Business is booming in the travel industry once more, and many travel brands are scrambling to hire the right candidates for the roles they have open, most notably in marketing and sales. Here are five practical tools that will help you pick the right person for the job.

Hiring the wrong person for the job falls under the category of epic fail—and it can be expensive. Research shows that when a new recruit leaves a company because the job isn’t a good fit, it can cost the company between six and nine months of that person’s salary. Most employers would much rather be sitting on the other side of the equation since happy employees in the right position produce good results all around—including satisfied managers and colleagues, and most importantly in the travel industry, happy clients.

So, how do you make sure that you find the right person for the job? The first piece of advice is not to rush the recruitment process, no matter how desperately you may need the position to be filled. Take your time in choosing someone who will enrich your business and feel fulfilled in the new position.

1. Write an accurate job description

This is the first golden rule. Get the job description right and you’ll automatically attract top talent for the job. Brainstorm with your managers what the job entails and what skill set is needed to flourish in that position. Ensure that you include the practical requirements, for example, knowledge of a particular software system that your company uses to make bookings. Bear in mind that fitting in with company culture is one of the major determinants of a successful placement. Are you a relaxed family business or a more hierarchical, process-orientated organisation? Whichever you are, be sure to mention your type of culture in the job description.

2. Shortlist the right candidates

Now that you’ve posted the job description, be careful who you select for the interviewing stage. Ensure that all the shortlisted candidates possess the right experience and skills, and match your company culture. Look for personality too—this is often demonstrated in the cover letter. Checking references is time-consuming, but don’t be tempted to skip this stage. Find out what the candidates’ previous employers have to say about their performance, and scan their résumés to see if what they’ve done in the past matches your requirements for the present job.

3. Listen to what they have to say

By the time the interviewing begins, you’ll need to sharpen your listening skills. Pay particular attention to the questions that the candidates ask. Are they keen to work flexible hours? If not, this could mean that they would not be prepared to work overtime, which could be a key requirement of the job. A template is a helpful tool to evaluate candidates and see who shines above the others. Ask questions such as what type of team do they thrive in, how did they cope with a challenge in their previous job, and what values are most important to them. After the interviews, you’ll need to talk to those who are also involved in the hiring process in order to reach a consensus on which candidates stood out the most.

4. Consider additional assessments

An interview may not be enough to gauge whether you have the right person for the job. Invariably, the candidates who come across well during their interview are extroverts, while the introverts may be nervous and thus could easily be overlooked. It may be worthwhile asking the shortlisted candidates to do additional assessments such as personality tests and skills-based questionnaires to establish if they have the right skills for the job.

5. Trust your instincts

The last piece of advice before selecting the lucky candidate and emailing them the offer of employment is this: Listen to your gut feeling. Throughout the interview process, check in with your intuition about whether this person is the right fit for the role and your company. Many employers assert that when they didn’t listen to their gut feeling and relied on pure logic, they failed to hire the right candidate. Some employers even ask a trusted friend or spouse to sit in on the interview to help confirm whether they’ve found the perfect person for the job.

By following these tips, you’ll be sure to pick the winners and weed out those who won’t fit into your organisation. If there are some exceptional candidates who didn’t make the cut, be sure to keep their details on record, so that you can reach out to them later should a similar position become available. Here’s hoping you’ll find the right person for the job, and they will love working for you!

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