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10 Qualities Employers Look for In Job Applicants

Updated on March 6, 2012

Qualities Employers Are Seeking

Being rejected time and time is hard to take as an unemployed person seeking a new job, so make sure that you consider the following 10 areas that employers are likely to use to evaluate potential employees. Depending on the industry and the actual position some skills and qualities that are highly desirable may be nonexistent for another job requirement. Remember that every interaction you have with a business during the application and interview process is part of the evaluation process the company has put in place to identify the right candidates and hire team members that will fit the company culture and be capable of implementing the duties of the job. Others may have different qualities in their top 10 list, but these are issues that have always been top of mind for me when I am hiring new team members.

Prepare to Showcase Qualities

10 Best Job Applicant Qualities

  1. Consistency - Most jobs require employees to be capable of performing specific tasks several times over the course of a day or week or in the case of jobs in the construction or manufacturing industries, every minute. If a person is not capable of keeping a consistent structure in there resume it is a good sign that they may lack the attention to detail required to be consistent.
  2. Professionalism - A hundred and one things can fall under the guise of professionalism so think about how you interact with potential employers. Show up on time for interviews, be polite in your interactions with everyone as you never know who may be evaluating you. I always would walk out and talk to the company front desk admin and ask about potential candidates, did they treat her nicely, what did they do in the office, feet up on furniture, etc. Dress nicely, I can't say it enough, regardless the position you are applying for dress nicely, this does not mean if you are applying to push carts at the local super market to go in a suit and tie, but wear a pair of clean and pressed khaki's and polo shirt even if the regular dress code is just jeans. You may go in for a interview for a cart pushing job and get hired as a cashier just because you are more professional then others. (That is a real story)
  3. Creative - Creative business people are capable of thinking outside the box and execute new business strategies that can drive growth. Creativity can not be demonstrated in random ways as no boss wants a rogue employee, however creativity that is channeled through the proper channels can be a great asset to a company.
  4. Positive Attitude - I have never hired a single person that seemed depressed or angry at the world for whatever reason. Even though you are unemployeed and things may not be gouing well, always start a conversation with a hiring manager with a smile and be positive about the day. The answer to how are you doing today, should be, " I am doing great and looking forward to talking with you about this opportunity to work at ....." Don't tell the life story, as a business does not things that can be a distraction to the workplace.
  5. Self Motivation - Can you get projects done on your own without being micro managed? This is a critical skill to learn and express to interviewers that you are good with direction and can be provided an example of what to do and be capable of doing the work with out regular check ups / reminders.
  6. Meet Job Listing Requirements - Don't apply for the job if you don't meet the basic requirements for the position or at least have the required experience.
  7. Culture - Does the candidate fit in with the culture of the company. All employers want to have a work environment that is productive and a big part of keeping everyone productive is making sure that the business has cohesive culture. This is critical for small businesses as a single person that does not gel well with the the company culture can cause severe problems.
  8. Reliable - Be reliable. Show up on time, do what you say you will do, refer to number 2.
  9. Multi Tasker - If a person is not comfortable being involved in several different activities at once they may not be the right fit for your business. In today's business world people should be able to work back and forth between different tasks from computer tasks to phone calls, to attending a meeting a clients facility and still stay in touch with the team. The technology is available that there should be no excuses from team members about not being capable of multi-tasking.
  10. Efficient - Be able to get things done quickly, yet still consistent to the level of quality that is required.


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    • Paul Kuehn profile image

      Paul Richard Kuehn 

      5 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand


      I agree that the 10 qualities which you list are those which employers are looking for in job applicants. Depending on the job, I would expect my prospective employee to be to express himself or herself well both orally and in writing. Voted up and sharing.

    • alocsin profile image


      6 years ago from Orange County, CA

      Good advice. I can't tell you how many times interviewees violated one of these rules and so didn't get the job. lack of reliability, #8, was the most common flaw -- they wouldn't show up on time, or come in late, or sometimes not come in at all with no notice. Voting this Up and Useful.


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