It’s all about data these days and your recruitment efforts should be no exception. Recruitment metrics are vital for tracking how successful your hiring has been and how well you’ve nurtured the talent onboard. As we’re now at the middle mark for the year, now is the perfect time to review your business and see just how your metrics stack up.

Below are our eight tips on what to measure and why:   

1. Make metrics a requirement

Agree upfront that you cannot improve anything unless you measure it. Metrics in recruiting becomes the key feedback tool for continuous improvement. Dollars and numbers are the language of business and recruiters are not exempt from using the language. For every major goal you set, develop a measure or metric. Create and maintain a company-wide recruiting scorecard because “whatever you measure, improves.”

2. Measure cost-per-hire

It’s important to build a business case for great recruiting by turning all of your measures into dollar impacts. Calculate the ROI and demonstrate that hiring top performers has a significant business impact over hiring an average person in the same job. Demonstrate that great hires are more productive than average hires and show the dollar difference between them. The language of business is dollars and numbers, so use these as your measuring units. Along with measuring cost per hire, measure the cost of a bad hire!

3. Measure quality-of-hire

The most important metric is the quality of hire, which means the relative success rate of new hires on the job. If you only measure one, measure the most important one: performance of hire.

4. Measure productivity

After the quality of hire, the most important indicator of great recruiting and retention is to improve workforce productivity.  It’s essential that managers monitor that in order to determine the real ROI of recruiting. Periodically measure your workforce productivity by comparing the ratio that is generated when you divide the number of employees into the firm’s total revenue. Try to improve that revenue-per-employee ratio through great hiring and retention. Develop actions that attract and retain top employees with the goal of maximizing overall company productivity.

5. Measure time-to-hire

Track the number of days, weeks, or months it takes from the start of the process to the time an offer is accepted. The best recruiters find new talent fast, but that is only half the equation. If your line managers are consistently unavailable for interviews or cause problems for the recruiters, then improvements must be made. Top performers want to feel wanted and will not tolerate unreasonable delays.

6. Measure “customer satisfaction”

Periodically survey a sample of applicants and new hires to see if they are satisfied with the recruiting process. Then examine your present recruitment process in order to identify areas where applicants can be given more say.

7. Rewards are also important

In addition to measuring success, it is important that you incent and reward your recruiters and managers for meeting their goals. Reward everyone who helps to recruit, develop and retain top talent! People do what is measured and they do it faster if it is also rewarded. If you care about something (performance of the hire) you need to measure and reward it, just as external headhunters will work harder because of their reward structure.

8. Other things to measure

Don’t forget to measure important things like diversity, new-hire retention rates and time-to-productivity. Also measure and track the most important things to your business, for example (a) the ability to fill mission-critical positions, and (b) the actual sources that yielded top performers and the greatest satisfaction for both the hiring team and the candidate.


This list is an excerpt from “Catch Them if You Can! How Any Manager Can Win the War for Talent in the Global Labor Shortage” by Dr John Sullivan and Greg Ford, M.Ed.

About Catch Them if You Can!

Catch Them if You Can! is a book about talent acquisition, written not just for recruiters or HR people but for everyday managers struggling to win the “Worldwide War for Talent.” Written in a story-based format, it is a quick, easy read about three managers who learn how to find employees during the massive labor shortage.

No matter what sector you’re in, no matter what size your organization is, you’ll gain a new appreciation and attitude toward recruitment. You’ll find practical applications that can be implemented easily, in any organization. You’ll get straightforward advice—backed by statistics—and a step-by-step recruitment plan that you can take away and apply immediately.

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