Aside from poor performance, failed hires are a result of a mismatched skill set. Nearly half of 270 CFOs interviewed (47%) in Canada by Robert Half Finance & Accounting attest to this, while 29% blame unclear performance expectations as the top reason new employees don’t work out.

CFOs were asked, “Aside from poor performance, which one of the following factors is most likely to lead to a failed hire?” In response, executives at firms of all sizes cited a mismatched skill set as the leading contributor to hiring failures:

Robert Half survey of 270 CFOs


Greg Scileppi, president of Robert Half, International Staffing Operations, cited failure to clearly define what it will take for a candidate to succeed in the position.

He provided a solution: "Set potential new employees up for success by going beyond a generic job description; outline the necessary skills and provide a roadmap for how new hires can excel in the role initially and in the future."

Recent research from Robert Half Finance & Accounting


Robert Half Finance & Accounting offered four tips to avoid making a bad hire:

  1. Identify the must-haves. Make a list of essential skills and those that can be learned through training. For example, soft skills that ensure they’re a fit and can take on greater responsibilities.
  2. Don’t shortcut the reference check. Talk to candidates’ former managers to ask about individuals’ work styles, strengths and areas for improvement.
  3. Get outside help. A recruiter can help evaluate each job seeker based on the required skills and performance expectations and accelerate the hiring process.
  4. Act immediately. Separate Robert Half research shows promising candidates lose interest when companies delay making a decision. Don’t prolong the process.
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