How to navigate unqualified applications

In times of the Great Resignation, where a record-high number of staff is leaving or thinking of quitting, there is a high probability that you would lose and retain new employees. 4.3 million workers have resigned from their jobs in the US, which is a continuously growing number since the registered record in April. This ongoing movement of the workforce is all due to the pandemic and the employee’s changed priorities. People want better pay, a more balanced work and life routine and are less willing to commute long hours. They prioritise their well-being and have confidence that there are ample opportunities elsewhere since the job market is in a better state.

Companies who are faster to react to those changes by either adjusting their business operations towards the shifting candidate needs or by responding quicker to candidate’s applications are the ones to gain talent.

While there is a lot of opportunity in times of change, there are also associated challenges such as receiving too many unqualified applications that could eat up your time. In the following lines, you can read why you get unfitting applications and how you can navigate those.

Summary (TL;DR)
It is the Great Resignation and it is likely that you would get even more applications. Many of those would be unqualified. There are 4 possible reasons why you are receiving unqualified applications: your job descriptions are poorly written, you employer branding is weak, your candidate experience is bad and your pre-screening processes could be outdated. Working on those areas could help you navigate those unqualified candidates.

Reasons why you are receiving unqualified applications

1. Poorly written job descriptions

A significant cause for attracting unqualified applicants is putting up not well-thought job descriptions. Unclear and poorly worded job descriptions negatively affect you, the recruiter, and the candidates themselves. A survey with 2000+  participants who are job seekers indicated that if a job posting is sloppy, with mistakes and editing errors, they will not apply for that position. After all, if tables are reversed, would you call an applicant for an interview if their resume was filled with poor and unclear language? Unless you are a giant company, the likelihood of leaving a bad impression with a poor job description is high.

What includes a well-written job description? In a separate blog called “How to write a job posting that attracts talent in 2021?” a couple of rules of thumb to follow when crafting a job posting are highlighted. They are:

▶   Write clear and correct job titles

▶   Avoid lengthy and vague job descriptions

▶  Opt for words that are gender-inclusive/neutral 

▶  Use the broad reach of job boards 

▶  Update your company’s website and the career subpage, as well as your social media channels 

2. Weak employer branding

How you market yourself as a company and an employer is a key component in your HR strategy. Find out what you offer to employees and communicate it strategically through your employee value proposition (EVP). A survey showcased that 75% of applicants are likely to apply for a job position where the employer has a grasp of the importance of employer branding, and he promotes it. 

Even giant companies focus on their employer branding as they’ve realized that they are losing talent. And that is not surprising if you think twice: why would a world-known company giant need an introduction or employer branding? Doesn’t the famous company’s name promote itself in a way? The answer is no, as one can quickly lose talent to other big brand companies in the same industry or others.

So, how do you go strategically about your employer branding? As a start, think about what kind of candidates you want to attract beyond their hard skills. This is particularly important if you are in a smaller company. It is worthwhile to research why employees leave you and why some stay long term. Think about what could attract quality candidates – it could be the excellent remote work conditions and policy or nurturing company culture.

3. Bad candidate experience

Poor candidate experience can affect your employer branding and vice versa. Talented candidates are usually quickly taken, so providing a short and intuitive application process is a must. We’ve dug into the topic in a previous blog and gave you 6 ways to improve and create a candidate experience.

It all starts by putting yourself in candidates’ shoes and understanding what they expect and how to provide that smooth application process.

4. Outdated pre-screening of applications

A survey conducted by Yello indicated that most of the survey’s respondents (60%) think screening candidates takes most of their time. This is a lot of time wasted for manual tasks, leaving less productivity for high-hanging fruits.

What many recruiters do is phone screen candidates as a way of narrowing down the application pool. Needless to say, there are faster and better ways to pre-screen candidates. For example, some good recruiters have a couple of pre-selection questions for candidates while they apply. Or you can have as many applications as you can, not worrying about checking the answers to the pre-selection questions, by using recruitment software to scan all the application pool.

How to determine whether an applicant is a quality one could also be done before the actual interview stage by having a resume reader that scans for personality and skills.

See how you can hire the right talent faster

With the right recruitment technology, you can get ahead and screen the whole application pool in seconds. Whaii Match and Whaii Candidate Report gives you even more than that. They keep the human aspect at the centre when hiring and gives you insights into the personality, values, and culture of each candidate. So you can hire the right match for your job openings.

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