As a recruiter, the one thing you probably come across every single day is “How to filter out unqualified candidates” to get a qualified talent pool in the most resource-effective manner.
However, with hundreds of candidates blindly applying for all job positions available across several job portals, applicant filtering is like finding a needle in a haystack.
With the global economy facing a downturn, thanks to the aftermath of COVID-19, the unemployment rate has seen never-before fluctuations in the last three years. These rates evidently tell us why candidates, especially those who are new to the marketplace or possess just a few years of experience, apply for any job that they come across.
Another reason for receiving a heap of resumes and CVs for every vacancy is that the job application process has been eased out a lot by almost all of the job boards. It just takes a couple of clicks to apply for just about any job available on the job portals. Hence, candidates think about trying out their luck in every job.
About 10 years ago, you might have received just 25-30 applications for a job. Whereas today, you would easily have to go through hundreds of job applications for the same kind of vacancy.
Effective Candidate Screening Methods:
Therefore, it becomes necessary to implement effective strategies to filter out unqualified applicants and streamline applicant evaluation. Here are 10 effective candidate screening methods early on in the recruitment lifecycle.
Provide a Detailed Job Description
While posting a job on a job portal, it is important that the job description is detailed and lists out every requirement that the position demands. Be it the skills required to get the job done, the location, working hours, shifts, salary structure, the roles and responsibilities, or the years of experience that the job requires.
Unfortunately, this is exactly where several recruiters make mistakes. For example, if you list out everything but forget to mention the exact location of the job, you might invite a lot of useless resumes who would reject the job offer simply because of its location. This is especially true if the job location is in a metropolitan city.
Additionally, when it comes to the experience that a job demands, do not give a vast range. For example, if you need a senior bookkeeper, instead of giving the experience range between 2 to 7 years, give it 4 to 5 years or so. The lesser the experience range, the more qualified candidates you will receive.
To make sure you give all the details in the job description, it is recommended to prepare the job description in association with a team member of the team that has the vacancy. So that you don’t forget to include any relevant details or skills.
Use of Advanced Filters
Several job boards in the market offer excellent search platforms to filter out irrelevant candidates using a variety of filters for fields such as location, salary expectations, experience, and age. You can even look for keywords in the resumes.
All you need to do is use the correct type of search to fetch the right kind of candidate. Look for the correct industry, sub-industry, department, sub-department, location, salary range, etc. to find the right candidate for your company.
For searching using keywords, you can use the correct boolean operators to get qualified candidates. For example, for a bookkeeper for US accounting, you can use a combination of keywords with correct boolean operators, such as, “bookkeeper AND US accounting NOT Indian accounting”.
Sadly, the increasing unemployment across the globe has triggered a lot of candidates to apply for jobs that are totally irrelevant to their interests, educational qualifications, and/or experience. The reason behind this is that 90% of job applicants do not even read the whole job description carefully before applying.
Thus, even if you provide all the relevant details in the job description, to enhance hiring efficiency, it’s imperative to ensure that the applicant has read them and only then has applied for the job.
And, this is where screening questions come in handy. Pick up a few skills or requirements from your job description that are most essential for the job and provide a small screening questionnaire to your applicants.
In the previous example of a senior bookkeeper, you can ask the number of years of relevant experience that the applicant has, how many entries he or she thinks they can perform within an hour, and other such technical questions to understand whether their productivity and knowledge match your expectations. To reduce time to hire and automate your screening process, use solutions like WeCP Screening to filter out the candidates.
Ask for a Video Response
In today’s highly volatile market, there are high chances you still get applications from irrelevant candidates. So, there is a grave need to filter out unqualified candidates.
Asking for a video response to know more about the applicant is a great way to assess the candidate’s experience, interest and energy levels, motivation, and overall personality.
Through a video response, you can either choose to give the candidates a problem and ask for a solution or request them to describe themselves and why they think they are the best fit for the particular vacancy.
There are numerous tools in the market today, like WeCP, that make hiring incredibly easy today with their vast library of questions for skill assessment in hiring for different types of technical and non-technical positions. These online tools are a fantastic way to fasten and ease your hiring process.
Check this video on how to easily filter unqualified candidates using WeCP easily and quickly:
Check for Culture Fit
Hiring for culture is a rather newer term for the recruitment industry. However, it is utterly important nowadays, thanks to the need for a diversified workforce globally.
Since the cultural differences between different countries, races, and communities will always be there, it is important to check if the candidates possess the corporate culture that a company follows.
For example, if a company believes in assigning a task to an employee and expects them to finish it on the deadline, it will always want to hire employees who are self-motivated and do not need a push to work.
However, “culture” is a broad term and cannot easily be objectified to a set of rules. Thus, hiring candidates based on the company culture is a difficult job. Nonetheless, with a wide variety of customizable online recruitment tools, it is quite possible to develop a culture test for every company.
Now that you have shortlisted a few qualified applicants, conduct a telephonic interview to assess them further based on their aspirations, motivation, personality, and cultural background to evaluate whether they are good for your company.
This step will save a lot of time and resources for you as well as the technical interviewer because you’ll know early on if he or she is a good fit for the organization.
According to a study by the Hedd degree verification and fraud service, about half of the businesses have come across candidates who lie about their qualifications or experiences.
Therefore, a background verification or reference check becomes imperative to ensure that the candidates who appear to be qualified are actually worth considering for the vacancy that you have at your company.
Some situations that warn you of an unqualified candidate are inconsistencies in the details provided and excessive positive comments about the candidate from a previous employer. In such cases, a thorough examination is necessary before you stop considering a candidate.
Applicant Tracking System
An Applicant Tracking System or ATS is a software that manages candidates, their resumes, screening process, status, etc. and helps you automate and improve your recruitment process.
An ATS can help you manage your candidate pipeline by letting you add the candidates’ scores for various tests to eliminate unconscious bias using technology and AI and scheduling and sending automated emails for interviews to the candidates.
Long story short, just like a CRM is for leads, and ATS is for candidates.
Use Automated Recruitment Tools
The best thing about recruitment today is that there are a lot of online tools and softwares that provide numerous types of staffing solutions to businesses to filter out unqualified candidates very early in the recruitment process and optimize candidate selection.
From preparing tech-based skill tests to evaluating the logical capability of candidates through aptitude tests and even preparing customized culture-fit tests, recruitment tools can do anything that seemed unachievable through technology 10 years ago.
With WeCP, you can improve your hiring process by boosting the quality of your candidates and reducing the recruitment time. WeCP helps you design a variety of tests for your technical hiring.
We not only provide solutions to help you judge candidates based on their hard skills, but we also offer to provide evaluations based on the soft skills of candidates, such as problem-solving abilities, communication skills, ability to work with a team, etc.
Contact us for more information or schedule a demo with us.