How to Choose Between a Couple of Strong Job Candidates

Using an IT recruiting agency is an excellent way to find great employees. In fact, the results are so good that you may find yourself having to choose between two really strong candidates. As far as issues go, it’s not the worst one to have, but you are still going to have to make a difficult decision. 

But how do you choose between a couple of strong job candidates?

Determine Their Drive

How much do they want this position? Does working for your company excite them? 

An IT recruiting firm will bring you excellent candidates, and you can then hone in on what is driving them to your company. Ask them why they want to work for you. See who is more passionate about your company and look for the candidate who will bring that passion and drive to work every day.

Check Their References 

Speaking to their former employers can give you a better understanding of their work personality. You can ask pointed questions about how they adapted and enhanced the work culture. Most candidates will have good references, but speaking to them directly can give you a useful perspective. 

Evaluate Culture Fit versus Culture Add

When faced with two strong candidates, many companies and hiring managers historically ask themselves, “How will this candidate fit into our culture?” 

Yes, you want to hire a candidate that will mesh with your team. But just looking at cultural fit limits the diversity of thought you bring to your organization. A cultural fit focuses on finding someone who will easily adapt and adopt your company’s values, attitudes and processes.

Looking at the two candidates as a culture add changes your perspective. A culture add as defined by OV Blog is “The likelihood that someone will not only reflect the company’s values and professional ethics, but also bring an aspect of diverse opinions, experiences, and specialized skill which enhances not just the team, but the overall company culture.”

Diversity of thought brings about discussion which brings about innovation. Think about what your team needs now to reach its fullest potential.

Introduce the Candidates to Your Team

Introducing candidates to the employees they will be working with can be a great way to gauge rapport. Asking your employees for feedback can give you valuable insight as well. After all, since they are the ones who will have to work with whomever you choose, giving them a say almost always ensures the successful candidate will fit in. 

Review the Data

Don’t rely just on memory. Review your interview notes again and look at the data on these two candidates. Go back to your Outcome-Driven Job Description and prioritize the most important tasks for this position. Review the short term and long term goals. How did you rate each person right after the interview in regards to those goals. Looking at those notes, how does each candidate fit into the long-term plans for this role and your company?

Yes, after you review the data, sit back to see how you feel. However, most studies will tell you not to go with your gut. But if you have a strong feeling, diving into your notes and the data will help you discover why you feel that way. We tend to pick people because of personality and likeability rather than their ability to perform on the job. Reviewing your notes in a practical way will help you combine the two.   

Meet Again

Don’t be afraid to reach out and meet the candidates again to get to know them better. This next meeting can be more casual and allows you to focus on any areas you are unsure about. Without having to cover so much, you can dig deeper into their skills and capability on the topics you want to learn more about to help you make your decision.

This next discussion can give you a deeper sense of fit and what they might add to your team to strengthen it. 

Hire Both

If you’ve completed this list and both candidates still excite you and you have the budget to do so.  Hire both! It’s hard to find excellent talent and especially for very hard-to-find skill sets. If the decision is that tough, you don’t want these two candidates to get away. See if there is a way to bring them both on.  If you don’t, the next time you’re looking you may not find them again and you will be sorry.  

Looking for an IT Recruiting Firm?

Want to have the problem of too many great IT candidates ready to join your team. We help companies in Toronto and all over the country find the IT talent they need to create a winning team. 

We assist starting with the Outcome-Driven Job Description throughout the entire hiring process. And unlike the majority of the industry, we do it at a flat fee. Contact us to talk about how we can help build the team your workplace needs.

For  more valuable articles on hiring the best IT talent for your team visit our Ultimate Guide to Hiring Executive Tech Talent.