By Jim Wong, CPA | March 25, 2013

There are many factors to consider when interviewing a job candidate. Typically you have less than an hour to create a first impression and decide whether or not the person should move on to the second stage.

Add to that, according to Mashable, the average employer may receive upwards of 100 applications per job opening!

With that many applications, it’s important for hiring managers to look beyond the resume. Business2Community contributor Jeff Adelson-Yan suggests asking these questions:

  • Which team will the candidate work on?
  • How are their specific skills going to balance and help that team become all they can be?
  • How is their experience going to help shape where the company is going?
  • What personalities will they work best with?

“Too often we assume everyone will work well with whomever we put them with,” says Adelson-Yan.

He suggests designing teams based on individuals’ strengths and weaknesses to increase productivity and output. “If there are several highly analytical and detail oriented thinkers, perhaps they need a person to drive the bigger picture and think about the creative execution,” he adds.

He offers some ideas to recruit and retain top talent.

Think Outside the Box
Don’t just focus on what the candidate might possess as far as their skills and experience. Think about the personality traits which are beneficial to the role, suggests Adelson-Yan. He uses an example of a candidate who has an analytical background even if it’s not in the exact field for which you are hiring. “You can teach someone software; it’s considerably harder to teach them how to think,“ he adds.

What Does Your Company Offer?
It’s important to find out what a prospective employee can offer to a company, but what can said company offer them besides salary and benefits? People are interested in more than just money. They want a place where they can grow professionally and contribute to a fun workplace.

Continue their Education
Education is constant and never stops, especially in today’s digital age. There’s always a new tool or something to help your company be more efficient. Adelson-Yan suggests hiring managers offer free online courses or even just webinars as a way to continue their education.

Implement Peer Interviews
Once the hiring manager interviews the candidate, have the people they will work with also meet and interview them. Let their peers assess how well a candidate will fit in with their team. “People who are in the job every day and know what it takes may see something you do not,” adds Adelson-Yan.

Set the Bar High
Companies not only need to fulfill an employee’s personal growth goals, but also should challenge them to be even better. Set the bar high for employees. If you don’t, you risk having employees who feel like they aren’t well-utilized and it will ultimately hurt the team and company’s success.

As the economy improves, it’s critical to hire and retain top talent. Job candidates want a good salary, career development, and new opportunities. They want to feel challenged, included, and valued so look at what your company can do for their career development and create opportunities to attract and retain top talent.

This article originally appeared on Clear Focus Financial Search.

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