The noise regarding today’s job market is unavoidable—you can’t go anywhere without hearing about how low unemployment is. With all this noise you may wonder: How can I hire with all this competition? It’s critical that you learn how to Stand Out…in the right way.
Defining Your Need
For Hiring Managers, how you define your candidate need as an organization, how you approach going to market to recruit for that person, and what your interview process is like are critical discussions to be having well before going to market for a candidate. If a candidate is interviewing or exploring an offer with your organization, they are absolutely exploring other jobs with other companies.
Let’s look at the noise and competition on the job boards this year compared to last year:
With so much competition, it’s imperative that an organization sell their company and role to prospective employees.
Selling “The Why” and Be Organized
There is no such thing as a passive candidate. Once a candidate is contacted about an opportunity, that person is officially on the market…and with a market like today’s you cannot waste time. Candidates want a smooth interview process, career trajectory, and solid benefits.
Candidates can sense a messy environment a mile away…and a disjointed, over-extended, multi-step interview process will quickly turn a candidate off. One of the best things you can do to ensure a smooth hiring process is identify your 3-5 non-negotiable candidate requirements. Sit down and come up with your laundry list that you’re looking for…go ahead, get it alllll out there. And then edit it 35 times with all the people who are making the hiring decision and in agreement with the top 3-5 qualities you want this person to possess to make your life easier.
When I meet with clients to discuss an open role, I love to ask them the fun parts of the conversation: the why parts. Why are you here? Why do you stay? Why has your longest tenured employee stayed? Why this company? It’s critical for organizations to be compelling and sell who they are to sought-after candidates.
Be open-minded to candidates who demonstrate having the aptitude to grow with your company. Pay attention to why they made jumps in their career, not how many. Think about how they approached the interview itself when you’re thinking about the candidate as a full package. Were they polished and prepared? Did they bring ideas? Waiting for the “Perfect Fit” who checks off all the boxes signals that you’re not really ready to hire—and puts your time to getting the candidate who can truly help you advance your strategies in the chair that much further down the road.
Defining Culture Fit
Culture fit ranks high up there with the “Reason for Rejection.” It’s a lovely grey area. Well, yes, this person can define a marketing plan on a limited budget, they are HubSpot certified, and yes, they can code emails…but the culture fit is missing. How are you as a hiring manager effectively assessing culture fit during the interview process?
I went to lunch with a friend of mine who leads marketing and operational success for a SaaS organization here in Chicago. She shared with me a great series of questions she asks candidates to help her successfully vet for culture. These questions help develop themes and consistencies across a candidate’s background. Themes that form synchronicity with your brand and beliefs can turn a “not-perfect fit” from a skills perspective into a candidate with the right aptitude to be a great hire.
These questions start with the very first experience listed in the candidate’s resume. The answers candidates give to these questions are very telling and can paint a pretty descriptive picture of the accomplishments this person is capable of achieving with your organization.
2018 Marketing Career Resources
So how do you build a more organized interviewing process, close skills gaps, and find sources of inspiration? Here are some excellent career resources including books, blogs, continuing educational suggestions, and networking groups! I look forward to next year’s recap and findings! I’d love to hear from you–I am always here to support you in hiring or with your career development.
“What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There” by Marshall Goldsmith
“The Unwritten Rules of the Highly Effective Job Search” by Orville Pierson
“Epic Content Marketing” by Joe Pulizzi
“Creative Conspiracy” by Leigh Thompson
“Who Gets Promoted Who Doesn’t and Why” by Donald Asher
“Digital Marketers Sound Off” by Matt Chiera
“1001 Ways to Recognize Employees” by Bob Nelson
General Assembly: https://generalassemb.ly/locations/chicago
American Marketing Association’s Chicago Chapter
Meetup.com (“Chicago Area Marketing Associations”)
Content Marketing Institute
Women in Digital