What Is Cost Per Hire? Everything You Must Know

The cost per hire measures the financial commitment required to motivate each new hire to start work. 

The cost per hire is the average salary of a new hire multiplied by the total number of hours dedicated to them. The cost per hire is used to compare the value of different jobs and compare pay rises.

It is calculated by dividing a new hire’s salary by the total work hours each week. This is the basis of the calculation and is equivalent to dividing total cash expenses by total working hours. 

The calculation at a given salary level is the same but includes all such expenses, including tax and other social security contributions.

The cost per hire is a simple and clear way to compare the costs of different jobs. The cost of a more attractive job is the amount paid in salaries plus bonuses, multiplied by the number of hours worked per week. 

This method compares different jobs at different salary levels to the number of working hours worked.

Cost Per Hire Definition 

The definition of “cost per hire” is basically what you might imagine. Cost per hire is the average sum paid to each new employee recruited into the organization. This includes the salary, bonus, recruitment cost, and other expenses. 

The cost per hire can be used as a performance indicator. Managers evaluate the success of their actions in terms of the number of new hires on the payroll. Managers will be able to determine the current staffing level in terms of cost per new hire. It also indicates how many hours a new employee will be working. 

The higher the cost per hire, the more attractive the job is for potential employees and the less attractive for current ones.

Ensuring that you include all prospective expenses while doing your computation is essential. 

Missing numbers can prevent you from taking advantage of the opportunity to improve in those areas, and you will wind up with an estimate of your cost per hire that is off.

What Are Recruiting Costs?

Recruiting costs are calculated by the average salary of a new hire multiplied by the total number of hours worked per week. The hiring process includes pay for wages and benefits, training, recruitment fees, and advertising. The number of hours depends on how long each position needs to be filled. 

If a job needs only for a few weeks, the number of hours may be much less than the figure used in calculating the cost per hire. The cost per hire can also be divided by the hours worked to give you an hourly cost. 

A recruitment specialist may charge a percentage along with their fee for finding and placing candidates on your payroll.

Breaking your costs into internal and external costs is a common strategy for approaching the estimation of recruiting costs. 

Understanding the difference between internal and external recruiting costs is important for overall best practices. 

Internal recruiting costs

Internal recruiting costs include the time spent by managers and employees on the recruitment process. It also includes any fees paid to temporary agencies or other recruiters. 

The internal cost per hire can be calculated as the total salary for internal recruiters multiplied by the total hours worked for them. 

This will give you internal recruitment costs, which is the total cost of recruiting a new hire internally. The staff who help with the recruitment process include human resources managers and internal recruiters. 

External recruiting costs 

These include all expenses outside the organization, like charges for advertising and any fees paid to a headhunter or employment agency during recruiting. 

The cost per hire can be found by calculating the salary for external recruiters, which is the total costs of external recruitment divided by the number of new hires. It is a combination of recruitment agencies and other recruiting processes like headhunters.

How To Calculate Cost Per Hire?

The cost per hire for a given position is the price of a new hire as best as possible, divided by the number of hours worked by an employee. It is used to compare the value of different jobs and to make comparisons with pay rises.

One way to calculate cost per hire is to divide total cash expenses by the total number of working hours. 

This includes salary, taxes, benefits, job training, and all other expenses. This calculation gives you the overall cost per hire. The actual figure you arrive at is often dependent on local conditions, such as the cost of living and tax rates.

The cost per hire can also be calculated as an hourly rate. This figure is useful for comparing different positions and different salary levels. It is calculated by dividing the total hours of work by a given salary level.

Steps For Calculating Cost Per Hire

1. Gather your cost data 

The cost data you want is your total annual salary and the total number of hours worked by the average employee. 

It is a measure of the cost per hire for a position. The cost data may include salary, benefits, bonuses, overtime, recruitment, and training costs.

You need to analyze the numbers for any distortion and remove them from your final estimate.

2. Identify your internal costs 

The internal costs are the savings that are achieved by operating your business with fewer employees. 

Expenses determine the internal cost per hire to support each employee, such as office space, insurance, health, and other costs associated with an individual employee.

3. Identify your external costs 

These include all of the expenses you pay for recruitment, including headhunters, employment agencies, and other outside resources. 

You can calculate this figure by dividing total recruiting agency fees plus fair job fees by the number of new hires or new jobs you create.

Recruiting agencies to charge a percentage of your salary for placing an employee on your payroll. 

4. Complete the calculation 

You should now have all of the data required to conduct your cost-per-hire calculation. All you need to do is add all of your expenses, divide the sum by new hires or total hours worked, and you will have the full cost per hire.

It is useful to keep a record of your calculations for future comparison.

Why Does Cost Per Hire Matter?

Cost per hire is an important metric used internally and externally. It allows you to analyze the efficiency of your current recruitment practices and use that data to improve your recruiting strategy in the future. 

The cost per hire can be used to make financial decisions regarding staffing. It can also be used as a benchmark for employee salaries, wage increases, bonuses, and more.

Cost per hire is also used in the industry to determine fair wages, legal compliance, rate of turnover, and job performance. It is used as a benchmark for job costing, compensation, and profit sharing.

The cost-per-hire tool is relevant both in the private and public sectors. It is useful when government organizations aim to create new jobs through different programs and when companies look to recruit the best candidates.

Cost per hire is also an important metric when used to determine the efficiency of employee performance. It allows you to analyze what types of positions your company is spending the most resources on. 

It allows you to compare your company with other similar organizations and their recruitment strategies. It provides insight into which professors are more effective teachers and thus justifies higher salaries or better benefits packages.

1. Budgeting for recruitment and HR

This tool is used to create a new budget for recruitment and HR functions. It is useful when companies are looking to cut costs or hire more employees.

Cost per hire helps calculate the number of hours needed to complete all the tasks for each position or hire. 

This is determined by hiring new employees, training them, developing their skills, and creating a proper work environment for each employee.

Cost per hire will help you identify what positions are more costly than others and which areas need more budgeting in the future.

It is critical that you ensure that your organization is able to provide competitive pay, benefits, and a good work environment for all employees.

2. Managing costs 

Cost per hire is especially useful because it allows you to calculate the point at which a position becomes too costly. It is an important tool for managing costs and hiring in your company.

It can also be used to calculate what employees are worth when they retire and move on to gauge their value compared to the cost of training a new employee. It allows you to calculate how much an employee contributes to the overall costs of your company.

This tool is also useful when managing human resources and employees who are in line for a promotion or pay raise. Cost per hire allows managers to see what employees are being paid relative to each other and benchmark their compensation levels.

It enables companies to make decisions regarding how much they are willing to pay for certain positions and whether they should cut back on expenses or develop new strategies for saving money in the future.

3. Examining the performance of recruiters 

Cost per hire is useful in comparing the effectiveness of different recruiters. It allows you to determine which will serve as a good benchmark when evaluating the performance of different recruiters.

This tool provides insight into the cost per hire for each position that is being recruited by different recruitment agencies. It can be used to compare the recruiting efforts of different companies, allowing managers to make comparisons between their own organization and those they are hiring from.

It allows managers to analyze how many hours it takes on average for them to find a candidate and how much they pay for each one hired. 

Managers can use this information to create a new budgeting strategy for future recruitment and hiring efforts. 

It is also a useful tool when looking to develop new strategies to compete in the recruitment and HR industry. It can be used to benchmark how much your company pays for each position and compare it with those of competing organizations.

This calculation is even more important when you are looking to hire the best and brightest employees without spending too little. 

It allows you to calculate the amount of money you could save hiring differently and determine what positions should be cut back on or eliminated altogether, saving you money in the process.

How Do You Use Cost Per Hire?

Cost per hire is used to analyze the performance of different HR and recruitment strategies and determine which ones produce the most qualified applicants. It can be used to compare the efficiency of your organization with those of competitors and benchmark your success.

Cost per hire is calculated by dividing the total cost incurred in a certain period by the number of hires or hours worked during that same period. 

It can be segmented by employee type, company division, or department to gauge performance against different benchmarks or competitors.

It is useful when looking to improve staff performance and minimize costs associated with employee turnover, hiring efforts, training programs, and background checks. Cost per hire allows you to adjust your strategy in these areas so that you are spending less money on each person hired.

1. Quantify your cost per hire 

By using this tool to track the time it takes to get a new hire up and running, you can calculate your total cost per hire. 

It can help determine what types of positions are the most time-consuming, which ones require more senior managers or recruiters, and which ones produce the best candidates.

It is useful in determining how long it will take to complete a particular task on average and when hiring new employees and developing their skills or experience. It is also useful when trying to recruit and retain the best candidates for these positions.

This tool provides insight into how much you are spending on each person hired during a certain period of time. 

This tool can help companies determine what the ideal cost per hire should be for each position and adjust their budgets accordingly. 

It also allows them to compare how much it costs to find and develop a new employee compared to what competitors are paying for the same position.

2. Benchmark against competitors 

Cost per hire is useful in determining which positions are the most costly to hire and manage and which ones should be cut back on or eliminated altogether.

 It allows you to evaluate the performance of your company and compare it with that of different competitors.

It can also be used to benchmark your effectiveness in recruiting against industry standards. This will allow you to identify areas for improvement in the recruitment department.

This calculation allows you to compare the cost per hire for different types of employees, such as new employees or existing ones who are being evaluated for promotion or pay increases.

3. Analyze the results 

It is useful in determining the cost of each employee hired against the cost per hire of other positions. It allows managers to compare the results of different recruitment efforts and compare them with those of their competitors.

It is useful in determining whether you have been successful in finding qualified candidates for your open positions. 

This information can also be used to determine the effect that the high costs of hiring have on overall results, such as how much revenue it generates for the company and how efficient it is at producing revenue from recruiting.

4. Research industry standards :

Cost per hire can be useful in determining the cost and efficiency of recruiting processes. It allows you to compare how much you are spending on each employee and with what results compared with other companies in your industry.

It is useful when trying to identify areas for improvement so that you can create new strategies for developing talent and attaining new customers. 

It can also be critical in guiding your core values system as well as creating a more efficient recruitment program.

Cost per hire is calculated by dividing total costs incurred by the number of hires or hours worked during a particular period of time. 

It is an important tool for evaluating performance in HR management, recruiting, and operations departments, allowing managers to compare their progress against industry standards.

Cost per hire formula 

To calculate the cost per hire and discover the formula follow these steps:

  • Determine your internal costs.
  • Determine your external costs.
  • Add them all up
  • Subtract this amount from the number of hires.
  • In conclusion, here is the cost-per-hire formula:
  • [Total internal costs] + [Total external costs] / [The number of hires]
  • Cost per hire – other metrics 

The cost-per-hire comparison is the most popular metric used to gauge HR management performance, but it is far from being the only one. Other metrics that are useful include:

1. Cost per hire comparable (CPHC) 

Cost per hire comparable is the average of costs per hire at other companies in the same industry. It allows you to benchmark your company against similar competitors and identify areas for improvement. 

It also allows you to identify how inefficient your recruitment process is and recommends ways to cut costs. It is useful when trying to recruit and retain the best people and is especially effective in assessing recruiting effectiveness at identifying top talent.

2. Recruiting Cost Rate / Recruiting Cost Ratio 

Cost per recruiting and sourcing cost is the average of the total amount spent on recruiting and sourcing costs in a particular time period, divided by the actual number of new employees obtained. 

This metric measures managerial efficiency and can be used to compare your performance with other similar companies. 

It can also be used to produce an average of different recruitment strategies, pay packages, and benefits offered by your company.

The following is a formula to determine your recruiting cost rate:

Your external costs + Your internal costs / The total compensation of new hires * 100

Why is the cost per hire an important metric to track?

The cost-per-hire metric is used to track the efficiency of recruitment and identify loss factors so that they can be minimized. 

It evaluates whether you are spending your resources wisely and helps you to identify areas for improvement and new strategies for reducing costs. 

This data can be used by managers to compare their performance with that of other companies in the industry. It provides valuable information on how much it costs to recruit talent, how much time it takes for a new candidate to get up and running at their new position, and determines if there are any unnecessary delays in the recruiting process.

Cost per hire is useful in determining how much it costs your competitors to acquire talent and the efficiency of their recruitment process. 

It can help you to determine ways to cut costs and streamline your own recruiting process. It provides valuable information on how much it costs you to recruit talent, how long it takes for a new candidate to get up and running at their new position, and whether there are any unnecessary delays in the recruiting process.

Cost per hire also allows you to benchmark your performance against that of similar companies, allowing you to compare how efficient your HR department is compared to others.

 It provides information on whether or not a company should continue using certain recruitment strategies and offers recommendations on improving its overall recruiting effectiveness.

Key Takeaways

  • Cost per Hire (CPH) is a metric used by HR professionals to measure the cost of filling a vacant position within an organization.
  • CPH is calculated by adding up all the costs associated with the recruitment process, including advertising, job boards, recruiter fees, and referral bonuses, and dividing it by the number of hires.
  • By calculating CPH, HR professionals can identify areas where they can reduce costs, such as using cheaper recruitment channels or reducing the number of interviews in the selection process.
  • CPH is an important metric for organizations because it helps them evaluate their recruitment strategy’s effectiveness and determine whether they are getting a good return on their investment.
  • CPH can vary depending on the level of the position being filled, the industry, and the location of the organization.
  • While reducing CPH is important, it should not be the sole focus of HR professionals. They should also aim to attract and retain the best talent by creating a positive candidate experience and offering competitive compensation and benefits.


Cost per hire should be part of an overall recruiting performance dashboard that allows you to monitor and compare your HR department’s performance regularly. 

It is useful for gauging the effectiveness of your training, recruitment, and HR processes. Cost per hire can also help companies determine which areas need improvement to boost productivity.

Knowledge of the cost per hire can be useful in determining the efficiency of your recruiting and HR processes. It helps you maximize your recruitment investment and improves how long it takes for new hires to get up and running at their new positions.

The cost per hire is a useful metric used to assess recruiting effectiveness. It helps managers to compare the quality of potential candidates that they have hired from different candidates and also allows them to determine areas of improvement in the recruitment process.


What is Cost Per Hire?

Cost Per Hire (CPH) is a recruitment metric used to calculate the total cost of filling an open job position, including advertising, recruitment agency fees, onboarding costs, and other expenses.

Why is Cost Per Hire important?

Understanding your Cost Per Hire can help you identify inefficiencies in your recruitment process and make informed decisions to optimise your hiring strategy.

It also helps you evaluate the effectiveness of different recruitment channels and allocate your recruitment budget more effectively.

How is Cost Per Hire calculated?

The formula for calculating Cost Per Hire is Total Cost of Hire / Number of Hires Made. This gives you an average cost per hire for a specific period of time.

What are some factors that can influence Cost Per Hire?

Some factors that can impact your Cost Per Hire include the level of the position being filled, the recruitment channels used, the job location, the duration of the hiring process, and the number of candidates considered.

What are some strategies to reduce Cost Per Hire?

Strategies to reduce Cost Per Hire can include using more cost-effective recruitment channels, streamlining the hiring process, optimizing job descriptions to attract the right candidates, and improving the candidate experience to reduce the likelihood of candidates dropping out of the hiring process.

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