Although businesses are reopening their doors amid increasing vaccination rates, remote and hybrid work arrangements remain the mainstay for many organizations. As a result, employers are adapting their hiring processes — and the qualities they look for in a candidate — to reflect the needs of this new work environment.
Case in point: A new report from job search resource ResumeBuilder.com revealed that 38% of hiring managers see video chat proficiency as the top skill they look for in a candidate.
This quality is in greater demand at companies with fully remote employees, as 49% of hiring managers with such a workforce prioritize this proficiency above all others.
Employers prefer job candidates with skills suited for remote work
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced companies to reevaluate how their employees perform and, consequently, 50% of hiring managers say the health crisis has also affected the skills they look for in potential hires.
Some industries, notably those that were able or required to shift to remote work during the pandemic, were also more likely to adapt their hiring processes accordingly. These industries included:
- Computer and information technology (64%)
- Advertising and marketing (60%)
- Business and finance (58%)
- Education (57%)
After video chat proficiency, ResumeBuilder.com found that the next most important skill that hiring managers looked for in job candidates was the ability to work with a variety of technologies in different work environments (23%).
"What most candidates do not realize is that their video chat, IT and computer skills are being evaluated during the interview process," says Stacie Haller, career development expert at ResumeBuilder.com. "Candidates must be prepared right off the bat to demonstrate proficiency, no matter how much those interviewing them say it’s 'just a conversation.'"
Just over half of employers (52%) are currently following hybrid schedules, after all, so it follows that they'd want new employees to be able to adapt to any style of working.
Interestingly, other top qualities preferred by hiring managers focused on soft skills such as:
- Self-motivation (11%)
- Strong written communication skills (9%)
- Emotional stability and the ability to seamlessly adapt to change (8%)
Companies hope to draw in new talent with competitive benefits
According to the findings from ResumeBuilder.com, almost 1 in 4 businesses have plans to expand their workforce by 20%. To do so, most organizations plan to entice job applicants by offering new perks like:
- Flexible work schedules
- Remote work options
- Retirement plans
- Life insurance policies
Surveys conducted by other organizations point to additional benefits job candidates look for in employers. For instance, Express Employment Professionals discovered that employer-funded or subsidized child care was a benefit especially desired by working parents and caregivers.
And with the continued shift to remote and hybrid work arrangements, a different survey from Ivanti showed that remote workers want companies to offer stipends for work-from-home related expenses such as Wi-Fi, home office furniture and cellphones.
Methodology: ResumeBuilder.com conducted an online survey of 1,250 hiring managers from multiple industries via Pollfish on April 25, 2021.