7 Secrets to Speed Through a Pile of Resumes
You've put an ad online or in the local paper to fill an open position or bring in extra help over the holiday season. Now you dread opening your email knowing you'll find tens or maybe hundreds of resumes waiting.
A flood of job applicants can be daunting. But these seven tips, courtesy of Tom Gimbel, CEO of Chicago Staffing firm LaSalle Network will help speed you through the job quickly.
Make sure to do these things:
1. Decide: Paper or digital?
Either option can be efficient, Gimbel says, but not a combination of the two. So if you're a paper sort of person, print resumes out and look through a physical stack of them. If you like digital better, then gather them together in a virtual stack.
2. Do it once a day.
Set aside a specific time for going through resumes. "Spend one hour every day or two times a week, and then do it at that time," Gimbel says. "You have to view it as a task. If you open them as they come in, it's hard to go back and find them again."
3. Pick three criteria.
Instead of trying to absorb each resumes as a whole, pick three essential qualifications you're looking for. These will be determined by the type of job and the type of employee you want for your company. In LaSalle's case, Gimbel says, the three criteria are: a college degree, stability (as demonstrated by long tenure at previous positions, for instance), and how well organized and well put together the resumes itself is.
4. Sort resumes into buckets.
The first bucket will contain resumes that reflect all three qualities you're looking for. The others will be set aside for now. Review the resumes in the first bucket for likely candidates you want to interview. If you can't find any, or only a few, then look through the remaining resumes for candidates with two out of three.
Here are three things to make sure you don't do:
5. Obsess over missing potentially good candidates.
Inevitably, that will happen. And it's OK.
6. Fall in love too early.
"It's easy to focus on the first two or three good resumes that come in," Gimbel says. "Hiring managers get this mental block."
7. Assume you're someone's first choice.
You know how wonderful you are to work for, but job-seekers may not, and if they've sent in an application for your job there's a very good chance they're applying for other jobs as well. So keep in mind that when you offer someone a job, there's a chance you may get turned down.
Thus, Gimbel advises, "The end day for looking through resumes is the day you hire someone, not the day you start doing interviews."
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MINDA ZETLIN | Columnist | Co-author, The Geek Gap
Minda Zetlin is a business technology writer and speaker, co-author of The Geek Gap, and president of the American Society of Journalists and Authors.