THE EVOLUTION OF HIRING, 2018

Large companies are starting to implement “modern” hiring practices, wherein: the applicant submits an application; that application is screened for appropriateness of background and experience for the position that is being sought; the applicant is contacted to stand-by for a telephone call; the call is made; a 20-30 minute conversation ensues; and the applicant, if successful, is offered a job over the phone with hours and salary designated.

No in-person interview; no large investment of time and expense by either the company that is hiring or the applicant.  This has long been an approach that I thought made a whole lot of sense – why waste the time jamming up peoples’ schedules,  both within the company and for those seeking positions, when a wealth of information is available prior to the telephone call and an in-person interview actually adds very little to the success of the process.  And, in a tight job market, the first company to contract with an employee, the fewer slots it will have remaining to fill.  This process works particularly well for seasonal work, as for the upcoming holiday selling period in retail – Macy’s and other firms are making good use of the practice.  But it is also being used for entry-level positions in engineering, information technology, and, even, teachers.  A Boeing Company spokesperson has said that the company is devoted to hiring a diverse workforce “from the most qualified pool.”  She explains that Boeing receives about one million applications per year and that the company uses a “contemporary candidate experience” with the “most current practices in candidate assessment.”  Indeed – there are many ways to pre-qualify a candidate in today’s information environment.  And, new hires can always be given provisional contracts, based on follow-on performance.  One new hire who reported to work after receiving a phone call and a hiring commitment (making it unnecessary for her make a 3-hour trip for an in-person interview) was told that she looked just like the pictures that she had submitted with her application.  Certainly – there are myriad ways to validate a candidate, as well as to continue the person in the company’s employ after hiring.  This is a process to consider as a welcome hiring advantage when attempting to make all those moving parts of a company work together. 

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