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According to the U.S. Department of Labor, a hiring mistake can cost your company approximately 30 percent of an employee’s annual earnings. For example, in the case of a developer earning $60,000 a year, the real cost to your company skyrockets to about $78,000. Needless to say, there are only so many of those blows you can sustain!

Here are 10 candidate characteristics to look so you can ensure a hiring win:

  1. A Good First Impression

How candidates present themselves speak volumes about how they would represent your organization. Look for such common-sense strengths as appropriate dress and mannerisms, punctuality, and courtesy to everyone they encounter.

  1. Responsiveness

A strong candidate is one who sets themselves apart by responding thoughtfully when addressed and politely when greeting others. Treating people respectfully will yield better results in everything an employee does, from interacting with coworkers to dealing with clients.

  1. A Proven Track Record

As you interview candidates, use behavioral questions that prompt them to speak in detail about past achievements. Dig deep to learn specific results. If a potential hire is vague about their past performance, consider it an immediate red flag.

  1. Passion

A candidate’s enthusiasm for the job should shine through during their interview. Passionate employees are much more likely to be proficient in all areas of their job.

  1. Motivation

A person may be passionate, but can they turn that enthusiasm into action? You may want to have a candidate complete a task or work on a test project to further confirm their skillset.

  1. Drive

You need to hire people who are willing to go above and beyond what is asked of them. Ambitious team members work both hard and smart – doing the best they can to improve in their role and thinking of ways to improve and be more efficient.

  1. Teamwork

Even if a job requires most tasks to be completed solo, there will be times when employees need to work together. Find out how well a candidate works as part of a team and what type of work environment they prefer. If you hadn’t planned a group interview, it may be a good idea to see if a person meets your teamwork standards.

  1. Integrity

When receiving a complement or describing a successful project, it’s commendable for a candidate to share credit with those who helped them to succeed. Appreciating coworkers strengthens morale and reinforces a trusting environment.

  1. Cultural Fit

In addition to considering a candidate’s technical fit, pay equal attention to how they would mesh into your organization from a cultural standpoint. Employees who have a sense of belonging are more successful at their jobs, and tend to stay at their companies longer.

  1. Long-Term Potential

Last but not least, a good hire is one that sticks. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) reports that every time a business replaces a salaried employee, it costs an average of six to nine months’ salary. For an accounting manager earning $40,000, that’s $20,000 to $30,000 in recruiting and training expenses. Look for commitment and longevity in every prospective hire.

Let the hiring experts at TRC Professional Solutions help ensure that you see only the best candidates – and cross hiring mistakes off your list of stress factors once and for all. Read our related posts or contact us today to learn more.


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