A good working relationship works both ways. It’s why, when you head to an interview, you’re assessing the person (or people) on the other side of the desk as much as they’re assessing you. It’s why, before you even make it that far, you’ll both have put your best internet detective skills to work. And why, even sooner than that, you need to have a good idea of what you’re looking for – so nobody’s wasting anybody else’s time.
It’s all professional, of course – but it’s not a million miles away from the way we meet romantic partners. Dating in 2021 is full of snap decisions, online snooping and perfect (and imperfect) matches. It works best when you know what you want before you start. And so it is with looking for a new company or a new candidate.
With that in mind, we’ve pieced together this guide to cover best practices when looking for that special someone – in the recruitment process, that is. You might be a candidate looking for a company or a company looking for a candidate… In either case, we can show you what to look for, how you should come across and how to ensure you are making the right choices.
Let’s get started.
Company seeking candidate
Employers, you’re likely looking for a candidate who is creative, has a great personality, fits into the current company culture and has a fresh range of interests to bring variety to the team. So, what better way to look for this information than through the candidate’s social media profiles?
LinkedIn is the obvious first search – commonly known as a professional network, LinkedIn is the most likely place you’ll find out more about a candidate, their experiences, achievements and sometimes even their personal activities. This is a great way to get to know them before an interview or even before deciding if they are a good fit for the company culture.
But why stop there? If you can find a candidate’s personal Facebook, Twitter or Instagram profile as well, you can really get a handle on who they are, what they are posting and how they behave outside of that carefully curated professional setting. All good to know before you make a decision on them joining the team.
So, what should you be looking for? We’d recommend eight main areas in which to review candidates – and social media will often give you an insight into all of them. Look for:
Planning and organisation skills
Attention to detail
Eagerness to learn
Strong written communication
Passion and commitment
Teamwork and interpersonal skills
Candidate seeking company
Job-seekers – the company is asking lots of you, but are you getting everything you need from the exchange? If you read the above, you know just how much a prospective employer will look into you. You should be doing the same.
Glassdoor is an excellent tool for any candidate trying to understand more about a company’s culture and how it functions. Like most things on the internet, take it with a grain of salt (you may find negative reviews from hard-done-by employees or too-good-to-be-true positive reviews secretly crafted by the company itself). But Glassdoor is an extremely powerful platform to help you ensure you are going to be joining a good business and to get a benchmark for what to expect from that employer. Listings even include details on diversity and inclusion, among other things like size, where the headquarters are located and salary bands.
Another important platform to use when starting a recruitment process, as mentioned above, is LinkedIn. You can use this tool to look into the CEO, other directors in the business and whoever will be interviewing you to learn more about them. This way, you can understand company values and see whether you match with the company culture and direction.
Finally, there are many due diligence platforms available such as Company Check, Duedil or in the UK, Companies House, where you can check the financials of an organisation as well as incorporation dates, credit risk and sanctions – some of which might come in handy in the interview, depending on your role.
So, what should you be looking for? Here is a checklist of the eight main areas a candidate should consider when researching a potential new employer. Try to tick off:
Leadership (a CEO that prioritises talent, for example)
Diversity and inclusion
Seamless onboarding experience
Get out there
Hopefully you have found this guide useful for preparing you for what’s to come with your new employee or employer. Should you have any recommendations of other smart actions to follow to best set yourself up for success through the recruitment process, please feel free to share.