Unqualified Candidates on the Short List

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“I guess I have my receptionist and a lower level supervisor sorting the resumes up front,” Byron replied. “They do the initial screening to toss out the candidates who aren’t qualified or who are overqualified. Look, I don’t want to waste the time of my hiring manager.”

“Let me get this straight. The open position is for a high level supervisor with a level of work around nine months time-span? You are right, I don’t want to waste the time of your hiring manager. Your hiring manager will have difficulty making this decision anyway.”

“What do you mean? Ron is the hiring manager,” Byron replied, backpedaling. “This hire will be on his team.”

“Yes, but Ron gave you these three resumes, right?” I looked at Byron sideways. “How would you rate capability for these three candidates?”

“Well, they are clearly not qualified for the position. They are barely supervisor material, the level of work in their prior experience is nowhere near the level of work for the role we have.”

“So, why did Ron pick these people over other candidates?”

“Well, he said these candidates were the only ones in our budget.” Byron’s face betrayed puzzlement. He suddenly no longer believed Ron’s reason. “But, the pay bands for this position are clearly above the salary requirements of these three candidates.”

“Byron, you are the manager-once-removed in this hire. You clearly see the situation. You are in the best position to see the sweet spot in the candidate pool, yet your screening process depends on the judgment of others that puts unqualified candidates on your short list. In what way could you contribute, as the manager-once-removed, to make this process more effective?”
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