We all want to hire the best talent possible. Unfortunately, recruiting and hiring is not an exact science, and less than qualified candidates can squeeze through the cracks from time to time. This can happen for a number of reasons:

  • You are in a rush to hire
  • Candidates aren’t completely forthcoming during the hiring process
  • You need to improve your screening process to eliminate unqualified candidates

Screening candidates can be a giant task. Depending on the position you are looking to fill, you could have thousands of applicants, and we all know you have limited time to work through these applications and separate the best candidates from the rest of the pack.


The screening process often involves 2 key activities – reviewing resumes and conducting phone interviews. These activities help to narrow the field and establish who you should call in for an interview. Therefore, getting these steps right is very important to finding the right candidates and making the most efficient use of your job interview time.

Here are 4 screening tips to help you find the best of the best:

  1. Have a detailed job description

Having a detailed job description and job ads will help ensure you are attracting the right candidates for the position. Be specific about the type of skills and experience you require, and provide as much information as possible about the position.

  1. Know exactly who you are looking for

Amid the pressure to fill a vacant position and meet hiring deadlines, it can be easy to overlook one very important factor – Who are you looking for? Knowing what your ideal candidate looks like will make it easier for you to assess potential candidates. Have a list of must haves and deal breakers to help you define your ideal candidate.

  1. Include skills testing

Skills testing is a great method for assessing and comparing candidates who look very similar on paper. There are many different software programs that can be used to create these tests. Send them out to the candidates you have identified as potential phone interview candidates.

  1. Ask the right questions during phone interviews

You have hundreds of questions you could ask a candidate during a phone interview. It’s imperative that you use that 10 minutes or so to not only learn more about the candidate, but to ensure they are a good fit. How do you do this? Focus on the deal breakers – make sure they have the required skills and experience, have salary expectations that are reasonable, and have the ability to start working within a reasonable time frame.


Here are some more insightful articles that will help you refine your recruitment and talent acquisition strategy:

How an Effective Talent Acquisition Strategy Can Transform Your Business

Are Talent Acquisition and Recruitment the Same Thing?

What’s Involved in a Successful Talent Acquisition Strategy?

Felicia Smith

Felicia is the manager of human capital solutions at AugmentHR. With over six years of recruitment experience coupled with multi-faceted HR roles, Felicia is an expert in matching people with the right role and environment. She has worked in many different industries, including investment banking, HR consulting firms, medical, and commercial. Understanding people is one of her strengths, and she has recruited at every level, from directors, project managers, and engineers to operators and general labourers. Her ability to network and develop relationships has been a key tool to her success. With approximately two years of experience managing people and creating a positive work environment, Felicia’s diverse skill set makes her a well-rounded individual. Her business education and background help her identify different business needs and human capital solutions.

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