This is a guest post by Ross Statham of Dogwood Services Inc. In a previous post, Ross shared the top three reasons to hire an executive search firm, and offered his expert tips for ensuring a productive partnership.

HR icons

© everythingposs – depositphotos.com

Want to tackle the hiring process yourself? Here are some suggestions for how to proceed, though keep in mind that the top talent will rarely respond to job postings.

  1. Allow sufficient time. My own experience has been to allow two or more hours per day (minimum) for 2-3 weeks.
  2. Determine the salary range, daily duties, and a brief overview of desired qualifications.
  3. Ask for help. This could be from your HR department, from subordinates, or from others on your team. They could help you write a good job description, help you better communicate with candidates and help you to find and select better talent.
  4. Setup someone you trust (HR, a member of your team or subordinate) to do some of the heavy resume filtering before handing them over to you.
  5. Post your job opening. But as noted above, don’t have the resumes come to your work email (which can be overwhelming), have them go elsewhere for filtration.
  6. As the resumes arrive to you, toss out those who obviously won’t make your cut. Those who are a “maybe” can be sent a (form email) note thanking them for their interest, and spelling out some details of what you are looking for and painting a realistic picture of the job. Many people can be filtered out this way, saving you additional looking.
  7. If you need to perform a software “scan” for key words again (perhaps using a Boolean search), now’s probably a good time to do so. This is particularly helpful with technical positions, when you’re looking for details of what they’ve done and when.
  8. At this point you’re starting to see where some resumes are starting to meet your needs by putting eyeballs on the ones that get your attention. Save these; if you think it appropriate, you can put their names on a spreadsheet (such as Google Sheets) with notes.
  9. As your eyeballs scan resumes, look at their last three jobs. How long were they there? What did they accomplish? What were their daily duties?
  10. If they continue to hold your interest, drill down from “scanning” to reading. Look for obvious negative and positives. Red flags may include employment gaps, evidence of decreasing responsibility, a career that has flattened or is moving in the wrong direction, short-term employment at several jobs, and multiple shifts in their career path.
  11. Continue to review your selected resumes against your criteria and each other.
  12. Found someone you like? Look them up on LinkedIn and Google them and see what you can learn about them.
  13. Telephone screen potential candidates.
  14. Bring in strong candidates for a face-to-face.

Again, you need to ask yourself if you really have the time. If so, then have at it! But if you’re like most busy executives, using an experienced outside expert will tremendously shortcut the process which will save both time and money. Most importantly, it will help you find those harder to find talented people who rarely respond to job openings.

This post originally appeared on Bill Jaffe’s blog at http://blog.federalsmallbizsavvy.com/stages-of-growth/finding-talent-in-a-flood-of-resumes/ and was reprinted with permission.

February 4, 2020
HR icons

Finding Talent in a Flood of Resumes

Want to tackle the hiring process yourself? Ross Statham of Dogwood Services Inc. offers his suggestions for how to proceed.
January 28, 2020
handing folder to colleague

Three Reasons to Hire an Executive Search Team

Why your best talent will usually need to be recruited (reached out to) by someone outside your organization.
August 20, 2019

Following Up – Not Just For Sales

Everything we do has an element of sales to it: if we want someone to do something for us, or buy something from us, we must sell them on the idea.
July 9, 2019

Leading by a Legendary Example

We at TAPE salute Nelson Mandela as a great visionary. As his birthday approaches, we are proud to share these leadership lessons.
May 21, 2019

Working Through the Lean Times

In lean times, leaders look for the light. We will find what we need to find, within ourselves as well as outside of ourselves.
March 28, 2019

Secret of Success: Luck or Perseverance?

Throughout her military and private sector careers, TAPE CEO/President Louisa Jaffe learned to start every effort by defining success in advance.
February 26, 2019

Leading From Values

At TAPE we focus on keeping the customer’s mission at the center and at the heart of all we do, and it’s important that we apply this value as a leadership tool.
January 28, 2019
woman listening with her hand cupped to ear

Listening is a Leadership Skill

Being a good listener allows us to identify really outstanding ideas that may be game-changing concepts. We might miss these new ideas unless we are really listening.
January 2, 2019
woman at crossroads

Playing to Your Strengths and Delegating the Rest

"Delegation is about making room on my plate and helping you do the same for all of us to share the load." - Louisa Jaffe, TAPE CEO/President
October 23, 2018
Photo of a woman taking notes

Building Business Relationships, Part Two – Following Up and Following Through

After making a positive first impression, the next most important thing a person can do is follow up. TAPE CEO/President Louisa Jaffe shares her thoughts.