Adam Franklin | How to hire and retain "A Players"

Smart recruitment involves building a funnel to attract, shortlist and hire the best candidates. This system details a step-by-step process to attract great talent to your business.

System Architect: Adam Franklin
Generated as part of the

System Details

Step 1: Write a Job Score Card (job ad) and publish it.

  • A Job Score Card contains a description of the role, what type of person would be most appropriate and your organisation’s core values.

Step 2: Create a job application form to allow candidates to apply.

  • Align your questions to your core values. Include questions about the candidate’s area of work interest, how they found the job ad, their salary expectations, what their dream career would be and other interests.
  • Suggestion: Create an online job application form using Google Forms or SurveyMonkey.

Step 3: Screen the application forms and run a competency exam for the shortlisted candidates.

  • Suggestion: Let the exam be 30 minutes where candidates can show their skills working on a part of a real project.

Step 4: Conduct a short screening call with the candidates that successfully passed the competency exam.

  • Call duration is about 15 minutes and helps to further shortlist candidates.
  • Great questions to ask include:
    • What are their strengths and weaknesses? Most “A Players” speak confidently about their strengths and are very clear about their weaknesses.
    • What will your previous bosses and references say about you when we call them?”

Step 5: Call and check the references of the successful candidates.

  • Call not only the ones they put on the application but ideally their previous employers.

Step 6: Invite the shortlisted candidates to a face-to-face cultural interview.

  • Interview duration is about 20 minutes.
  • During the interview talk in greater detail about the questions asked in the application form and on the screening phone call. The primary objective is to ensure candidate’s values align with the companies core values.

Step 7: Introduce the successful applicant to the team.

  • This process that takes about 20 minutes and includes:
    • Introduction to the team,
    • Applicant introduces themselves,
    • Sharing examples of applicant’s previous work and expertise,
    • Team members introduce themselves to the applicant,
    • Q&A time.
  • After the meeting, ask your team to vote anonymously if they want to work with that candidate or not. Note: All team members need to vote positively for the candidate to receive a job offer.

Step 8: Employ the successful candidate for a 3-month probation period.

  • On day one invite the new staff member to a “welcome lunch”.
  • Send a small gift (e.g. a bottle of champagne) and a card to his/her home address at the end of their first working day.
  • After the probation period, ask your team members to vote anonymously again for their colleague. If all vote “Yes”, hire the employee full time.

Additional steps to maintain “A Players"

Step 9: Set an organizational hierarchic system with a pay range for each level.

  • Set an organizational hierarchic system for each position, with levels from 1 to 5 and set a pay range for each position and each level. Make the system and the price ranges transparent to the team.

Step 10: Conduct performance reviews and offer incremental promotions and pay raise to retain “A Players”.

  • Performance reviews frequency: every 6 months.
    • Identify 5 criteria for each team member and review their performance based on these criteria. Ask the team member to write a review of their performance as well, and compare both.
    • Create an anonymous survey and ask each team member to assess the performance of each of their colleagues.
    • The best performance leads to a promotion in the hierarchy and a salary raise.
  • Quarterly (between the formal reviews), run informal reviews to discuss what’s nourishing them, what’s draining them and what they are looking forward to.
  • Schedule a 5-10 minute phone call with each team member for a weekly coaching conversation.