When the labor market is tight, finding the top talent you need is increasingly challenging. Most skilled professionals – the A-list candidates – are already working elsewhere, and they might not be actively seeking new opportunities. As a result, you might feel you have little choice but to hire a B-list job seeker if you want to fill a vacant position.
However, going with a second-tier candidate is rarely a smart move. While they might have the right amount of experience or a reasonable skill set, they might not have the ability to achieve the results your company needs to thrive. For example, maybe they lack recent relevant accomplishments. It is also possible they seem like they could excel, but their major achievements are all tied to team-based projects, leaving you uncertain whether they were responsible or merely riding the coattails of a true A-lister.
Luckily, there is an alternative to hiring B-list candidates. If you are struggling to find talented professionals for your vacant positions, here’s who you should focus on instead.
The Candidate With Potential
If you can’t find a genuine A-list candidate, your next best bet is to hire a candidate with potential. This could include a less-experienced professional who is quickly rising through the ranks. Alternatively, this could be a job seeker who is a top performer in an adjacent field or industry but is just now trying to enter your arena.
Candidates with potential are frequently overlooked because they don’t look like an ideal fit on paper. However, these job seekers are usually highly motivated and ready to learn. They understand there may be a bit of an uphill climb but are actively looking forward to that journey and feel completely prepared to conquer it.
In many cases, a candidate with potential has all the right soft skills, some of the required hard skills, and an amazing amount of drive. As a result, they are primed to be molded into an A-lister for the role, and can often rise to the occasion, reaching full productivity shockingly fast.
The Benefits of Hiring a Candidate With Potential
While selecting a candidate who might need to develop their hard skills seems like a bad move, it can actually be beneficial. If you have a strong training program, clearly documented processes, and can make a mentor available, a candidate with potential can get up to speed very quickly. Plus, along the way, they will learn your preferred method of doing things, so you don’t have to worry about breaking any bad habits.
Additionally, a candidate with potential can be an outstanding value. Job seekers with less experience or those making a career change don’t often command the high salaries you might have to offer a traditional A-lister. This can make paying for training and giving them a little time to reach full productivity more affordable, essentially making the candidate an excellent bargain and long-term investment.
Ultimately, in today’s tight labor market, opting for candidates with potential when A-list professionals aren’t available is a better choice than hiring a B-list job seeker. If you would like to learn more or are seeking exceptional candidates for your vacant positions, the team at CPS Recruitment can help. Contact us to speak with one of our recruiters about your hiring needs today and see how our recruitment expertise can benefit you.