Employers are getting frustrated in the job search process. They find candidates who appear qualified on paper, but they then interview them or hire them only to discover they don’t have soft skills such as reliability, professionalism, integrity, or a professional style of dress.
Employers understand potential new hires need to learn these skills in addition to their traditional education so they have more opportunities in the job market, but the candidates don’t seem to understand this themselves. If you’ve been disappointed in your recent hires or pool of candidates, this guide will help you become more astute in assessing employee job readiness.
1. Advertise for Help Correctly
You may not realize it, but the way in which you advertise for help plays a significant role in the type of applicants you get. Make sure your job posts are specific and compelling enough to attract the most qualified, reliable applicants.
You also need to ensure you post your job on industry-specific job boards and general job boards to get a feel for which platform delivers the most qualified applicants. You also should participate in job fairs and industry events to meet candidates face-to-face and do your own screening process before the hiring process progresses.
2. Don’t Automatically Discount a Certain Age Group of Potential Hires
Whether you are aware of it or not, you may be discounting a certain age group of potential hires because of your previous experience with them. For example, you may count out millennials because they have a reputation for being lazy, entitled, self-absorbed, and unable to commit to one job for any length of time.
KPMG head of HR Bruce Pfau says, “Very few of the stereotypes hold up to factual scrutiny if we’re talking about what is attributable to a difference in terms of the date in which an individual was born. I think that there are clearly differences between younger workers and older employees… but these have been differences that have been true throughout the centuries.”
If you are looking for a way to have millennials prove themselves to you, consider hiring them on a part-time basis or putting your HR team in charge of creating a new onboarding process that involves assessing their soft skills and helping prepare them for the rigors of your workplace while hiring them on a temporary basis.
Other strategies for hiring millennials include hiring based on potential and assigning them a mentor who will help them learn the job before making a final decision about their employment. Or, you could hold informal professional development classes, rather than the traditional two or three-round interviews and give them a chance to learn about your company, the position, and your expectations before extending a job offer to them. The only way you will know if millennials are the right fit for you is to give them a fair shot.
3. Value Personality Over Experience
If you’re frustrated about potential hires’ lack of soft skills, change your interview questions and thought process when hiring new people. Professional skill sets are important, and they can be strengthened on the job; soft skills and personalities cannot be learned as easily.
Ask some unconventional interview questions to determine how the candidate’s personality aligns with the job tasks and your company culture. Look for interpersonal skills, communication skills, thought processes, and emotional intelligence instead of focusing on experience and GPA.
If you really want to know whether your final candidates’ soft skills and personality will fit your company, hire them to work paid internships. You’ll increase your company’s productivity and ensure you are recruiting the right people by setting up an intern program, and you’ll help potential hires know whether the job is right for them before they become a traditional employee.
Hiring the right person is frustrating, especially now that it seems so many potential candidates lack the soft skills needed to be a good fit for your company. If you want to make sure your potential hires are ready to work for you, advertise job openings correctly, don’t discount potential hires because of age, and hire based on personality after changing your interview and onboarding processes. Image via Pixabay by Maialisa