As an HR professional, I am sure you are very aware of the long and arduous process of finding the perfect candidate to fill a position. Reading resumes, going over applications, checking in with references, interviewing, running background checks and so on are tasks that take a long time and keep you from focusing on other important responsibilities. It's a long process and we all wish we didn’t have to do it so often. Depending on the level of turnover at your company, some might be doing this more often than others. Is there a way to make this process easier? Does focusing on entry-level candidates help the process? Many employers believe that hiring experienced professionals is the smartest thing to do because they don’t need as much guidance or training, they have already worked in professional settings, and they know what they need to do in order to get things done in a timely manner. Whatever the reason may be, employers tend to prefer hiring experienced professionals rather than entry-level professionals. What employers need to realize is that there are many pros to hiring entry-level candidates over experienced professionals.
According to mercer.com, 92% of employers surveyed expect an increase in the competition for talent this year. This makes sense because according to the National Center of Education Statistics (NCES), 1,830,000 students will graduate with a bachelor’s degree this year. It is important to keep in mind that there have been many lawsuits recently about possible age discrimination. According to mercer.com, the issue is whether the word “employee” in section 4.a.2 of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) excludes job applicants from protections. With that said, hiring managers should focus on hiring more entry-level candidates rather than staying on the safe side and focusing only on experienced candidates. The following are some of the benefits of hiring entry-level candidates.
They Require Less Experience
Entry-level positions are called that because they require less, if any, experience in the field. Entry-level jobs allow employees to gain experience while getting paid. As for the company, these jobs help the company accomplish certain tasks that experienced employees don’t want or shouldn’t be doing on a daily basis. Usually, the requirements for these positions are designed for individuals that are just beginning their careers, such as high school and college graduates. Because these type of jobs require less experience, they require a lower wage. This doesn’t mean that you should pay your entry-level employees unfairly - they, too, deserve a good pay. However, since experienced professionals have acquired new knowledge over the years and past jobs, they want to get paid accordingly. Entry level professionals often just want a stable job and an opportunity to expand their resume, gain knowledge, and build their skill set. Because of this, they will often take whatever you offer them. What’s more, it can be difficult to teach an old dog new tricks. By that, I mean experienced professionals can be set in their ways. Fresh entry-level employees can be molded to exactly how you want them to be and you won’t have to worry about retraining the new-hire to better fit your business practices.
They Are More Competitive, Therefore More Productive
Most upper-level positions require time in the field, and that time must begin somewhere. Entry level positions allow employees the time to gain the experience and skills needed to seek a more advanced position. Because entry-level positions are open to a broader group of job seekers, they tend to be more competitive. When more than one entry-level employee is hired, they usually tend to want to stand out. They want to be noticed by their managers in hopes of moving up in the future. This motivates them to work harder and better, which is good for the company, but in return can potentially cause burnout. Keep an eye on your entry-level hires and keep them from burning out. Encourage them to work hard, but also to have a good work-life balance.
They Have New Ideas
When someone is fresh out of college or new to an industry, they tend to want to show off their knowledge and skills. They are more willing to research and look at things differently than someone who has been in the same industry for many years. Young, entry-level professionals are usually more in touch with the outside world. Because of this, they know about new technology, new jargon, and simply look at things from a different point of view. If you have an internship program, that is a perfect way to hire entry-level candidates. Let your program act as a way to draw those candidates to your company!
If you are considering hiring entry level candidates, I encourage you to read this article that shares tips for hiring entry-level employees. I also recommend using an Applicant Tracking System to keep track of all your applicants as it can be very beneficial. An Applicant Tracking System is a software feature that allows the HR department to handle all of their recruitment needs electronically. Dominion’s Applicant Tracking System allows you to customize and match the software to meet your hiring process, view candidate’s qualifications at a glance by flagging important questions, gain important hiring information such as the average amount of time it takes to hire, turnover percentage, rejection reasons and more.
If you are not currently using an Applicant Tracking System to streamline your hiring process, request a free and personalized demo below!