Everyone understands that hiring new staff is a resource intensive endeavor – no news flash here. I read an article in Forbes late last year and I think about it almost every time I interview a candidate to become C2 talent or talk to a C2 client who needs to make a hire. I’ll include the link to the article below, AND add my 2¢ along the way.

The Forbes article referenced a study that quantified the cost to replace a bad hire at 21% of annual salary. In our business – advertising, marketing and design, where most jobs are specialized and require previous experience in the field, it can get even higher. At a minimum, a bad hire might cost 21% of an average salary of $50,000. That’s $10,500! That calculation is based on the resources allocated for:

  • Hiring: crafting the job description, posting it, screening, interviewing – think of ALL the hours spent by multiple members of the team.
  • Onboarding: training, managing, administrative and actual costs (desk, computer, taxes, insurance, etc.) of a new hire.
  • Day-to-day productivity costs: the toxicity of a mediocre or bad fit with colleagues and customers can lead to a loss in engagement, output, increased conflict or worse, the departure of good staff or clients.


How can you hire the RIGHT candidate? My easy, and most favorite answer, hire talent through C2. I have my reasons, and I’ll allude to them while giving you 3 tips to ensure your next hire is GREAT!  

Write a great job description – KEEP IT REAL.
Obviously, there’s value in transparency and asking for what you really need. I like to provide job descriptions for my clients that are as likely to deter candidates from applying as much as they entice. The clearer you are about the reality of the role, the more likely you’ll find someone for whom the role resonates. Do you want to spend time screening resumes from mice when you’re looking for a bulldog? Sure, you want to sell people on the role and the company, so definitely do that. Simultaneously, be clear about who you think will thrive in the role.

Also, consider including photos, videos or other content that convey the culture, style and expectations of the organization.

Figure out fit.
If you’re hiring a creative, you’ll have the chance to look at their work and resume before deciding to bring them in for an interview. When C2 interviews potential talent, we ensure they pass a software assessment – to guarantee our clients that our candidates have the skills needed to execute the job. We review their portfolio to see what kind of work they can do and at what level they execute. And when we finally sit down to interview them, we focus on their aspirations, character and accomplishments. We want to answer the questions:

How does this candidate show up at work?
Who are they as a teammate?
What do clients think of them?
Where and how do they deliver value?

Then we ask them to rewrite their resume to highlight their capacity, character and value, so C2 clients can quickly look at equally qualified candidates and determine, amongst them, who is the best fit. We push C2 talent to really articulate what they’re looking for, so mutual expectations are clear from the start. Doesn’t that sound nice?

Hire slowly, fire quickly.
Or maybe try before you buy? You can’t always give an incoming hire a test project – or can you? Depending on the urgency of your need, testing a candidate with a project can tell you a lot about how they behave under real deadlines and budgets. We encourage clients to either give finalists a project the agency has completed already to see where the new candidate lands in comparison (did they nail the brief, ask great questions or come up with an even better solution?), or provide a billable job to see how they perform in situ. Either way, it’s a much lower risk to test a candidate or have them temp to ensure they’re a great hire, BEFORE you commit to a full-time arrangement.

Fire quickly: do what it takes to protect your culture, valued staff and product by firing quickly. It takes strength to admit a bad hire and the team will appreciate any effort to rectify a bad situation. Move quickly, and call C2 to fill in the gaps while you’re interviewing, or even help you find a better hire

Direct hires from C2 never cost a percentage of salary; we offer a flat fee for direct hires and reduce that fee for temp-to-hire candidates based on the number of hours worked. C2 invests in your success, and it’s free to shop our candidates…take a look today! Call us at 414-431-0062 or make a request for talent here.