Despite there being a relatively high unemployment rate, many requisitions are still going unfilled. Undoubtedly, the main reason given to upper management is something along the lines of “not enough qualified candidates.” In this article I am going to highlight four common recruitment practices that are severely limiting your qualified candidate pool. Or to put it bluntly, four common recruiting fails.
Long Stint of Unemployment? No Job for You!
Let’s face it, it’s not 1967 anymore. The unemployment rate is high and people are no longer spending 30 years at the same company. In fact, it has been quite the opposite as job hopping is the “New Normal”, according to Forbes. In 2010 we saw the highest unemployment rate since the Great Depression.
Just because someone has been unemployed for an extended period of time does not make them any less qualified for the job. Don’t assume the gap is due to laziness; you have no idea what their circumstances are. Put the preconceived notions aside and let their previous work experience do the talking.
High-Skill Positions at Entry-Level Wages
Candidates turning down high-skill, hard-to-fill positions due to wage rate is not a qualification problem, it’s an affordability issue. You need to be flexible with the wages you offer for these positions. Take note of your competitors and see how long similar positions go unfilled. Usually there is a reason they are paying people in those roles more, and it’s not because they can afford to.
Job Descriptions that Misrepresent the Actual Position
The job description is one of the most important and influential pieces of your recruitment strategy, and often gets overlooked. Your job descriptions need to be interesting enough to draw candidates in and keep them reading. Show job seekers that what you are saying is useful and relevant to them.
While being creative in the wording of your postings is definitely encouraged, do not misrepresent what the position has to offer. Do not leave off core job functions because you think it will scare top talent away. Be open and honest because nothing will cause a candidate to walk away from a job offer, and bad mouth your company, quicker than a feeling of deceit. Not disclosing that the position requires cold calling while hopping up and down on one foot on a balance beam that is suspended three feet above a tank of sharks will surely cause a candidate to feel mistreated.
Limiting Your Candidate Pool by Job Title
CareerBuilder did a fairly large study and found that 55% of all hiring managers, from the over 2,000 organizations surveyed, only hired people who held the same title as the open vacancy.
My official title is “Talent Engagement Strategist.” What does that really mean? I do a little bit of everything – I do some recruiting (apply now!), I get to play around on social media for part of the day (Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn), I devise strategies to engage with my fellow co-workers. If you are reading this then you know I get to create some compelling content, and I also support a myriad of internal tasks and projects ranging from reporting to business development. I have so many hats that I needed a hat rack installed at my desk!
If I was a prospective candidate for your Social Media Specialist position, and you filtered your candidate pool by job title, I would certainly be eliminated. Nowhere in my current or past titles have I ever been a “Social Media” something. I clearly have a lot of experience with social media, but I would surely be passed over.
The next time you are finding yourself short on qualified candidates, I want you to think back to this post (assuming you haven’t printed this out and posted it next to your computer screen). You may be guilty of some of these common recruitment practice fails. If you need any reminders, you can always tweet me @Tom_Castronova.