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5 Action Items to Find More Qualified Candidates

You don't just need candidates, you need qualified candidates! The talent shortage gives us pause for contemplation. Dr. John Sullivan, an HR Thought Leader, prolific writer, and speaker, published Next Year’s Headlines, Trends and Practices in November 2012. Let's consider his predictions and ways to attack them to improve the situation. Although the economy continues to be shaky, reality demands immediate action.

Plan ahead
“Volatility and workforce planning — as continuous business volatility becomes the “new normal,” data-driven workforce planning will become an absolute requirement. In addition, the increased use (approaching 40%) and the improved management of contingent workers will become essential to provide the needed agility and flexibility.”

Contract or “contingent” workers are an attractive alternative. The vendor may supply benefits, saving money for your company. Plus, you see the ethics and skills of the worker before deciding whether hire the individual full time.

Qualified candidates
“Referrals — will continue to produce the highest volume and highest quality of hires. The target percentage of all hires from referrals at top firms will reach 50%.”

As a recruiter my absolute best source of candidates was employee referrals. If you don't have a referral system, start one. If your referral system does not provide at least 25% of your hires, explore ways to improve it.

Know your value
“Candidate selling — the overall recruiting emphasis will continue to shift away from what is becoming relatively easy — the “finding” of candidates. Instead, there will be a shift toward the still difficult task of successfully “selling” top talent who are in high demand.”

Too many times I've seen hiring managers look at the resume for the first time as the candidate sits in front of him or her. I'm well aware that many hiring managers and team members prefer doing their regular responsibilities rather than recruiting. The hiring manager must devote adequate time for preparing the job requirements and the interview team. The hiring team needs to clearly know why anyone would want the job you have available.

Improve recruiting processes
“Remote work — the growth of technology and the willingness of managers to accept remote work options will dramatically expand recruiting for remote jobs. This shift will force recruiting to increase its capability to find and land a higher percentage of candidates from around the world.”

For example, the recruiter might have an Analyst opening for someone with supply chain experience in the beverage industry in Dallas. The recruiter finds the perfect candidate in Atlanta, who will not move, as his teenager is entering her senior year in high school. Arranging for one week in Dallas and three weeks telecommuting for a year would fill the opening immediately, rather than waiting to find someone in Dallas who might be less qualified.

“Recruiting at industry events — as the economy approves, industry events will return to popularity. And once again recruiting at these events will become an essential and effective tool for recruiting top and diverse talent.”

Career fairs are brutal for both recruiters and candidates. Recruiters sometimes have long lines of candidates, who may not be even vaguely qualified. Personalized events, such as conferences, webinars, or localized special events with industry leaders may help. A company career event “by invitation only” can provide immediate hires, if done correctly. Innovative team efforts may yield unexpected results.

You will hear more suggestions from the experts on Tuesday, April 30, in the webinar Averting the Supply Chain Talent Crisis. Please register to hear about more ways to address this hot topic.

57 comments on “5 Action Items to Find More Qualified Candidates

  1. HM
    April 27, 2013

    one can make use of skype and other video chats to interview when you are hiring globally. its always good to have a video interview. yes hiring managers must spend time reviewing the resume, the candidate and upcoming oppurtunities. its good to know cultures, it helps a lot.

  2. Ruth Glover
    April 27, 2013

    All good ideas. 

    If you have never done a video interview, I'd suggest you practice beforehand.  You need to know where the camera is and get feedback from the opposite side.  I interviewed a candidate who kept looking down rather than into the camera for a preliminary interview, which was quite distracting. It must have helped.  She got the job!

  3. Susan Fourtané
    April 27, 2013

    Ruth, 

    I'm glad you mentioned she got the job after the video interview, despite she kept looking to a different direction from where the camera was.

    Do you think it's possible to read body language during a video interview in the same way you can read body language in an interview in person? 

    -Susan

  4. Ruth Glover
    April 27, 2013

    Good question. I don't think video interviews provide as much as an in person interview but with our global companies, it certainly helps.  Let's say the VP is in DC, the Director in Atlanta, but the candidate is in Nashville.  All need to interact. Time and money can be saved with a video interview, rather than waiting until everyone is in Atlanta.  Getting the team together for an on site interview can take “forever.” Arranging the video interview can certainly expedite the hiring.   I think video will continue to grow as an excellent resource for hiring.  

    What do you think?

  5. Houngbo_Hospice
    April 27, 2013

    @SF,

    “Do you think it's possible to read body language during a video interview in the same way you can read body language in an interview in person? “

    I think it depends on what is shown in the video. If the full body of the intervewees can be seen in the video it might be possible to read their body language, but it may not be as accurate as in a face-to-face conversation.

  6. Houngbo_Hospice
    April 27, 2013

    @Ruth,

    If you have never done a video interview, I'd suggest you practice beforehand.

    That's a very good advice. Eye contact is critical in video interview as it is in an in-person interview. One advice is to look at the camera, not the screen.

  7. prabhakar_deosthali
    April 28, 2013

    One of the advantages of a video interview , in my opinion, is that everybody is at ease . Both the candidate and the interviewer are sitting in their own familiar ground. There is no wrong side of the table and the right side of the table.

    So the interview happens in a more relaxed manner and the candidate is likely to open up better and express in a more natural manner than a face-to-face interview.

  8. syedzunair
    April 28, 2013

    SF:

    I would say that it is possible to read boby language in an online interview. Many of my friends have got jobs abroad and were interviewed on Skype. I am sure the interviewer must have gauged their potential from their body language. 

  9. syedzunair
    April 28, 2013

    Hospice_Houngbo:

    I have never experienced an interview with a full body picture on camera. Usually, it is only the facial expressions that are being monitored or any hand gestures that come during the conversation. 

    Facial expressions are able to convey a lot about the candidate and their state of mind in an interview. 

  10. syedzunair
    April 28, 2013

    That is one way of looking at it, Prabhakar. I think otherwise. In an interview it doesn't really matter if you are in the bedroom of your house or in an office. What gets to you is the pressure of the job and the application. If a candidate is able to get rid of it in the confines of the house they must be able to do the same in the office. I don't really see a difference. 

  11. Susan Fourtané
    April 28, 2013

    Ruth, 

    Yes, there is no doubt that video interviews are a great help when hiring people from around the globe. It's just one more step in globalized companies, which are incresing as we speak. I believe video interviews are much better than the old phone interviews. 

    The question about body language arose to me when I read that the person you were interviewing was looking down all or most of the time. I was wondering if she was shy, if she didn't have too much experience in video conferencing, or if she was just focused on looking at the interviewer, who most likely was in a smaller screen down on her computer. 

    So, I believe your advice about practising video interviews with someone else, and getting feedback from the other side is great. 🙂

    -Susan 

  12. Ruth Glover
    April 28, 2013

    The comments on video interviewing are thoughtful.  I think you need to be cognizant of the background on a video interview or online meeting.  You need to be professional.  Lock up the dog.  Send the kids outside or to a neighbor's house. Remove the messy bulletin board behind you to maximize your opportunity for excellent results.  

     

    I haven't read any statistics on the first five minutes of video interviewing making a huge difference, but I know it does in face to face interviewing.  That's why it is recommended that the interviewer wait at least 30 minutes into a conversation before making a decision on whether to move forward with a hiring process.  And that's why I tell candidates that appearance, including confidence, needs attention.

  13. Susan Fourtané
    April 28, 2013

    HH, 

    “If the full body of the intervewees can be seen in the video it might be possible to read their body language, but it may not be as accurate as in a face-to-face conversation.”

    The applicant should sit far away from the screen in order to have a full body picture. 😀

    However, body language reading includes face expressions, hand movement, eye contact, variations in the voice, etc. 

    -Susan

  14. Susan Fourtané
    April 28, 2013

    Prabhakar, 

     “Both the candidate and the interviewer are sitting in their own familiar ground. There is no wrong side of the table and the right side of the table.”

    That is an important observation. The easiness and confidence that you get being in your own territory is a good advantage on video interviews.  The waiting before the interview is also eliminated.

    I would like to see some stats –if there are any– about the success in hiring through video interviewing in comparison to person-to-person interviewing.

    -Susan

  15. Susan Fourtané
    April 28, 2013

    Syed, 

    Yes. I believe there are many consideration taken about video interviews that are quite different from those about a traditional interview.

    It's also a matter of adaptation to new interviewing skills that have to developed as new interviewing tools are being used in the process. 

    -Susan

  16. itguyphil
    April 28, 2013

    Video interviews are more difficult from the interviewers perspective. You can be more direct and ask more questions, but you lose the elements of reading body language. Which is very important when it comes to in job experiences.

  17. Taimoor Zubar
    April 28, 2013

    @pocharlie: My experience with video interviews has been not so good. While interviewing a candidate I like to walk around with them and have a casual conversation in an informal setting like a balcony. With video interviews this is not possible.

  18. Taimoor Zubar
    April 28, 2013

    @Rich: LOL! While what you mentioned might be a great exaggeration, in reality, I have seen HR practices which are as flawed as this. Especially when it comes to scanning resumes, companies have the most ridiculous ways one can imagine.

  19. Eldredge
    April 28, 2013

    @ Rich – Thee MUST be an ap for that!

  20. HM
    April 29, 2013

    video interviewing especially with good bandwidth and clarity works really well when you are hiring globally. but yes candidates have to be used to video interviewing or atleast do demo before hand. have seen cases where candidates video works well but the micronphone was not adjusted properly and its difficult to get the next schedule.

  21. HM
    April 29, 2013

    video interviewing especially with good bandwidth and clarity works really well when you are hiring globally. but yes candidates have to be used to video interviewing or atleast do demo before hand. have seen cases where candidates video works well but the micronphone was not adjusted properly and its difficult to get the next schedule.

  22. Eldredge
    April 29, 2013

    Career fairs are brutal for both recruiters and candidates. Recruiters sometimes have long lines of candidates, who may not be even vaguely qualified.

    The long lines are often the fault of the career fair. Often, candidates don't find out what positions are available until they reach the front of the line. There muast be better ways to organize these events for both recruiters and candidates.

  23. hash.era
    April 29, 2013

    Im not sure how effective video interviewing will work since its easier to cheat and the real eye to eye co-ordination while interviewing cannot be gained by that.

  24. Houngbo_Hospice
    April 29, 2013

    @syed,

    “Facial expressions are able to convey a lot about the candidate and their state of mind in an interview.”

    Agreed! Facial expressions might just be fine in a video interview, but not everything  bout the candidate`s body language can be detected, though. But that may not be necessary in most cases.

  25. Ruth Glover
    April 29, 2013

    If you haven't yet registered for the webinar tomorrow, please do immediately.  The registration is on the right side.  I'm eager to hear what the experts say about upcoming trends.

  26. Mr. Roques
    April 29, 2013

    Invitation – only events have proven to be a good way to meet strong candidates. Career fairs might be a first filter, and a dinner cocktail after that fair, with more specialized HR recruiting.

  27. itguyphil
    April 29, 2013

    Especially when they're being recorded for quality control and training purposes.

  28. FLYINGSCOT
    April 30, 2013

    Thasnk for the post.  I will try to use these points next time I am looking for someone.

  29. Susan Fourtané
    April 30, 2013

    hash.era, 

    How do you cheat in an interview? And why? :/

    -Susan

  30. Daniel
    May 1, 2013

    “Facial expressions are able to convey a lot about the candidate and their state of mind in an interview.””

    Syed, I agree to you up to an extent. But a person with good facial expression and technically null, won't be fit for any job. Moreover, such expressions won't be possible through telephonic interview.

  31. syedzunair
    May 6, 2013

    Ruth: 

    A lot of good points there. Professionalism definitely matters the most. One cannot step into an interview and run home errands at the same time. An interview be in person or on the internet requires undiverted attention. 

    Personal appearance and confidence helps in securing a job and I can relate to it from experience. 

  32. syedzunair
    May 6, 2013

    Susan: 

    They must be because an online interview only gives a person limited options as compared to a physical one. Nevertheless, the idea is great and helps especially in the case of global recruitment where physical presence might not be possible. 

  33. Anand
    May 6, 2013

    You can be more direct and ask more questions, but you lose the elements of reading body language.

    @pocharle, I totally agree with you. Its very difficult to read the body language when interview is conducted through videos. I think that is the reason video interviews are not very popular. Even if the video interview is conducted it is conducted in first round just to screenout the candidates. Face to face interview is again conducted later.

  34. syedzunair
    May 6, 2013

    Hospice_Houngbo: 

    I agree. Video based interviews will not tell you completely about the body language of the candidate. Though it is much suitable in cases where the interviwer & interviewee are in different places and they cannot come in physical contact. 

  35. itguyphil
    May 17, 2013

    Yes. It is also cheaper and more time effective in the first few stages.

  36. Susan Fourtané
    May 23, 2013

    Syed, 

    “Nevertheless, the idea is great and helps especially in the case of global recruitment where physical presence might not be possible.”

    Yes, in helps a great deal in global recruitment. A friend of mine had an interview in Glasgow, Scotland a week ago. He lives in Cambridge, England.

    I found it strange that they opted for a physical interview rather than a virtual one. Maybe some employeers still prefer to have the person in front of them. It was a panel of four people interviewing him.

    -Susan

  37. hash.era
    May 23, 2013

    @Susan: I have seen many who can talk well and impress others with their talking will get the jobs easily, but in reality they cannot work when they are been put into their jobs. So isn't that cheating?   

  38. Susan Fourtané
    May 24, 2013

    hash.era, 

    “I have seen many who can talk well and impress others with their talking will get the jobs easily, but in reality they cannot work when they are been put into their jobs. So isn't that cheating? “

    That's an interesting question. It made me think. Thanks. 

    I thnk it depends on several things. Some people are more charismatic than others, and in general they are manipulators. It depends on the personality. People with a Narcissistic personality impress others with their talk easily. Some are conscious about this; some others are not. Can you cheat if you don't know you are cheating?

    What is considered cheating in a job interview? That's the question we first have to answer. 

    Also, the ones conducting the interview should be trained in distinguishing when someone is being sincere, when he is exaggerating, shen he is pretending, and so on, shouldn't he? 

    I think here is when the individual factors of the interview should be considered rather than the general ones. 

    -Susan

  39. hash.era
    May 25, 2013

    @Susan: True but don't you think the impression you give during an interview makes a bigger impact in selecting that person for the next round ? 

  40. syedzunair
    May 26, 2013

    Susan: 

    That is odd. Most people that I now who live in different cities usually are called in for online interviews. Probably, it is more feasible in my line of work, i.e. telecom and IS consulting. 

  41. Susan Fourtané
    May 26, 2013

    pocharle, 

    Cheaper and more time effective for the company, not for the applicant, you mean. Why would a company would ask someone to travel to another country/city for an interview then?

    -Susan

  42. Susan Fourtané
    May 26, 2013

    hash.era, 

    Certainly, first impressions count. But back to your question about if it is lying when the applicant has a dispaly of charismatic personality, but later on he is got good at the job, I don't think we can consider that as lying in the interview.

    If someone can trick someone else with his personality in order to get something he wants, then it's manipulation. 

    -Susan

  43. Susan Fourtané
    May 26, 2013

    Syed, 

    Yes, that's what I thought, too. 

    Well, his line of work is BI and Analytics, and some other IT stuff. You would assume that a tech company would have chosen to use a tech tool available, instead of the traditional one, right?

    Then we can combine this with what I am discussing down below with hesh.era about how personality may or may not influence in an interview.  

    -Susan 

  44. itguyphil
    May 26, 2013

    Well I hope that would only happen if they're a serious candidate.

  45. hash.era
    May 27, 2013

    @Susan: Do you think a person who can market himself so well always has the capability to do as promised ?  

  46. Susan Fourtané
    May 27, 2013

    pocharle, 

    What do you mean? :/

    -Susan

  47. Susan Fourtané
    May 27, 2013

    hash.era

    No, not always. There is no magic formula.

    -Susan

  48. itguyphil
    May 28, 2013

    I mean that I hope a company wouldn't make a candidate travel if they weren't a leading candidate in the process, unless they're going to reimburse them otherwise.

  49. Susan Fourtané
    May 28, 2013

    pocharle, 

    I see. Well, he didn't get the job, which was quite frustrating considering the circumstances, and the expectation. It's not Okay to make people travel from another country for an interview making them waste time and money for nothing. 

    -Susan 

  50. itguyphil
    May 29, 2013

    Agree 100%. Knowing that and moving forward with that decision is blatantly disrespectful.

  51. hash.era
    June 30, 2013

    @Susan: Ok but I guess it would have been better if we had one. Just to control things 

  52. Susan Fourtané
    June 30, 2013

    pocharle, 

    Yes, it is. Now he got a job in London, doing his business intelligence thing. 

    -Susan

  53. Susan Fourtané
    June 30, 2013

    hash.era, 

    LOL, yes, indeed! 😀 It would be very nice. 

    -Susan

  54. itguyphil
    June 30, 2013

    I guess that's a good thing…

  55. Susan Fourtané
    July 1, 2013

    pocharle, 

    Indeed, that's a good thing. However, I am still clueless why the company in Glasgow asked him to travel all the way there instead of having a video interview. :/ It's so illogical coming from a tech company. 

    -Susan

  56. errricwillson
    September 12, 2013

    First three interviews of mine are really hiarious i answer the question with full of mine confidence but after some time i came to know its quiet diffcult to train like a psychiatrist.Tips you shared are completely helps candidate to get a job. Either its a job of psychiatry, or job of a engineering these are neccesry thing every one have to follow. Nice post . 

  57. itseliza
    May 12, 2017

    it has been great work done by you thanks..

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