Corporate Eye

7 steps to yes: what are my options?

How can you help your potential recruits apply for the best job for them? Perhaps more urgently, how can you stop them wasting your time (and theirs) by applying for the wrong positions in your organisation?

7 steps to yes

Your prospective recruit has found out something about your company, decided that they’d like to work for you, and discovered that you are looking for someone like them.

Next they will want to know more about which of the potential job openings at your company they should apply for. (This step will be most relevant for first-jobbers, or graduate applicants).

Step 4: What are my options?

If you have several different areas in your company into which you accept recruits, you will need to explain the difference between them:

  • what the different requirements are (e.g. degree subject, exam results, languages needed)
  • what difference it would make to their day to day experience (what would they be doing?)
  • what difference it might make to their future career path (training provided, grooming for leadership)
  • any other differences, such as location, extent of travel, and remuneration.

For example, at BAE Systems, new graduates could apply for one of three different graduate programmes (Graduate, Finance and Sigma). Within the Graduate programme, they could apply for a range of engineering or business roles … but within the Sigma programme, new graduates could apply for either engineering or business training too, aiming for leadership positions. The Finance programme also offers a range of different placements, though aiming for a CIMA qualification and eventually a Director position. It could be very tricky for a new graduate to sort out which is the best approach for them.

Some companies have come up with handy quiz-like tools, which end up recommending a particular start-point with the company based on the candidate’s answers to the questions. These tools, like the ones at Accenture or at BAE Systems, will help steer candidates in the right direction, and are a great alternative to endless paragraphs of text.

BAE Systems show you the options as you answer the questions (so you can see the consequences of, for instance, your decision not to travel); Accenture give you options after you have completed the quiz. Either one should give you the most appropriate job choice within that company.

For example, on the right, you can see the first question of the Accenture careers quiz … and their recommendations for me, after I had completed the quiz. (Investor Relations or Research – they’re not far wrong there, are they?).

And you can see from the two BAE screenshots, that my options are significantly narrowed when I indicated that I wouldn’t want to travel.

These tools would be very useful for potential candidates who know that they want to work for you, but aren’t quite sure what the best role for them would be. This way, they don’t waste time and effort applying for the wrong job – and this saves you time and effort too.

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