We are touching lightly upon A.I again this month, but this time from a hiring perspective. This is because it works so well alongside our hot topic of the month here at RISE which has been (other than why is it ACTUALLY so hot we can’t sleep / eat / breathe) :  What a good candidate looks like!

A recently published Article suggested that Recruitment Agencies may become a thing of the past as A.I starts to play a bigger part in recruiting and internal hiring. Are companies set to lean towards this kind of technology to find their next star players?

But let’s ask the question again…..what does a good candidate look like? Have you asked yourself this question and do you continue to ask it whilst writing job descriptions, scanning through CV’s and carrying out interviews?

At first thought, the usual “tick box” criteria might arise such as “Someone with the right Qualifications” “proficient in using Microsoft & basic admin level Software” “A minimum length of experience in that exact field” and so on.

Where all of these things, are of course important, none of these questions make space for a candidate who has the

right personality or interests and outlook to fit the culture of the team or the business as a whole?

Sometimes a “good candidate” for you or for the role you are hiring for, could be as simple as “Someone to come and inspire or implement change in a team” “Someone who might be a speedy learner and is not afraid of a challenge” “someone who has outstanding communication skills”?

These are things that are often lost on paper!

These discussions have been open and ongoing in our office this month as our team have been reflecting upon their own experiences of what a good candidate looks like:

Aimee “When you look at someone’s CV sometimes they don’t appear to have the skills you’re looking for but when you actually have a conversation with them you can get a better feel for a person and start to see their real qualities and skills.” 

Our MD Toni believes firmly in the fact that:

Character should not be overlooked, as the ability to fit into a team and get along with other people is what pushes you into top roles

As a “good candidate”, having the confidence to honour yourself as an individual and not be afraid to be open about what you are looking for is vital. It has to be a fit for you too!

Toni: “Being yourself in an interview is your strongest asset. Even if a certain role doesn’t seem like your cup of tea, it doesn’t mean you failed. Why would you work for a company that doesn’t suit you either?”

There are obviously many roles that require a specific skillset, especially within I.T and Technology. Camila, our I.T Specialist Consultant, sometimes finds that if she has a certain role that is a little more flexible in terms of leaving room for training and development then the “Right Fit” can really come in to play.

Camila – “I have a candidate who is specialised in a certain field in IT and every time I see a relevant role come up I think of him. Not because he is technically the best, but because he is just a really nice person and I want to help him find the perfect role. I will always push for interviews for him. “

All of these things that we touched on as a team really brought to attention, how much of what we do is based on “People”. Understanding, empathy, Human Nature, even guessing someone’s next move. Is A.I going to be that…well…..intelligent?

We see it often where clients have a range of candidates with very similar experience and qualifications who, on paper, tick all the boxes but then there will be a “Wild Card” candidate that might not have experience in certain aspects of the role, but they end up hiring that person because they had a better connection with them.

They had turned up bright eyed and enthusiastic and asked all of the right questions. Their personality and vibrancy were just absolutely perfect and the client’s “Light Bulb Moment” was realising that all of other “missing stuff” could just be learned and wasn’t as vital as they had first thought.

Chris – “If someone comes in excited and raring to go, that’s a great first sign as it gets me excited about putting them forward to a Client, I look forward to telling them about someone special”

Maybe companies could end up missing out on these wonderful experiences if just relying upon tech. An inspiring connection can sometimes be made when meeting people face to face, especially in interviews, for both parties involved!

The other point being, that potentially, A.I might not be flexible enough to accommodate the very best of Human Nature which is to “change one’s mind.” We are all guilty of it and hey life happens!

So many factor’s and influences affect people applying for roles and hirers making offers.

Sometimes we get thrown off course ourselves, and well, we understand Humans better than A.I (……..hopefully!)

Upon reading a previous article that we published and have referred back to above: “Celebrating the Things That Make you Unique” I stumbled across this quote from Angela:

“If someone walked in here now and they knew what was expected of them, with the right attitude and the right values regardless of their experience I would take them on within a heartbeat. It is that spark someone has in their eyes.”

This couldn’t ring more true and more in line with what we do and I am happy to say that I am living proof of this.

By chance I was working in close vicinity to RISE in my previous role, and developed a relationship with the team and four months later here I am! No specific job role experience, no qualifications. Just purely a “connection with the team and the right outlook”. I might not have been able to “tick the boxes” if I had applied for a position in the regular way.

We are not saying that skill set or experience count for nothing. That’s far from the point here, but we do think that being yourself, being passionate about something whether related or not and having the right attitude can sometimes get you opportunities that you might not have had access to on paper.

Working these things into an interview alongside your skills and experiences, could set you apart or propel you further in to your career. You could end up being someone’s “Light Bulb Moment”.

And if you are hiring, then we urge you to consider the “Wild Cards”.

I think it could be said that is one of those “human only” things… I’m not too sure that A.I can really reach this light bulb!

Prepping for an interview whilst not a complicated task, is fundamental to the success of how the day goes.


Having a good breakfast, knowing where you’re going and researching a company itself is essential, but finding ways to prep online can often follow the same pattern. Dress smart, research the company, it is nothing we all haven’t heard before.


Let’s flip this conventional advice on its head and focus on some important aspects that are not as commonly shared.


Let’s highlight some areas and interview tips, no one has told you before.


Image Is Everything


Let’s make something very clear, companies do genuinely care about image, more than you think.


A good tip is to ask your recruitment consultant what you should wear for the interview. There is nothing wrong in asking how you should present yourself to others. One company that endorses a shirt and a tie, maybe completely opposite for another company that is happy with a shirt and jeans.


Fitting the company profile can go a long way. You have to be the right person for the company.


It is so much more than just skills, it goes way deeper than people may think.


Showing an interest and the company itself, not just the salary is essential, and will make you stand out during the interview process. Fitting the right atmosphere of the business is also critical, both for the employer and the employee and will make a significant impact when choosing the right job for you.


Yes, People Look At Your Social Media Accounts


Before an interview, the employer has already spent time with your CV.


They know the version of you that you have typed out, but they don’t know the person behind the paper yet.


This is what you need to present, not just your skills in industry. Social media can play a key role in this too – if you have an online presence, it has to be suitable for an employer to view. Because they can, and they will see everything the internet has on you.


It is a fact of life, people will look at others Facebook profiles and make a decision on that basis alone, before anything becomes face to face. The social rants, political bias and delicate views can go against you. According to Society For Human Resource Management 84% of employers recruit via social media, and 43% of employers screen job candidates through social networks and search engines.


Let’s flip things the other way round, if you show your true self and the interviewer finds smart, funny and interesting content, on your social spaces, then this can support you.


Likeability Can Be Your Special Move


Likeability is something that shines in unlikely circumstances.


Small things may be noted by others, such as a smile in reception or opening the doors for someone. Feedback goes straight back to the employer, and people will always hear what you are saying.


You never know who people in the building might be. Manners will be noted, impressions always count.


Deal With Awkward Interview Situations In Your Favour


Interviewers do have some unconventional questions ready for you. What animal would you be? What colour best represents you? Why did you choose that tie today?


You might be asked what your worst trait is. Here is a tip, choose something with a secret positive. For instance, a constant belief in precision brings it back to a selling factor towards you.


There is no such thing as a closed interview question. There is always going to be a chance for you to keep on talking and really sell yourself.


Context is key, so you must always be able to relate your experiences and selling points to the questions you have been asked. When you can connect a question to your own experience, it can put you in place of strength.


Showing Yourself In Your Best Light


If you ask any interviewer how they want you to come across, the answer is of course be yourself. But there is more to this than the cliché it sounds like.


It maybe obvious but not swearing is a huge no, no, even if an interviewer throws in a few expletives. Perhaps they want to see how your react? Be yourself but also be professional, because your personality will show in the workplace.


As a tip, always be grounded and try not to be over confident, as it is more than likely you won’t come across in the right way. Show that you have dreams and aspirations and want to grow within the company.


Let’s Round Up


There is a lot to think about when going for an interview, but remembering the little things can go a long way.


No set formula exists on how to perform perfectly and get the job, but showing the employer who you are both professionally and personally can and will put you in a good position.


After all, once you have secured an interview, you’ve got something special about you and employers just want the chance to see this for themselves.