The Dilemma of Comparing Candidates
Most organisations expect to get at least half a dozen CVs to review when they’re recruiting for a technical vacancy. Sometimes they get dozens!
Our clients don’t have that problem – simply because we carry out all the due diligence for them every candidate is skills matched, tested and pre-interviewed so they might get two or three – sometimes just one candidate who fits their job role.
However, we have some clients who have a policy of ‘comparison candidates’. This means that they want at least two candidates to make comparisons and ensure they get the best fit for their role.
When a company is operating in a highly niche area finding the right candidates can be a challenge. The reactive approach depends on seeing what the response is to advertising the post; the proactive approach involves active searches of available candidates online and offline and head-hunting to contact potential candidates. The latter approach is much more likely to get a better fit for a role – particularly if you’re starting with ‘a little black book’ of potential matches!
When the job specification is really niche and a very specific skill base is required, there may simply be very, very few people who will match. If the company operate a comparison candidate policy, there is a real danger of losing the one excellent match already offered, whilst waiting for a second candidate to make the comparison.
Compared to … what?
Realistically, a candidate should be compared to the role profile – not another person. If the role is properly defined with a clear outline of essential and desirable skills, plus a person specification with the required attributes for the perfect candidate, the comparison should be with the job requirements, not with an alternative candidate.
This has benefits in more ways than one:
- It establishes that the candidate ticks all the boxes for the work
- The person specification ensures that the attitude and personality fit will work in the team and organisation
- It provides the company with evidence of their recruitment process should anyone ever claim discrimination in the selection system.
Either the candidate meets the requirements – or they don’t. Having two candidates that both meet the requirements is a bonus, but not essential if the skill portfolio is rare.
The choice is take the good match on and save time and effort or put them on hold, risk losing them and maybe hold up a project whilst a second candidate is searched out. With the Edison Hill guarantee you can employ a well-matched candidate with confidence. If they don’t work out in the first six months, it will cost nothing to find a new match.
If you’d like to find out more about niche role recruitment please call us on 020 3762 2020 to discuss what you want.