Is personality a better predictor of a successful hire than skills and experience?

In today's competitive job market, hiring managers are always looking for an edge in recruiting the best and the brightest Gen-Zers. To narrow down the ~500,000 graduates that enter the job market every year, it is easiest to focus on skills and experience. However, we can all agree that personality, mindset, and culture fit are far better predictors of success than the skills a grad gains from an internship. But is personality more important than skills? And how can GradSmart help you prioritise what's important to find the right graduates for your company?

We've all had our fair share of jobs that have led us to where we are now. Some of them we probably liked... others not so much. When looking back at our own experiences, it's pretty obvious that most of the jobs (or tasks) we were best at are the ones we enjoyed the most. Now, of course, there are some exceptions. Andre Agassi and Gareth Bale jump to mind! But in general, we enjoy spending time doing things we are good at. And just because we have experience or skills in a particular field, doesn't mean we enjoyed it... or were any good at it for that matter.

When thinking about the most sought-after candidates within various sectors, it's easy to think that those with the most experience are the best. And in a lot of cases, that's true. If you're wanting someone to battle in a board room for multi-million-pound projects, you want someone with a track record that shows their ability to deliver. However, more experience is not always better. More experience could mean a dated mindset. More experience could mean more bad habits. More experience could mean less hunger.

When we're talking about the young talent that is going to be the future of our workforce; are skills and experience really that important? Does a 6-month internship mean you will have to spend less time helping graduates develop their skills? Probably not. In fact, I would argue that it's just as likely that you have to spend more time (rather than less) training new hires if they have experience in the industry. What if they learned bad habits? What if their confidence was knocked out because they had a bad manager? What if they actually hated their internship but you will pay them more money than anybody else because they have experience in a certain field? No matter what.

With experience or not, we need to spend time investing in our graduates. The more new hires are aligned to the job, company, and culture, the quicker they will learn. I understand that it's difficult to prioritise personality, interests, and culture fit when looking at a CV... but not anymore. GradSmart matchmaking algorithm still considers skills and experience. However, our algorithm is weighted toward finding graduates who will actually enjoy the job. Graduates who are well-aligned to the culture of the company. And hence graduates who are most likely to stay for the long haul. Oh yeah... we save you time and money by preventing irrelevant applications also. Launch your advert with GradSmart today!