Employing seemingly “Over Qualified” candidates

5 years ago

There is no doubt that there are currently far more job seekers than vacancies. Here at Cummins Mellor, we are constantly receiving applications for positions where the candidate would appear to be vastly overqualified.

We ask, “is it a mistake to employ someone in a role which is offering less seniority and pay than they have held in the past”?

Without a doubt, the common fears in this scenario are:

  • Will the candidate stay in the role?
  • Will they be open to management and direction?
  • Is my own job at risk?

Getting to the heart of why the candidate is applying is key. Is it to fit in with the demands of family life? To cut down on stress? Perhaps they were promoted a step too far into a more demanding role and wish to regain the feeling of performing successfully again?

Don’t automatically disqualify an over-qualified candidate, they probably will not simply leave when a better offer comes available, they may well stay and bring considerable value to your business.  Ask open questions to find out what is motivating their application, probe how the candidate can add value to the role, where they see themselves in the future and consider how you can accommodate this in your organisation.

It is important to understand what motivates each candidate and provide recognition and development opportunities which will enable you to make use of their skills and experience.

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