7 Things to Look for When Searching for the Perfect Candidate

The cost of getting a new hire wrong is staggering. HR Exchange Network suggests the cost of a bad hire can cost $240,000 in expenses related to hiring and recruiting, pay, and retention. The higher the position in the organization, the more a bad hire is probably going to cost you. There has to be a better way. In fact, we have seven ways you can improve your hiring effort. Here’s how to look for characteristics when recruiting new candidates and save your organization the cost of a bad hire.

7 Ways to Look for Hidden Candidate Qualities 

1. Observe the candidate’s body language.

Crossed arms are a sign of a closed-off candidate. Consider things like: Does the candidate make direct eye contact? Do they fidget? How was their handshake? Sometimes it is the intangibles in the hiring process that make or break your decision.

2. Use the STAR method for interviewing to focus on specifics.

STAR stands for “situation, target, action, result,” and it’s a good way to structure your interview questions to dig into candidate specifics. This tool will help you separate fact from fiction by honing in beyond “we did this” to “this is what I accomplished.”

3. Determine their attitude towards work and their work attitudes.

Again, this is a bit intangible, but it speaks strongly to the level of effort the candidate will put into your company. Ask questions about how candidates handle workloads that shift or grow heavy and how they organize their tasks. What motivates them?

4. Do they like to learn? Is learning important to them?

Employees that like to learn exhibit intellectual curiosity. This could be a signal that this worker is interested in moving up the ladder. Employees that want to learn may exhibit more of an eagerness to take on new tasks. These are all great benefits for your company.

5. How did the candidate treat your ancillary staff?


Sure, you have multiple people within the department interview the candidate. All of their feedback is valuable. But when was the last time you asked the front desk receptionist how the candidate treatment them? If the candidate was given an office tour, ask who they met what their first impressions were. This is all data that should help inform your hiring decision.

6. Ask the candidate about something outside of work that they’re passionate about.

Does the candidate light up when telling you about their organic farm? Are they in a band? Is it their kids? What is the great passion of the people you’re hiring, and how does that fit in with the culture and team that they’ll be joining?

7. Test them.

This doesn’t have to be an extensive testing process; even a good on-the-spot question can help you understand how the candidate solves problems. Ask questions about how they solved the problem and what made them come to their conclusion. Give them feedback during the process and see how they handle it.

Call ADD STAFF Today

At ADD STAFF, we devote ourselves to helping you find the right candidate on the very first try. It’s in this way that our service literally pays for itself. Talk with our team today about how we can help.