News & Updates

Get the latest insights from the experts at Search Wizards.

Candidate Red Flags: How to Identify Them and What You Should Do

Share it

Does the perfect resume mean someone is the perfect hire? 

Maybe. Or maybe not. 

If a candidate is even worth considering for a job, it means they’ve done their homework and preparation, which also means they’ve practiced telling you just what you want to hear when you question them. So, how can you single out true prospects from others who may not really fit the bill when you reach your final hiring decision? 

That’s the question. And the answer is: Know what red flags to look for – the sometimes subtle and sometimes more obvious indicators that a person isn’t as ideal as their resume and interview persona makes them out to be.  

Here’s one caveat: A single red flag may not be a deal-breaker. Use your judgment and skills as a recruiter, and dig deeper if needed until you’re satisfied, one way or another, with what you hear. That being said, these are some common candidate red flags to be aware of: 

Rudeness, Sloppiness or Tardiness 

You’re not wrong in expecting that candidates put their best foot forward in interviews. So if they show a lack of effort to look and act professionally, it may also be a sign of how they would present themselves on the job. If your reaction is “no way!” then this is a clear sign you should take this job seeker off your shortlist. This includes being late, unless they have a valid, reasonable excuse. 

Strange Body Language 

Actions – or lack thereof – really do speak louder than words sometimes. So, pay attention to both. In addition to what a candidate says, be attuned to their body language during interviews. Look for lack of eye contact, poor or overly relaxed posture, or standoffishness. These are all potential signs of a lack of confidence or professionalism, or a negative attitude. Not what you’re looking for in a new hire, right?! 

Poor Listening Skills 

Poor listening skills are an indicator that a person doesn’t pay attention to detail, or just doesn’t care about what someone else is saying. If a candidate repeatedly forgets what’s already been mentioned or has to keep asking for clarification, it’s cause for concern. 

Complaining or Gossiping 

Some less than glowing feedback about a candidate’s previous employers isn’t unexpected. But, their attitude and level of respect may be indicators of their general attitude toward work. Pay careful attention to how they provide such feedback, and follow it up with questions about how they managed it. 

Asking No Questions 

Interviews should be two-way dialogues. This means candidates should also ask questions – about the job, the company, their responsibilities if hired, and other relevant matters. Candidates who fail to do so may be less ambitious, unwilling to dig deep to find solutions, or trying to cover up a lack of understanding about the role in general. 

As you build your career as a recruiter, turn to Search Wizards as your source of tips, resources, contacts, and valuable information to keep you on track for success. Read our related posts or contact us today to learn more. 



Related Posts