When a job opening is publicised, most HR managers expect average candidates with adequate skill sets and experience to apply. Many of them even prioritize to recruit only fresh graduates with no experience at all.
Reasons for hiring fresh grads, as obviously known would be saving on cost of hire, and getting the urgent business needs met for a time period.
These cost constraints overpower the decision-making ability of HR professionals, who choose to hire candidates with average knowledge and qualification to perform the job role, instead of an overqualified experienced professional.
Now the choice is rather obvious, would it be morally incorrect to thrust the blame on sole shoulders of an experienced HR professional? We believe, employers are equally responsible in this decision-making process.
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Overqualified candidates are definitely appealing and attractive to most employers, but HR managers seem to be avoid recruiting them for a couple of reasons as enumerated below:
HR managers are aware of the fact that an overqualified professional comes at a hefty price to business, this increases their cost to hire. Hence, they choose to compromise on an average qualified talent, that best fits the company culture and job role.
Other key reasons that force businesses to stay away from recruiting overqualified professionals are – their in-depth knowledge, potentials and skillsets might not be fully utilized in the job role. This could lower employee morale and lead to dissatisfaction on job, at a later point in time.
Some hiring teams are rather suspicious, if this overqualified candidate treats the job offer as another stepping stone for career progress.
HR managers are wary of the fact that, if these overqualified professionals are tempted with lucrative offers and better paychecks, they might choose to quit immediately without prior notice.
These negative perceptions about overqualified candidates firmly held by the HR community at large cannot be accepted in all of its entirety. Everybody is unique, and best candidates could have their own reasons to apply for the job position in a company.
While some might want to experience a better working culture and leadership, others would like to strike a better work-life balance, regardless of the payment considerations and benefits offered in the new job role. It is too early to judge new candidates and arrive at a conclusion.
HR managers should thoroughly understand the reasons for job change from an applicant, during preliminary interview rounds before zeroing onto a prospective candidate. Here are some key reasons, why HR managers and employers should rethink on their decisions in favour of hiring overqualified candidates for a position:
They Bring More Positive Energies to the Workplace
Overqualified candidates with higher skill sets and experience can be a powerful driver to motivate energy levels of the team and achieve higher performance efficiency.
These talents could in turn, motivate their colleagues and coworkers to upskill their competencies and capabilities to meet strategic business goals.
They can also be used as great resources for mentoring and training colleagues, who lack experience, expertise and knowledge about the job role.
Possess Leadership Potentials
Not all overqualified candidates are endowed with leadership traits and skills. Their industry knowledge, insights and experience can bring in more value to a business.
Project managers should consult, ask for opinions and suggestions, before taking up new projects and nurturing their capabilities to assume leadership positions in their career.
Overqualified candidates can easily adapt to challenging business environments and new workplace culture, aiming for promotions and scaling up the ladder of success in their careers.
Value-Addition to the Company
Overqualified candidates have vast insights and experience. They understand business demands and customer requirements immediately. Hiring them and seeking their opinion or suggestions is a value-add for most businesses.
Offer New Expertise
Overqualified performers commonly bring in new skills and expertise, since they possess significant years of relevant industry experience under their belt.
The potential capabilities to handle new projects and take up more responsibilities can prove to be lucrative for many businesses.
Employers should offer them a chance to enhance their expertise, by trusting them with ownership to handle a specific job role or project, beyond their current competencies and recent career accomplishments.
Higher Talent at a Lower Price
When overqualified candidates are aware of the fact that, they are applying for lower-skilled jobs, they do know that a lucrative paycheck is not expected or awaiting.
Professionals today, look beyond money as a motivation to work everyday and achieve success in their careers – this could involve scope for learning new skills, an opportunity to learn about a new industry or vision for individuals goals aligned with the company’s futuristic vision.
While the company can derive significant returns on investment from the overqualified workforce, they should not take excessive advantage of the employee’s skills and experience.
The knowledge and skill sets honed by the professional, should be recognised, appreciated, and rewarded with extra incentives and benefits.
Instead of holding onto a rather pessimistic viewpoint, HR managers and employers should not miss out on the opportunity to recruit overqualified candidates for lower-skilled jobs.
Maybe a new idea just awaits or a new outlook for business growth is on the anvil. It’s only when you are willing to risk and chance upon an overqualified candidate, can you explore new untrodden paths to success.
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