Why It's Time To Dump Your Old-School Hiring Practices - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Comments
Why It's Time To Dump Your Old-School Hiring Practices
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/25/2016 | 11:32:38 AM
Re: Adding to the problem
> you best put your best foot forward

You get no disagreement from me there.


>  It's just the way it is.

Competent and successful CEO I know just last week said "If I ever find myself saying, 'That's just the way things are done here,' it's time for me to retire."


> You have to play the game.

It's a losing game is my point -- for both sides.




 
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/25/2016 | 11:27:46 AM
Re: Adding to the problem
It's virtually the same.

Director at audition: "Demonstrate to me how you perform this song/monologue/scene."

Interviewer at audition: "Demonstrate to me how you solve this problem."  (ESPECIALLY in the technical fields.)

Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/25/2016 | 11:25:17 AM
Re: Adding to the problem
Sure, they're not the same thing precisely, but speaking as someone who used to direct film and theatre both in school and for a living (before my legal career), I'd say it's more or less the same insofar as they involve performances.

And, having been on both sides of the table in both auditions and job interviews alike, I've observed that -- in general -- the performances in auditions tend to be the more genuine ones.  ;)
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/24/2016 | 12:25:23 PM
Re: Adding to the problem
@jries: Isn't that what an interview is?  ;)
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/24/2016 | 11:20:18 AM
Re: Adding to the problem
> It's just sheer laziness to turn in a less than perfect one.

It's sheer laziness to turn in a resume riddled with substantial errors and formatting issues.  We agree on that.

A single typo or missing punctuation mark, however?  Not sure I'd go so far as laziness (at least, in all -- or even most -- cases).  I think we've all sent an email or memo or other document that had a regrettable typo.

(For my own part, I once turned in a 70-page brief to the Massachusetts Appeals Court that I spent consecutive sleepless weeks on, rereading and proofing the dang thing a zillion times as I tinkered with it.  Turns out I left a few typos.  NBD.  I still won the case, my career remains intact, and I'm sure the panel of appellate judges don't think I am a lazy or incompetent person.  Indeed, the opposing counsel on that case has since referred me clients.)

The "sheer laziness" philosophy sounds suspiciously like the old (and failed) consulting practice from the '90s of telling employees that if you can go a second without making a mistake, you can go a minute, you can go an hour, you can go a day, you can go the rest of your life.

I'm not saying, "hey, don't worry about typos."  You and I are totally agreed there.  I'm only saying that if you employ an entire department (or automated software system) to determine the best people to employ in your organization, and one of that department's primary and automatic exclusion policies is having zero tolerance for even the slightest typos no matter what, regardless of context or anything else the candidate may have to offer, you should fire that entire department and hire some human beings who know how to think.

HR people (esp. bad ones) concern themselves with typos.  Meanwhile, when CEOs and other top execs bring in people themselves without the help of a "professional" recruiter, they have more important things to worry about than, say, if the potential hire has a superfluous punctuation mark.
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/21/2016 | 10:28:07 AM
Re: Adding to the problem
Infographic alternatives to traditional resumes can be cool, but (1) they are typically only respected in a small subset of fields (e.g., certain marketing and design jobs at cerrtain companies), and (2) are completely useless for the vast majority of enterprises that use Taleo, Brassring, and a bazillion other auto-trash services to filter people out.  Anything non-standard is ditched.  Innovative and effective communication in one to two pages takes a backseat to 10-page resumes repeating the same keywords and rewordings of the job description to the point of headache-inducing redundancy (or, rather, headache inducing if they were actually read and filtered by a human -- which they aren't until you reach the point where a human is looking at you -- at which point 90% of non-HR human hiring managers don't care too much about resume nitty gritty).
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/20/2016 | 5:17:43 PM
Re: Adding to the problem
@TerryB: My agreement with your points aside, there is also the issue of the automated resume-screening software -- which automatically throws out resumes that don't conform with the software's extremely specific expectations.

It took me years of unsuccessful job searching before I realized that a big part of the reason I wasn't getting anywhere is that my resume used to feature dates first (which used to be the standard way to write a resume) -- and that most resume-screening software works in such a way that where the date is featured first, it automatically disregards the entire job entry.
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/20/2016 | 5:13:22 PM
Re: Adding to the problem
@vnewman: Any form of written/typed communication can showcase one's tendencies to make typos/mispell words/etc..  If that's the best defense for resumes as a key hiring tool, then it's a pretty poor one.

(I would also argue that the occasional spelling mistake should not completely blow a candidate out of the water.  I have seen one of the most brilliant and talented marketing people I know -- and, I daresay, probably the best in her industry -- make occasional egregious spelling and grammatical errors (albeit moreso in personal communications -- not professional).  If your resume is littered with errors, sure, there are some judgment issues there, but one or two probably shouldn't be an automatic candidacy killer except to the HR recruiter desperate for any reason to throw someone in the circular file.  But this is a separate discussion altogether.)



Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/19/2016 | 4:23:48 PM
Re: Adding to the problem
> It used to be that you could use them as a means of assessing their writing skills, but with the advent of resume writing services, templates and downright copying other's resumes off the internet, it's become useless for that.

To which I respectfully reply: So what?

Other than at such a professional resume-writing service, in what job on the planet would you need to be good at writing a resume?

Alas, thanks to automation and "innovation" in the HR/recruitment space, the pseudoscience of resume creation has taken up far too much of most adults' time and energy and does not actually do much to improve hiring efficiency or quality.

I don't care what your resume looks like.  Can and will you do the job well?  Great.  You're hired.

Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/18/2016 | 10:20:11 AM
Adding to the problem
What happens when "inclusive" hiring practices are implemented in the real world is you get candidates scheduled for 3-hour to 6-hour (if not longer) face-to-face interviews -- after already facing a battery of phone interviews with stakeholders (and I use that term loosely) at all levels -- with several different people.  And then again for a second such interview.  Maybe a third.  Maybe more.

And the more hurdles you make your candidates jump over to please you -- and, in this case, EVERYONE IN YOUR DEPARTMENT OR COMPANY -- the more you make yourself a less attractive place to work.  Job hunting is a full-time, er, job.  Consequently, any new barrier you infuse into the hiring process translates to drop-offs in the number of qualified, talented candidates you'll get.  (If "eliminating resumes" -- regardless of the aptitude of the candidate -- is a recruiting department's goal, then that recruiting department is lazy at best, inept at worst.)  If I'm a job seeker, my time is better spent completely avoiding companies like these and instead interviewing with companies that know how to make a consarned decision and don't mind risking "failing fast."  I'll also be happier working at such a company.

Plus: if you have a diversity problem at your company, I cannot imagine asking everyone to agree on one person is going to help.

Respectfully, fie on this.


The State of Cloud Computing - Fall 2020
The State of Cloud Computing - Fall 2020
Download this report to compare how cloud usage and spending patterns have changed in 2020, and how respondents think they'll evolve over the next two years.
Slideshows
11 Things IT Professionals Wish They Knew Earlier in Their Careers
Lisa Morgan, Freelance Writer,  4/6/2021
News
Time to Shift Your Job Search Out of Neutral
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  3/31/2021
Commentary
Does Identity Hinder Hybrid-Cloud and Multi-Cloud Adoption?
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  4/1/2021
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Successful Strategies for Digital Transformation
Download this report to learn about the latest technologies and best practices or ensuring a successful transition from outdated business transformation tactics.
White Papers
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll