What Hiring Managers Are Looking For

So you just got the call you’ve been waiting for.  A hiring manager is interested in interviewing you in the next few days. You are most likely full of excitement and also, like most job seekers, you’re probably more than a little apprehensive too, unsure of what to expect during the interview.

Job seekers do not have to be left completely in the dark. There are many characteristics hiring managers look for specifically when trying to fill a role. Some of these characteristics include qualification, cultural fit and flexibility.

Basically, hiring managers want to see if the applicant is qualified for the role based on the preferred qualifications. When looking at the job description, a candidate's technical experience and interpersonal skills should tick 75% or more of the job duties and requirements, with room to grow and tackle new challenges. An applicant who has experience in 100% of the job requirements is quite often not seen as the ideal candidate. A hiring manager would be concerned that at 100% experience level, the employee would quickly get bored of their job and soon be out looking for a more challenging position. 
Hiring managers are looking for a qualified candidate that can fit into the culture of the team and company. Teamwork is vital in most working environments therefore it is crucial for a manager to get this right.
Finally, hiring managers are looking for candidates who are flexible. Naturally, not every task and responsibility is listed on the job description. Hiring managers are looking for candidates who have the flexibility to complete tasks and activities as needed. From covering for a colleague unexpectedly out of the office, to learning a new skill because of a change in project scope, hiring managers need someone they can depend on for future changes, and flexibility is key.

While no one can see into the future, identifying what types of characteristics hiring managers are looking for is not as hard as one may think. Qualified candidates who are a great fit with the team and organisation, and that demonstrate their flexibility will find space in nearly every organisation. Candidates should take their job-search strategy further and research the companies, positions and teams they could be working with to ensure the right match.
So during your next interview, try to relax and be yourself. This isn’t the easiest thing to do when your dream job is at stake, but a good place to start is to ditch those interview answers you memorised and attempt to respond to the interviewer’s questions in your own words.
Instead of saying “I’m a perfectionist,” for example, tell them about a time when you used your unique skills to perfect a difficult paper, project or proposal. This will most certainly help you stand out in the crowd.
Identify your weak spots and work on improving them. For instance, if you have a fantastic resume, amazing experience and top-notch credentials, but you tend to avoid eye contact during interviews, practice making eye contact several days before your next interview.
Try doing mock interviews with someone you trust (contact KHM Recruitment as they offer this kind of support as a standard service).  After they “interview” you, ask them to describe the way you come across, then work to get better. Do you slouch? Break eye contact? Ramble? Roll your eyes? Lack enthusiasm? The more you practice, the more prepared you’ll be during the actual interview.
Hiring managers appreciate candidates who demonstrate why they love their company. Genuinely demonstrate why you would rather work for them than anyone else.  Hiring managers never want to feel like they’re just another company you sent your resume to. Instead, they want to see that you’re genuinely interested in contributing to the growth of the company. If they sense you’re just looking for a wage slip, you won’t get one!
During the interview process, hiring managers want to know you did your “homework.” In other words, they want to see that you took the initiative to research their company, understand its unique challenges and demonstrate how you can help them get better.
This might all sound quite obvious but become very familiar with companies before you interview with them and during your interview, use what you’ve learned to demonstrate why you want to work for a particular company and what you can do to make it better.  Do this or otherwise you run the risk of looking like just another job seeker.
KHM Recruitment offers specialised support to all of our registered candidates and can provide help with updating or creating the CV, assistance with interview preparation and more.   

Published by Julie Jones