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Peter Cappelli, director of Wharton’s Center for Human Resources, says companies’ hiring practices have worsened over the last couple of decades, and many companies fail to determine if their hiring practices select the types of employees they want. Instead, he says, companies focus on how much it costs to hire an employee and how long it takes to hire one. “This is like checking to see the total cost of your advertising campaign without looking to see what effect it had on sales,” Cappelli adds. One of the biggest misses, he says, is not using the results of task-related skills tests when hiring, leaving the decision to hiring managers’ judgment rather than taking into account objective assessments. He also explains that companies fail to look internally to promote candidates to bigger roles, and when looking externally for candidates, companies are too focused on attracting passive candidates-those who aren’t looking to move. A LinkedIn survey found that those actively seeking new jobs were motivated by the chance of doing better work and having better career opportunities, but most passive candidates are motivated by money. Cappelli warns that unless the hiring process becomes more tailored to the needs of the company and engages objective measures, the time it takes companies to fill job openings will continue to increase like it has for the last decade. For more with Peter Cappelli, read this Q&A with HR Leader.

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