How to Weed Out Unqualified Candidates During the Hiring Process

If you’ve hired the wrong person before, you know just how costly it can be to recruit, onboard, and train a new team member only to have them leave within the first few months and start the process all over again.

To spot the top performers and sort past the spam resumes, implement the following simple strategies into your recruitment process.

1. Establish Clarity on the Job Description 

As a hiring manager, if you’re not clear on who you need, how can you be confident in who you hire? Screening for specific skills, qualifications, and attributes may seem like an obvious strategy, but you’d be surprised at how many companies hire based primarily on likeability.

To eliminate bias and ensure you hire the right person for the job, you must start with a clear job description. Once you’ve identified the responsibilities and requirements of the role, the musts versus the wants, and your non-negotiables, you can start to gauge whether an applicant measures up. 

2. Read Between the Lines

You can tell a lot about a person from their resume and track record, but it’s important to note that not all candidates are 100% truthful about their skills and abilities. 

Here are a few things a resume can reveal about a candidate that might not be obvious at first glance:

  • Is the resume free from spelling and formatting mistakes, or chalked full of typos? Errors can be a sign of carelessness and poor attention to detail.
  • Did the candidate read through the job description and target their resume to the job, or are they mass emailing to every opening they can find? 
  • When you look at the applicant’s work experience, do you see someone who demonstrates long-term loyalty and stability or someone who hops around from job to job? 
  • Is the applicant progressing in their career, or have they been sitting stagnant? 
  • While reviewing the resume, think about the skills and achievements listed. Does the candidate identify volumes or quantity, or speak in terms of process improvement? Accomplishments are important, but you should also be looking for transferable skills. 

3. Dive Deep During Interviews  

An applicant’s resume should tell a clear story, and the story needs to be consistent during the interview process. To determine whether a candidate is exaggerating their skills and competencies, don’t take their first answer to interview questions as the only answer. How do they respond to follow-up questions? What happens when you challenge their responses? Can they adapt and carry the conversation as it evolves, or do they sound overly rehearsed and robotic?

4. Test for Soft Skills 

Screening candidates for soft skills is critical to hiring for fit within your unique team and culture. Unfortunately, these skills are the most difficult to assess in a candidate. Take the guesswork out by using an online personality assessment tool like DISC. DISC provides powerful insights into a candidate’s communication and work styles, strengths and weaknesses. Ultimately, helping you make a great hiring decision based on who is most suitable for the job, increasing job satisfaction and employee retention rates.

When it comes to filling vacant positions, our specialized recruiters are committed to hiring the right person the first time, but it doesn’t happen by fluke. Hiring the right candidate requires going beyond the resume, digging deeper into the skills and experiences the applicant claims to have and asking the right questions. You can count on us to drive your recruitment strategy forward. 

To learn about our customizable recruitment support, give us a call!

P: 403.264.2242 


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