Today, hiring managers experience a unique situation. They have more candidates to choose from, but finding the right talent seems harder than it was before. Having more candidates is good, right?
Yes and no.Why are hiring managers finding this seemingly positive situation difficult? Imagine a radio. Having more candidates to choose from increases its “volume”. However, the quality of the sound doesn’t necessarily improve just because it’s louder.
The additional quantity makes it difficult to navigate through the noise to determine who meets their specific requirements. Today’s hiring managers are afforded a unique opportunity. A greater percentage of available talent has college degrees, valuable certifications and well rounded work experiences and accomplishments.
Despite a greater number of candidates available, statistics are telling. In 2007 and 2008 when the economy was still adding jobs, we had to present an average of 3.5 “qualified” candidates in order to produce an offer from a hiring manager. Though unemployment is currently very high, this ratio remains VERY similar. We now need to present 4.5 “qualified” candidates. Largely speaking, the only thing that has changed is how many more candidates we need to screen! For companies that are already operating on a lean workforce, this additional investment of time and resources is unnecessarily taxing.
Interestingly, the increased number of candidates has created a correlation that has been unfolding over the past few years.
Having more candidates has led to more scrutiny during the interview process. Understandably, a larger candidate pool warrants higher expectations. But that is a dual edged sword. As companies create longer interview cycles, this affords candidates opportunities to find new options. And when it comes to making hiring decisions, time kills.
The noise of abundant talent should help increase hiring managers’ abilities to identify professionals who will have a positive
impact on their organization. But remember: Louder isn’t better, it’s the quality that matters.