. So, where do you start? These five steps will help improve your hiring strategy, allow you to make the right decisions and transform your organisation from the inside out.


Make sure that they believe in your mission

People who are genuinely passionate about an organisation’s mission and cause are more willing to put in the work that is required to make it a better place. This is also incredibly important in the not-for-profit sector. You want to hire candidates that are loyal, demonstrate an interest in what you’re striving to achieve and want to truly make a difference. 

So when you’re looking for a new hire, see if they’ve volunteered for a charity that is committed to a similar cause to yours or has shown an interest in your mission/vision in their cover letter. Or, if your recruitment process includes an application form, this is the perfect opportunity to ask them why they want to work with you in particular. However you choose to filter through candidates make sure that this is a priority.


Check that they fit into the culture

All organisations have their own personality, traditions and beliefs. Having people that can comfortably fit into – and enhance – the culture is always worth taking into consideration. Remember, that producing quality work is just one aspect of a role. That individual, and their ability to communicate and socialise, can completely change the dynamics of a team or the atmosphere in an office.

Willingness is just one of many primary things that a candidate must demonstrate. After an interview, take them around the office and introduce them to their potential team members to see how well they respond to meeting new people. That way you can get a better idea of how well they cope under social pressure. 

But be careful. Diversity is key to enhancing your organisation and focussing on fitting in can allow an unconscious bias against good candidates who are different from your current team. Just as you expect of a candidate, you and your current team also need to be open to people who are different.


Let the candidate interview you

You shouldn’t be the only one with questions. Try to gauge how interested a candidate is in working for your organisation by the types of questions that they ask you (if any). It’s important that you feel they’re really up to the tasks that they will be responsible for, and this is a chance to see what is truly important to them.

Be as open and honest as possible when answering a candidates questions. You want to give them a realistic preview of the environment that they might be in. Make sure that you create an environment where it’s clear that there’s no such thing as a silly question. The more accommodating you are to a candidate at this stage, the easier it is for them to open up and ask the questions that matter most to them. Who knows, you may even get an idea or two on how to keep improving things from them.


Look at their potential as well as their past work

Personality is equally as important as skill set. While having experience in a role or industry is always desirable, remember that while skills can be acquired, personality counts too.

While CVs and cover letters are a great stepping stone, achievements should never overshadow a candidate’s potential to grow.

Social and emotional intelligence can go a long way, especially when introducing people to an entire team. You want to have employees that are able to navigate their way around a number of social situations, as well as the ability to compromise and communicate effectively with others.

Pay close attention to their body language and ability to actually answer questions that you pose to them. Are they willing to admit what they do and don’t know? Do they sound passionate? Do they have a vision? There is much more to a job than simply producing results, so remember to look past that when assessing a candidate’s potential. 


See what they’re up to on social media

Checking a candidate’s online profile (whether on social media or a quick Google search) is now everyday practice for employers. Not only is this a great strategy if you’re hiring employees for tech or marketing roles, but doing so allows you to see what kind of person they are outside the workplace.

You’ll be surprised how much you can find out about a candidate by looking them up across social media. With around 90% of businesses using the likes of Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter while recruiting, make sure that you’re also taking the time to get to know potential candidates before inviting them in for an interview. 

It takes time to find the right people, but the effort will ultimately benefit you and your organisation. We hope that all of these suggestions help you to find exactly what you’re looking for. Good luck!

Further information

Content for this How To was contributed by CharityJob, an NCVO trusted supplier. CharityJob is the UK’s most popular site for charity jobs. Over 200,000 subscribers receive their email job alerts and their services are used by over 20,000 charities.


Page last edited Jun 08, 2017 History

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