Three tips for recruiters to identify poor workers before you place them.

As a staffing professional, a client is trusting you to identify the potential candidates who will demonstrate strong performance in a given role. You’re given a lot of responsibility and are a key player in the hiring process. As you are often the first line of defense against a poor hiring decision, you’ve got to craft a way to identify the low-performing workers.

Your cutting edge staffing software will help you track candidates, organize who’s who, and identify which worker is best for what job. At that point, you still have to weed out the undesirables, the unqualified, the cultural miss-matches, and the chronically poor-performers before they ever get the chance to enter your system as a potential candidate. Here are five tips for identifying under performing workers:

1) Ability to meet goals. First and foremost, you need to know whether a worker is able to complete tasks in a timely manner. Take a deeper look into their portfolio of work or the tasks they were charged with in a past position. Were the responsibilities given to this person on par with industry standards? Next, you have to determine if the person under or over achieved due to unfair standards set at that company or personal failure. This can sometimes be hard to do, but with questioning it is possible. Always check references, and don’t be afraid to ask probing questions of those references.

2) Responsible with communications. How well does the individual interact with you over the phone or in person? While a bit of nerves may be expected and forgiven when interacting with a stranger (depending on what industry the person is in), the inability to communicate effectively is often a deal breaker in an employee-employer relationship. In addition to checking a person’s skills when talking over the phone or emailing, you will also have to ask yourself if they are responsible communicators. Does the person get back to you within an acceptable amount of time? Does the worker spell your name correctly or even remember to use a proper salutation? These are critical skills in the workplace and employers want to be able to trust their workers to handle simple phones calls and emails without direction.

3) Proper attitude. When you have decided to evaluate a potential worker for a position, how did they react? Are they courteous and confident, or are they rude and inept? The right attitude in an evaluation and while completing everyday tasks is important. A client is going to want you to identify a worker who will seamlessly integrate into the corporate culture, but still not be afraid to speak up if there are improvements or strategies that can be developed.

As a staffing professional, what methods do you use to identify who is going to be a strong and productive worker or a potential problem in the office? Some professional recruiters have a system in place, while others rely on a gut feeling. Are you using any technologies, like your recruiting software, to help your make your decision on who to show to a client? 

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