Subscribe to
Halliday Marx Visions

HM Visions aims to provide you with all the latest accounting recruitment news, jobs and careers advice

Hiring for a new role is often not a company’s favourite task. Like any other major undertaking, the correct preparation is fundamental to find the right person, plans need to be in place early. Even if you’re six months or more off your hire, these three key early steps will make sure that both you and the successful candidate get the best out of the recruitment process.

What do you need

This might seem an obvious question, but quite often a company will get to the hire stage and all they have to put their advertising and shortlist criteria in place is a job title. If the job has evolved, and you haven’t had to hire directly into it before, there’s a good chance that you have little idea how you’d identify the key person and job specification criteria to find another ideal fit. Gut instinct just won’t do.

Make a list of the essential qualifications and experience, plus any skills that are necessary. Now’s the time to future-proof the position as well; what plans do you have for the business, and how does the position you’re hiring impact upon those? What extra skills might a new hire need, or be capable of acquiring, that could help take the business where you’re planning?

Next, consult, consult, and consult again. Decide now who will be on the interview panel – for both first and second stage interviews, if required – and refine that person specification. Decide what is essential and what is desirable and start to draft your advertising. Make sure that the process will be as transparent and speedy as possible, and that you won’t have to waste time discussing aspects of recruitment that could be dealt with now, and which might lose you the ideal candidate.

This is the perfect time to be working with your professional Recruitment Company who will have the depth of knowledge and market experience to help with this planning phase.

Who’s out there?

Your recruitment company will already have a fair idea of who is doing what and where within your industry, and who might be looking to move to pastures new within the next few months. They will be considerably better-placed than you to make speculative calls to potential candidates who might not even have considered a change of job, and they will also be able to advise you on crucial market factors such as what the remuneration should be, and whether you’re paying under (or even over!) the market rate.

Use your network

Your existing staff is one of your biggest assets here in terms of spreading the word – not just internally, but keeping their ear to the ground at conferences, exhibitions, and even their own personal networking events. Staff who have come through graduate recruitment schemes, or from recruitment companies themselves are also likely to have kept in touch with others following similar paths.


Start early and get the job specification in place and use your specialist recruitment company who are best placed with up to date information on candidate availability and remuneration packages. If you are interested in finding out more, please call us on 020 3857 5100 or email at [email protected]