Hiring manager’s hiring challenges

Q: I am a manager of a small IT (information technology) team. I am disgusted at how unprofessional many candidates are when supposedly they are so very interested in a new job. Candidates don’t dress appropriately. All of their answers are filled with “you know” or “like” or other slang terms. I had one candidate refer to me as “dude” in our interview. Here I am ready to hire and I can’t find anyone that understands basic professional decorum. No one sends a grammatically correct thank-you note. And their follow-up is non-existent. And I won’t even mention the texting, checking their phones, etc. during breaks between interviews. Do you see this as frequently as I do? I don’t feel it is my job to coach candidates on how to behave professionally.


P.S. I often post this column on my office door to share with my team members.

A: I can sense your frustration as a hiring manager. You share many valid concerns, many of which I have heard before. I have personally witnessed some of these concerns as well. Let me try to offer some (hopefully helpful) advice to these candidates.

1. Dress the part and then some. What do I mean? Dress NOT for the role for which you are interviewing. Dress how the hiring manager dresses. It is better to be over-dressed than under-dressed. No wrinkly shirts or pants. Good hygiene. Get a haircut. Brush your teeth. Look professional, presentable and enthusiastic.
2. Have a trusted colleague or family member ask you sample interview questions. Be careful of the crutches many of us use. The “you know” is a common one. Especially when nervous, these phrases seem to slip out more frequently. “Dude” is definitely not a noun that should be used to address a hiring manager, ever.
3. Thank-you notes are a must. Make sure that the note is polished and crisp. In some companies, an emailed thank-you note is fine. For more formal companies, I would suggest a type-written mailed thank-you note.
4. Keep your phone out of sight and silent. No one should even know you have a phone with you.
5. Before ending an interviewing (whether in-person or on the phone), a candidate should always ask about follow-up. An example: “Thank you so much for taking the time to talk with me today about the IT Specialist role. I am very interested in this role. What are the next steps? How should I follow-up with you?”


Good luck with your future hiring!

Loading Comments...

Catch up with The Boston Globe for free.
Get The Globe's free newsletter, Today's Headlines, every morning.
Thanks for signing up!
Job Doc
He's a jolly ole' fellow
January 6, 2017 | 9:29 AM
Job Doc
Rejecting Feedback
January 4, 2017 | 12:04 PM
Job Doc
Are you Really Sick?
December 28, 2016 | 10:00 AM