Redefining quality talent

September 22nd, 2021
HireVue Team

Hiring the workforce of now

In the past, sought-after job candidates typically had narrow education and/or work experiences that fit squarely into well-defined open roles. But as the world of work changes rapidly, there’s a growing disconnect between the bullet points on many candidates’ resumes, and the skills needed to succeed in a new job. Today, candidates may even apply for jobs that, five years ago, didn’t exist yet.

One reason for this disparity is the increasing need for skills such as communication, problem-solving, and digital literacy, which are usually not taught in traditional educational programs. Another contributing factor is the laundry list of requirements listed on many job posts, despite the fact that the jobs themselves have become much more broad and flexible than they used to be.

So how do hiring teams close the gap between what they see and what they need? It all starts with redefining what they’re looking for in the first place.

A new surge in talent migration

For years, forward-thinking organizations have focused on reskilling their workforces for the future, especially in sectors experiencing the most technological disruption, such as travel, print, and retail. 

But in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s been an even greater surge of people leaving a line of work they know to start over somewhere new -- leaving hiring teams scrambling to meet competitive hiring demands, all while trying to figure out how to source, attract, and assess talent in new ways.

McKinsey predicts that by the year 2030, between 3% and 14% of the global workforce will need to switch occupational categories. Some of those categories will call for skill upgrades; but for others, workers already have the required essential skills -- they just need to be identified, and applied in new ways.

Potential > Past

Traditionally, hiring teams attempted to uncover candidate competencies through a combination of resumes and interviews. But resumes offer a very limited amount of information by which to judge a candidate’s abilities. Alma maters, test scores, and past work experiences may reveal little to nothing about a candidate’s future potential.

Instead, it’s more critical than ever before to look at the competencies that predict success in a new world of work. Here are 3 qualities to look for when defining what quality talent means now:

1. Ability to learn quickly

Increasingly, employees are being asked to become more digitally literate, to work with data and analytics, and to work side by side with bots and AI. But those are skill sets that recruiters may or may not find listed on resumes.

In a study conducted in early 2020, Oracle and Future Workplace found that between the years 2018 and 2020, the number of workers who used some form of AI at work increased by 32%. That number will undoubtedly continue to climb. 

2. Soft skills

According to future of work expert Jeanne Meister, collaboration, cultural IQ, and emotional intelligence will be the skills most needed for future roles; and the industry or job a candidate has worked in previously may have no bearing on whether or not they have these skills.

The right set of soft skills - or what Meister calls “power skills” - allows teams to innovate, solve problems, and execute ideas, while technical skills can be trained.

3. Ability to work independently

Today, just as important as being a team player is the ability to work independently. Many industries, like hospitality and entertainment, are inherently unable to operate with a remote team. But for those who can, the future is hybrid. In these sectors, many employees find themselves working for organizations based in another city, or maybe even another country.

In these industries, the value of a workforce that can manage time efficiently, and complete tasks and projects with little to no supervision from a manager, cannot be overstated.

Matching existing competencies to emerging careers

So how does a recruiter know whether or not a former restaurant employee has what it takes to become their newest account executive? And a better question may be: how do hiring teams assess hundreds or thousands of these candidates at a time?

While resume bullet points are self-reported, interview automation tools like HireVue Builder take a scientific approach to discovering quality talent, and give hiring teams the ability to assess at scale.

Using predetermined, job-related competencies, HireVue Builder provides interview questions, and evaluation guides for any role, at any level. The outcome is consistent evaluation for job-related attributes, reduced unconscious bias, and a faster time-to-hire -- not to mention, better quality decisions in a world where job descriptions can change quickly.

By using skills assessments, hiring leaders are able to collect a more diverse set of data from candidates, while considering both hard and soft skills. By identifying job-specific skills that translate to success in a given role, for thousands of candidates at a time, recruiters can confidently prioritize candidates faster and more effectively.

Need help planning for your workforce of now? Download HireVue’s Guide to Hiring When Hiring Is Hard.