Those well-versed in sign language watched the December memorial service honoring Nelson Mandela with a mix of shock, horror and embarrassment. The sign language interpreter procured by the South African government was using gestures that were completely unintelligible!
Not only did the debacle raise major security concerns as to how the man (who reportedly suffers from schizophrenic episodes and has a criminal history that includes arrests for rape and murder) was able to get so close to world leaders, but also questions about how he was hired in the first place. The South African government said in a statement that it was “looking into this matter.”
Clearly this was a hiring disaster of the greatest degree.
While any hiring missteps your company makes may not make the nightly news, that doesn’t mean the impact will be any less severe on employees and customers. That’s why it’s so important to take your time and dig deep when you’re looking to bring someone new on board.
Next time you need to hire for your company, don’t skip these essential steps:
Lesson #1: Ask follow up questions.
Get behind the mask candidates wear and dig deeper in a job interview by asking follow up questions.
For instance, when a candidate states they have experience with a certain computer application, ask them for a specific example of a project they’ve used it for, what challenges they faced with it, and how it helped them complete their work.
A candidate who is being honest will have no problem answering these questions with plenty of detail.
Lesson #2: Check references.
Simply requiring that candidates provide three professional references and checking each will go a long way in weeding out less-than-honest job candidates.
Even if you simply confirm employers, dates of employment, job titles and educational degrees, you can rest easy that they are who they say they are.
Lesson #3: Require skills testing.
One test with a licensed sign language interpreter, and the “fake” used at the Mandela memorial service would have been thwarted.
Whether you give your candidates a homework assignment or require they undergo online skills testing, make sure the person you ultimately hire has the hard skills to get the job done.
You can test skills in any number of ways; just make sure you do it.
If you need more help with the hiring process, give PrideStaff a call. As one of the leading Tempe staffing agencies, we can help you recruit and hire skilled, dependable and trustworthy employees.