The Right Stuff

Every day we look at people’s resumes to see if they have the right job skills for positions we are trying to fill. Do they have Salesforce experience? What about a pharmaceutical background? Have they ever had any direct reports?
With so much focus paid to a candidate’s work experience, where do their people skills come into play? When is it more important for someone to have good communication skills as opposed to a particular talent? Do hiring managers ever hire someone based on their interpersonal skills instead of experience?
It all depends on the job says our team of Recruiters and Client Support Specialists.
“Soft skills are important for any role, but I think it does vary greatly depending on the job,” explains our Tech Recruiter Steve Svenda. “A person in a more technical role who is going to be coding and developing would not likely need to have the same level of soft skills as someone in a position like a Project Manager or Business Analyst, whose main responsibilities depend on clear communication, liaising and interpersonal skills in order to be successful.”
The length of the job also is a factor.
“If companies have a need for a quick project, they should hire someone with the exact job skills for quick delivery,” says Caitie Winters, another member of our Tech Recruiting team. “For longer-term positions, I think hiring managers should be more open to hiring someone who might not have the exact job skills, but is fantastic and willing to learn.”
A company’s attitude about hiring also comes into play.
“Companies have to determine what is most important for a specific job,” says our Client Support Specialist Lisa Mellott. “If they have the time and desire to train someone for a particular role, a company might be more apt to hire someone who is less qualified but has a willingness to learn. If they don’t have the time, a company might just go with the person who skills are the best fit.”
However, if companies want to create a positive work environment, they need to pay attention to a candidate’s communication skills.
“Skills such as the ability to work with people will create a healthy environment and the ability to communicate effectively will reduce mistakes and confusion within the workplace,” Lisa explains.
In addition, if a candidate has skills plus personality, it’s a win-win.
“Being a team player with a nice disposition is important,” our Tech Recruiter Mary Jane Adams believes. “If this comes through during the interview, a hiring manager will see the candidate as a double asset. Strong technically and personality-wise.”
In the end, there is no right or wrong answer as to what is more important hiring wise.
Steve sums it up best.
“At the end of the day, nobody is perfect. If you think someone can perform and is a good person, hire them. If they’re the right fit, the rest will come.”
30 Years of Excellence