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Interview Red Flags: Spot Them to Make Better Hires

Let’s be honest – in an employer’s market, you can afford to be choosy and take a pass on candidates who are under-qualified, job-hoppers or otherwise not a perfect fit.

But again, let’s be honest – it’s definitely NOT an employer’s market.

In today’s tight talent market, you simply cannot afford to rule out a promising candidate for the wrong reason. Great people are too hard to find!

What do you really need to watch out for – and what’s probably just a false alarm? Today, our Nashville staffing service shares some practical advice for making the right hiring decision when you spot a supposed “red flag” in the interview process:

Job Hoppers

Job hopping is becoming increasingly prevalent. In fact, average job tenure in the U.S. is down to 4.6 years and the majority of employers have actually hired job hoppers.

Frequently changing jobs no longer carries the stigma it once used to. Furthermore, job-hopping can just as easily indicate a flexible “rising star” who quickly masters positions and enjoys the challenge of advancement opportunities.

Should you hire job hoppers?

Find out first why they left their most recent job(s). If candidates moved up, or moved to a place with a better cultural fit, ask about their career goals and the contexts in which they perform best. Then, determine whether your available opportunity and culture align with their needs and aspirations.

Candidates with Online Degrees

Concerned that your candidate’s degree comes from an online “diploma mill” that issues certificates to anyone who’s willing to pay up? It’s no surprise; a few big offenders have created a real image problem for all online universities. The truth? Not all online degrees are easy to obtain. Many programs have the same academic rigor as traditional universities, giving candidates the same skills and experience they need to thrive in your organization.

Should you hire candidates with online degrees?

Whether degrees come from ivy-league schools or online universities, they’re no guarantee candidates are equipped to succeed on the job. So, regardless of where a degree comes from, delve into candidates’ relevant coursework to find out how their education prepared them for work. Focus on their scholastic accomplishments, internships or work-study arrangements, using those as a barometer for gauging candidates’ suitability.

Under-qualified Candidates

Think hiring an under-qualified applicant is an automatic failure? Don’t be so sure. Research shows that job failure is not typically due to a lack of functional or technical skill on the job. In fact, bright, enthusiastic individuals who aren’t fully qualified for your available position can turn into great hires:

  • they don’t need to “unlearn” bad behavior;
  • they’re willing to tailor their work to your methods and processes;
  • they have the motivation to learn and a willingness to do whatever it takes to succeed.

Should you hire under-qualified candidates?

If your position is in an industry or functional area where experience and knowledge rapidly become obsolete (such as IT), “more experience” is not always a great asset. Consider the rate of change in the field for which you’re hiring, as well as candidates’ prior job performance to guide your decision-making.

Struggling to fill open positions? Trust Wood Personnel to deliver promising candidates who will thrive on the job – and grow within your organization. Call our Nashville recruiters today!