How Super is Your Pre-Employment Screening Process?

I often say to business owners that “they hire for skills” – these are the hard skills you see on their resume- “and fire for attitude” – these are the things you don’t see in your resume including behaviors, what drives a candidate or soft skills like how they get along with others and how they communicate.

I also say they hire too quickly – have you ever hired a warm body because you really needed someone and they turned out to be horrible? They also fire too slowly – they have the devil I know syndrome,  the pain of not having someone in the position and fear they will hire someone worse.

There must be some better way than just an interview –which by the way a Michigan University study showed to be only 14% accurate in selecting high performers.

Enter pre-employment screening divided into these categories:

·       Intelligence focused on how quickly someone can learn

·       Benchmarking what the perfect person would look like in their behaviors, motivators and soft skills leading to behavioral interview questions and assessments of candidates to see how they match. We use Devine and Target Training International.

·       Hard skill testing including computer skills, multi-tasking and job specific skills like benchmarking

·       Background checks like drug screening, criminal issues, resume verification (make sure you know the laws)

When you hire, you should base your decision on three things equally.  The first is what they have accomplished which is most often seen on a resume.  The second is the interview: how do you think they fit with the culture.  Here is the place where your gut rules.  The third is your prescreens. If a candidate doesn’t match in 2 out of the 3 or if the prescreening reveals things that are deal breakers, we usually don’t suggest you hire them. 


If you don’t have a hiring process that includes prescreening, you are rolling the dice based on your interview and the resume alone.  Find a group who can help you with the last third of your decision process.

Andrew Jacobs