Sorry, but You're Overqualified?



  • For those that have a great deal of experience interviewing, what do you do when you find a candidate that is obviously overqualified for a position but still applies? Do you go ahead and meet with them and get a feel for their expectations and skills, or do you tell them thanks but no thanks? There's probably no hard and fast rule here, but I'd like to hear some opinions.

    I have a feeling that in these situations there will be a mismatch in expected pay between the potential employee and the employer. And I certainly would not want to put a candidate in a position where their expected career growth may not move along at the rate they expect.



  • In this situation I think the best thing is to lay the expectations of the position out on the table. Gauging someone by their experience only isn't always the best test. Many people just do not like the stress of a higher position, qualified or not. On the other side of that they may fight against any restraints that are put on them and be pushing to take over everything. Just be sure that expectations are not only stated in the interview process but written out as well.



  • I never turn people down for being too good. Seems pretty silly to me. How can someone be too perfect?



  • The overqualified are often the best possible option. They are the best equipped to earn their keep. The most likely to provide you with more options down the road. And they know the best what they are getting with you. Rather than settling, they are choosing.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    I never turn people down for being too good. Seems pretty silly to me. How can someone be too perfect?

    Because over qualified != too perfect or too good. Those are different concepts. There is no way to be too perfect for a position as perfection is impossible.

    An over qualified individual will have all the skills needed for the job in addition to a number of other skills that may or may not be useful to the job. Those skills will hint at things like what the person may be truly after.



  • While everyone is right on one side. There is the be careful side, overqualified people can also become a huge issue. Why did they leave their last couple jobs? They might be looking below their abilities cause they have been black listed as well.



  • @Minion-Queen said:

    While everyone is right on one side. There is the be careful side, overqualified people can also become a huge issue. Why did they leave their last couple jobs? They might be looking below their abilities cause they have been black listed as well.

    This leads into my thoughts on the subject. I would not turn down someone with too many qualifications out of hand. There are many, many reason that person may have applied. The reasons would play a part in the decision to hire or not.



  • @JaredBusch said:

    @scottalanmiller said:

    I never turn people down for being too good. Seems pretty silly to me. How can someone be too perfect?

    Because over qualified != too perfect or too good. Those are different concepts. There is no way to be too perfect for a position as perfection is impossible.

    An over qualified individual will have all the skills needed for the job in addition to a number of other skills that may or may not be useful to the job. Those skills will hint at things like what the person may be truly after.

    Hint at is misleading, I think. I have skills in fast food management. It hints at my experience, not my goals.

    Everyone has other skills. I find considering being too rounded or too experienced very bad.



  • @Minion-Queen said:

    While everyone is right on one side. There is the be careful side, overqualified people can also become a huge issue. Why did they leave their last couple jobs? They might be looking below their abilities cause they have been black listed as well.

    Possible. But the same is just as likely for people with the right skills or too few. I thinking reading too much into skill lists doesn't have an upside.



  • @JaredBusch said:

    @Minion-Queen said:

    While everyone is right on one side. There is the be careful side, overqualified people can also become a huge issue. Why did they leave their last couple jobs? They might be looking below their abilities cause they have been black listed as well.

    This leads into my thoughts on the subject. I would not turn down someone with too many qualifications out of hand. There are many, many reason that person may have applied. The reasons would play a part in the decision to hire or not.

    Exactly. The reasons, not the skills. Extra skills, on their own are neutral at worst and positive at best.



  • A few years ago, I was recovering from burnout and took a helpdesk position. It was low-stress, low-workload, and extremely relaxing. Sometimes taking a step back isn't all that bad to do. If I hadn't been recruited away, I'd likely still be there.



  • I do rather tech roles even though I'm CIO qualified. Let's me spend more time doing what I like.

    I actually turned down CIO nine years ago in favour of an admin position. It was a good choice.



  • I've gotten furious (on the inside) when told this, and it's happened a few times. I've applied for jobs that based on the description given, I feel like I could grow in and learn some new things only to be told that I'm over qualified.

    FFS, I either get told It's because I don't have a bachelor's degree, or I'm over qualified. It's maddening. Was even told once that I appeared to be a 'job shopper' even though every job I have ever had since my Wal-Mart days has been on average 3+ years.



  • @alexntg said:

    A few years ago, I was recovering from burnout and took a helpdesk position. It was low-stress, low-workload, and extremely relaxing. Sometimes taking a step back isn't all that bad to do. If I hadn't been recruited away, I'd likely still be there.

    That's kinda what I did with my current job, went from an MSP, to Goodwill, to another MSP to help desk / internal IT for a single office. All involved IT help desk in some way except this job, where it's software support only. Been less stressed and given some room to move and do things but I miss having projects and different environments.