Straight Answers to Real Questions
Question: I run a family owned commercial construction company and we’re recently had to go to the market to recruit a new CFO to replace the incumbent who’s retiring in a few months. I posted the position on LinkedIn and I’m currently in the process of sorting through all the responses and frankly, it’s been a little overwhelming. I’ve had 93 applications so far and I need to weed that down to a manageable number to interview. Any thoughts on how I go about this?
Answer: The trick to triaging ad responses to set some hard and fast criteria and be disciplined as you apply those filters to your ad response. Don’t assume that the people responding to your posting read the criteria you specified in your posting carefully and are submitting their resumes because they fit those criteria. It costs nothing in terms of time and effort to respond to job boards so many job seekers respond to everything and anything that’s even remotely a fit.
Since you posted the job on LinkedIn you can take a quick look at the applicants’ backgrounds and make your first pass at narrowing down your field quickly without even having to read the resumes. You can safely reject candidates who’ve had too many moves in their career or are obviously too senior, too junior or don’t have the education or accounting designation you’re looking for. Next, apply your biggest must-have criteria to the respondents, which in your case will probably be experience in your industry as a VP Finance or Director of Finance.
Applying these filters should get your field down to five or six candidates. You may be able to get a sense for whether these people have the rest of your criteria from their resumes but if you think they’re basically in the right ball park you should go ahead and start interviewing.