The hiring process can be time-consuming and seemingly impossible at times. From search to hire, you will encounter an array of personalities that may or may not match with you or the job you are offering.

Unfortunately, if certain steps aren’t taken, you may find that the person you hired may not be as perfect for the job as you originally thought. To eliminate hiring errors, it is important to remain thorough and informed from the moment you post a job offer. Check out the 4 simple steps below that will help you hire a star employee fast and efficiently.

1.      Create an informative advertisement. It may be surprising, but one of the simplest of ways to attract competent offers is to create a job posting that reflects the type of interview you want. If you post a job advertisement that is vague and open-ended, you will receive resumes that may not fit with what you are attempting to attract. On the flipside, you also do not want an advertisement that is too lengthy and rambles on regarding unnecessary information that should be discussed during the interview. Think of your job posting as your business’s resume. It should not be too flashy, but also not too boring. The perfect job advertisement should provide a neat layout of concise information regarding the job duties, qualifications, compensation, and a very brief description of the company – all in approximately less than 500 words. Remember to be informative, not tedious.

2.      Read the resumes. This may seem like common sense, but many employers make the mistake of not thoroughly reading the resumes received. Instead, some judge the resume by its cover and allow preconceived opinions cloud the proper evaluation process. While it is good practice to remove resumes that are sloppy or full of errors, it is not good practice to remove resumes that seem “dull.” Every person has a vastly different personality; therefore, some may be better with content rather than graphic creativity. Do not eliminate offers with the thought of “which is the best resume?” Instead, think “which is the best resume for this job?” If hiring for a job specializing in graphic design and computer knowledge, the flashy resumes may be perfect. However, if hiring for a sales position, look beyond the resume formatting and read the content that suggests they have the appropriate behaviors and motivation.

3.      Utilize social media. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram  – rather than viewing these platforms as distraction services for your employees, begin viewing them as a tool for the hiring process. With a resume in hand, you are given all of the information you need to conduct an internet search to see what your potential employee is posting on social media. However, it is important to use caution and only use information that is valid. This can be tricky for most employers, and often leads to missing out on a great employee. For example, if a potential employee states on Facebook that they hate puppies, the information most likely has nothing to do with the task for which you are looking to hire. Unless the information directly relates to job performance, do not be bothered by personal preferences you find on social media.

4.      Skip the clichés and ask questions that matter. If you have ever conducted an interview, you have probably uttered phrases similar to: “Where do you see yourself in five years?” or “What type of fruit would you be and why?” or “Can you explain the internet to me as if I just woke up from a 30-year coma?” These questions are not only time-consuming, but also useless to your job search. If you are hiring someone to join your sales team, does it matter if they would rather identify as an apple or an orange? Speaking in riddles and judging one’s ability to explain a situation that will never happen on the job will only frustrate your potential employee – as well as drain away time that could be spent asking useful questions. Instead, be specific. Ask: “Do you see yourself sticking with this company long term?” Additionally, scenario questions can be great – so ask questions that apply to the job such as: “How would you handle an angry customer?” By saying exactly what you want to say, you will receive an answer that will help you in your employee search.

Hiring the right employee is one of the toughest decisions in the business world. Taking time to craft an informative advertisement, sift through resumes, read social media profiles, and creating unique interview questions may seem like a waste of time. Still, with just a small amount of effort on your part, you will be on your way to finding an employee that is a perfect fit for the job you need.