In April of 2017, Amazon Founder and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos made a strong statement to his shareholders: embrace the start-up culture. Known as the Day 1 Philosophy, it was created many years ago, back when Amazon was just getting started in the late...

Google is considered one of the most desirable companies to work for by a huge host of young and talented individuals.  Google receives over 1.5 million applications per year for only 6,000 positions.  This means they can select from a massive pool of candidates, accepting only the top 0.04%.  Thus Google manages to cull many of the most intelligent and inventive individuals on the market, strengthening the company and creating a positive feedback cycle where they become ever more productive and ever more desirable a place to work. Your company may not be Google, but you can steal a page from their book to make your business more attractive to applicants. The better your pool of candidates, the stronger your employees will be and the more your company will prosper. Google hiring process boasts a second point of strength: it shuns traditional interview questions, using quirky challenges to separate the creative brains from the conventional.  This helps Google build an inventive yet homogenous culture of unified and like-minded individuals.

Can you tell when a job applicant is being honest with you?  You probably answered yes, but the unfortunate truth is that lying during the hiring process is becoming increasingly common, and increasingly difficult to detect.  Entire websites are dedicated to helping candidates falsify details of their resumes, and a whopping 56% of resumes contain embellishments and outright lies regarding previous dates of employment, job descriptions, education, and more. To help you avoid getting scammed by job seekers, here are a few of the most egregious hiring horror stories, and a few lessons we can learn from them: Hiring Horror Stories: 1. Candidate Listed Himself As CEO Of The Company He Was Applying For
I was screening applicants for a mid-level position at a Fortune 500 company.  As part of the process, we checked the candidates' profiles on a variety of social media and networking sites.  One applicant had himself listed as CEO of our company on Facebook.  Judging from his Facebook page, I wouldn't have hired him for the mailroom.

Many companies don't take advantage of freelancers, because they are afraid that freelancers will be hard to find, the quality of the work may not be high, and they may not be reliable.  In fact, the opposite is true.  Thanks to the proliferation of websites like oDesk and Elance, professional freelancers are extremely easy to find.  They are rated for professionalism and the quality of their work, and if you build relationships with 3 or 4 strong freelancers, they may become one of your company's strongest assets. The Benefits Of Hiring Freelancers: 1. Freelancers Save You Money When you hire a freelance employee, you pay on a project-by-project basis, so you pay only for the completed job.  You aren't shelling out for salary, benefits, or wasted hours. 2. Freelancers Have Highly Specialized Skillsets It can be difficult to find employees who can complete a wide variety of specialized jobs.  When you hire freelancers, you can hire a computer programmer for one job, a writer for another, and a spreadsheet wizard for something else.

Most job applicants have spent a lot of time on their resumes.  Everyone wants to appear as qualified as possible, so "stocking shelves" becomes "inventory management" and "changing the thermostat" becomes "climate engineering".  What with creative phrasing, exaggeration, and outright lying, it can be difficult to separate the fantastics from the flops.  But there are a few key indicators and some red flags that can help you spot the best candidates, so you can hire the most productive employees and avoid turnover. Good Signs and Bad Signs In The Hiring Process: 1.    Longevity

Good Sign:

The candidate has stayed at each previous position for 2-5 years or longer.

Bad Sign:

The candidate jumps from job to job.

Applicants will have a lot of plausible-sounding excuses for why they left previous positions: management was poor, they got a better offer, they wanted a change, they moved to a different city.  And maybe all those reasons are valid.  But the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior: if a candidate tends to switch jobs every 18 months, you can expect to keep them for about 18 months before they look for greener pastures.  And that's expensive for your company.

Bonus Points:

You can also look to see how applicants progressed at each of their previous positions.  If they kept the same job title the whole time that's fine, but it's even more impressive to see someone who obviously learned and grew at the job.  Earning promotions shows that they performed at a high level during their tenure.