To the Top

Job Hopping Contractors Got You Down? May Want to Take Another Look at Those “Over-Qualified” Candidates!

Posted: Jun. 15th, 2018 at 1:39 pm under General

Article written by Jamie Comiskey
Original post


With unemployment rates at the lowest since the year 2000 This presents an excellent opportunity for companies to grab some really great talent. Unfortunately I have seen many candidates rejected because they are overqualified with the less-experienced candidates having the upper-hand and landing the jobs over the more qualified/tenured candidates. Now, this may be happening for a myriad of reasons, but the trend is becoming more apparent especially in Contract and Contract to Hire Positions in major markets like Atlanta.

On the front end I see how hiring these folks could be seen as a good idea – fresh ideas, more tech savvy, cheaper, trainable, and not so “programmed” in the professional sense. However, a another trend I am seeing is more and more frequent job-hopping from that same demographic especially in contract and contract to hire roles. The “freshness” mentality that these candidates could bring seems to be the demand these days. Therefore they are constantly being contacted and recruited even, when they have just started a new role. It is simple supply and demand.

Gallup polls show that Millennials are quickly making up the largest portion of the workforce and switch jobs more than any other age group. Sixty percent are open to new opportunities and engagement levels are overall low. This presents a challenge to businesses, since employee retention can mean lower operating costs and a better bottom line. With companies consistently having to hire new folks and with retention being one of the biggest expenses, the bottom line can take a huge hit.

First lets look at what “Over-Qualified” Means.

Overqualified Is A Loaded Word

A client that may review a candidate’s experience and not even want to interview them because they’re “overqualified”.

  • “This person makes me nervous with all this experience. He/She might outshine me and threaten my job.”
  • “This person seems “too mature” to fit into our young, hip culture.”
  • “This person may be “too smart” and get bored or be insulted with the tasks we need him/her to do.”
  • “This person will probably want a higher pay rate than I can afford.”

It turns out that these seasoned candidates usually have a completely different mindset than a job candidate looking to join a company as a full-time employee. It’s time to think of hiring a contractors with a different lens.

Let’s take a better look at these “over-qualified” candidates:

  • With more experience, the less training they need and the faster they can jump in.
  • With an outside perspective, they can bring new, innovative ideas to your team.
  • They have a higher level of professionalism, making it easy to work with them.
  • Having worked in different environments, they can adjust to the corporate culture quickly.
  • You don’t have to worry about a big ego. They know what they’re signing up for.
  • Most importantly they are loyal and if they commit to a project they have every intention of completing it.

In general, the qualities listed above can bring increased productivity and cost savings. Imagine hiring a person with only 0-3 years of experience for a contract role. You may be able to hire them at a lower rate, but consider that there’s an extra layer of effort needed for them to get up to speed and work strategically and efficiently and you are running a risk of training them, adding to their skill set only to have them get recruited out within a few months. Then having to start over again.

The combined HR costs, time taken away from other tasks to interview candidates, and time spent on getting new employees trained and up to speed add up quickly. The return on investment (ROI) from new hires will obviously increase as time goes on.

Take advantage of the current job market to hire some great new talent. Don’t shy away from the “overqualified” candidates. Do your homework and hire the best of the best. You won’t regret it.