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Friday, 21 December 2012

Friday Guest Blog - Should you Employ Someone who Held a Much Higher Level Role in the Past?

By Lyndsey Meredith, Director of ethical recruitment company Meredith Consultancy Services

This is a somewhat controversial question and everyone will have different opinions on this, so I suggest we look at it from both sides and let you make up your own mind.

There are a lot of talented people out there at the moment who are currently un-employed. A lot of them have held high level positions in the past on good salaries and for one reason or another are now looking at lower paid lower level jobs.

In this case many may have been made redundant and are happy to work their way up again for the right role or the types of roles that they used to hold simply do not exist anymore. Alternatively they may be looking at a lower level role for other reasons, including having less stress or more life balance.

Employers are taking two different and opposing views on applications from these types of candidates. The first and more popular view in my experience is that the employer sees these candidates as over-qualified for the position and so the employer assumes that they are “just looking for a job for now” and will leave when another role more befitting their experience comes along. The second view from employers is that they are getting a lot of experience for their money and are actually getting a great deal that they would not have got prior to the recession.

I will let you take your own view. However, advice for employers in this position:

1) Assess the candidate on their ability to do THIS job.

2) Ask the candidate how THIS job fits in with their long-term goals and aspirations.

3) Ensure that the salary for THIS job is adequate for the candidate to live on.

4) Play devil’s advocate! Ask the candidate what they would do in a few months’ time if a job at their previous level came along.

5) Ensure that the candidate will not continue looking for employment once employed with you.

Unfortunately there are no guarantees when it comes to people but go with your gut feeling. There are some fantastic and talented candidates out there actively seeking work - don’t discount anyone until you have at least met with them and asked the above questions.

Meredith Consultancy Services is a local, independent ethical recruitment agency. Based in Cheadle, it supplies high quality professional staff to companies across the North West.

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