Time to Hire: The Complete Guide

September 24th, 2020
HireVue Team
Metrics & Analytics,
Recruiting Teams
time to hire

As a recruiter, you’re on the front line of your company’s talent acquisition efforts. Sourcing and attracting ideal candidates for your organization is a weighty responsibility, and your interactions with those candidates ultimately determine the success of the entire process. One common challenge many recruiters face is the back and forth of interview scheduling. It may sound simple from the outside looking in, but in reality, can feel like an endless game of ping pong.

HireVue empowers recruiters and hiring managers to build out their teams, not just their calendars.

With HireVue, you can be sure never to lose another great candidate to a drawn-out or convoluted hiring process by providing a highly efficient time to hire, while simultaneously improving both the candidate experience and the quality of hire.

What Is Time To Hire?

According to management guru Peter Drucker, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. Time to hire (sometimes styled time-to-hire) measures the overall efficiency of an organization’s hiring process. It’s the number of days, weeks or months it takes a job candidate to move through the process, beginning with the date they apply for an open position, and ending with their date of hire.

Unlike HR metrics such as employee engagement or job satisfaction, which measure attitudes and beliefs, the average time to hire metric offers concrete data that can help organizational leaders find efficiencies in day-to-day operations, ultimately boosting the bottom line.

Image inspiration from Google Hire article

Average Time to Hire

Time to Hire VS. Time to Fill

Time to fill is also a measure of organizational efficiency; however, it’s more organization-centric, whereas time to hire is more candidate-centric. Time to fill helps answer the question, “How can we make our workflows as efficient as possible, saving the company time and money?” whereas time to hire helps answer the question, “How can we make our workflows as efficient as possible, so as not to miss the best talent out there?

Image inspiration from Google Hire article - this is a great visual for displaying the difference between time-to-hire and time-to-fill (it’s not specified here but Day 1 - Day 20 is time-to-fill)

Time to Hire: 14 Days

The Business Case for Time To Hire

You don’t want a candidate, who is eager to get to work, to be waiting around on you to schedule another meeting. Especially in a competitive labor market, where candidates may be juggling several job offers, it’s important that potential employers make decisions in a reasonable amount of time. If one of your goals is to create a successful candidate experience, the time-to-hire metric should be guiding your decisions.

However, simply telling your executive team that your company “takes too long to hire” won’t get you very far. Being armed with real data on your company, as well as industry benchmarks, will.

Doing so allows you to demonstrate the correlation between efficient time to hire and quality of hire, which both drive business value.

How To Track Time To Hire

If you’re new to time to hire, or at least new to actually using it, here’s a great place to start:

1) If you’re using an applicant tracking system (ATS), it should be able to easily generate a time to hire report for you, both as an overall metric, as well as broken down by departments and/or positions. If you’re not using an ATS, time to hire can be tracked manually using a simple Excel formula. Just record the date each new hire accepts their offer, less the number of days since they submitted their application.

2) Next, find out the standard time to hire for your industry - or better yet, for your competitors. While a competitive time to hire for a professional firm may be measured in weeks, that for a restaurant or retail store may be just a few days.

3) Then, if your time to hire is subpar, take a deep dive into your hiring process to identify any bottlenecks. If needed, you can begin collecting data in the following areas:

  • Time between application submitted by candidate and initial response from organization
  • Time between initial response and first phone screen / first interview
  • Time between first phone screen / first interview and second interview
  • Time spent deliberating internally

4) Finally, once you’ve fine-tuned the process, continue tracking time to hire monthly, quarterly and annually to watch for any dips or spikes.

Automating interviewing technology doesn’t erode human connection; it enhances it. Let HireVue help you with the details, so you can focus on identifying the strongest candidates, and inviting them into a fair and pleasant process.

And, for a shorter time to hire, use HireVue's Automated Interview Scheduling!

See why HireVue Coordinate is more efficient that Calendly or other meeting software.

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