About 18 months ago I worked with a candidate who had three jobs in three years. Most every client I presented him to refused to give him the time of day. It failed to matter why the candidate had so many jobs, they simply assumed that the candidate was unstable and would only be with them for one year.

Hiring authorities cover a variety of duties, from appointing personnel to directing and on-boarding new hires, therefore they very little time.  That said, when hiring authorities are presented candidates with questionable work history they rarely give such applicants the time of day.

Now, I know much can be said about a candidate having bad judgment etc. but, the average job in United States only lasts 2.5 years and the average company in the United States only lasts 6.8 years (when I got in this profession in 1973 the average company was 59 years old).

If the hiring authorities inquired further or allowed me to explain they would have come to understand that my candidate, with multiple jobs in short amount of time, worked for two companies that went out of business shortly after being hired.

Importance of Knowing the Right People/Building Relationships

Having been in this business for so long, I’ve developed some relationships with hiring authorities who will see my candidates without a resume, simply on my word.  Therefore, I was able to get the candidate an interview opportunity, in which he was hired.

Did the hiring gamble pay off?

Recently, the candidate called me right before Christmas to wish me a Merry Christmas and let me know, along with his Christmas wishes, that during his employment, 18 months earlier, he had been promoted.  Not only that, he was also the #1 salesperson out of 22 in the company and making more money than he ever had, with another promotion in line!  I would say, the hire gamble not only paid off but was less of a gamble and more of a guaranteed employee who needed a chance.

Moral of the Story: Give People the Benefit of a Doubt

Now, I am not saying that this is going to happen every time. But I do want to remind hiring authorities that dismissing candidates for too many jobs without taking the time to find out why, is both biased towards the candidate and creates a imbalance to your business.

New Normal: Today’s Candidates

Understanding the shortage of quality candidates and managing complicated hiring practices, in a talent pool deficit, it is important to overcome traditional hiring mindsets to maintain a competitive edge.

Three tips to uncover diamonds in the rough:

  • Discover exactly why candidates have left their jobs
  • Perform a thorough job of interview
  • Conduct an in-depth reference check

If you are a hiring authority, take the time to do your due diligence, doing so makes you look like a talent acquisition king/queen, as well as allows for a competitive edge in a crowded market.