Welcome to the company

Firm handshake, polished shoes and a neatly pressed suit. Hire him, right?

Not so fast. Those aren’t the most predictive attributes for success in a job candidate, according to Development Dimensions International, a Pittsburgh-based human resources consulting firm. DDI based its conclusion on a survey it co-sponsored with Electronic Recruiting Exchange.

“The survey strongly suggests that specific hiring practices and tools are linked to an organization’s success,” says Scott Burton, vice president of staffing and assessment consulting for DDI.

The study indicates a correlation between companies with effective hiring systems and their financial performance, productivity, quality, customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction and retention.

The four hiring practices of highly successful organizations, according to the study, are:

* Job interviews in which candidates are asked to describe specific examples of their skills;

* Automated resume screening and searches;

* Assessments that predict whether candidates are motivated by the factors associated with a particular job or a company’s values and ways of doing things;

* Simulations that gauge specific job-related abilities and skills.

Still, we think good grooming counts. Oh, and get a haircut while you’re at it.

Ray Marano