CWS 3.0: August 29, 2012

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Getting the Candidate You Hired

Several contingent workforce program managers I have talked with have said that one of their biggest  current challenges is “candidate validation”: making sure that the candidate whose résumé was  reviewed is the same person who is phone screened or is the same applicant who took the technical evaluation — or better yet, is the same person an offer was extended to.  How and why does this happen?

Why does this happen? Many of these buyers believe suppliers of staffing services inflate a candidate’s experience to get him or her in the door. Some suppliers will have other more experienced and technically savvy candidates answer questions during a phone screen. And some hiring managers have noticed that the résumé they are looking at does not align with the person they are screening. Or they are getting different responses in person than they did during the phone screen.  It stems either from the suppliers’ wanting the customers’ business or the candidate taking liberties to get a job.

The fact is there are no excuses. Regardless of whether the candidate is engaged or not, there is the implication of fraud. The consequences for both the supplier and the candidate could be severe.

The policy of requiring staffing professionals to interview each candidate in person should still be the case. During my days on the staffing side, we not only had to validate their experience, but be able to provide examples of where they used it, how long they used that particular skill, etc. Suppliers should still be doing this. Many times the account manager also wanted to meet the candidates to make sure they knew who they were representing.  I realize that our contingent workforce world has changed. It moves fast, requests come in through a VMS, résumés need to get presented quickly, you have certain numbers you have to hit regarding submittals, interviews, etc.  BUT all of the best metrics of a supplier will be forgotten when a buyer questions either their integrity or the integrity of the candidates they bring in.

Every contingent workforce program needs good staffing suppliers, suppliers that work with them and every supplier needs good CW programs in order to be successful. Remember, every candidate who is presented to a hiring manger is a reflection of both the CW program and the supplier, so make sure you know who is representing you. You don’t want to win the battle just to lose the war.

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