How to Identify the Best Candidates for Open Positions


These days, finding the right employee takes more than having the right credentials. Just because an employee is well-qualified does not necessarily mean that they will be a great fit for your business. Learning how to recognize top talent is a valuable skill that can save time and money. Here are some ways to identify the best candidates for an open position:

Figure Out What You Want

According to career giant, creating a set of “success factors” before you begin the interview process is a very effective strategy – these factors include specific habits, traits, skills or motivations that the ideal candidate will possess[1]. Creating this list ensures that management and human resources are in agreement on what they are looking for. During each interview, be sure to carefully listen to the candidate’s responses to see if they meet these criteria.

Enlist Help

Filling a position is easy, but filling it with the right person will take some time and dedication. If you do not have the time to invest in the hiring process, or are not sure where to begin, consider enlisting the help of a recruiting firm. They can help you find or pre-screen candidates in order to find the best possible pick.

Prescreen Candidates

Many candidates will look good on paper; prescreening the applicants allows you to weed out the ones that may not be good for the job. This can save time for both the company and the applicant. Telephone or video chat interviews can be time-efficient and cost-effective ways to do this. Be prepared with a short list of questions that will help you identify whether the applicant meets the basic requirements you are looking for. If that interview goes well, an in-person interview can be scheduled to further discuss their qualifications.

Provide a Company Description

Along with a job description, consider providing applicants with a brief introduction to your company. While many candidates will still conduct their own research, this gives businesses a chance to communicate their culture, vision and values. In addition to basic company information, be sure to include details about the work environment, company mission and what role the company seeks to play in the community.

Finding the right candidate is about much more than simply filling a position. You want to find someone that will fit in well with the culture and goals of your company. Follow these tips, and you will be well on your way to selecting the perfect candidate.


The Top Three Underrated Qualities That Recruiters Should Look for in Every Interview


When preparing for an interview, applicants are often taught to highlight the attributes they believe hiring managers are most impressed by. According to Chicago Now, the most coveted qualities in an applicant are flexibility, listening  skills, confidence, enthusiasm and the ability to work well in a team[1]. While these may be enviable attributes for potential employees, they are not all that matters. Discover the top three underrated attributes that hiring managers should be looking for at every interview.

The Ability to Work Independently

There is a big emphasis in almost every work environment to hire candidates who get along well with others, can work as part of a team and can be diplomatic with their colleagues. However, it may be equally important to look for someone who is able to work independently. Before a deadline or when a project requires individual attention, your company may need an employee who can buckle down and work alone for hours at a time without constant monitoring or reinforcement. According to Workopolis, “It comes in handy to have a highly skilled employee that can just take the reins and produce results without too much instruction or supervision.[2]

The Drive to Experiment – And Fail

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, has a number of interesting principles when it comes to creating an efficient and successful workplace. One of these keys, according to Bloomberg Business Week, is retaining an experimental attitude about everything. He says that Amazon, or any other company, should seek to “reduce the costs of experimentation so that thousands, not hundreds, of experiments take place.[3]” When seeking out new employees, an underrated quality to keep an eye out for is an experimental nature and the confidence to keep experimenting even when a few past ideas ultimately end up failing.

Inquisitive Nature

Hiring managers are often pleased with the candidate who shows up informed about the business and ready to answer all the tough questions. However, a better choice might end up being the candidate who asks serious questions about company growth, their place in the hierarchy and more. According to an article from the University of California, an interview should be a two-way street that involves both sides asking questions and learning more[4].

Some traits, such as a strong work ethic, enthusiasm and communication skills, are at the top of the list for hiring managers. By also including these underrated qualities, companies can benefit from having more diverse and well-rounded employees.





Key Factors That Can Change a Workplace Environment Forever


Managing a workplace environment is an extremely important function for leaders to undertake. The ability of a workforce to function together productively and in harmony is contingent upon several variables being in place. These key factors can make the difference between a well-functioning workplace and one that does not achieve its business objectives. The factors include a clear-cut chain of command that provides understandable objectives and expectations, the timely availability of necessary resources, and an environment that empowers employees and ensures equitable treatment.

One of the most important imperatives for a well-run workplace is having an understandable chain of command. Environments where there is confusion over areas of responsibility and reporting can easily become chaotic and devolve into ill-performing or non-productive business units. It’s the responsibility of the various levels in the chain of command to not only provide their employees with reasonable objectives but also to be a champion for their employees. An employee who has the support of their supervisors is far more likely to perform at or above expectations. This success also hinges on the quality of communication between various levels of management and frontline employees.

Another key factor that can change the tenor of a workplace is the availability of resources. The complexity of this factor ranges far beyond simple physical resources and includes having the necessary information to act upon, having adequate training to approach both day-to-day and sporadic situations, and having access to other employees or departments as necessary to complete objectives. Organizations that reexamine common and frequent work processes through evaluative and corrective measures, including applying Six Sigma or Lean methodologies, often find that the addition of previously unavailable resources can turn non-productive or even failing business environments around.

A final key factor that can ensure a permanent positive shift in a workplace is the empowerment of employees at all levels. While some work processes require impacted employees to take the same steps repetitively and without variance, there are often areas in which frontline input can not only improve the outcome but also raise employee morale through engagement at the same time. An engaged employee is an exceptional employee. By ensuring engagement opportunities, resource availability and a well-designed chain of command, a company can ensure that business objectives are consistently met while attracting and retaining high-level talent.

Keeping Employees on the Job for at Least 5 Years


According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employee Tenure Summary, the average new employee stays on their job for 4.6 years – that’s an increase from 4.2 years in 2010[i]. The trend is rising partially due to the high unemployment rate.

With that statistic in mind, how do you keep an employee on the job for five years? Forbes reports in their article, ″Job Hopping is the ‘New Normal’ for Millennials: Three Ways to Prevent a Human Resource Nightmare”, that employees who leave their jobs after one to two years are costly: losing an employee after a year means wasting precious time and resources on training & development[ii].The return on investment isn’t there, and you may be a victim of “job hopping.” If you want to keep a new employee on the job for five years or more, you’ve got to keep them happy. Here’s a few ways to do this:

First, employees should learn at least one new business skill yearly to make them more valuable to your company. Find out what they would like to do and try to help them attain that aspiration. Give them training or hands-on experience and let them learn something new.

Secondly, give them more responsibilities but don’t overwhelm them. A sense of responsibility may make them feel more valuable to your company.

Consider employees for lateral movement internally or promotions. Ask managers to take a look at their employees and move one or two internally each year. As employees learn new skills and responsibilities, they may feel excited, almost like they are starting a new job over again. This keeps them from becoming stagnant or feeling burned out.

Keep their training up-to-date. As new processes, systems or trends become available, show employees what’s new with appropriate training.

The bottom line is that today’s employees don’t feel as loyal to a company as their parents did. Businesses have drifted away from employees and are, therefore, not giving them the attention they need to feel committed to the company. By giving employees internal benefits to grow individually and with the company, you may find more employees staying rather than leaving.