The English phrase rule of thumb refers to a principle with broad application that is not intended to be strictly accurate or reliable for every situation. It refers to an easily learned and easily applied procedure or standard, based on practical experience rather than theory.
In HR and Recruiting we have a lot of these ‘rules’:
– Never give a reference check beside dates of employment.
– Employee files are confidential and should be guarded with your life.
– Don’t ask personal questions in an interview.
– If it’s important it should be written in a policy.
– Take every allegation of wrongdoing seriously and investigate.
– “It was a mutual decision for me to leave the job” means it wasn’t a mutual decision to leave the job.
– That which is measured gets done.
– Try not to ever set precedent.
– Everything falls apart around day 2 of your vacation.
– A candidate hasn’t really accepted the job until they actually show up to work on Day 1.
– If it’s on the ‘roadmap’ of your HR or Recruiting technology vendor, it means it’s not actually built and might never be built.
– The employee who is tattling on another employee is usually guilty of something.
– There are more than two sides to every employee harassment story.
– It’s not really an open enrollment meeting if there aren’t cookies in the conference room.
We love our rules in HR! It’s ironic that I love the profession so much because I’m a low rules kind of person. The reality is, in my couple decades of HR and recruiting work there really has only been one Rule of Thumb that has been the same at every organization I’ve worked in. Big and small. Public and private. Across all industries…
– Things change.
So, what is your favorite rule of thumb in HR and/or Recruiting?