As an employer, you may have noticed fluctuations in what your applicants say and do when they apply for jobs with you. If you wonder why they all present the same phrases and buzzwords in interviews and on their resumes, it’s probably because they all get the same advice from similar online sources.
Although there are many online “employment experts” happy to provide advice to job applicants, there are some who always seem to top the list in Internet searches. It’s those your applicants turn to for advice. That’s why it sometimes feels as though all your applicants say the same things.
Resources your applicants trust
Job hunters turn to myriad resources online and receive advice from a variety of sources. They’re trying to figure out what you want to see or hear from them in order to get hired. For example, HR Policy Association-sponsored Jobipedia.org provides interns and entry-level employees advice directly from participating companies to help them successfully apply for entry-level positions.
Employers painted as The Bad Guy
Some online job advisors portray employers as an adversary to be conquered. For example, the job advice website Way Up claim employers don’t actually want entry-level employees. The website says employers pretend they do so they can pay people less.
They advise inexperienced people to apply even if the position requires experience. After all, employers just trick applicants anyway, so why not apply? If your applicants seem to throw your desired position requirements out the window, it’s because they’re advised to.
Avoid potential problems
How do you avoid getting a bunch of applicants who didn’t seem to take the time to pay attention to the job requirements? Compose a crystal-clear job posting. If that seems too difficult, stop and look at your hiring process.
Does your company know what it wants and does it request it appropriately through job postings? Do you really tell applicants what you seek or do you present inaccurate descriptions? If you don’t tell them what skill set you truly want, don’t be upset when the ideal applicant never applies.
Don’t ask predictable questions
If you don’t want more interviews where the applicants claim their most negative personal trait is they “work too hard,” don’t ask the question. Instead, fashion a list of questions that actually help tell you what you really want to know.
For example, if your employees are most successful when they can focus solely on their work, don’t tell applicants your company culture focuses on a work/life balance that allows flexibility. Instead, frankly ask applicants how they feel about working hard to succeed in your company.
What your company tells people
Look at your company’s website before you start the interviews. What image does it portray? If your website implies you manage a fun-loving, at-times-silly workplace, don’t be surprised when fun-loving, eccentric applicants show up. They likely audited your website and decided your workplace was a desirable workplace.
So if a certain type of unwelcome applicant flocks to your open positions, look at how your company portrays itself. It may be time to redesign things to attract the best employees for your company’s particular culture.