Recruiting: Do You Have Time For The “Maybes”?


As a recruiter you probably sort your job candidates into three piles; “yes”, “no” and “maybe.”  How would you feel if one of the “maybe” candidates you dismissed as not good enough was presented and hourglass-708574_640successfully placed by one of your competitors?  You might lose sleep over it.  Well one such recruiter experienced this and in his post he explains why recruiters are reluctant to take chances on “maybe” candidates.

“We feel they are overqualified.”

“We feel they don’t have enough experience.”

“We feel like they are “job hoppers”.

“They worked at a certain company that isn’t admirable.”

In each instance the recruiter urges picking up the phone and getting the candidate’s story before passing judgement on their resume.  What I believe is implied in his post, especially when he mentions looking at hundreds of resumes a day, is that recruiters don’t have the time to get to know the “maybes”, even if this may be their desire.  Using the methodology above, if one sorted through just 100 resumes, you might find yourself with twenty yes candidates, twenty maybes and sixty no candidates.  The recruiter explains that inevitably, even after revisiting each “maybe” candidate several times, you will still find many reasons such as those above not to select him/her.

How much time are you willing to invest in a “maybe” candidate?  Interviewing twenty could take hours and for nineteen of them your suspicions based on the concerns above may as expected be found true.  Even then the one “maybe” that could turn into a “yes” may lag behind ten or fifteen of the others you have already chosen.  So you may ask yourself why you should bother spending hours phone screening twenty “maybe” candidates only to uncover one potential diamond that is no clearer than the “yes” candidates you already have?  And really how often does one of your passed over “maybes” get scooped up and placed by a competitor?

Recruiters have no extra time to waste on a “maybe” that might truly be a “no”.  According to some statistics recruiters spend no more than six seconds reviewing a resume.  Still, though, no one wants to fail.  As an outside recruiter you will kick yourself if you lose a commission and as an internal recruiter or hiring manager you don’t want to miss out on a good employee especially if they go to work for a competitor.  So how do you secure greater insight into your “maybe” candidates without further burdening your time?

A 2014 study by the Aberdeen Group showed that “Best-in-class” companies using video interviewing reduced time to hire by sixty percent and in addition reduced their cost per hire.  Many video interviewing vendors offer automated interviews which allow candidates to log in and basically interview themselves by answering the questions the recruiter/hiring manager pre-uploaded.  So using the scenario above, invites could be emailed to twenty “maybe” candidates and on their time they can interview themselves while you the recruiter better spend your time sourcing candidates.  Once the candidates complete their interviews, you review their interviews in just one to five minutes each and confirm whether they are truly a “yes” or a “no”.

Don’t toss and turn anymore over the candidates that got away!  Set up your “maybes” with a video interview and while you’re sleeping peacefully they can be interviewing.


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