How To Avoid Losing Qualified Candidates
January 9, 2019

How To Avoid Losing Qualified Candidates

Alex Csedrik

According to ERE, top talent is off the job market in 10 days.

Yes, 10 days.

In early-career recruitment, however, the average time from job posting to interview is more than three weeks.

That’s a huge disparity, and it can significantly affect your company’s chances of hiring qualified candidates. But the delay affects more than just recruiting. It can also hurt your company’s productivity: Employees in the top 5 percent of a company’s workforce can produce 26 percent of that company’s total output, driving profitability and fueling innovation.

That makes hiring top talent the utmost priority, as these candidates can turn into superstar employees who usher companies to new heights. So, what can you do to ensure you’re not missing out on top talent? Here’s how to avoid losing qualified candidates.  

Write Clear Job Descriptions

qualified candidates

A clear job description lets a candidate know what they can expect from a job. First and foremost, it should explain what the daily and weekly tasks are. When you create your job description, you should be mindful of your word choices. According to Mediabistro, words such as “ninja,” “rockstar,” or “guru” may imply your company is a boys-club, which could, in turn, dissuade female candidates from applying.

Another trick is to include compensation in the job description. Forbes points out that in a tight labor market, this can be a big point of differentiation for companies looking to attract top talent. And, with only 10 percent of job listings including explicit salary information, there’s an opportunity for your company to stand out. Keep in mind, though, that your company’s comp plans need to be attractive to candidates. If your starting salaries are lower than other companies in your industry and location, candidates will look for work elsewhere.

You should also avoid falling into the cliché trap. As SmartRecruiters notes, talking about your “fast-paced environment” or “competitive compensation” is not going to win you many points. This is especially true among Gen Z and Millennials, 79 percent of whom say working at an innovative company is important to them. And you know what innovative companies do? They avoid clichés.

Focus On Accomplishments

Having years of experience as a job requirement is counter-intuitive to recruiting top talent. Why? Because what really matters are results. The secret is to instead focus on accomplishments. Remember that most early-career candidates lack experience, so you can use accomplishments as a way to attract enthusiastic and driven employees.

Besides, you can train qualified candidates in the hard skills necessary to perform the job. It’s much easier to train employees in Photoshop than it is to teach them emotional intelligence. Prior accomplishments—like founding a college club—are just as valuable as Microsoft Office proficiency for an early-career candidate. In fact, innovative companies including Tesla have abandoned resumes as the main criteria for qualified candidates.                

This applies to all levels of experience, too. Why? Because limiting the search to only years of experience removes wunderkind workers from the hiring process. The potential to be great, combined with tangible achievements, is very attractive to hiring managers. This demonstrates that candidates not only are driven, but also can accomplish their goals.

Showcase Your Company’s Values

qualified candidates

Companies lose qualified candidates because they don’t know how to sell themselves. A strong employer brand is a critical part of a recruitment plan. And to create a strong employer brand that’ll resonate with candidates, you need to think about your company culture, compensation/benefits, and your work environment.

There are several ways you can sell your employer brand.

For starters, social media is a cost-effective way to highlight a positive work environment. In 2018, 80 percent of businesses used social media as a recruiting tool. Your company can do this by posting pictures of events such as birthdays and team outings. It’s an organic—aka free!—way to show that your company cares about its employees and what the work environment is like. It also gives your customers a better understanding of your company. By highlighting some of the processes that go into your company’s work, you can demonstrate how you value creativity and collaboration.  

Your company website is another great tool for selling your employer brand. Apart from leveraging it to inform potential customers about your product(s), it’s a great way to highlight your company’s culture, values, and work environment. Your website can (and should) include videos and pictures that show off what it’s like to work for your company, as well as articles and other content that give an insider’s perspective.       

Make Sure You Have An Efficient Hiring Process

Successful companies are efficient. This applies to the hiring process as well.

So, how can you improve the efficiency of your company’s hiring process? One innovative solution is incorporating a hire-by date for qualified candidates. Essentially, it forces hiring managers to identify top talent quickly and act even quicker by assigning them a date in which a job offer needs to be made. If the date passes, that candidate is likely to be off the market.

Leveraging technology throughout the recruiting and interview process helps make this possible. No longer do companies have to spend countless hours and thousands of dollars visiting college career fairs across the country to recruit qualified candidates. In fact, only 53 percent of Gen Z attend career fairs as part of their job search.

Besides saving you money, going digital is far more efficient. Since talent acquisition professionals spend 13 hours per work week sourcing candidates for a single role, job listing platforms allow them to find top talent within seconds by setting parameters or specific qualifications that are necessary for candidates to be considered.

Also, using outside recruiting firms can expedite the hiring process. With each corporate job opening attracting 250 resumes, it’s a herculean task to sift through every application you receive, especially when you have limited resources. WayUp Source, Screen & Coach helps companies review resumes quickly and screen qualified candidates within 24 hours, saving hours of work each day and enabling recruiting teams to focus solely on top talent—so they can hire the best candidates before their competitors do. Using WayUp Source, Screen & Coach, companies like Nasdaq have even saved more than 100 hours of work per week throughout their recruitment process.  

Top talent is a company’s greatest resource. If you follow these steps on how to avoid losing qualified candidates, your company will benefit with better workers. And better workers leads to better work.

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