Three Challenges to Hiring the Best Candidates

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Experienced leaders understand the importance of hiring ideal candidates for each position within their company. Unfortunately, all employers share this goal. With increasing demand, limited supply and a growing skills gap in the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) communities, the sourcing process can be especially difficult.

A successful placement is well worth the effort as a completely qualified new hire can provide an organization with the knowledge and skills needed to meet goals and achieve lasting success. The key, is minimizing the time-to-fill while sourcing the most qualified person available.

3 Common Challenges When Hiring Highly Qualified Candidates

As with any endeavor, it can be helpful to anticipate potential issues. While each sourcing situation is different, (based on factors such as the current environment, job market, company, location, requirements, salary and benefits) there are certain challenges that span all industries. The following describes three common struggles employers face when trying to hire industry-leading professionals, as well as tips to overcome these hiring challenges.

1. Knowing Where to Find Top Talent

Where do you typically begin sourcing candidates? Possibly the company Applicant Tracking System (ATS) or a large job board and resume database? While the traditional approach might work most of the time, it might fall remarkably short when searching for unique, highly qualified professionals. This is because highly coveted candidates are often already employed elsewhere. While they might be satisfied in their current role, they may consider new opportunities if the offer is enticing.

Since these potential candidates are not actively planning a career move it is unlikely they will go out of their way to seek out new opportunities. In turn, they will not see job postings on company websites or search through listings on job boards. To make connections with passive candidates, take a non-traditional approach through networking, employee referrals, or by utilizing staffing firms.

2. Attracting Leading Candidates to Your Company

Individuals who are in high demand have a plethora of options and a significant amount of bargaining power. You might need to sweeten the deal if you want to sway them to join your team. There are many ways to do this regardless of budget. Simply find a way to make your company stand out, such as:

  • Enticing perks — e.g. free gym memberships, onsite daycare, flexible schedules, a pet-friendly work environment, etc.
  • Competitive pay
  • Opportunities for bonuses
  • Chance to do truly meaningful work
  • Potential of advancement

Remember that culture is a large factor as it impacts every aspect of the business. If the company’s image is the problem it may take time to improve pubic perception. While this may be an difficult process, don’t discount its importance; a toxic culture can quickly destroy morale, productivity and business relationships.

3. Gauging Cultural Fit

The best person for the job on paper is not always the right fit for the job. A candidate may have all the necessary skills, but if they are not a good match for your company’s culture it is far less likely to work out. Minimize the risk of a poor cultural fit by learning more about the candidate. Speak to references, but dig much deeper into the candidate’s past by researching their online presence. During the interview, ask behavioral questions to see the way they respond. Show the candidate around the office, introducing them to multiple team members. Gauge how they interact together and ask for your current employees thoughts. What you learn can help increase your chances of making the right choice.

Solve Your Biggest Hiring Challenges

Staffing your company with all the right people is an extremely important, but difficult task. Partner with RealStreet to find the best architecture, engineering and construction talent. Choose from a variety of options, including temporary, temp-to-hire and direct hire employment solutions.

It was my distinct pleasure working for RealStreet, aka KJMK, on separate FEMA disaster recovery assignments and long-term recovery planning assignments between October 2004 and May 2006 in the aftermath of Hurricanes Ivan, Katrina, Francis and Wilma. I found working with these professionals enjoyable as well as self-fulfilling and rewarding. After a 9-year stint as Read More…

Steve Spry, CAPZO, Certified Alabama Planning and Zoning Official

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