Down to Two Candidates? Here’s Who to Hire!

You’re in an enviable position:

After weeks of recruiting, multiple rounds of interviews, and countless hours invested in evaluating candidates, you’ve narrowed the field to two top contenders. Congratulations!

How do you choose the right candidate?

You could flip a coin. You could play “eeny, meeny, miney, mo.” You could draw straws.

You could…but we recommend using a more structured – and highly more effective – method for making the best hiring decision.

How to Choose Between Two Qualified Job Candidates

Weigh job skills and experience.

If each candidate possesses the same number of skills/experience required for the position, ask stakeholders (e.g., the hiring manager or immediate supervisor, department manager, etc.) to weigh or prioritize those requirements. When you re-evaluate each candidate based on this new weighted rubric, you might identify a clear winner.

Compare soft skills.

If both individuals check off all the boxes in terms of job skills and experience, move beyond their resumes. Consider which candidate has a better set of soft skills for the role. This post explains how to assess candidates’ soft skills and determine which might be the ideal choice.

Think long-term.

Where is your organization headed in the next five years? How might the new hire’s team or department evolve over time? How well does each candidates’ 3- to 5-year career plan align with departmental or organizational objectives? Which one do you envision making a more positive impact on the team’s future? The answers to these questions may tip the scale in one person’s favor.

Consider culture “add.”

While it’s essential to hire people who are excited about your mission and whose values complement your organization, it often perpetuates work teams’ homogeneity. Instead of evaluating candidates on which one will merely fit better within your organization, consider which one will add more to your culture – i.e., contribute more in terms of diverse thoughts, perspectives, and background.

Conduct a work simulation test.

If you’re still unable to choose, consider administering a work simulation test. These evaluations require candidates actually to demonstrate or perform job tasks. Simulations may be conducted as written tests, role-playing exercises, a computer, or real-life conditions. Once each candidate completes the test, reduce the chance for bias by asking stakeholders to blindly evaluate results (i.e., share only the test results, not the candidates’ names).

Learn more about hiring success:

Breaking Bad…Hiring Habits

Avoid Making These Mistakes When Hiring Employees

Want to hire smarter?

Trust PrideStaff with your search. Using industry-leading technology and best practices, our On Target fulfillment process quickly delivers your ideal candidates – each and every time. With our temporary-to-hire option, you can even try out potential employees on the job before committing to hiring them.

Contact your local PrideStaff office today to learn more.