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TOOLS: How To Make a Portrait Of An Ideal Candidate And Why You Need It

TOOLS: How To Make a Portrait Of An Ideal Candidate And Why You Need It

The recruiter's arsenal has a ton of tools that help you quickly close positions. Today we tell you about one more, which, incidentally, migrated to HR from marketing. To find someone, you need to understand in detail who we are looking for. Meet the portrait of the candidate.



Candidate's portrait: what is it?


The candidate's portrait is an image of an ideal employee thought out by a recruiter. This term has something in common with another that has long been used by marketers - a portrait of a customer. With it, companies determine their ideal target audience and develop a sales strategy for it. But for HR-specialists, such a tool helps to focus on hiring "the right" employee. Industry research and statistics, recent trends, and even unofficial data are used.


For a result, you need to pay attention not only to the resume, work experience, and professional skills. It is worth feeling the spirit of the team and its values, and only proceeding from this, derive soft skills, career goals and other elements of the portrait.



Why is it necessary?


Most recruiters use this tool unknowingly - from time to time the image of the ideal candidate arises in their imagination. But few people transfer this image to paper. And very in vain! It is worth detailing your ideas in a notebook, sorting them out a little, and the search process will improve significantly. And also it will help with this:


  • create and publish vacancies

  • work with employer branding

  • find passive candidates

  • keep hiring statistics


The biggest advantage is that a well-designed portrait of the candidate allows you to look at the vacancy through the eyes of the applicant. As a result, you know what a potential employee wants, where to look for him and how to get along with him.



Step-by-step instruction


Although creating such a portrait takes time, the process itself is not very complicated. The work can be divided into three stages:


  • data collection

  • determination of the general qualities of successful candidates

  • final portrait modeling


We will analyze each of these stages.


1. Data collection


Forget about stamps. Getting to the collection of information, try to abandon the templates and unfounded assumptions. For example, do you think that introverts are ineffective in communication? Why? Maybe this is just a common myth? Remember that the best portraits are the result of an analysis of strict facts.


Learn successful cases. When marketers create a portrait of a customer, they are first acquainted with the latest market research data. Recruiters should take the same approach, with the only difference being that they will have to focus on examples of successful hiring.


Take a look at the resume of the best performers. There are a lot of channels for obtaining such information. You can start with a simple one - ask those who work in the right field. For example, you need to find a PR manager. See a summary of the managers you hired in the past. What are their similarities?


Look for statistics and ask colleagues. Maybe you can find information on the performance of top PR managers. Find out from professionals who work in such a position, what qualities make them successful, what kind of KPI they have in their work. Consult with colleagues who have experience in this area - what if they have something to share?


It is important to remember that although you are displaying a single portrait, many different people walk in front of you. Therefore, the more information you collect, the more elaborate the image of the candidate will be.


If you work in a specific field - for example, in IT - it is good practice to collect portraits of candidates depending on the position or direction of development. Over time, your developments will become more detailed and will serve well more than once.


Here are a few characteristics that you should pay attention to when maintaining a recruiting base:


  • Demographic information: age, place of residence, current position, salary and salary expectations.

  • Background: education and professional experience.

  • Qualification: basic and preferred skills, availability of certification, etc.

  • Objectives: what career does the candidate seek to build, where he sees himself in 5 years.

  • Obstacles: what can cause a candidate to refuse, what features of a company's brand, its corporate values or the hiring process can push him away.

  • Web activity: how a candidate spends time on the network, which sites or social networks he uses for leisure, and which for work, which sites he will choose to search for vacancies.


This is how a card from your database might look: it remains only to enter the information received. Of course, this list is very conditional. You can adapt it to your needs by adding and removing some items.


2. determination of the general qualities of successful candidates


When you have collected the data, you need to organize and analyze it. So you can highlight trends and bring out features that are common to real professionals. At this point, your portraits will begin to take shape.


The goal here is to make a list of qualities and features that form your ideal candidate. For example, for one of the blog articles, we interviewed HR specialists and found out which soft skills developers need. Based on the results of the frequency of responses, an image was made - the more important the quality, the larger the font:


This is how you can approach portraits in different ways. So different ways you can approach the composition of the portrait. When you display an averaged portrait, ask yourself the following questions:


  • Have you noticed that successful candidates have something in common in their professional experience/worldview/ career progression dynamics? What exactly?

  • What skills are indispensable for your ideal candidate?

  • What is the motivation for the ideal candidate?

  • How does an ideal candidate see himself in 5 years?

  • What does the ideal candidate expect from his work environment?

  • Where and how is your ideal candidate looking for a job? And is he looking for her at all?


Answers to these questions will help conclude the applicant, who will best fit into the position being closed. By the way, you can go from the opposite. Do not forget about your negative experience: which candidate is not suitable? Who for one reason or another can't cope and is likely to quit the job?


3. Final portrait modeling


At this stage, you need to collect all the details in one puzzle. It is important to remember that you are making a portrait, not a job description. No need to think in a list of duties - imagine a living person and how he will fit into the team. Be realistic: make sure that the person described can exist, and not be the result of your imagination. If you overstate the requirements, there is a chance of not finding anyone. Over time, you will have a whole library of portraits, this will make the selection process more efficient and optimized. Adjust your base from time to time - professions do not stand still, new skills and challenges appear.


Perhaps you are already using such a tool? Share your experiences and secrets with us and colleagues!