How To Deal With More Than One Great Candidate

 In Business

Recruitment is all about finding that perfect candidate, but what happens when we end up with more than one? Every now and then, an effective recruitment process gathers multiple suitable applicants, any of which you would love to hire, but unfortunately only have one position.

While this is a good problem to have, it can be a situation where we miss out on strong talent that could be valuable down the line or even currently in a different section of the business. So how do we address it?


How to Handle Several Excellent Applicants


  • Find a Lateral Position – Often we find applicants who seem like excellent organisational fits but due to a slightly better applicant, they miss out on the position and you miss out on a potentially valuable employee. When you have situations like these make sure to keep in mind any upcoming or other current  positions you will be hiring for that may match the candidate’s skill-set. Furthermore, communicate this consideration to the candidate. This will keep their job seeking mentality engaged with your organisation and potentially line up a strong hire down the line.
  • Talent Pooling – Building off the last point, even if you have no other positions available, communicate your own positive feedback to the candidate in terms of their application performance and their strong fit and ask to keep their details on file in a talent pool. While this is not revolutionary, this is often just used as a way to mollify disappointed candidates, but if managed correctly can over the long-term, build a database of already positively-screened candidates as your first port of call for future roles. Additionally, a strong Candidate Management System, such as Scout, is invaluable in the process of building these kind of pools.
  • Keep them on in a Project or Contract Basis  – An additional approach you can take is to consider outsourcing work to the promising individual on specific projects or for a particularly busy period. This has the double effect of keeping them engaged with a presence in the organisation for when a role becomes available, while allowing you to examine their on-the-job performance. While many candidates may not engage such a proposal, the individuals who are exceptionally motivated to join your organisation will often seriously consider such an offer, and relish the opportunity to get their foot in the door.


Now while this may seem a best-case kind of problem, it still is a problem. Recruiters need to be ready and possess the tools to track and manage human talent as it moves around their organisation. By building a positive connection with all candidates through strong candidate care and considerations like the above, you can streamline your recruitment to not only make current applicants more valuable, but build your employer brand positively within the market.


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