Candidate referencing: 360 and beyond

Maybe we're mildly amused that people over-exaggerate their CVs to get onto The Apprentice, with at least three instances of candidates trying to pull the wool over Lord Sugar’s eyes in recent series.   That’s entertainment.  In the real world it can be less than amusing to discover that a new senior recruit has fictitious information on their CV and embellished their experience during the interview process. It could mean that they are not genuinely equipped with the necessary experience or skills to perform in the role. 

Increasingly, 360° reviews provide reassurance that self-reported achievements and capabilities have been accurately represented.  Evidence from independent sources ascertains that you really have identified the right person for the job.  Whether the objective is to benchmark shortlisted candidates against each other, or to perform due diligence on a final candidate, taking references above and beyond those listed on a CV can reveal aspects of personality and performance that would otherwise have remained undiscovered until later – possibly when it’s too late to avoid a mistake.

Discovering shortcomings in a preferred candidate isn’t necessarily a show-stopper.  The individual could still the best person for the role and you can work with them to enhance the areas which have been identified as needing development.  Knowing in advance which areas need to be addressed can positively impact on successful  on-boarding and make creating a personal development plan more efficient. It helps you to proactively help the individual to succeed in their new role from day one.

When you’re investing in hiring, that extra spend on referencing not only offers reassurance, it also provides clues for engaging with your new hire in the often tricky period between job offer and commencement date.  Working on a personal development plan and creating enthusiasm around a tailored on-boarding programme during the notice period might just prevent the onset of second thoughts, or susceptibility to better offers.  It sends all the right signals to the new employee, demonstrating commitment to their long-term career in your business.

For more information on candidate referencing or to discuss Executive Search and intelligence please call Jane Kirk on 07775 927 223 or email [email protected].

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