Some really good points in this, however trying to decide which way is best isn't a 'one size fits all' approach. 

I think often people get caught up in the "red tape" instead of trying to interpret them and apply your own skills, knowledge and gut feeling... one should not be in place of the other.

Policies, frameworks and procedures are put in place, in the main, for the best interest of the company, however it doesn't mean you can't apply some common sense and instinct to this.

Usually the most successful hires, are those that satisfy both the line manager and the company standards, the skill lies within the strategy for recruiting...pretty sure there aren't many places that have the "This is not up for discussion" caveat!

Guidelines are just that... they are there for guidance!

Whilst I appreciate, there must be company 'standards' this shouldn't get in the way of extracting talent to join our organisations.

Final point and a nod to Zoltan "see for the extraordinary" " the one who realises potential"