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How Hong Kong leaders deal with bad hires

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Robert Half’s recently published research shows the majority (99%) of Hong Kong CFOs have hired an employee that did not meet expectations.

According to the study of 150 CFOs, one in three typically recognise the misfit within a fortnight. Another 37% took two weeks to the realisation.

The most common reasons given were underqualified candidates (48%), a mismatch of skills (39%) and a CV fraud (28%).

Almost half (41%) of CFOs terminated the employee contract. 33% respectively re-started the recruitment process from scratch and partnered with a staffing agency to secure a replacement.

One-third (31%) of finance employers decided to deal with the matter internally by looking for an internal vacancy for the candidate. 30% developed a training program to upskill the employee. Only less than one in four (23%) adopted a ‘wait and see’ approach.

The top three consequences of a bad hire according to finance employers are increased workload for colleagues (53%), increased stress on colleagues and managers (39%) and higher recruitment costs (33%). Other cited negative consequences include increased workloads for managers (27%), decreased productivity (26%) and low staff morale (23%).

Adam Johnston, managing director of Robert Half Hong Kong, said, “Businesses go to great lengths to find the right candidate, but the cost of not hiring an adequate employee can be significant. Whether organisations decide to terminate their employment or invest in additional training, it will impact the company financially and can cause significant disruption and stress to the existing workforce, indicating the importance of getting it right.”

“While some factors, such as cultural fit, attitude, or even the credibility of candidates’ qualification or experience, can be challenging to account for in an interview; an experienced interviewer and a rigorous hiring process can prevent a wrong hire to take place, such as by asking the right questions, thoroughly testing skills and meticulous reference checking. Employers would benefit from reviewing their hiring policies to ensure they strike the right balance between efficiency and rigour,” Johnston concluded.

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