March 07, 2019

“A” Players vs “C” Players – Recruiters Beware

Vicki Cline

Vicki Cline
Owner/Sales Co-Sourcing

Share This Post

Don’t be fooled into thinking paying a higher compensation will result in higher quality. Unfortunately, more doesn’t always mean better but at a certain point of a company’s maturity, recruiting “A” players to join the organization is imperative to grow a company’s revenue and margin.  Moreover, successful recruiting at the “A” level is closely linked to the amount of preparation and time spent sourcing exceptional talent.

There are a few rules to follow to get the desired results:


Create a playbook for a successful candidate


The playbook is more detailed than that of a posting for the position but accounts for the characteristics an individual should possess, the substance of the position, and proficiencies the employee should have to execute the job at the “A” level.  If there is an “A” player/players already in the same or like type field, then establishing the playbook becomes easier as those individuals can be used to benchmark the right person for the position. Don’t be hesitant to use profile testing for the position. Test your current “A” players and any talent being consider for the position.


Sourcing Passive Candidates


There are some exceptional job boards but typically job boards will return candidates that are unemployed, underemployed, or disenchanted workers. “A” players are employed and usually operating at the top of their game. Using technology and/or recruiters will uncover the candidates best suited for the position. Competitors are also a good source of passive candidates as well as referrals. Offering an employee referral program is a great way to source like-type people into the organization. When sourcing passive candidates, remember that moving from a comfortable position where they are on top may lead to anxiety and trepidation considering a possible risky move. Put on the sales hats and always be selling to the candidate throughout the recruiting process. Remember the value of the “A” player.


Interview, Interview, Interview


Many recruiters will advise to hire fast in the tight job market but since the “A” candidates are currently employed, taking time to make sure it is a right fit works to everyone’s advantage. Conduct a phone interview in all cases to gauge the openness of the candidate to a possible move.  No matter the distance to be traveled, always conduct a face-to-face interview shortly into the interviewing process. This brings reality to a possible career move. Involve other employees into the process, especially “A” employees. Make sure each employee has a copy of the position playbook so they can grade the candidates on all the defined characteristics and proficiencies. Team interviews with preselected questions and answers are often critical to obtaining how the candidate works under pressure with multiple expectations. The preselected questions and answers will also assist in making the candidate grading more quantifiable. Lastly, references.  If the company is willing to invest in hiring an “A” player make sure the reference check is done in person or via video conferencing (a visual is worth a thousand accolades)!

Every company desires talented and resourceful employees. “A” players are an investment to be treated differently throughout the process.  “A” players don’t just apply or walk through the door. Cultivate a process to source, attract, engage, and hire the elite for your teams.

Comments? You can contact me directly via my AdvisoryCloud profile.

Share This Post