In the game of recruitment, the ball is firmly in the employers’ court. While this means they are likely spoilt for choice for the level of talent on offer, hirers are often overwhelmed by the amount of candidates they need to screen and review when looking to fill positions.

If you’re feeling daunted and unsure where to start with your people management, look no further. Here’s 10 easy steps to pick the best person for the job:

1. Start with the basics

Log, number, and make summary notes of all applications received.

2. Get ruthless

Review or grade in bulk against pre-set criteria.

Top tip: To be even more ahead of the game, start this even before the closing date!

3. Don’t waste a moment

Immediately after applications have closed, review the final list and reject altogether any definite ‘no’s’ immediately.

4. Make the cut

Use a scoring matrix to paper sift the remaining candidates against your pre-set criteria, selecting a ‘long list’ of no more than 7-9 per position.

5. Begin the long haul

Review your ‘long list’, prepare your interview questions and invite those selected to a first stage interview. Look at areas where the candidate could add value from the information available.

Top tip: consider including a tele-screen exercise stage here if needed.

6. The more the merrier

Group interviews are a great way of speeding up a process and can look really professional when conducted correctly.

7. Go on a diet

Reduce your ‘long list’ to a ‘shortlist’ of four or five candidates. Only include people that you genuinely believe could do the job and that would suit your culture.

8. Make things more intimate

Interview your shortlist one-to-one.

9. Struggling to choose?

If you shortlist to two candidates, consider a work-based trial to help you decide.

10. The results are in

Appoint, and subject to references start the probationary period.

By Gerfried Aigner, Head of Product Development, Sage