Don’t Overlook the Candidate Starting a Second Career

Starting a second or a new career can be a difficult decision for any person to make. Making the choice of leaving a profession that you know and are comfortable with, to go into a completely new professional direction can be daunting. There are be many different roads that can lead an individual into making the decision to start over professionally:

  • It may be due to necessity from getting laid off and using this time to jump into a new field
  • It can be a professional who after twenty years in one field simply decides it’s time to try something different.
  • Some can be led to their second career because it brings them back to the craft or work they love and now they have the opportunity to do it.

Whatever the reason is that brought that individual into their second career, they’ve probably withstood the ups and downs in their professional life and can handle most situations sent in their direction.

As an employer or recruiter, there are many benefits to bringing someone like this into your organization. While he may not have developed the actual experience or skills in your particular marketplace yet, he has plenty of overall professional skills that shouldn’t just be overlooked either.

Experience, Knowledge, and Professionalism

As an employer, one of your responsibilities to your team and your organization is bringing in the top talent to fill vacant positions. For someone who is starting a new career, it’s easy to look at their resume and see either an unqualified candidate, or a candidate with little-to-no experience in the field. But beneath the surface of that resume may be the diamond in the rough your organization needs.

Dig deeper into why this individual has delivered their resume to you. Through a thorough phone screening you can find out enough about the individual to see if he/she is worth bringing in for a face-to-face interview with you and to meet some of your staff.

Don’t focus so much on his/her skills in your field, or lack of skills, but rather find out more about his/her communication, leadership, commitment, what drives him, and just his overall experience. Ask what brings him here at this particular moment in their careers. Does he have the intangible qualities that you need for your team? If his answers pass your initial gut check, bring him in for the face-to-face interview and dig deeper to find out what assets he can bring to your team and how he can deliver for you.

Knowing where to find the best talent for your team

Recruiting and hiring applicants who are strong in your field with the right skillset and experience is generally a good recipe in developing a strong team and organization. Neglecting to at least be open to talking to professionals changing careers can be a major oversight in finding the best person for the job.

Top talent is out there. Sometimes recruiters and employers need to be open to new ideas or look outside the box to find them.