In recruitment should you sweat the small stuff? The answer is emphatically yes. During a recruitment project candidates can reveal a lot about themselves by small things which otherwise might be seen as insignificant, but really reveal a huge amount about the candidate’s approach to work and life generally.  Here are a few tips:


  • Monitor how quickly candidates get back to you. I never hire candidates who are tardy in responding to emails or phone messages.  If they do that when they are applying for a job chances are that they will do it when they are hired.
  • Give big brownie points for little civilities. Candidates who thank you for your time in interviewing them, for instance, or who promptly send an email after an interview expressing their interest and gratitude.  Very gracious stuff which is a good indicator of likely future behaviour.
  • Ask your receptionist whether the candidate was friendly towards them. Do you really want to hire someone who is gracious to senior people but dismissive of or rude to people they perceive to be of lower status? When a candidate leaves our office, my first action is to go to the staff member who greeted them to ask this question.
  • Watch their behaviour when you get to offer stage. How often do we see a candidate who has been easy to deal with and responsive during the recruitment process become difficult and inflexible when they perceive that they have got the job? This is a bad sign for the future.


Of course, you can avoid guessing by psychologically assessing every candidate before you hire them.  Click here to find out how.  What key indicators have you picked up through experience?  Post a comment to let everyone know.


Andrew Marty
Managing Director

Did you know you can subscribe to the SACS blog? Head over to our Blog page and enter your email address to be kept up to date!

Andrew Marty