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How To Identify The Right Candidate

As recruiters, our ultimate goal when shortlisting candidates is to select the best and most qualified applicant for the position. With a congested talent pool of suitable applicants aiming for the same position, how do you select the one that most suits the role?

Basically, it is about knowing the specific type of candidate you are looking for. Before proceeding to place a job ad, one should already have a mental picture of the type of candidate being searched for in terms of skills, experience and work culture.

What are those steps you can take as a recruiter in order to identify the perfect candidate?

Know Your Ideal Candidate

In order to identify the perfect candidate, it is essential you know who the ideal candidate is. To easily achieve this, define the ideal candidate’s persona in terms of their characteristics such as skills, motivation and preferences etc. Knowing the ideal candidate will help sift out candidates who do not match the “ideal candidate persona” to enable you find the right candidate faster.

Pay Attention To The Job Application Process

The way a candidate handles the job application process can distinguish him or her from other candidates. To identify the most suitable candidate, take note of how candidates apply for the position. Do they accompany their application with a cover letter? Do they follow up with a phone call or an email? Or do they just send in their application with no further interaction. A candidate who does not strive to be noticed by the employer is a candidate that does not go the extra mile and definitely not the best fit for the position.  

Involve Employees

Involving the current employees of the particular department you are recruiting for, is an effective way of getting the best candidate for the job. Current employees have a practical knowledge of the job and what it takes to function in that particular role. They would be better equipped to evaluate the most suitable candidate for the position.

Use Interview Questions To Differentiate Candidates

Another means of identifying the perfect candidate, is by asking applicants certain interview questions. Their response to these questions would aid your decision making process and will enable you to make an informed choice. You can ask such questions like: what motivates you to pursue and ultimately achieve outstanding results? How do you describe your long-term career aspirations? What do you expect from this company in your pursuit? Etc.

Utilize References

To know more about a particular candidate, take time to call the references provided by the candidate and ask them about the candidate’s previous work performance and what their general attitude is towards work. The information gotten from references will guide you in making the right choice.

When sourcing for the most suitable candidate for a position, always look beyond the resume to the individual and what value they can actually bring to the team.

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