Identifying and Hiring Top Performers: The Secret Recipe

Jun 17, 2020 | assessment, HR Resources | 0 comments

Hiring top performers can help to increase the profits your company makes through higher productivity. When undertaking a hiring process, it can be hard to analyze who might be a top performer and who might fall flat. Let this guide help you to hire more amazing staff.

Top Tips for Hiring Top Performers

Unfortunately, hiring top performers proves to be more of a challenge than most companies expect. The majority of companies – 83% say that retaining and attracting good talent is a challenge for them. 80% claim that the quality of applicants is what sets them back from getting great staff.

So, how can you go about hiring better quality staff for your organization? By adding in a mix of the following tips for hiring top performers, you can take your hiring processes to the next level. You just may find yourself with some incredible new staff for your company!

Who Are Your Top Performers?

First of all, you can start by looking at your current high performers. Who are they and what makes them achieve so much more than others at your company? Perhaps it’s their financial results adding to the bottom line of the company. Or maybe they are just more productive and can get more done than other employees.

Start by discussing what makes these people different from average performers. This can help you to define what makes a top performer. Then you will know what to look for when hiring new employees.


To get the best, you don’t necessarily need to pay the best. However, the rate you offer when hiring top performers should be consistent with market rates. Otherwise, why would they come to your company over another? Even if they love your company, they still need to put food on the table at the end of the day.

Research what the current market value is for the role you are advertising. Offer a salary that is in line with this. If you can’t increase salary, you can always consider other benefits. Perhaps you can offer additional paid holiday leave or sick days, or yearly bonuses. When it comes to the job offer, additional benefits can make all the difference.

👉Engaging Job Description

Once you have decided on the skills of top performers you are looking for, you need to clearly outline these in the job description. This part is trickier than you may expect as one study showed that 72% of employers thought that their job descriptions were clear. However, only 36% of applicants agreed. Ensure that you include a mixture of soft and hard skills that you are looking for when screening candidates.

👉Assess Candidates’ Skills

Rather than trying to subjectively assess the skills of the applicants, why not do it objectively? Consider using cognitive assessments in the recruitment process. These can offer you quantitative data on who the top-performing candidates might be.

By adding in a test relevant to the skills you require for the position, you can increase your chances of hiring top performers. Using test results to create your shortlist can minimize unconscious bias. This bias often prevents us from selecting the best candidates for the role.

👉Include Top Performers in the Interview Process

You as the HR representatives or hiring managers may be used to conducting the interviews for a new hire. However, did you know that it can be highly beneficial to get your top performers involved in the hiring process? The old phrase ‘it takes one to know one’ may prove to be true when it comes to top performers.

By including people you consider to be fantastic employees on the interview panel, you can hear their valuable insights on the candidates. As they perform well, they know what it takes and what to look for in a candidate.

You can either let some of your top talents handle the first round of interviews and then you do the second round or interview together as a panel.

👉Conversational Interviews

Sometimes, rather than having only structured interview questions, you may find that conversational interviews will give you more insight into the candidates. This can help you evaluate their strengths and weaknesses without them even realizing that you’re doing it.

So, what is a conversational interview? It’s an interview where you aren’t asking predetermined structured questions. Instead, you simply make conversation with the candidate and use the information to analyze their skills.

One benefit of this is that it is a more relaxed style of interviewing where the candidate may feel more comfortable. Additionally, they may tell you things that they otherwise may not have thought to say.

For example, you could be discussing their love of sports. Asking what kind of sports they do will help you to see whether they prefer to work as a team or on their own. Or, discussing how they divide the chores in their household will show whether they are good at delegation or if they are a perfectionist.

Feel free to add some behavioral and situational interview questions into the mix as well. Using a combination of these 3 interview question techniques can help you gain a full picture of the candidate.

By using these simple techniques in your hiring processes, you can finally unlock the secret to hiring top performers. Help your company become more productive and profitable by using the above recruitment tactics.

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