Selective Screening: How to Ensure You're Getting a Quality Candidate

How do you get a quality candidate? Selective screening

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Obtaining a quality candidate is truly priceless for your business. Hiring someone who is competent and adds to your team as a whole can increase productivity and morale. This is how you can increase your odds of landing the perfect candidate with your screening process.

1.  Skills Testing

One thing many employers have begun to do is launch skill-testing during the screening process. Skill-testing gives you a chance to see where their skill level lies in comparison to the rest of your team. It can also give you an idea of their strengths and weaknesses. Knowing these things prior to hiring a new employee can be crucial to the position's retention and overall success.

2.  Resume Review 

Traditionally, employers review resumes during the screening process. While this has not changed, many employers are now using automated systems to screen for keywords. If your business is doing this, it is still a good idea to review all of the resumes sent in. Not all candidates are informed about resume keyword optimization yet. Taking time to review them all may help your chances of landing the perfect candidate.

3.  Use a Tracking System

Create a system for tracking applicants. If you have decided not to move forward with one, note that and note the action taken. For instance, if you find someone is not a good fit, send an automated message to let them know, then push their resume to another pile. Staying organized will help you land the best candidates. 

4. Require a Cover Letter

Ask your applicants for a cover letter. Many employers do this to see if the potential candidate follows directions. However, it can be a good way to get to know the person as well. Cover letters typically give you a small bit of insight into their professional background and future ambitions.

5. Check References

Another good thing to do for selective screening purposes is to check references. Having others in the field give their stamp of approval can give you a little peace of mind. References can also give you more personal information about the candidate, their work ethic, and general demeanor. 

6. Be Open to a Trial Period

Many employers don't consider offering a trial period to get a feel for a new employee. This trial period can range from the length of a single project to the first quarter of their time with the company. At the end of this period, you can review the employee's performance and decide whether or not to keep them on. This gives you and your new employee a chance to get a feel for how they work within the company culture.

7.  Work with a Staffing Agency 

Working with a staffing agency can help you identify quality candidates. Not only do the professionals at the agency have access to individuals you may have not otherwise come across, but they also know their references and past experience. They can also identify what traits would be a good fit for your overall company culture, which helps increase retention. 


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