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    Insight Into the Recruitment Process: Filtering Out the Best

    The executive recruitment process is one like no other, and businesses can ill-afford to leave room for error during it. It’s important to match candidates accurately to the job requirements in order to identify the perfect match.

    The right executive requires a blend of skills, background and experience in order to perform well. Candidates should be skilled in specific areas, in order to deliver the best possible results.

    The recruitment process needs to be tailored and focused in multiple stages, identifying key skills before honing in on specifics. However, such attention to detail can sometimes be overlooked during what can be a time-consuming process, leading to an age-old square peg/round hole dilemma – without the right candidate, you simply won’t find the right fit.

    Recruitment approaches

    The UK recruitment process typically falls into one of three approaches on a ‘pyramid’ of techniques – each with different success rates in pinpointing ideal candidates. At base level sits the traditional, standard interview – a face-to-face opportunity to discuss a candidate’s CV and work history.

    Level two features a more robust approach, including competency-base questioning which challenges the candidate, transferring their on-paper experience to a real-world setting. By tailoring questions to meet the role description, it’s possible to gain a greater understanding of a candidate’s skills and expertise in a particular field.

    In spite of all this, there still remains a possibility of not identifying precisely what you need to know. In reality, a top screening process is needed in order to find the best possible candidates.

    Filtering the candidates

    Recruitment can be considered a filtration process – start out with a large selection of candidates, and sift through the numbers at each stage of the process. Like any filtration process, the more meticulous the steps are, the purer the end product. Although this can be a lengthy process, indentifying a linear, management-friendly process encompassing the tools needed to identify an ideal candidate without prolonging the process is the key. For many, the use of assessment centres is the solution.

    Executive assessment

    Although using assessment days as a recruitment tool is nothing new, their focus has primarily been on the entry-level recruitment sector, or industry-specific sectors. They are often used to assess large numbers of graduate-level candidates when recruiting for a number of roles, a common practice across certain industries. In the executive arena, assessment days can be used to provide employers with a unique opportunity to see whether candidates have the required skill sets prior to making an offer of employment. From presentations and one-on-one interviews to general observations and conversations during coffee breaks, assessment days provide much more scope than traditional interview processes.


    Assessment days are not always a feasible choice. Consequently, the traditional interview remains vital for recruitment. However, there are numerous ways the process can be fine-tuned in order to create greater returns, by adding ‘filtration’ levels in order to find the perfect candidate.

    One of the most important factors involves attracting the right people to the interview stage in the first place. It’s important not to simply rely on the candidates to come to you – the best candidates are not always looking, or might not realise what’s out there, so it’s up to you to make them aware.

    Without an in-house recruitment team, it can be beneficial to appoint a recruitment partner to provide you with the edge in a competitive recruitment market. A specialist with experience and knowledge of your sector can save you time and money.

    Interviews and selection

    The way you process candidates reflects on your business – ensure candidates are dealt with efficiently, providing them with a window into your business practices. Getting the interview process right is important, and requires a certain amount of preparation. If your experience of recruitment is lacking, consider training and support – there’s nothing more important than choosing the right talent for your business.

    Recruitment: do it right

    Mistakes are easy to make, resulting in lost opportunities and costs to business time. Applying simple filtering processes can prove invaluable, separating your ideal candidate from the masses and providing true results. Fundamentally, the process of executive recruitment takes time – don’t do it more than you have to.

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