Candidates Have a Shelf Life

Do applicants for your technical positions have a shelf- life? You bet they do, and right now the shelf lives of top candidates are getting shorter as demand for skilled technical professionals increases. An unemployed or under-employed technology worker can find three to five viable career options in just a few days.

Many employers are finding that qualified candidates who had expressed an interest in their firm are gone by the time they finish their old-school, exhaustive, redundant and slow-paced hiring processes.

BravoTECH has worked with hundreds of clients to help them expedite their hiring and on-boarding processes in order to secure illusive “A Player” candidates. Some areas that should be evaluated and can often be improved are:

1.    Number of interviews for a single position. Consider condensing the interview process by using group interviews. If numerous people are needed for a hiring decision, schedule multiple interviews on the same day.
2.    Background investigations. It’s wise to perform a basic background check before making an offer, but unwise to delay a hiring decision while waiting days or weeks for results.  An option is to make offers contingent on receiving positive background check results.
3.    Departmental inefficiencies. If other departments are involved in your screening and interviewing process, make sure they have the same sense of urgency as your team. Make sure they are aware of how soon you’d like the new position filled and how the new hire will contribute to helping your department meet its goals.
4.    Process and Quality Control. Believe it or not, some firms have totally automated or outsourced the applicant screening and selection process or they have empowered low level administrators to do the work. As a result, some very good applicants never make it to an interview. Make sure you know how your firm is screening and identifying potential candidates and if you do use an automated, external or non-technical person to screen applicants, allow for an exception policy so that candidates or services can protest an unreasonable deletion from the process.
5.    Drop Unproductive, Old School Beliefs. One such belief is that you must interview three applicants for each position before making an offer.  Instead, when you find the right candidate, make a decision. Don’t fall prey to analysis paralysis. By the time you look at the third applicant the first may be off the shelf!

Finally, remember that applicants are individuals who have expressed an interest in, not made a commitment to your firm.  Their career options will grow with the passage of time. Don’t let processes keep you from hiring your share of the “A Players” who will likely not stay on the shelf for long.

By: Andrew Jackson, President

Andrew is the co-founder and President of BravoTECH, an information technology professional staffing firm.  He has served on the Board of the American Electronics Association, SIM (Society for Information Management), Texas Association of Business, and National Kidney Foundation.  Andrew received a BSBA in 1980 from Illinois State University and has more than 30 years of experience in the technical employment services industry.