Best Ways to Screen Candidates

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Best Ways to Screen Candidates

Applying for a job now is easy and convenient. As almost all industry is in full online, applications are accepted online, as well as the screenings, interviews, and eventually, the actual work is done and evaluated online. In recent years, fast and accurate screening prompted hiring managers to use artificial intelligence or AI as the traditional way of screening takes time and already inefficient. However, despite the use of AI, hiring managers are still not confident with the people they hire, and worst, they still hire the wrong people for a certain job.   

Once a job is posted online, hundreds or even thousand resumes are coming in. At first, it looks interesting and feels so exciting, knowing that many candidates are interested in the job. However, as hiring managers go through, they end up frustrated because they have trouble finding the right one for the job because of the volume of resumes to review.   

The candidate screening process is a tough and hassle job. It is not easy to go over a hundred resumes in a day and end up with no one. This daunting process remains a headache to recruiters and hiring managers even if we have now applicant tracking systems and artificial intelligence. the question now is not what but how to find the star in the vast universe that is perfect for your virtual dream team. Here are three screening methods to help you with your screening process. These tips will help you optimize your existing screening methods, system, and the traits to look for in a job candidate which are important before you decide on hiring your candidate for good. 


Narrow down your priorities 

Sorting does not come after the submission of the resumes. Sorting should start from the job posting. Most hiring managers commit this mistake; they post a job with too general qualifications. This is the common reason why resumes are rolling in too fast and many because even the candidates are misled with the job posting. They think that they are qualified as posted, wherein the end of the screening procedure, the job requires a specific skill or qualification. To prevent this from happening, clearly define what you need for this job and limit only those candidates who are qualified. The job posting should specify the designation, minimum requirements, and ideal qualification.   


Related video on how to shortlist candidates:


Filter More through Screening Questions 

Filtering should not start during the interview phase because if you immediately interview everyone who passed the minimum requirements and ideal qualification, you will end up burned out even before you finish the entire hiring process. Hence, the filtering of candidates should be done in the earliest phase of the process through candidate screening questions. You can place these questions after the candidates start filling their application form on your website.   

Candidate screening questions aim to clear out the ambiguity in the candidate’s qualifications to work in your company. According to research, the ideal number of questions is 20 since it gives around 40% of accuracy. By this, hiring managers are confident with the applicants that push through the next level of the screening process. The 20 screening questions are divided into three, namely the knock-out questions, the core requirement questions, and the ideal requirement questions. These details are asked once again because during the submission of resumes these details are sometimes present and for others are not.   


Knock-out questions are questions that determine if the candidate can work in a certain company or not. Like if he has a clearance to work, does his current work allow him to work part-time for another company, or if he has any criminal record or state violation that could affect his work. Core requirement questions are questions about the candidate’s educational background and specific certification or affiliations needed for the job. Ideal requirement questions are those if ever you have one, will give you a heads up compared to other candidates. By having these set of questions in the screening process, only the highly qualified candidates will remain in the system.   

Use advanced screening tools.  

Now that you only have a manageable number of candidates on the list. You can start the advanced screening process, wherein you can start testing their skills, validating their educational backgrounds and certifications, and start the interview process in phases.   

Screening tools can be chronologically used like this:  

? Start with a pre-recorded video interview. Give the questions in advance and require the candidates to record their 30 second-2-minute answers in every question. This gives hiring managers a hint of whether the employee is qualified for the next stage. Pre-recorded interviews reveal the authenticity of the candidate, especially now that it is hard to determine whether employees are the same on the web and in real life.

? The second stage is a skill test. This could be done through paid trial works. This method greatly works in almost all companies since a paid trial test reveals the candidate’s specific skill and knowledge needed for the job, work values, and professionalism. It is also an extra motivation for the candidate because imagine where you can earn while you are just still applying. This also lets the candidate experience the real job and the hiring managers can assess and evaluate if he is fit and can do the job. This saves the company time and resources in training the right person for the job. This is also to increase the accuracy of the screening process and decrease the risk to hire a wrong candidate.

? By now, you only have the top of the candidates, around 3-5 of them for the final interview. To objectively rank them, you need to have a systematic scorecard that will score the candidate according to their output, skill level, and qualifications. This is an absolute and no bias rating because it is done by inputting values and digitally checking outputs without human intervention.   


What does employment tests look like


Integrating all these processes will take the company and hiring managers time and resources but it is worth the wait. We should invest in the screening process to hire qualified talents. The quality of our screening process has a big impact on the success of the company since our employees are the foundation workforce of our company.   

The screening process in every company is different as we have different industries to manage. There is no ideal or best screening method but what we have here is applicable in a general sense and works in all kinds of business. The screening process may have different methods but one thing for sure, it has the same goal. It is to hire the best candidate in the pool. We can customize but we should always go back to the basics. Always choose a qualified, motivated, and hardworking candidate. We can only unveil these qualities if we have a good screening process. A process that is fast, yet accurate before we invite them for the final call, to be part of our team.   

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Written by Ariane Negishi

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