Should You Avoid Hiring Over-qualified Applicants?

As our nation faces even more challenges in the job market, recruiters everywhere continue to encounter a great influx of candidates for fewer job openings than ever before – many of whom are overqualified. While this can be a difficult situation for any hiring manager to decide if taking a risk on an overqualified candidate or not, there is actually some good that can come out of this scenario.

You may not want to avoid hiring candidates who are over-qualified after all….here’s why.

Over-qualified actually means more experience. The person that is deemed over-qualified for a specific assignment may be able to bring your team more than you can imagine. Instead of having just the basic skills to do the job, the over-qualified person has gathered a nice amount of real-world work experience that can translate to better ways of doing things. Your organization can use this experience to help bring other team members up to speed faster, as well as mentoring opportunities.

Experienced candidates are dedicated to their careers. You may find this surprising, but a vast majority of seasoned job seekers are actually trying to maintain a solid career path. That’s why they are applying for work at your company because they are dedicated to furthering their careers through relevant positions. The trick to keep these more experienced employees on board is to make sure they are compensated and challenged enough in their roles.

Career-minded candidates tend to desire more stability. For candidates who place a emphasis on gaining long-term career success, your task is to make sure your company can provide somewhat of a stable experience. This means having a clear succession plan in place to give top performers somewhere to go on the corporate ladder over time. While a lower level spot may be all you can offer presently, knowing that there is more to offer will keep experienced candidates on board.

Stable employees mean more successful long-term placements. The great thing about focusing on serious candidates, even if they do seem overqualified, is that their interest lays in finding stable employment. This translates to employees who will most likely stick around for a longer period of time, than job hoppers and youthful inexperienced candidates who don’t know their status. Choose seasoned candidates for lower staff turn-overs.

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