Too Many Applicants (There’s No Such Thing)
by Ryan Kohler
I’m going to let all you HR professionals in on a little secret . . . there’s no such thing as too many applicants. I can hear the protests you’re starting to assemble in your mind right now, but I guarantee you, having one of my HR clients tell me that they don’t want more than X number of job seekers to apply for their openings is right on par with a Marketing Manager saying that they want to limit the number of potential customers buying their product. It’s absurd, and here’s why: more applicants equals greater access to quality hires. And, better hires equals a more solid foundation for the success of your organization.
More applicants equals greater access to quality hires
I’m hosting a free, HRCI webinar tomorrow that will walk you through this process step-by-step and in much greater detail, but for now, here’s an overview of what you can start doing today to ramp up not only the quantity of your applicants, but the quality of your new hires as well.
Conduct Job Research
Every company is unique and each of you have your own company culture or employer “brand” that attracts a certain demographic or employee personality to you. Market this to applicants. Don’t just regurgitate five-year-old legal-speak from your internal job description. Engage your applicants; draw them in and entice them to apply by selling your company’s benefits. Do you offer a great salary? Great benefits? Flexible schedule? Whatever it is, market it in your job ad. Keep in mind that what may be a selling point for you may not be for your job seekers so talk to your top performers. Ask them what drew them in and what keeps them there.
Filter Based on Your Qualifications
There are a few ways to go about this depending on your budget. You can start by designing questions and assigning a weight to them. In other words, determine what skills or experience is most important to you and then allocate a number to each response. After your job seeker completes the application, tally their score for each question to determine whether or not they’re a good fit. Another great tool is creating “knockout” questions. For example, if you’re hiring for a bartender position one of your questions might read: are you at least 21 years of age? If the applicant answers no, they would automatically be eliminated from the running.
Using hiring assessment tests will filter down your pool and allow for the highest rate of success. There are a multitude of assessment options out there. One of the best for gauging applicant fit is called the job fit assessment. It’s different than other tests in that it uses your best employees as a benchmark and then rates how well your applicants’ scores align with your top performer.
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