#NextChat: How Do You Decide Between Two Candidates of Equal Skill and Experience?

Kathy Gurchiek By Kathy Gurchiek August 13, 2020
two job candidates

​You must choose between two job candidates whose experience and skills are equal. What factor will be the most important in deciding which one is offered the job?

That was the question posed in a recent Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) #NextChat. The following is a compilation of responses from LinkedIn and Twitter:

[SHRM members-only toolkit: Hiring Practices Checklist

—Daniella Pierre, founder of On the Grid Community Solutions and employment and career services specialist at Miami Dade College in Miami, on Twitter

Diversity—what new perspectives can the candidate add to make your organization richer?

Floor Blindenbach, founder and CEO of Organizing4Innovation in Washington, D.C., on LinkedIn

The one who will complement the existing team the most. I like to have a team with different areas of expertise and different personalities to bring different strengths and perspectives to a project.

Suzanne Gregory, employee services director for Beaufort County in Beaufort, S.C., on LinkedIn 

—Paula O'Brien, senior instructional designer at Fresenius Medical Care North American in the Nashville, Tenn., metropolitan area, on Twitter

I would try to vet out which one has a desire to grow more in the role and with the company. During my capstone project on culture, I pointed out that mediocre workers are more likely to stick around if they share the cultural values of the company. This means that you can hire someone who seems like a good fit but if they're not adaptable, trainable, and want to be there, it can end up being a bad fit down the line.

Ryan Bailey, assistant power manager at DSW Designer Show Warehouse in San Diego, on LinkedIn

However too much of a focus on cultural fit can undermine diversity and inclusion and reinforce group think and exclusion. 

Sile O'Donnell, adjunct assistant professor at Trinity College School of Medicine in Dublin, on LinkedIn, in response to Ryan Bailey's post

Thought process is an excellent thing to examine. I find that understanding how a person reached their answer to be more valuable than the fact that they know the answer.

Michael King, safety manager at U.S. Engineering Co. in Pryor, Okla., on LinkedIn 

How much a candidate is passionate about being a part of the team and if he/she can bring a new way of thinking that is needed at the moment of hiring.

Ksenia Belkina, training and development specialist at New York-Presbyterian Hospital in New York City, on LinkedIn  

—Melanie Peacock, Ph.D., SHRM-SCP, consultant at Sole Proprietor in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, on Twitter

—Angela Champ, HR executive, author and speaker in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, on Twitter

I think communication needs to be mentioned. You have verbal communication as well as body language. How we speak to others is critical in all aspects of business.

Ricka Renfrew, HR coordinator at Bass Pro Shops in Sachse, Texas, on LinkedIn

Their soft skills when I meet them in person or speak to them over the phone. How do they interact with others naturally?

Rachel Lindley, SHRM-CP, HR recruitment and selection coordinator at Ada County Sheriff's Office in Boise, Idaho, on LinkedIn  

—Christie Engler, director of client services at Consolidated Employer Services in the Columbus, Ohio, area, on Twitter

—David Prunell-Friend, CEO of Talent in Motion in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain, on Twitter

—Abhishek Dubey, interim HR lead at Zensar Technologies in Pune, Maharashtra, India, on Twitter

Recent stories from this series:
#NextChat: How Do You Manage Former Peers? 
#NextChat: What Are Resume No-Nos?



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