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Holding Out for Perfect Candidates

The hiring process can stress out anyone, whether they’re in the interview chair or lining up possible candidates. As the person doing the hiring, it stands to reason that you want the right person for the position; you certainly don’t want to bring on the wrong person and have to go through the time-consuming process again. But where do you draw the line–when do you hold out for the “perfect” candidate, and when do you take on someone who’s not perfect but pretty darn close?

  • On the one hand, it will help if you keep your job description and requirements specific. Of course you want someone with a certain background and skill set for the position, and the job description should make that obvious. You’ll find the right fit more readily if you make your expectations clear; an ambiguous job description can lead to hundreds of resumes that might work but don’t really cover what you want. On the other hand, give a little leeway for a candidate who may lack one of the essential skills but shows a lot of potential for growth.

  • Another point in hiring: You may have such a need to get the position filled that you rush through the hiring process, often an enormous mistake. Most people know that resumes get a quick glance and cover letters sometimes get even less time than that, depending on the company, but taking time with the process will help you find the best person for the job. Make sure you get to know the candidates as well as possible, including a background check and talking to their references. In some cases, the position is specific enough that you truly need a certain type of person; finding out all you can about the candidates can help you find that “just-right” hire.

  • Hiring the “perfect candidate” may actually backfire on you in the end. If you hire the person who fits the job description perfectly, needs very little training, and excels immediately, they may see few challenges in the position or opportunity to grow…and go elsewhere. If you truly want that perfect hire, you should check to see where and how in your company that person can expand the position before they choose to move on, either to a higher position or another company. Hiring someone who’s “almost perfect” will allow the candidate to grow with you, thus earning expertise and loyalty.

There are reasons for and against holding out for the “perfect” hire, but you have to carefully weigh all the parameters before making that decision so it turns out best for everyone in the end. Reach out to the expert staffing professionals at Creative Staffing to help you find the candidates you need!

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