When trying to hire qualified candidates, performance-based hiring is becoming more and more important. Testing for technical skills as well as behavior and personality is all necessary to predict whether a candidate will be able to perform well in their job.
Companies like Google and Facebook are evaluating their candidates before bringing them on board. Google and Facebook have the right mindset. What exactly are they doing and how are they doing it?
According to this Forbes article, recruiters are focusing more on behavioral questions in the interview process. For example; any question that begins with “ tell me about a time...” can tell recruiters how candidates will react to different circumstances. Situational questions are meant to determine what the behavior of the candidate will be in regards to everyday tasks of the job. Those questions also give insight into managerial styles and personality.
Evaluating for technical and behavioral skills is done best behind-the-scenes. What do I mean by “behind-the-scenes”?
Picture having multiple candidates competing for the same position and, you, as a hiring manager being able to see with your eyes what they are capable of doing technically and how they do it before you decide to bring them in for an in-person interview.
To break it down, here are three features of performance-based hiring:
1. Determine Behavioral Skills
As more and more iGens are entering or about to enter the job market, recruiters are worried. Much is discussed on the internet about whether or not younger job candidates have the skills and values that the older end of Gen Y and Gen X grew up with. You see it and hear about it all the time. They are entitled, lazy, lack manners in some cases and are not just inexperienced for the jobs they are applying for, but inexperienced in many life skills. As someone in a position to search for job candidates who possess the right skills on a daily basis, you know exactly what I am talking about. Behavioral skills are just as important, if not more so than technical skills. After all; you cannot teach important soft skills such as leadership, empathy, problem-solving and negotiation skills (just to name a few) as easily as you can teach MEAN Stack, B2B sales, UI/UX, or SEO.
When candidates work on a project (created by you or your hiring manager) they are essentially competing to get brought in for an in-person interview. Several hungry candidates are given the task of working on a project as part of the screening process.
Unlike with resumes, job boards, personality tests, phone interviews, or anything else you can think of, you will gain the most insight when watching candidates over a 2 week period working on a task similar to what they will actually be doing if they get the job. You will be able to determine the following things through their experience and interactions with others:
Leadership skills - Is someone taking lead on the project and making sure it gets done? You can see which students stand out from the rest through their messaging and interactions with other candidates. Additionally, you will be able to see if they offer assistance, guidance or anything else that puts them in a higher caliber of candidate.
Communication skills - Communication is the most important behavioral skill someone can have. If a candidate cannot ask for help or clarity on a project, they will fail to add value to your company. You can see what level of communication candidates have while working on projects. Are they constantly reaching out? Are they reaching out too much or not enough? The most important thing to remember is that these skills translate into any position that they end up receiving.
Receptivity Skills - Do they take criticism well? Throughout the project you can determine how they not just communicate, but if they are receptive to other candidates. These candidates might be competing for the same position, but at the end of the day, poise, composure, and results are what matter. In no other setting, can you determine how receptive a candidate will be during the screening process?
2. Determine Technical Skills
Jobs that are more technical in nature should require testing. Whether it be in engineering, design or finance, there isn’t a set procedure in place to accurately test for these skills. Some companies have resorted to analytical questions to determine if a candidate has the right IQ for the job, or they look at their portfolios. These have been proven to be ineffective for many reasons, but mostly because someone with a high IQ may not always have the technical skills relevant to the position.
Likewise, a candidate with a good looking portfolio is not a bad start, but it is not always a great indicator of ability proficiency that your role requires of them. Essentially, you are not finding the most appropriate candidate that you possibly can.
Upon assigning projects to qualified job candidates, you can see for yourself what their skill sets are. Working with your hiring departments, you can tailor the projects or quick challenges to capture the essential duties and technicalities that specific role calls for.
By testing for the needed technical skills, you will not just find people you KNOW can do the work they are hired to do, but you will see how they do it, how long it takes them, if they bring something new to the table, and if it was a struggle or not. All of this is possible through observing their progress and results via tools that are easily accessible on both sides - yours and theirs.
3. Determine Cultural Fit
Cultural Fit gets talked about a lot, but it is a really important topic. Culture is your company’s DNA and every person you bring should add to bettering and improving the atmosphere. Even if you found someone that can do the job, or has the right behavioral skills, will they fit with what you already have going on?
This is among the hardest things for you to determine as a recruiter: Do they have the right attitude? Mindset? Do they believe in your company’s core mission and values? It’s hard to determine if someone will add to your culture solely through knowing their skill sets, and that’s why through performance-based hiring you can see if the potential job candidate has the right personality and characteristics over the period of a project.
It takes time to get to know people, and it will be more cost-effective to take the time to get to know them (at least well enough to reduce risk) before they get brought in to interview. Performance-based hiring can give you a glimpse into those answers well before you even begin the interview.
As more and more younger candidates are also looking for mutual fits with companies, focusing on creating the best screening and onboarding process will benefit you as well as your next hire. Let us say your candidate checks all the marks in a traditional interview setting, then gets brought in and after about 3 months you decide they are "not the right fit” after all. This is probably due to the fact they didn’t check the box in either technical skills, behavioral skills or the cultural fit.
Prevent this from happening, sign up for a demo and let ProSky help you implement performance-based hiring today!