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Specialist recruitment expertise

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Call 01489 865200

Ever wondered why CVs seem to disappear into a black hole?

There are substantial barriers for jobseekers with lack of experience entering employment and although there is strong evidence to suggest that the market is improving, it is still filled with thousands of candidates who are unable to find work.

Jobseekers should always be assessed on their experience, skills and qualifications relevant to the advertised role but many apply indiscriminately for jobs that don’t match their skills and experience and as a result employers are inundated with applications from unqualified people who apply for every job posted or only apply so they can justify and continue to claim Job Seekers Allowance (JSA).

The creates a huge problem for recruiters and employers as not only is reviewing every CV on an individual basis extremely time consuming but it is now becoming more difficult to pick out those good quality candidates from those who don’t quite fit the hiring criteria. In many cases, the employer is stuck evaluating them all which often means quality applicants, who are a perfect fit for the role, are missed because they are hidden amongst the poor CV’s with time and effort wasting, sifting through those who should not have been considered in the first place.

Applying to irrelevant jobs topped the list of pet peeves for 1,500 recruiters surveyed by the global leader in online recruitment software, Bullhorn. The survey indicated that thirty per cent of recruiters noted that their biggest turnoff was candidates who apply to jobs for which they are clearly unqualified for, closely followed by candidates who exaggerated qualifications on their CV.We cannot restrict these candidates from applying to jobs but we can look at what we can do to limit the volume of irrelevant applications.

Top Tips

For the candidate

It is crucial to ensure that your CV stands out from the crowd and portrays to the employer within the first 5 seconds that you possess the necessary skills and qualifications for the role advertised. Having a well written and relevant CV will reduce the time employers spend sifting through irrelevant CV’s.

For the recruiter/employer - how you can reduce the number of unqualified candidates who apply for your jobs.

Give a precise job title and accurate job description

Start with a job description that is very clear on the requirements of the position. Identify the core skills and then be sure to specify location, years of experience, education and qualifications. The more specific you are, the less likely an unqualified candidate is to consider applying.

Use pre-screening questions

Even with a definitive job description, you will still have some unqualified candidates applying so the second step is to create screening questions so you can eliminate those irrelevant candidates at the beginning. Most job boards now give you the option to create screening questions which allow you to pose yes or no questions. Questions should be used to qualify if candidates meet one or more certain requirements and multiple choice questions, with weighted answers can be used to score your candidate and eliminate those who don’t score highly.

If you’re looking for some more tips on working smarter and getting better qualified candidates, email

About the Author: Ben Evans is specialist Energy Recruitment Consultant for Fusion People. You can find out more on Ben's LinkedIn profile.

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