Have you ever found a purple squirrel? In the staffing world, this term relates to candidates who match all your job requirements with perfectly matched skills, experience, knowledge … the works! But since ours is an imperfect world, purple squirrels are a rare species—they’re mostly found by luck. And when you’re in need of an employee, it will not serve you to leave a position unfilled for months while you hunt down your perfect candidate. But despite this, you still need a highly qualified person to get the job done for your company. So what should you do?

Five ways to get around the perfect candidate search

If you can find one, more power to you! But if you need to fill an open job opportunity and don’t have the time or resources to search out the perfect candidate (if he or she even exists), you can do the next best thing. Consider the following:

  • Put a laser focus on your training efforts. It’s possible to find a candidate who is mostly perfect, but could use a little training to get to where you need him to be. By boosting your onboarding and training program, you can build your own perfect candidate.
  • Become a hunter—not a gatherer. If your recruitment efforts consist of posting job ads and then waiting for the perfect candidate to contact you, you may wish to reverse your efforts. You’ll have a better chance of finding a good match by getting more active in your search—by connecting with possible candidates on social media and attend networking events.
  • Analyze the job market. In most cases, the competition for talent is pretty stiff. But, perhaps the position you’re looking to fill has an overabundance of qualified talent available. If this is the case, you may wish to proceed with your search.
  • Take a step back to re-evaluate. If your job description is too rigid, review and revise it. What requirements can you loosen up a bit to open the door to more hiring options?

Are you currently working with a recruiter?

Staffing firms have access to deep pools of qualified talent—both active and passive. When you work with a recruiter, you increase your chances of finding a great match for your open job opportunities. And you’ll be able to find good fits more quickly and easily than hiring on your own.

McGrath Systems can help

We work with employers to find best-fit candidate matches for administrative, engineering, light industrial, marketing and human resources positions. And we have a special focus on licensed insurance agents. To speak with a representative and learn more, contact us today!


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