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Ideal Candidate Profiles in Recruitment: What You Need to Know

Assessment | June 20 2018

Step 1: Job Analysis

For an organisation to meet its goals effectively and flourish in the modern marketplace, it must have clearly defined functions or roles. A job analysis identifies the tasks or activities involved in performing such functions and the human attributes needed to successfully execute these tasks. A job analysis, aligned to an organisation’s strategic goals, provides the basis for writing job descriptions and specifications. Carried out prior to personnel selection, a job analysis helps to select employees who best fit a role, enabling organisations to then leverage employees’ potential through development.

Step 2: Ideal Candidate Profiles

The process of job analysis usually involves analysing and detailing the duties of a certain role and the knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics (KSAOs) that are needed to perform that job successfully. An ideal profile is the set of KSAOs that top performers share in a specific role, that should be ideally be based on data and not only subjective interpretations of the employees themselves. During recruitment and selection, candidates can be benchmarked against an ideal profile to help managers make more informed hiring decisions.

Step 3: Maximising the Benefits of Your Ideal Profile

The right assessment methods are needed to maximise the benefits of having an ideal profile within a recruitment context. For example, when recruiting sales personnel, CVs and interviews may not be sufficient to accurately identify all the other characteristics that you would need to define in your ideal profile, especially drives and motivators of a person that are pertinent to their success. Thus, an ideal profile can be maximised by using a profiling tool that measures critical traits essential for sales success.

Employees who matched the ideal profile at the selection stage, brought in more revenue at the beginning of their employment, and outperformed others as they gained more experience.

Coupled with a reliable and valid profiling tool such as the Trait Sales Profiler, an ideal profile ensures better prediction of job success and provides a robust defence of selection processes. This is because a valid job analysis is aligned to an organisation’s strategic goals and an ideal profile should answer the questions of why a job exists and the activities involved in meeting those goals. Finally, having an accurate ideal profile based on precise data helps differentiate between closely matched candidates and hire candidates who will perform better both short-term and long-term, and are likely to benefit from training quicker, ensuring quicker progression.

Step 4: Calibration

Since organisations exist in a dynamic external environment, they are under constant pressure to innovate, improve results and gain competitive advantage. To keep up with such rapid changes effectively, organisations must review goals, introduce new ventures, change structures and processes, adjust personnel numbers, etc. At any point in the lifecycle of an organisation, change is a given, and such change will have an impact on the demands of existing jobs which may have an effect on job performance. Depending on the intensity or amount of change occurring in roles, ideal profiles and profiling tools may also need to change to remain valid, relevant and prevent stagnation.

The next step to maximising ideal profiles relies on capturing change as it happens. Data collection and HR data analytics can provide real-time insights into business performance which can help organisations identify areas where improvements are needed, trends in organisational behaviour and potential gaps in employees’ talents, giving them a competitive advantage. If the changes in jobs and job performance are collated and analysed, existing ideal profiles and profiling tools can be adjusted or calibrated to better suit the needs of an organisation. In this way, smarter decisions can be made for recruitment, selection and development. Calibration is, therefore, necessary for organisations to grow and tackle the challenges resulting from an ever-changing environment and ensures that personality assessment becomes tailored to a specific organisation’s needs, increasing in the value it has to the business.

Next Steps

Contact us to gain more information about personality profiling, building and leveraging your ideal profile and taking your first steps towards calibration. Click here to find out more about our Trait Sales Profile tool.

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