Dispelling 5 Hiring Myths That Can Hinder Your Company’s 2020 Talent Acquisition

hiring myths
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Liz Strikwerda

Content strategist and corporate blogger (2000+ posts). Her work has been featured on G2's Learning Hub, Human Resources Today, Better Buys and over 500 business websites. She plays bluegrass mandolin and enjoys sailing her catamaran and hiking in the red rock wilderness of southern Utah. Connect with me on LinkedIn

Hiring myths hamper your recruiting efforts.

Let’s debunk some of the common misconceptions.

1. Work-from-home policies lower productivity and reduce collaboration.

Companies in widely diverse industries have found the opposite to be true. When managed correctly, remote employees are just as effective as onsite workers. Inexpensive (or free) cloud-based software solves collaboration problems.

JetBlue allows folks to work as far as three hours from headquarters—close enough to come in now and again but a much bigger radius from which it can draw applicants. When I asked the people at JetBlue about this policy, they said it helped them gain access to educated, high-ability mothers who wanted flexibility in their jobs. The airline believes this policy has improved the quality of its workforce.

Many companies have experienced higher retention among their offsite staff. Work/life balance increases engagement as well. Don’t rule out telecommuting due to outdated hiring myths.

2. There’s no reason to actively recruit people with disabilities.

Many employers believe that people with disabilities are less productive. Absenteeism is also a concern. And they assume it will be costly to make accommodations.

Studies have disproven these assumptions. Employees with disabilities are just as productive. They aren’t absent more frequently.

‘Reasonable accommodations’ may have a moderate cost, but the Work Opportunity Tax Credit can offset the amount.

According to the DOL’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), two-thirds of employer accommodations for employee disabilities cost under $500, and most of the remainder require no special costs. (Source)

3. Hiring older employees has many drawbacks.

Last year, employees age 55 or older filled 49 percent of U.S. jobs.

But hiring myths about workers aged 50+ abound. The most common are: 1.They will demand a higher-than-average salary. 2.They aren’t tech-savvy. 3. They have significantly higher healthcare costs.

Each of these misconceptions have been disproven in many studies. Employers who hesitate to hire older candidates are missing out.

Older workers are more productive, have lower turnover, stay with an employer considerably longer than younger individuals and possess the accumulated knowledge and skills of a lifetime. Analysis of the economic value and profit contribution of age 50+ workers produces a strong argument for the retention and recruitment of older workers. (Source)

4. If you wait long enough, you’ll find an ideal candidate.

Not in this labor market. That’s why there is a renewed focus on soft skills. Many candidates don’t have the exact education and experience you could insist on if there wasn’t a talent shortage. In response, some companies have increased opportunities for on-the-job training.

Demand is outstripping supply. At the best of times, employers will find it near on impossible to find talent that perfectly fits all the position requirements. (Source)

Crafting job descriptions and requirements for soft skills is no longer optional. Structured interviewing questions are also critical.

5. An ATS is a luxury that small businesses can’t afford.

An ATS saves more money than it costs. As such, it can be the best way to stretch your recruiting budget.


It allows you to process and screen more applicants faster. This improves your quality-of-hire because you can compete with larger companies.

Another hiring myth is that ATSs remove the personal element. Because they narrow the pool of applicants quickly, they allow you to focus your attention on the most qualified.

ATS’ improve engagement for your entire staff. When your workforce has to cover for unfilled positions, you are at risk of employee burnout. Filling positions faster reduces or eliminates productivity gaps.

An ATS may also allow you to bring all hiring in-house. You won’t need outside agencies to find talent. Use software as capable as the platforms used by professional recruiters. Your hiring outcomes will improve AND you’ll save money.

Infographic detailing several benefits of an applicant tracking system


By Liz Strikwerda

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