Getting Piles from Sorting Resumes

The piles I’m referring to is not the type that cause anal discomfort, it’s the “Yes,” “No,” and “Maybe” piles that result from sorting through tons of resumes before we engage in the interview process.

When you think of it, we make our go/no-go interview decisions based on the quality of the writing in a resume along with what we read. In many cases what we are reading is a well-written fabrication, a skewing of the truth so to speak (or write). Some resumes are a masterful exercise in creative writing. Whatever, it gets the person the interview.

There has got to be a better way and that better way is to assess candidates early in the hiring process.

Studies have shown that companies who use an assessment early in the hiring process end up interviewing a better quality of candidate. So why don’t more companies use a pre-interview assessment with all their candidates? The answer is painfully obvious — it’s too expensive to assess everyone.

An alternate approach is to be selective in who you assess.

You still need to go through the aggravation of developing piles (the paper ones). Then either test everyone in the “Yes” pile or re-sort the “Yes” pile into mini-piles and assess smaller groups of candidates until you have enough people to conduct a series of interviews, usually 5-8 people if you’re lucky.

When you do this, you may lose a few good candidates from your “Maybe” and “No” piles but don’t sweat it. You can always go back if you run out of Yesses.

What assessing the “Yes” pile does is eliminate those people early in the process who would be cut later when you finally did the assessment, but with one big advantage. Unbiased decision making. Companies who use an assessment late in their hiring process have generally fallen love with their candidate by that time and tend to ignore unfavourable assessment results.

The key? Only assess those candidates in your “Yes” pile, but test early in your hiring process, preferably prior to the first interview.

The result? By using a sales assessment early in your hiring process, you’ll end up with a better-quality candidate, a lot less wasted time, and a stronger sales team.