What’s the Over-Under on That Candidate’s Qualifications?

Recruiting workers

The term “over-under” is often used in the gambling world. An over-under bet is a wager in which a sportsbook will predict a number for a statistic in a given game (usually the combined score of the two teams), and individuals will wager that the actual number in the game will be either higher or lower than that number.

In the recruiting world, it’s not gambling-related, but do you often find yourself playing the “over-under” game? This game isn’t “official” but is rather a thought process: You go through a pile of applicants and reject over- or underqualified candidates because they aren’t a great fit for the role.

Do Qualifications Even Matter?

When talent was in short supply, pre-COVID, recruiters were quick to hire underqualified candidates, with the idea that these workers could be upskilled to meet the demands of the role, but now that the bottom has fallen out of the candidate-driven market, will underqualified candidates still get an offer?

Remember the 2008 recession? After the stock market collapsed and unemployment skyrocketed, overqualified candidates were desperate to reenter the workforce. It was so bad that executive-level workers were settling for jobs at McDonald’s just to make ends meet. Given the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, we’re more worse off now than we were during the Great Recession!

As companies begin to start rehiring workers—and for those that are still trying to fill vacant roles—we’ve got to ask: Do qualifications even matter these days?

For a closer look at why companies hire over- or underqualified candidates, SimplyHired recently surveyed 984 hiring managers for their insight and hiring practices. The survey was used to examine how often companies consider over- or underqualified applicants, how those candidates are perceived, and the ways in which companies attempt to set up their employees for success.

The infographic below highlights the key findings from the survey. To learn more or view the full report, click here.

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