Is Your Outdated Screening Process Eliminating All-Stars?

by Susan Mullin

hiring team reviewing their screening process on laptops and clipboards

Hiring for digital marketing roles in Washington, DC isn’t the same as it was even just a few years ago. The digital landscape is in a constant state of flux. You expect your candidates to be one step ahead of trends. However, if you’re using outdating screening processes for hiring, you could actually be eliminating digital marketing all-stars.

Your Resume Screening Process Could Be Hurting You

Many companies use one of two methods for pre-screening applicants. Either someone scans every single resume that comes through, or applicant tracking software (ATS) scans every application. If your organization relies solely on one or the other, you’re letting great candidates slip through the cracks.

The problem with a human-only screening process is obvious. Nobody can possibly keep up with the flood of applications and accurately evaluate each resume. The problem with ATS software is a little less obvious. It saves time, but if a rock-star applicant doesn’t word something in just the right way, they get kicked out of the system.

Your company should invest in an ATS system, but users must know how to create comprehensive parameters that won’t eliminate good candidates. Users should also consistently scan rejected resumes to evaluate whether the parameters are working well. Humans can’t do everything, but neither can machines. A comprehensive, two-pronged approach can reduce chances that you’re losing top talent.

Outdated Assumptions Could Shut Out Top Candidates

Many pre-screening criteria involves rejecting candidates with gaps in their employment history or several jobs in a short period of time. Your screening process shouldn’t automatically reject otherwise talented candidates because of something like a gap. Welcome to the 21st century where people take leave from the workplace to raise children and/or care for ailing parents, to go to school or to try their hand at starting their own business.

Job hopping is also not the kiss of death it was once thought to be. Many millennials hopped jobs out of college in search of more money to help manage their massive college debt. The shaky economy of the late Aughts also created situations where people were laid off or let go, many from multiple positions in a short period of time.

Modern employers have abandoned judgment when it comes to work history. You never know why someone left the workforce or job hopped, so if you’ve got a rock-star resume in front of you, but you have questions about their history, don’t be afraid to call them.

Don’t Skimp On Pre-screening

Many companies also skip over pre-screening interviews, choosing to jump right to the formal interview process. Telephone screening seems to have fallen out of favor, but failing to pre-screen is actually a sign your screening process is not with the times.

Pre-screen meetings are critical to identifying people who are likely to be a good fit and who are genuinely enthusiastic about the position, ensuring in-person interviews are focused on the right candidates. Pre-screening also allows some candidates to self-select out if they feel the job doesn’t quite align with their expectations from the job posting. Taking 30 minutes to screen candidates can save countless wasted man-hours in the formal interviewing process.

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Posted in , Hiring Managers, Recruitment