How to Weed Out Candidates That Won’t Fit Into Your Team

Hiring is a challenge for businesses today. What are some things you can do to weed out candidates that won’t fit your team?

This is a guest post by Ashley Wilson. She is working remotely as a content creator, writing mostly about business and tech. She has been known to reference movies in casual conversation and enjoys baking homemade treats for her husband and their two felines, Lady and Gaga. You can get in touch with Ashley via Twitter.

One of the biggest concerns of a company is bringing the wrong personnel onboard. Worryingly, many HR executives still suffer from this problem.

Job scopes are becoming complex, making it harder for companies to hire the right people.

Businesses in the past only had to rely on a piece of paper to determine candidates but the landscape now is not as straightforward as it was before.

Ensuring the candidate can fit in the office culture, determining whether they have the right mix of talent and hard work, and browsing through online portfolios are just a few things (out of a big list) employers need to look out for today.

67% of respondents in Monster’s State of Recruiting survey say recruiting talent is harder than it ever was, while a similar study by Jobvite shows that 74% of businesses believe hiring will a lot more competitive in 2019.

These stats prove it’s more likely for you to hire the wrong person for your organization.

But, it’s not entirely out of your control.

There are some things your organization can do to weed out incompatible candidates thus making it easier to hire the right employees.

The #1 Reason Why Companies Fail to Hire

Not adapting to company culture is the biggest reason why employees fail to succeed in your organization.

The candidate may be a 10 out of 10 on paper but hard skills are not good indicators of employee fit—a mistake that even major organizations fail to address consistently.

Yes, the candidate has to tick all the boxes but what’s more important is if he or she can work with your organization’s vision, goals, and office culture.

What’s the use of bringing onboard a stellar candidate if the employee cannot cope with your organization’s style of working?

There are several instances in the workplace where skills don’t matter—this is one such situation.

An average employee will perform significantly better than a team member with years of leading experience that is unable to deal with the company culture.

Hiring the wrong people can affect your organization’s workflow as team members cannot work with each other well.

This negatively impacts relationships which creates an unpleasant company culture and potentially some costly mistakes, which is not what you want in a high-performing organization.

You can, however, overcome this problem by identifying if a candidate is a right fit for your organization with these tips.

Leverage the Benefits of Scorecards

Scorecards remain popular today and for several good reasons.

Not only is it a great tool for planning and executing strategic business frameworks, but scorecards can also be used to help you identify potential candidates.

With scorecards, you give candidates and your organization a clear idea of the ability of potential hires and how they can contribute to the company.

Without it, you’ll be relying heavily on gut instinct which is irrelevant in determining the performance of an employee.

The goal of your scorecard is to assess if the potential employee is able to meet what is expected of the role.

This is broken down into three components: the mission, outcomes, and competencies.

  • The job mission is straightforward—what is the role of the job?
    If you’re looking for a sales manager, a good mission would be something like “managing the sales team to meet monthly quotas”.
    You know you’ve described the mission well if the candidate doesn’t have to ask you to what their job scope is.
  • Outcomes are events that must be accomplished by the candidate.
    Going back to the sales manager example, an example outcome would be to hit the sales quota for 6 months straight.
    A good rule of thumb is to have 3-7 outcomes, depending on the role.
  • Finally, determine the behavioural and cultural fit by expressing how the candidate is expected to perform.
    The competencies vary between organizations but in general, a good employee will possess the following abilities: “Efficiency, Integrity, Planning, Follow through, Analytical skills, attention to detail, Persistence, Proactivity, Flexibility, Creativity, Enthusiasm, Listening, Communication, Persuasion” 

Conduct Multiple, Phased Interviews

A mistake many organizations do is to schedule one or two interviews at most to hire candidates.

Having more interviews allows you to screen the potential hire in detail which in turn, detects behaviour you may have missed by only working off a single interview.

Your organization should hold 4 to 5 interviews to be successful in hiring strong (and compatible) candidates.

Scorecards must also be used as a guide to help you make decisions across every phase.

These interviews are broken down into:

 

The Screening Interview

You should ask candidates about their career goals and their biggest strengths.

This interview also dives into their weaknesses and tasks they’re not interested in doing professionally.

Finally, ask candidates to rate their performance in previous companies from a scale of 1-10, with 10 denoting the best performance.

The candidate’s answers should then be reflected along with your organization’s scorecard to determine if they’re qualified to move on to the next phase.

 

The Top Grading Interview

This phase works to discuss the applicant’s previous job experiences.

The 5 questions you want to ask in every top grading interview include:

  • What were you hired to do?
  • What accomplishments are you most proud of?
  • What were some of the low points during your job?
  • Who were the people you worked with?
  • Why did you leave your job?

Again, compare the candidate’s answers to your scorecard.

For example, if your organization is looking for compassionate employees, candidates who can elaborate on their previous colleagues and are honest about their failures are good choices.

 

The Focused Interview

Remember the competencies listed down in your scoreboard?

This is the phase where you go in deep about their achievements and insights learned regarding a particular competency.

You can ask the candidate about their biggest accomplishments that portrayed their creativity and enthusiasm, for example.

Follow up this question by asking them what experiences have improved them as a professional in that area of competency e.g. “what experiences have made you more creative?”

 

The Reference Interview

Finally, get in touch with the candidate’s references and ask for his or her previous performance and what the applicant was like attitude-wise.

You don’t have to conduct formal meetings for this step; a phone call works just as well.

Leverage Technology to Make Selecting the Right Candidates Easier

Technology is a boon to various industries—including the HR field.

Today’s biggest companies are using tech to simplify the hiring process and help organizations identify top talents.

AI, in particular, is helping HR people to screen candidates quicker and more effectively than ever before, saving organizations a significant amount of time and money without affecting their quality of hire.

Adaface – Automate first-round code interviews and get back important engineering time.

If your company is spending a lot of resources on recruiting, it may be time to invest in tech to make the hiring process more efficient.

There are still flaws with AI in recruitment as it’s still relatively new to the field. But, it’s only a matter of time before the tech changes the hiring landscape for the better—both for candidates and organizations.

Your Organization Can Start Hiring Better Today

Hiring the right talent is a mix of bringing in candidates who fit the company culture, conducting multi-phase interviews, and utilizing technology.

With these tips, your organization will hire better which is always a good thing.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.