Job-hunting: lying through your teeth and being bored rigid

Apr 03 2006 by Nic Paton Print This Article

The British jobs market is hampered by lazy and unimaginative recruitment methods, bad interviewing techniques and candidates failing to be completely truthful, latest research has suggested.

Staff turnover and churn is commonly assumed to be an unavoidable fact of corporate life, but in fact is normally the result of just four simple factors, the study by recruitment company Jobsite has concluded.

The poll of 2,000 British job seekers found that in more than two thirds of cases personality differences and clashes in cultural fit were the key reasons for someone leaving.

Two out of three employees would also move to another company to achieve a better cultural fit, the study found.

Job interviews too often created a disconnect between employers and candidates.

More than half – 54 per cent – of job seekers complained of not getting enough information from employers to make informed decisions about a company or a position.

And more than a quarter said employers asked two few questions.

The vast majority of job hunters (91 per cent) make pre-judgements about what employers wanted to hear in an interview and framed their answers to this effect

As a result, candidates were ending up in unsuitable jobs because employers routinely have a false impression of the candidate and the candidates themselves are failing to understand the role they are applying for and their own workplace desires.

Third, employers lack imagination when it comes to hiring. Eight out of 10 companies used "one size fits all" template-style recruitment methods.

This approach was taken irrespective of the roles being filled or the psychological make-up of the person being sought.

The reliance on standardised process and structure extended to candidate assessment, with 46 per cent of the companies using the same pre-determined criteria for scoring candidates on personality attributes compared to company culture.

Finally, many hiring decisions are simply made on gut instinct or feel. More than two thirds – 67 per cent – of recruiters formed opinions on the suitability of a candidate in just four hours while 59 per cent based their hiring and firing decisions on gut feel

Jobsite managing director Keith Potts said both sides needed to develop closer and longer-lasting bonds.

"However the responsibility isn't just with the employer, every job seeker in the UK has a commitment to themselves to find the right job for them. This means being honest, as well as investing the right amount of time and effort into the job seeking process," he added.

Ian Boyton, recruitment marketing manager at Carphone Warehouse, said: "Interviewing is an art in itself. The skills of interviewers and the observers make all the difference – the best people ask questions that don't just get the best answers, but give you a feel for what a person is really about."