Sourcing Potential Job Candidates

By Carla Fulton, SPHR

Is the job market today filled with unskilled, unreliable slackers unqualified for job postings?

Increasingly it seems, many applicants don’t follow directions on job postings, are no-shows for interviews, don’t return telephone calls and will even accept a position only to say, at the last minute, they have gone to work somewhere else.

This type of behavior is leading prospective employers, especially those in small businesses, to conclude that the applicant pool in this job market is filled with not only unacceptable candidates, but also with candidates that have no work ethic.

So although you might think that this is just prevalent among younger or less experienced workers, l you would (could?”)be wrong. Unfortunately, such behavior is pervasive across all age groups and compensation levels.

Employers may schedule interviews with a number of candidates, and then find that at best, only one or two will actually show up for the interview. Furthermore, the others don’t even bother to call to inform the employer they won’t be coming.

So why is this happening? Employers may be partly to blame for the uncaring attitudes that applicants may share. Historically, the hiring manager or the human resources department has failed to acknowledge applications, and in some cases, do not get back to the applicants even after they have had a face to face interview. Perhaps now the applicants are following suit!

In an survey conducted by CareerBuilder, 75% of the candidates surveyed said they never heard back from an employer after applying for a position. Sixty percent said they went on an interview but were never informed that they had not gotten the job.

The most frustrating candidate behavior for employers is the applicant that has accepted the position and then fails to show up on the start date. Some will send an email at the last minute stating they have accepted another position; and unfortunately, the employer may never hear from some again.

So what is the lesson learned for employers? The old adage, treat others as you would like to be treated may apply here. Respond to applicants, inform the candidates that have been interviewed and not received a job offer about the decision to extend employment to another candidate. Conduct entry interviews with the new hires regarding the positives and negatives of the selection process and alter processes and communications as appropriate.

Also, be sure to inform a candidate if a background check result may lead to an adverse employment decision regarding employment. Candidates must be provided with information about information obtained during background checks that may lead to a decision not to offer employment and must be offered the opportunity to explain the circumstances that may mitigate the potential negative employment decision.