The recent years shed a different light on the career world in favor of job candidates. Since 2009, the trend of people voluntarily leaving their jobs has been increasing, and more professionals have a clearer vision of what they want to see in the labor market based on Harvard Business Review’s studies. With candidates’ mindsets changing comes the need to revisit how job requirements are crafted.   

Is it better to retain your current approach toward gaining candidates’ attention? Or would a candidate-centric perspective benefit your organization more? 

The first half of this article focuses on answering the first question in the context of the market shift, current job requirements, and their impact on acquiring candidates. The second half of this article answers the second question as it discusses new and possibly effective job requirements to obtain top candidates in a candidate-centric job market. Let’s have a closer look at these points in the next sections.

The Market Shift 

The former organization-centric job market teaches employers to fix their eyes on roles that would work best for their organizations. They do this by demanding a certain skill set or by counting a candidate’s number of years in the industry. But this job market does not consider the needs and goals of any candidates. Candidates doubt their resumes are reviewed by humans, and this is partly true as Harvard Business Review pointed out that many organizations use automated talent technology

Today, more organizations realize the value of a candidate-centric approach in recruitment and retention. This approach increases their candidate pool and maintains their current workforce. It’s because candidate-centricity that’s attached to an employer’s brand and reputation helps attract candidates and make employees stay.

The Current Job Requirements 

Experience, combined with a decorated educational background, is often two of the non-negotiables for every organization. True, experience and textbook knowledge will teach people a lot. While the lessons not taught within the class are encountered within the working field, experience is not always a key factor for professional success. If this is your deciding factor for employment, you will miss out on potential top candidates. 

Consider budding professionals. The only work experience they may have had is from an internship or immersion in a related institution. They might not have the best experience, but the ideas these candidates could bring are fresh and innovative. To add, they are only starting out on their career path, which means it will be easier for you to mold their ideals and ethics toward what is good and beneficial for your organization. 

How about considering professionals wanting to switch careers, too? With a new career path, these workers aim to widen their field of expertise and gain other skills and experiences. If experience and education in a specific role are your priority requirements for employment, they might not become qualified candidates. But who knows if their former experience in a different work nature might be useful to your organization if you look at it from a candidate-centric perspective?

Meeting In Between

Before you write a new list of job requirements, you would first have to listen to what candidates want. Once you understand what drives these candidates, you can cultivate it and align it with your organization’s agenda. New job postings should be focused on answering what candidates need, how their needs could help your organization grow, and what you can do to satisfy them.

What Candidates Want 

1. Employers who will establish good relationships 
Candidates want a professional relationship founded on understanding. People take jobs so they can belong to a community that shares the same passion and troubles along the way toward achieving the same goals. 

2. Employers who could help them with their personal goals 
Your future employees will work as a mother who provides for their children or as a craftsman who hones their skills. Although work meets an end by itself, keep in mind that the roles these candidates will play in your organization must also serve as stepping stones to build their dreams. 

3. Employers with the knowledge to lead people
Candidates do not want their potential wasted by organizations that do not know where they will be put to good use. They want someone to lead them where they can thrive and be fulfilled so that their good work bears fruit for themselves, the organization, and the community.

The Redefined Job Requirements 

The right match for your job vacancy may not have the highest educational attainment or the longest years of experience. A candidate’s resume may consist only of soft skills and a knack for learning, but they should not be dismissed for lack of experience. The new job requirements should emphasize that your organization can be molded into what candidates would be glad to join in and tell their fellow job seekers about.   

When these criteria are met, you can hire someone quickly. At the same time, a candidate-centric approach allows for hiring the right person the first time. These positively affect those in your present workforce, as having new hires prevents tasks from piling up and halts a high turnover rate. These will also prevent your recruitment costs from getting wasted as you can use your investments in candidates for a long time instead of just a month of employment. 

Given a candidate-centric job market, what characteristics of candidates should be included in your redefined job requirements? 

1. Candidates willing to share their insights 
Candidates who can articulate their thoughts and perspectives in recruitment and employment can help you build a community where they could grow. With candidates not being afraid to share their insights on what they want, you can create an employer brand that listens to their needs. You can assess this trait during their interviews and their interactions with you. Observe how they give feedback and ideas if given a chance to improve processes in an organization. 

2. Candidates who are laser-focused on goals 
Candidates who can express their goals and ways to achieve them exemplify how they can also help you in your organizational endeavors as they know it will benefit them equally. When you understand why candidates work and their personal motivations, your organization can provide them with the means so they can reach a better end. 

Your organization needs people who will perform tasks with their utmost abilities because they aim for something more than getting the job done. Conversely, candidates will perform better if the benefits and incentives you provide will be the source of help for their personal goals.

3. Candidates willing to learn and experience new things 
Candidates can come from a work field different from what you offer and still perform well if the leaders in your organization are able to teach them efficiently and they are fast learners. Also, if you can provide short-term and long-term plans for your candidates, they’ll know their skills will not be wasted.

Specific abilities, skills, and experience don’t have to be a requirement anymore. What candidates need today are able bodies and the comprehension to perform tasks even outside their field of expertise. As long as they are willing to be taught, experience and knowledge will come next. 

Final Thoughts 

To put it in summary: interest, intellect, and interrelations should be the focus when writing in job requirement sections. 

First, you should find ways to determine if these candidates are driven to perform the job – finishing various tasks to gain various benefits. The second would be their intellect – not their academic knowledge. Look for candidates’ capability to focus on the tasks at hand. Lastly, it is the interrelationship between you and the candidate. Assess what these candidates want now and for the long run. In the same way, you should lay down your plans for them once within the organization and then come to an agreement. 


At ACS Professional Staffing, we will take the time to ensure candidates are a good fit for your job offer. We can help you formulate hiring strategies to engage top candidates from both strands of budding professionals and groups of career shifters. Connect with our staffing specialists today, and we will guide you toward the best talents in your field.