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5 Reference Checking Failures When Assessing Candidate Fit

fit There seems to be 5 common reference checking failures. Reference checking is critical to building an organization with talent that fits the needs of the company in more than just capability to do the job.

All recruiters and human resources professionals know that it is critical to assess candidate fit based on three key hiring factors. Do they have the skills to perform the job? Do they exhibit the behaviors necessary for success? Can they thrive at the company in their unique environment.

For a particular job, these factors vary under differing management approaches. Exceptional recruiters go through an extensive discovery process before doing any candidate sourcing. They work with a company’s human resources people and the hiring manager to understand the unique culture that makes employees successful at the company.

Effective reference checking is critical to assess ultimate fit of a candidate to perform a role and thrive at a particular company – while meeting contribution expectations.

Reference checking usually fails in the hiring process for one or more of these 5 reasons:

  1. Someone unfamiliar with the job or the factors (above) does the reference checks.
  2. Reference checking is limited only to the names of the people given by the candidate.
  3. Checking references is done at the end of the process, just before making an offer.
  4. References are for a final sanity check of a decision that’s already been made.
  5. Probing beyond the “how long, when, title and salary” information is not explored.

Employer to employer, skills may be slightly different, business processes and interaction behaviors vary as well as the leadership styles that define the environment. These variations make the potential failure risk factors also vary from company to company.

It’s obvious that each employer will have different values and leadership styles. These differences reflect the culture of the organization. Recruiters are trained to identify, understand and tune their search efforts to ensure the best candidate is found for the role and the company.

Hiring managers must also develop effective reference checking skills.

An individual that fits well in terms of performance and behavior at one company may not fit well at another company requiring the same role but where a different culture and style of management exists.

When comparing candidates based on reference input, be sure concerns are factors at your operation. Remember, a good employee at one company, but may not be good at another company – or vice versa.

Professional recruiters like those at Barton Professional Placement Group don’t just recruit to find a resume that fits a job description, they spend the time necessary to discover the uniqueness of a particular search assignment based on the three factors above. That translates into deep screening of candidates to uncover their unique fit for that company in terms of skills, behaviors and potential to succeed and thrive.

As your partner, Barton Professional Placement Group can provide instruction and training for your hiring managers on reference checking. Call us to learn more about how we can help you meet your organizational development objectives through effective hiring. Or, if your organization needs help in understanding the 5 points of failure in reference checking, we are available to help. Call us today.