Recruiting the Perfect Employee
Recruiting the Perfect Employee

The Perfect Candidate

Published September 06, 2019

Categories: Thought Leadership, Employees

Recruiting the Perfect Employee

What does the perfect candidate look like to you?

Is it someone with 5+ years of experience in a certain industry, 3+ years of experience using a certain platform or tool and a degree in a certain subject?

NEWSFLASH! - There is no "perfect" candidate.

Many recruiters look for job candidates who have experience aligning with the role they want to fill. But a review of 81 studies shows that past experience actually doesn't translate into better performance.

In a study from Florida State University, there was no significant correlation found between an employee’s prior work experience and the performance at a new organization, even when there were strong similarities between the job roles.

So, why continue to make experience the first thing that your company looks for when that experience doesn’t predict a new hire’s success?

This is not the labor force of 2010 that inundated HR inboxes with resumes and every applicant was bubbling over with years of experience. Yet, there are still many qualified individuals job searching, you just have to know where and how to look. If you are reposting the same jobs over and over and your positions are remaining vacant for months, you may not be fishing correctly, and you need to look at:

  • Where you’re fishing – if the talent isn’t in the current pool, try looking outside your standard process to find your audience
  • Your bait – is your offer tempting?
  • The equipment – make sure the description matches what is needed, is clear and test to make sure all the links are working
  • The reflection in the water – sometimes a self-assessment needs to happen to uncover the deeper issues

The good news is, this can be a great opportunity for recruiters and organizations. Despite the fact that it’s a job seekers market, and unemployment is hovering around 3.7%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is a great time to make diamonds when you can’t find them.

In any market, employers need to be able to attract, engage and retain top talent. With a smaller talent pool, the attracting portion may feel like an uphill climb.

In today’s talent landscape, it takes much more than ping-pong tables, snack trays and free soda fridges to keep employees satisfied. Great communications and robust engagement strategies are crucial to be a top employer – and so is job education and training.

Sometimes the best employees are created, not cultivated. Your organization has the potential to win on multiple levels with a strong educational program for new and current employees:

  • Make your own diamonds – Since experience does not predict success, use this opportune time to create an education and training program that will develop the skills your organization desires.
  • Find hidden talent from within – There may not be a need to look externally for some positions, the talent may be right within your walls with some extra education.
  • Customize the skillsets – It’s your program, you can educate employees on exactly what they need to know, how to perform tasks and use this training to unteach any prior bad habits that were developed with previous employers.
  • Develop brand ambassadors - Give employees the skills they need to be an effective marketing tool and ambassador for your employer brand to help increase brand awareness and sales. Loyalty is no longer only about keeping an employee working under your roof forever, but it’s about corporate respect, while they are there and after they leave.
So, instead of searching for months for the “perfect” candidate, think about how you can develop the best qualities and attitude into an employee that thrives and continues to grow into a loyal brand ambassador. Employees want growth, training and job development; therefore, a strong training and development program will not only expand your applicant pool, but help you retain your current employees. It can also improve your organization’s overall direction by increasing employee retention and maximizing worker output.