If you're a hiring manager, then you already know how difficult it is to find recruits who have a good balance of education and work history. The question is which qualities should hold the most weight when it comes to potential employees?
In order to help you better navigate the recruiting process, here are just a few things to consider when hiring employees based on their qualifications:
Start with a Checklist
Before you begin the interviewing process, it's important to have a hiring checklist to cross-reference. Any hiring manager knows that a checklist can mean the difference between getting all the facts or accidently skipping over important questions that should come up in the interview.
Start by making an overall checklist to keep track of every candidate that walks through the door. This list will become extremely helpful during the decision-making process.
As for individual interviews, you should create a checklist that reminds you to ask important interview questions as well as prompts you to collect necessary information that may not be in the candidate's résumé. This includes questions like when the candidate can begin work and what their salary requirements are.
Prescreen When Needed
Prescreening certain individuals can save your management team a lot of time during the recruiting process. If an application doesn't necessarily meet your company's requirements, but the candidate's skills and expertise are above average, then a prescreen interview can give you a better idea of the candidate's abilities.
When prescreening, remember that you still need to ask about the candidate's skills and education, but you don't have to go into start dates and salary requirements just yet. If the candidate passes the prescreening test, you can then bring them in for a traditional interview and get a feel for their personality.
Judge Education Wisely
Education goes a long way in the recruiting process. As the following article notes, just because there are certain college degrees with the best average return on investment doesn't mean a highly educated candidate is right for your particular business. Because of this, it's important to judge the candidate's education experience wisely.
When perusing the candidate's résumé, you should keep a close eye on the degrees obtained and how they relate to the position you're offering.
With the growing number of specialized bachelor's and master's degrees available, something too specialized might mean your company will have to spend time and money training the candidate.
Call All References
An impressive education background or not, it's your job as a hiring manager to call each and every reference the candidate provides. Going with your gut is helpful, especially if candidates look good on paper and present themselves professionally. However, gut instincts never replace an open and honest phone call.
If the candidate seems good on paper, but he or she is missing contact information for past employers, it's important to ask why that information is missing. Contacting all the candidate's past employers will give you a better idea of whether they're right for the job or not.
Likewise, calling personal references is helpful in terms of forming a fuller opinion of the candidate.
Use the pointers above when seeking out the most qualified candidates for your company and remember, education experience is just one piece of the hiring puzzle.
Adam Groff is a freelance writer and creator of content. He writes on a variety of topics including résumé writing and workplace recruiting.