Finding Reliable People: 5 Ways to Make Sure Job Applicants are Reliable Choices


From small businesses to large companies, every business – or every organization – is only as good as its employees.

When your business is built around reliable, highly skilled and professional people, progress and results come easily. You can’t grow any business by yourself, and it’s essential that your team represents your business’s values and goals.

Are you searching for reliable people to add to your team? Recruiting people that aren’t just skilled and talented, but also extremely reliable, is one of the toughest aspects of growing your business.

Luckily, it’s possible to screen your applicants for reliability throughout the hiring process, from receiving their resume and cover letter to interviewing them for the position.

Read on to discover five ways to ensure your job applicants are reliable, talented people that will add real value to your business.

1. Look for a history of great performance. 

Do you know the saying “the best indicator of future behavior is past behavior?”

The most effective way to narrow down your hiring pool to highly reliable people is to look for applicants with a great past. From a reliability perspective, this makes it important to look for people that have a history of consistent, high quality work.

Have you received job applications from people that exceled in their past jobs? Do any of your applicants have stellar references and recommendations? People can and do change over time, but top-performers often work very consistently.

If you’ve noticed outstanding resumes in your list of applicants, prioritize them, as an excellent job history is often an indicator that someone will perform well in their position within your business.

2. Make sure they’re a good match for your company. 

Company culture is one of the most important yet frequently ignored aspects of the hiring process. A candidate with a fantastic background that doesn’t match up with your company culture may not necessarily be a good fit.

The reason is simple: people typically perform at their best in an environment that they feel comfortable in. Someone accustomed to a slow, relaxed work environment may not excel in a fast-paced, high-stress, results-focused work environment.

Don’t just screen applicants for competence and reliability – also screen them for a culture match. If an applicant has a great resume but seems out of place within your business, they may not ever feel comfortable enough to perform at their best.

3. Avoid people that jump from one job to the next. 

Highly talented people often don’t spend much time at each job before moving on to the next. No matter how talented someone may seem, it’s best to avoid hiring serial “job hoppers” to work within your business.

Although applicants with a long history of short periods at different jobs may have great skill sets, their history shows that they could jump on to the next job as soon as a better opportunity reveals itself.

If you’re interested in hiring someone with a history of moving from job to job at a rapid speed, it’s important to be aware that you may need to deal with them moving on to another employer in the near future.

4. Value positivity – it adds value to your business. 

Some people are highly talented, professional and dedicated, but have a negative or pessimistic attitude that wears on their coworkers. It’s often far better to hire highly positive people than to choose a more talented person with a negative attitude.

Many businesses thrive on energy, and a candidate with limited energy and a low-motivation mindset – no matter how talented and effective – can have a negative effect on the performance of your entire team.

This is ultimately part of hiring people that match your company’s culture. As well as being a good fit for your work environment, it’s important that the people your business hires are a match for its attitude, outlook and energy level.

5. Write your job description to prioritize reliability. 

If reliability is essential – as it is for most important positions – you should write your job description to emphasize how important a dependable person is for your business.

Doing so will reduce the number of people that apply for your job, but it will also screen out most (but not all) applicants that view your business simply as a point that can be used to jump to a more lucrative opportunity.