How to Select the Right Person for the Job When There Are Two Qualified Candidates
You sorted through a throng of applicants; held initial screening calls; interviewed a select group in person — and are now torn between two job candidates.
How can you determine which one would be best to hire?
Choosing the most capable candidate can be a challenging scenario. Nearly three in four employers (74 percent) say they’ve hired the wrong person for a position, according to CareerBuilder data — with an average loss of $14,900 for each bad call.
To avoid bringing the wrong person on board, consider utilizing some of the following approaches:
Verify potential hires’ skills and experience
To identify what situations a candidate has dealt with or could handle, interviewers can ask primarily behavioral-based interview questions — focusing on concrete actions people have taken in the past, which are generally a reliable predictor of future behavior — instead of traditional and situational questions, which tend to be overly broad or only involve hypothetical scenarios.
Employers can also use pre-employment assessment test questions and answers to determine certain traits, proficiencies and other strengths potential hires will provide. More than 71 percent of North American companies do, according to a Talent Board survey.
Assess enthusiasm and drive
Seventy percent of employees in North America, Australia and the U.K. don't consider themselves to be engaged at work, according to an Achievers survey. To find out if the candidates you’re speaking to might end up falling into that category if hired, making at least some of your behavioral-based interview questions about topics such as how candidates furthered their career in past positions and what major initiatives they volunteered to work on can indicate whether they have a desire to seek challenges and make a long-lasting impact — two traits employees with a sense of passion and commitment to work often possess, according to Deloitte research.
Figure out if a candidate will thrive within your work environment
Research has shown a company culture can influence employee satisfaction, performance and retention; so it’s important to make sure your organization’s culture will be amenable to whomever you hire. Three-quarters of employees measure whether or not a candidate will fit within their corporate culture, according to a Connexys survey.
While describing your culture and asking about a candidate’s specific expectations can help you determine if your work environment will correlate with what the person wants, generally, research has found employees view a number of common corporate culture elements positively. In a Robert Half survey, for example, 31 percent of U.S. and Canadian workers said their ideal company culture would include a supportive environment. Twenty-seven percent mentioned a team-oriented structure, and 20 percent said they prized innovation.
Hiring based on network fit — involving more specific criteria than cultural fit, including how well candidates click with their immediate colleagues and informal peers, in addition to a jobseeker’s competencies, values and work preferences — can improve hiring quality by up to 30 percent, according to CEB findings, compared to a 12 percent quality improvement companies can experience when hiring for cultural fit.
Thorough hiring practices are a crucial part of finding the right employees to add to your team. For additional recruiting and hiring process suggestions, view our posts on 3 innovative ways companies are using AI in recruitment, why companies are aiming for deeper insight in recruiting, how to ensure recent graduates are good hires and how to determine if a candidate is just somewhat unconventional or is actually a questionable hire.
Once you’ve officially decided who to extend an offer to, learn how to strengthen your onboarding program, help new hires excel — and correct any current recruiting process issues to make hiring easier and more effective in the future.