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Are you hiring in 2018 and looking for a great candidate?

Post Date: 12/12/2017

Here are the top 10 qualities you’ll want to find.

When you have positions open in your organization, you want to fill them quickly with the best available candidates. Hard skills such as technical ability, work experience, and the required degrees are just the first piece of the puzzle when it comes to finding the right person. Soft skills such as personal qualities and social attributes are harder to measure, yet equally critical. Here are the top ten soft skills to evaluate once you’ve narrowed down the candidate pool:

Communication Skills

Effective and professional communication skills are essential for interacting with managers, coworkers, clients, and vendors. Before interviewing a candidate, you may have corresponded by e-mail or text, checked their social media pages and spoken by phone. Observe how the candidate handles different forms of communication. In a face to face meeting, look for important cues such as eye contact and body language. Ask open-ended questions to find out how the candidate will communicate with others on the job.

Great Attitude

Most successful individuals have a positive attitude in their personal and professional lives. Regardless of the position, you want someone who is upbeat and excited about working with your organization. When a candidate is enthusiastic about their job, it shows in their performance. People who love their work stay at companies longer than people who work for just a paycheck. Hiring an enthusiastic and outgoing employee is almost like getting a built-in marketer who represents the best of the organization.

Gets Along with Others

How a candidate fits with the company culture and with the rest of your team is a major factor in selecting one person over another. Even if a job requires tasks to be completed alone, there will be times when employees must work together. Ask about their role in past collaborative projects and examples of teamwork. Some employers bring applicants in for a group interview to see how they interact with current staff members.

Sets and Achieves Goals

Goal-oriented candidates are a powerful addition to any organization because they see the job as a fulfillment of a goal rather than just the means to a paycheck. A goal-oriented employee will follow a strategy to identify and set their goals and then track their progress as they move toward accomplishing it. During the interview, ask candidates to share their short and long-term goals. Follow up by finding out the specific steps they intend to take to reach those goals.

Handles Curveballs Well

Companies must be flexible and nimble to survive or thrive during economic downturns. As a result, flexibility is a trait that is more critical than ever. Employees must be willing to step out of their roles, change their approach and multitask if the situation calls for it. Look for a history of taking on different responsibilities and ask how they might handle a major shift in their job description or a change in the company’s products/services.

Tried and True

You want a candidate who shows up on time and maintains a consistent quality of work. The prospective employee must also comply with your company rules and procedures and be trustworthy with company resources. Dependability and trustworthiness are difficult to measure in an interview. The best indicator is prior performance so check work history and references for clues.

Operates with High Integrity

Ethical standards are important for any organization, and the best employees support this by being honest and upfront. Evaluating the honesty and integrity of a candidate during an interview can be challenging because they will be on their best behavior and have rehearsed their responses. Some interviewers ask candidates to talk about their weaknesses, or why a company shouldn’t hire them. These unexpected questions may elicit candid and transparent reactions that can show how willing they are, to be honest.

Innovative and Creative

Thinking creatively is a highly-valued skill in today’s job market. Candidates with a creative streak will be eager to share their ideas and usually have a lot of questions. Creative employees regularly contribute big and small ideas that can benefit the organization. Ask about ideas they have implemented at previous positions and offer an imaginary scenario that requires a creative solution.


An employee who has the correct technical skills, but loses track of valuable information, misses deadlines and can’t organize their work is a drag on the department and the organization. The screening and interview process may give you hints about the candidate’s organizational skills. Did they show up on time with the correct paperwork? Ask them how they handle heavy workloads and if they have a personal system of time management.

Has Intellectual Curiosity

Changing technology, trends and legislation often require employees to learn new things quickly. People with intellectual curiosity may not currently have the necessary skill-set for a particular position, but will be eager to receive training. Look for candidates that have demonstrated a willingness to try new things or learn new skills from their previous organizations. Don’t assume that older candidates won’t be interested in learning new skills.

At VIP Staffing, we are dedicated to finding candidates with the right mix of hard and soft skills to meet your organization’s employment needs!