How to Know If an Applicant is More Than Just a CV?

How do you assess an aspiring candidate? Do you hire people based on skill set or cultural fit? Regardless of the target-focus, skills and culture come in as bread and butter — preferable if combined. Cultural fit and expertise are both significant factors in the prosperity of the talents you bring on-board. You want to safeguard their success in the company.

An impressive resume can blow your wigs away. From prominent universities, astounding working background, tantalizing skills and attributes boldly written in the paper. So much for an apple of the eye. A job candidate can utter all the best words during the interview session enthusiastically, in which they’re sporting sleek corporate suit with Caron’s Poivre fragrance — acing an effort for prelude impression. But sometimes, even most of the time, the best impression does not equate a new hire. It takes more than ‘that’ to secure the position as the ‘best fit’ for the company.

In Blueprint, we hire talents who can exhibit best fit in our A-PLUS culture with required job skills and qualifications. Talented employees who can pull off quality work within the context of the company values. Exercising day-to-day productivity along with collaboration with the workforce as a team.

Hiring someone who happened to be unfit for your business personality can be costly at your peril. During the vetting process, resumes and CVs can be superfluous and superficial. That’s why an extensive interview is vital to determine if the applicant’s resume resound in his/her actual identity. This is to avoid committing mistakes that can root to pitfall. Remember, the interview process is NOT an arithmetic problem where employers can afford to commit trial and error all over again.

How to determine if the candidate is more than just a description in a piece of paper?

An interview session is like hanging in a suspended harness. It can be a win-win situation for both or it can be the other way around. An applicant will actually do the best to land in the open position you are hiring. As an employer, it is your job to determine the ideal applicant after a series of appraisal.

Read on to get insights on how to adequately test the candidate’s skills set and personality, before getting their feet wet on your company premises.

Culture Fit

  1. Reckoning with Personality — The best way to start the assessment is to cut off interview clichés. “Why-Should-I-Hire-You-approach” has gone trite, boring and scripted. The candidate has likely memorized the queue response in every mock interview in the past. That’s why engaging a free-spirit atmosphere while conversing about the company objectives to determine leadership skills and decision making is more relevant. With this, you can decide judgment on the person’s personality based on the logical reasoning and quick wits. This will also determine how the prospect will play its role in your culture. Also, a personality can transcend to your own temperament, of course. But keeping the professional sight on the right track in evaluating the candidate’s personality should be upheld. Hiring people for the company fit is the principal purpose, not as a personal ‘buddy’ search.
  2. Confronting the Passion for Industry — Aside from the purpose of urgent talent acquisition, it is imperative to be upfront about the candidate’s passion for the job role. If the applicant is applying for the position just to upscale his/her resume, then the candidate’s foot is in the wrong door. Asking a series of questions pertaining to the nature of the sector will help you in the selection. Hiring people who can be with you fervidly despite the lapses and setbacks of the business is the best hire you should target. That entails the manifestation of loyalty and longevity. You can also learn best if you let them talk about their work history — the biggest challenges, moments where they cried the hardest, times when they smile the brightest. With that, you’ll be able to determine sincere passion over temporal enthusiasm.
  3. Employ Some Off-the-Wall Discussion — When testing for culture fit among applicants, employ some curious mindset and pump some non-working related query. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you ask personal questions. Have the liberty to ask about anything from their interests or outside work activities. Probably you shared the same passion for poetry. You both enjoy strolling on the beach to await crimson sunrise. Cool by choice if you two have met at a book signing event last April. Or maybe your cravings for Thai cuisine is the same as your candidate. Interestingly, this can titillate the interest of the applicant and will eventually take-off any pretension and inhibitions. You can introduce your company’s culture lightly, without intimidating the candidate what to expect. If the attitude radiates intangible interest during the interview, that can be an advantage during the actual stride.


  1. Challenge your Thinking Magnitude — A new hire can be the genesis of a new idea. Picking the best suitor can catalyze for a new approach in the workplace. If the candidate leaves you in a positive gasp, chances are they can create innovation, which must be welcomed on your merit. Since acquiring a talent means a new individual, fill your pool with brand new and distinctive talents. Hiring for duplicate skills from standard can make your environment stagnant. Keeping the team fresh is a jumpstart for goal progress. Embracing changes quickly while considering new objectives is a healthy challenge for you and the workforce.
  2. Embody Abrupt Problem-Solving Questions — The most critical aspect of an interview is when you test the candidate’s analytical skills. Incorporating technical-industry questions will assess if the applicant is results-oriented during the course. Radical thinkers who can predict the potential result of a technical complication are the best fruit. If one has the tailored-fitting skills in a specific niche, hence the candidate has the ability to complete the process, offer insights, and decisively spawn specific and detailed explication on a particular issue. Having a wide grasp of the industry workflow can support your business in bringing much to the table.
  3. Proven Experience through Portfolio — Aside from a resume, the old-school interview tool like portfolio is essential for talent evaluation. This helps you go through specific outputs and analyze the level of skill set the candidate has. Mostly, you can ask several questions pertaining their craft and how can this be integrated for the benefit of the company. Portfolios also come as testimony about the candidate’s creative spark and flexibility to see the array of works in the precedent job. As an employer, it will give you a hint what the prospect can contribute to the company. Giving you the prerogative on where to start and what to improve and incorporated in your training SOP’s.

Originally published at on November 24, 2017.