Why a perfect resume might not be the best hire

Now, when you have been thoughtful defined a position, created a job description and it's now circulating widely, one part of hiring process is done. Great!  

Hope that you are prepared to receive an inflow of resumes and to select the right candidates to invite to an interview.

Resume screening is of the most difficult steps in the hiring process. Each applicant has a different set of experiences and skills. So, it's extremely hard to decide which candidate best match the responsibilities and requirements of the position. It's very challenging part of work for recruiters.


Always give the "Imperfect" a chance

Many recruiters fear that they will easily overlook a brilliant talent in the hiring process. Every good recruiter has his/her own system for reviewing resumes and choosing the most relevant candidates in their interview pool. According to Regina Hartley (human resources manager), you should strongly consider candidates whose resume isn't perfect, but very qualified. Give them an opportunity to tell their story in an interview and you will be surprised. In her Ted talk Regina talks about the choice between a job candidate with a perfect resume and one who has fought through difficulty.

Don't be like most hiring managers who look for candidates with the impeccable resume – elite university education, great internships, and high GPA. Give a chance to candidates that maybe don't have a flawless resume and great recommendations but certainly are qualified for the position you need to fill.


Identify the candidate as a whole

Every resume tells a story. So, if you see a resume of the candidate which attended a state school and has a fair amount of job-hopping, and less appreciated and somewhat odd jobs like a cashier in fast food and singing waitress, don't just discard it. Call that person to an interview and listen to his/her story, ask about the experience and skills he/she has, and then decide if that person is good for the job.  

A series of odd jobs does not necessarily mean that that person is inconsistent, with the lack of focus, or unpredictable. Maybe it's the sign of a committed struggle against obstacles. At the very least, that candidate deserves an interview.


Don't be blinded by a "Ivy League school" degrees

To be clear, getting into and graduating from an elite university takes a lot of hard work and sacrifice. But people whose whole life has been engineered toward success often don't know how to handle the tough times. In practice, it often happens that candidates who attended an elite university just don't want to work on certain assignments that were beneath him, like temporarily doing manual labor to better understand an operation. Eventually, that person quits the job and you have to defend yourself to your boss for a bad decision. At the other side, when person which whole life is destined for failure actually succeeds in the job you gave them, they will be good for the company you work for.

For example, you have in front of you the resume of the guy that never finishes college and whose parents gave him up for adoption. He job-hoped quite a bit, went on a sojourn to India for a year, and to top it off, he has dyslexia. Would you hire this guy? His name is Steve Jobs.

History is filled with people whose paths were non-traditional and spotty. Many of them failed numerous times, rose from humble beginnings, and now are the leaders of successful global organizations. Don't forget, people who have overcome difficult circumstances, often bring a sense of passion and purpose to business situations that lead to success.