It’s warming up, and we’re not talking about climate change.
Job growth is up. And, seemingly overnight, everyone needs help finding outstanding talent.
Cloud computing is back on with a vengeance. (Mobile continues to be a trending platform, but for now, talent has caught up with demand.) Next-generation ecommerce is hot, from beefing up content to adaptive, personalized plays. And we’re seeing a strong investment in image-making roles, from brand positioning experts to visual designers.
As always, just finding great people is a challenge. But now, landing them is tougher than ever.
“Qualified” has taken on a new meaning. Companies have slimmed down, and they're liking their new look. But with fewer people in the mix, the remaining employees are working harder than ever. So no smart company is going to blow a req on a second-tier candidate.
The upshot: companies are digging deeper, testing more—in a word, qualifying. No one can afford the time sink of a bad hire, let alone the extravagant costs. If you're not an all-star, you're not in the game.
More companies are testing candidates' presence, thought leadership, and ability to communicate. In-interview presentations are becoming more common, even for techies. Winning resumes have a new look—think Apple brochure, not Windows 95. You have 30 minutes or less to prove yourself. And, as with American Idol, there are no do-overs.
Passion translates to an upbeat, motivated, idea-generating, kickass doer. Unfortunately, several candidates disqualify themselves here. They just can’t express that they want the job—that they think the opportunity is fantastic. So it goes to someone who can.
Fit. Cultural compatibility matters. A lot. When it comes to a company’s velocity, work ethic, intensity, problem resolution dynamic, and communication style, there's little room for differences.
Even though fit isn't as difficult to test as passion, it takes time to really ‘get’ most people. Sharing lunch and a bottle of wine, or even just taking a walk around the block, are often skipped over in favor of interviewing yet more candidates. So this vital assessment often gets shortchanged—and so does the resulting role.