4 Ways to Impress Your Job Applicant

  • By Mark Ridgeway
  • 10 Jul, 2017
Job applicants and first impressions

Quite often, a job applicant’s first impression of your organization is formed during the hiring process.

There are hundreds of articles on the web about how applicants should present themselves to prospective employers. But perhaps we should take a minute to consider the inverse: as a business or hiring manager, what kind of impression are you making with job candidates?

Much like a first date, both parties should be respectful enough to show up with their A-game if they want the relationship to move forward.

Over the past few years, the job market has stabilized and good candidates are harder to find; with the best candidates receiving multiple job offers.

So how do you get these employees to choose you over your competition?

1. Be on time, and prepared

If the candidate is late for the interview, that sends a big message to you about their priorities. Likewise, if you are late or unprepared it leaves the candidate questioning how important this meeting is to you. This sets the tone for the rest of the interview. Don’t wing it, have their resume printed and a list of questions ready.

2. Dress appropriately

Going back to the dating analogy, how would you feel if you dressed up for the occasion but your date showed up in gym clothes? Businesses in general are more casual these days, but remember, you are the first impression…

3.Eliminate Distractions
Ever gone to lunch with someone that is on their cell phone the whole time? It makes you feel like you aren’t a priority to them, doesn’t it? Someone told me recently that they were being interviewed for a senior level position at a bank. The hiring manager stopped the interview three times to respond to text messages and they were interrupted two more times with co-workers knocking on the door. Needless to say, she was very underwhelmed with the company and went to work elsewhere.

4. Communicate
The hiring process may be part of your everyday routine, but it’s not for the candidate. Make sure you explain what is next in the process and give them a timeline.

And if you are running a background check, don’t assume candidates know how this works. Explain the process, the role of technology, what they will need to do, how they will be kept informed and how to get their questions answered.


A background check is filled with personal information. Reassure your candidate about electronic data security and confidentiality of the information within your organization.

Like that first date, you may not fall in love with each other, but you WILL know by the end of it whether you want to see them again.

First impressions come from both sides. It’s not just the candidate’s role to convince you they are right for the position. In today’s competitive job market, business owners and hiring managers should remember that they also need to sell the applicant on why they should choose to work there.

The CHC Blog

By Mark Ridgeway 19 Jul, 2017
As a business owner or HR professional you've been there: you’re at the tail end of a particularly difficult hiring process and you’ve finally found the right candidate for the job. It’s easy to say, “Phew! Glad that’s over,” and move forward with finalizing the details.

But before you do, you should really consider ordering a background check on your candidate of choice. Integrating a background check policy can really benefit and protect your company. Here are 5 reasons you should always run a background check:

1. Stronger hires = Saving Money

Don’t just rely on your “gut feeling.” The more you know about the candidate, the better you will be able to assess if he/she is a fit for the position and for your company. Talent acquisition is a struggle in nearly every industry, so make sure that you’re not cheating yourself out of any of the available information before extending an offer.

It’s important to point out that better hires often means less turnover. We know that turnover is typically the number one cost to employers. Save yourself from investing in the wrong employee for the job.

Aside from turnover costs, as was stated in a previous blog post Who Is Stealing From You , we know that upwards of $50 billion annually in cash and inventory is stolen by employees. Does your job candidate have a history of taking extra "perks" from previous employers?

2. Safer Work Evironment
Running a background check on potential employees before officially hiring them can aide in reducing workplace violence. As an employer, you’ve made a commitment to your current employees to operate a safe work environment. Don’t skip this important step in ensuring that safety.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI), of the 4,679 fatal workplace injuries that occurred in the United States in 2014, 403 were workplace homicides. However it manifests itself, workplace violence is a major concern for employers and employees nationwide.

3.  Better Compliance in State & Federal Regulatory Requirements
A third-party background screening provider with in-house compliance expertise, can help your company properly create a screening solution. This not only satisfies your industry standards, but also state and federal regulatory requirements, which vary from state-to-state and by type of position you are staffing. Utilizing a partner that is a true expert in this field is important for the success of your company.

4.  Decrease the risk of being sued
Making a bad hiring decision can leave you and your company vulnerable to liability. Ordering a background check can help you find patterns in a person’s history. For example, if a potential employee has had multiple discrimination suits against them, you as an employer may be liable should the employee discriminate within your workplace. Being able to sort out candidates with these issues will help decrease the chances of a lawsuit.

5. Verifying Resumes
Does your candidate have the experience they claim? Do they really have the education and the professional licenses that are listed on their resume? A survey from CareerBuilder  of more than 2,500 hiring managers found that 56% have caught job candidates lying on their resumes.

Background checks can help you weed out the people that do not have the skills for the job. It also can help you verify that the candidate’s resume is valid.  Don’t leave yourself vulnerable to these discrepancies.

Requesting a background check for a prospective employee is perfectly within your rights as an employer. These background check reports can hold vital information that is relevant to your hiring decision. You wouldn’t choose to not gather all of the relevant information when making a different business decision, so don’t skimp here either. Take the time to do your homework and you’ll see the results!

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