Intelligent Hiring: The Assimilation Process

By Ty Bello

We all know that hiring quality employees is important. Now more than ever, it is critical to have the right steps in place to identify, qualify, hire, and retain quality team members, but in reality, it is always the right time for that.

Regardless of the current economy, you should always be looking at interviewing and hiring with a new, exciting and fresh perspective. While unemployment is down, you still need to grab on to some new blood for your team. There are plenty of “A” and “B” candidates out there, and you just need to find them. That isn’t entirely true. You need to do more than just find them — you need to engage them. Finding recruits is easy; getting them assimilated to your team is a totally different thing. Notice the change in hiring vocabulary. We used to say on-boarding, but today’s recruits want to not just be hired or on-boarded; they want to take in information, ideas, culture, and assimilate.

The greatest obstacles you face in your Assimilation Process are: 1) Poor interviewing skills and process; 2) Lack of assessment tools; and 3) No job description. These are the ABCs of a great Assimilation Process.

You must move away from “Pulse Hiring,” which is short for “If they have a pulse, hire them.”

The first thing needed is to develop an Assimilation Process using the ABCs above. The candidates that want to be on your team will be looking for a business they can commit to. This goes beyond impressing the candidate; it actually is a proven methodology that filters out the bad candidates from the good ones.

You need to have a strong interviewing process that will promote a strong organizational culture. These first steps of the interviewing process should include the following components, regardless of the position being recruited:

  • Quality advertising, including Web based
  • Initial interview by phone
  • A 2-3 face-to-face interview process, including scripted questions
  • Assessment tools and job description (to be given and provided, respectively, after Interview #2)

The interviewing process has three very distinct purposes. You want to see if the candidate: 1) is qualified, 2) has the aptitude for the job, and 3) is a cultural fit.

A good interview always starts with two factors: 1) A clear understanding of the position and its requirements; and 2) a complete review of the candidate’s application and résumé. As the interviewer, your role is to complete all of this work prior to interviewing the candidate. Too often, interviewers escort a candidate into their office and then ask the candidate to give them a moment while they review the candidate’s application and résumé. WRONG!

Starting with a phone interview allows you to hear before you see. This is a perfectly relaxing opportunity for both the interviewer and the candidate. Most phone interviews take place in the evening. You can either schedule the phone interview in advance or cold call the candidate.

Once the candidate has qualified based on the phone interview, it is time for the face-to-face interviews. At this point, the candidate has passed through the Qualification Phase, where the résumé, references, and phone interview reveal they qualify for the job. Now, you need to move into the Aptitude Phase of the interviewing process. Does the candidate possess the ability to do the job based on experience and your job description? To begin this phase, review your notes from that initial phone interview, be on time, and greet the candidate with a firm handshake. I know this sounds elementary, but if you want this candidate, then impressions do matter.

With this being the first step in the Aptitude Phase, you do not need to provide the candidate with a tour of the company, but that should be a part of the second face-to-face interview. Also, this interview should be with only you. Other leaders should be included in rounds 2 and 3 of the interviewing process. These leaders should be identified in advance and must receive a briefing on the candidate’s Qualification and Aptitude Phase information. These other leaders must also be equipped with questions that they are responsible for asking.

As an interviewer, you must be prepared with questions that will lead the candidate into a deeper understanding of the job and that person’s possible role. Ask questions that will help you make a clear decision regarding the candidate’s aptitude.

The Interview Process should be broken down into three phases:

  • Introduction Phase (2-5 minutes)
  • Aptitude Phase (35-40 minutes)
  • Position/Organization Information Phase (10-15 minutes)

As you further qualify the candidates that you are considering to make an offer to, you must incorporate Assessment Tools. These tools will further qualify the candidate’s behaviors; tendencies; and communication, listening and selling skills as applicable to the job. This is part of the Cultural Phase that will show if this candidate fits with the culture of your business.

This is probably more than any of you have done in your business before. It is an understatement to say that the hiring process of the past no longer works. Change is hard, and yes, this will take you more time, but it will also afford you a strongly vetted candidate. Ultimately, this is an investment in the future of your business.

Ty Bello is the president and founder of Team@Work, a Registered Corporate Coach (RCC) with the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches, and a graduate of Indiana Wesleyan University. Ty served as a sergeant in the United States Air Force and was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal for his distinguished and meritorious service. Ty is a highly sought-after speaker, and he provides relevant and best-in-class information during his energetic presentations. Team@Work is a coaching and business services organization that serves businesses as they maneuver through the everyday ebb and flow of running a highly focused organization and team. Its roots are based in business coaching and the belief that businesses and team members are not broken, but are occasionally misguided and drift slightly off course. Team@Work’s goal is to motivate and coach businesses down the correct path and lead them to even greater success and team dynamics. Team@Work provides coaching and execution strategies in sales, business optimization, organizational health, and leadership and team development. For more information, visit or contact Team@Work at (260) 627-8938 or


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