How to Shortlist Your Job Applicants in 7 Easy Steps

One of the biggest challenges of veterinary recruiting is narrowing down the best candidates for the job. Some days it can be difficult to find the time to take a sip of your coffee, let alone dig through mountains of resumes and interview dozens of applicants. Thankfully there is a true method that can make this monumental step seem much less cumbersome. Let’s take a look below.

Finalize the number of candidates you’ll consider.

Before you start culling your list, it’s important to have a clear picture of how much time you are capable of committing to the process. In a perfect world, interviewing every applicant would be ideal, but this is obviously not practical, especially given your already jam-packed schedule. Decide on a final number of how many candidates you’ll interview. This will tell you how many applicants you’ll need to eliminate from the pile.

Determine elimination criteria.

The next step in streamlining the veterinary recruiting process is to determine what criterion you will use to assess each applicant. Keep in mind that the purpose of this exercise is to eliminate candidates, not select them, so you should be thinking about what “bare minimum” requirements you are looking to uphold. For instance, you may wish to only consider candidates who have a certain number of years’ experience. This will help you to narrow down your list of options.

Establish selection criteria.

Now that you know what things will get an applicant eliminated from the pile, the next step is to figure out what characteristics will help you identify the top candidates from those remaining. These criteria should include skills and traits that you envision your ideal employee to have. For instance, you might place a strong value on communication skills, enthusiasm, the ability to work well under pressure and certain role-specific expertise. These should be above and beyond the bare minimum requirements, such as academic achievement and industry experience.

Start eliminating.

With your elimination and selection criteria in hand, it’s time to start weeding out the candidates that don’t meet your requirements. If you’re using veterinary recruiting software, you might check to see if it provides the option to scan resumes and applications for certain elimination keywords, as this will facilitate even faster elimination.

Select your candidates

From your pile of applicants who have made the cut, it’s time to start the more detailed selection process. This isn’t something you can do with just a quick resume scan. You will need to invest some time and effort into reviewing each of your leftover candidates searching for key qualifications that you included in your selection criteria.

Invite or dig deeper.

The next step will depend on where you stand in terms of number of applicants. If your list is close to the limit you’ve set, great! You can now start reaching out and scheduling interviews. If your list is still too long, however, you will need to do a little bit more digging in order to trim it down to a more manageable number. Social media is a great tool for getting a feel for who your prospects are and whether or not they’d be a good fit with your practice culture.

Rank those left and start diving in.

With your final list of candidates in hand, it’s time to do a little prioritizing. We recommend creating a ranking system against which you can measure each applicant. Assign a score to each candidate for each of the key traits or skills you are looking for and then add up the total for each. This will help you to prioritize your list of applicants. From there, you should be ready to begin inviting your candidates to interview, starting at the top and working your way down.

Of course, if you’re still too busy to take the above steps and you’re finding the task of veterinary recruiting incredibly challenging, the good news is there’s help available. Dream Team Elite can handle all of the legwork for you, narrowing down the list and presenting you with only the very best possible candidates. To learn more or to get started, click here.

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