Nowadays, it is difficult to find skilled employees for open positions. The labor market is very tight, because the percentage of people employed across the country is at record high levels.

A tight job market can be challenging when you need employees, but there are ways to deal with the situation. One way is to never dismiss a potential job candidate because of employment gaps.

Look Past the Gap…

It is common to see an employment gap as a red flag. We are accustomed to looking for proof of steady work, and even looking for progressively higher job titles. We may view employment gaps as a sign that skills or performance may be rusty.

But remember, employment gaps do not necessarily have anything to do with lack of skills or poor performance. It is important to learn why the person has a gap. Many women, for example, take breaks from the workforce to raise a family. A gap may represent a break to care for an older family member, to return to school and receive advanced training, or to travel.

See if the prospective hire addresses the gap in their cover letter. If they do not, develop some interview questions to determine out the reason and give the interviewee a chance to say how it could benefit the open position.

Focus on the Skills

Regardless of the answer, focus on the skills the interviewee can bring to the table. Job performance is far more dependent upon skill set than the number of years the person worked.

Look at the candidate’s skill set and capabilities. Problem-solving, initiative, and even reliability and punctuality can be shown in a number of different positions. Parenting, for example, often takes skills in time management and in getting people to work together. If you need an employee with time management and collaborative team skills, a stay-at-home mom or dad may fill the bill.

Examine the resume for transferable skills. If the person is a whiz at databases in a warehouse but the position you have open is in an office, look at the database skills rather than the warehouse skills.

Also, remember a person who has learned one type of software can often learn another. It is the skills of capturing and utilizing information that you are looking for, not just a specific software.

Your Partner in Business

The hiring process is important, and the search for skilled employees is time-consuming and drain productivity. Staffing agencies like Nesco Resource can help you be as productive as possible while fulfilling your hiring needs with high-quality employees.

Contact us at your earliest convenience to discuss your hiring needs.