The ‘jury’ system of hiring

This method of hiring works on the same lines as the 360 degree performance feedback, and can be the best option for hiring managers who do not rely on technology.

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As a hiring manager or an HR personnel, if you are on the lookout for a new and effective method of hiring talent, which is better than personal interviews, then here is your answer— the ‘jury’ system.

This new method to hire experienced managers and people in leadership roles involves minimal interaction with the candidates, before making an offer and discussing the commercials.

The process is very much similar to a 360-degree performance review.

The first step is to stop accepting applications and start demanding written nominations from internal and external stakeholders.

The nominees should then be asked to give five references — people they have worked with in the past.

These five references should be asked to give one name each of a current or former colleague of the candidate, that is, somebody who is aware of the candidate’s leadership style and way of working.

Therefore, this process will involve a jury of 10 people, with each one undergoing in-depth interviews. Through these detailed interactions with the 10 references, the hiring managers will be able to obtain a great deal of vital information about the candidate.

Rajeev Singh

“Jury system hiring will definitely work very well. It will give credible and authentic data points about the candidate. It becomes a reliable source of information and also gives several different perspectives”

Finally, the candidate can be called for a meeting at the office, where the conversation can start with a formal offer.

This ‘jury’ system will allow organisations to hire candidates without any bias. The system is better than personal interviews because the candidate does not get an opportunity to lie. Also, 10 different perspectives of a candidate are any day better than just one.

Rajeev Singh, CHRO, ATG Tires, reveals that they do follow this method but not in the exact same manner. They have a more informal approach. Recently, while hiring a C-suite member, they took information from the candidate’s current as well as former colleagues well before scheduling an interview with the candidate.

For VP-level hiring they do take information from references before making an offer, but only after personally interviewing the candidate.

“This strategy for hiring will definitely work very well. It will give credible and authentic data points about the candidate. It becomes a reliable source of information and also gives several different perspectives,” explains Singh.

Apart from this it is also a great method to check if the person is a culture fit or not. “When you take information from people in different companies the candidate has worked in, you get a clear picture of the candidate’s suitability to your company’s culture. This is otherwise rather difficult to ascertain with even psychometric tests,” mentions Singh.

Subir Mitra

“The important thing in jury system of hiring is how to deal with the collected data. Data has to be applied judiciously using different tools for an unbiased approach”

Subir Mitra, executive director-HR & IR, GAIL, India, also agrees that this 360 degree feedback mechanism is a very useful hiring technique. However, GAIL does not follow such a practice because of a lot of government regulations involved in its hiring process.

This method will allow access to a lot of data and when you have so much data in hand, it becomes very important to use it wisely.

“The important thing is how to deal with the collected data. Data has to be applied judiciously using different tools for an unbiased approach,” asserts Mitra.

He adds, “Whoever is handling the data has to be mature enough to use it wisely. It is essential to analysethe data and create a data bank.”

But everything in this world comes with a drawback. The reliability of the information offered by the references can also be doubted.

“In most cases, we see that many people say only good things about the candidate. This may deprive you of a true picture,” shares Singh.

Leadership hiring is crucial and credible data points become the key in such cases. Though you have many technological interventions to support unbiased hiring, a question mark revolves around the credibility. This ‘jury system’ can work as a great alternative for people who do not trust technology.

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