One of the first mantras I learnt while working in the Recruitment industry was ‘Time Kills All Deals’. It is the biggest frustration that I have in my job and it has nothing to do with my A Type Personality! I realise that at some points during the recruitment process, we need to wait for our clients, or candidates, to make a decision on something. This ‘waiting time’ can vary between a day, a week, to sometimes – months! Unfortunately, in this scarce skilled country that we live in, we do not have luxury of time as your ideal candidate will be employed by your competitor before you realise what has happened.
As mentioned previously, the delay can lie with both the clients and the candidates. Unfortunately, most of the delay is usually with our clients. I do find that if our client has been through a retrenchment themselves that they are far more sympathetic to the candidates who have experienced the same misfortune. The process seems to move quicker and there is more empathy from their side. I also find that our clients are also of the opinion that the candidates will wait for an offer from them and if they don’t, it is their loss. Unfortunately this is often not the case as our candidates make their own decisions to either go with the highest salary package or the first offer they receive as they need to feed their families.

Good talent doesn’t sit around. Period.

Here are some pointers to ensure that time is not wasted, by both parties, during the Recruitment Process:


  • Are you ready to hire? Have you got sign off of this role and do you have the mandate to employ a new employee to your organisation? There is nothing more frustrating than roles being placed on hold when interviews have already been scheduled with the candidates.
  • Who needs to be involved in the Interview process? Do you have access to the decision maker’s diaries to efficiently book interview slots? Are any of the decision makers scheduled to be out of town for an extended period of time – if yes, are they willing to interview via Skype? Has everyone been briefed on the role and the importance it plays in the business?
  • Are you ready to extend an offer? Do you have a salary structure and KPIs in place for this role already? Is there a Commission or Bonus Structure – is it clearly defined? If these are not in place it will further delay the process once the best candidate has been identified.


  • Do you understand your Salary Structure? Do you fully understand your current salary structure or are you going to suddenly bring up an ‘omitted’ 13th Cheque as the client is about to make an offer? Do you earn commission – do you understand how this is calculated? Are there any other benefits that you have like a company cell phone or petrol card etc.
  • Is your documentation sitting in a Dropbox Folder? Have you scanned your ID Book; Passport; Driver’s Licence; latest CV; Payslip and Educational Certificates and are they easily accessible? Far too many candidates have these documents hanging on their parent’s walls somewhere, a thousand kilometres away.
  • Are you sure that you will not take a counter offer if it is offered to you? Write down your day to day frustrations with your current employer so you remember them if you get a counter offer. Think about why you put yourself on the market in the first place! Has the company that is offering you a counter offer put all of their ‘promises’ in writing?

As you can see, when you allow the recruitment process to drag on for too long, people begin to think too much (usually about all the wrong things). You need to set time targets and adhere to them or else you will lose talent and potentially destroy your brand image in the process.


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