As the end of year approaches, employers set out to hire long-term, full-time employees to kick off the new year on a strong footing. The average job listing attracts an average of 35 applicants in Malta and therefore, it is important to have a solid plan in place to streamline applications and pick the best candidate for the position you’re looking to fill. Below are just a few recommendations from industry specialists that will ensure you pick out the crème de la crème of your field.

Evaluate your needs

Before you release your call for applicants, it’s important you put your needs into perspective. Keeping your requirements in mind will help you write out a thorough job description to help narrow down potential candidates. Although seemingly daunting, this process will help you streamline applications before you even receive them. A scarce job description will cause you to receive irrelevant applications that will cost your hiring manager their time and, as a result, your company money. For this reason, it is important that you sit down with your managerial team and assess the needs of your company, as well as the ideal candidate you seek to find through the recruitment process.

Keep your budget in mind

On rare occasions, the perfect applicant will present themselves to you. Of course, with talent, come exuberant wage requests. Whilst some companies may have the budget to employ such individuals, it’s perfectly fine to recognise that yours might not. In fact, it is essential. Every successful company establishes itself through a disciplined financial budget. Careless overspending, inevitably, creates a domino effect: employing workers you cannot afford will lead to cutbacks in other areas which might, consequently, lead to an unhappy workforce, and therefore cause a number of resignations. It is important you streamline applications and turn down applicants that do not complement your financial scheme. Instead, dedicate your leftover budget to training individuals who show potential and express a craving to learn.

Look out for soft skills

Whilst qualifications are important to fill your position adequately, soft skills are what make people good at what they do. Soft skills, in fact, are interpersonal traits that you acquire through social cues. These traits are what make your candidates emotionally intelligent and capable of working in a group environment. Hiring an individual that has strong social skills will prove to be a great asset to your team. Most applicants will not spell out their soft skills in their resume, but these will shine through as you read the ‘Objective’ and ‘Volunteer Experience’ categories. Soft skills should also be looked out for during the interview process, as the personality of the candidate will come out through their mannerism and behaviour. Soft skills will help you streamline applications when you’re stuck between two highly eligible candidates. You can learn more about soft skills in our earlier blog post.

Go beyond the resume

Releasing a call for applicants will see a large number of resumes coming your way but, whilst indicative of an individual’s skills, resumes alone will not cut it. The first step to streamlining applications is filtering out the resumes which do not suit your criteria. Once you have a substantial amount of valid applications, we suggest you invite the applicants in question to pay a visit to your office. A good way to assess a potential employee is by observing how they carry themselves in social situations. An interview is also a good time to pose your applicants with an ability test. This is a task that assesses the skills of your applicants with regards to the position in question. If you’re on the look-out for a journalist, for example, you might ask your applicants to write a short article pertaining to a series of fictitious scenarios.

Besides this, we also recommend you take a good look at an applicant’s social media profile. Although you are looking for a skilful individual to fill your position, you should also be searching for a person who satisfies your brand’s values. A social media profile says a lot about who the applicant is and how they carry themselves outside of the office so it doesn’t hurt to pay it some consideration during the final stages of recruitment.

Take your time

On average, companies all over the world take an average of 51 days to hire an applicant. Whilst you might not require such an extent of time, we highly suggest you take your time to streamline applications. At times, the first call for applicants might not attract the individual you’re looking for; if that is the case, we recommend you release a second call. Once you have a list of potential applicants at hand, we suggest you take your time with the interview process to ensure you’re confident about the person you want to hire.

When looking to fill in a position of a certain calibre, interview callbacks are a must. These interviews see some applicants called to the office up to 3 times before a final decision is made. These additional interviews are more commonly utilised to clarify information or to put a specific trait to the test.

Don’t stop at hiring

Once you’ve hired the employee of your dreams, you may be tempted to sit back and let your company run itself, but we urge you not to get too comfortable. Make sure to follow your new recruit throughout their first weeks at your company to monitor how well they fit in and how efficiently they get work done. If for some reason, it doesn’t pan out with your recruit, we encourage you to get back on the playing field and look for the employee you truly deserve amongst the 50,000+ candidates in our database.