The Purple Squirrel: Is the hiring process broken?

Face-to-face interactions are becoming increasingly rare as more employers rely on computers to screen potential employees.

Image of Why Good People Can't Get Jobs: The Skills Gap and What Companies Can Do About It
Author: Peter Cappelli
Publisher: Wharton Digital Press (2012)
Binding: Paperback, 128 pages

All right, so journalist Bob Woodruff, former Joint Chiefs Chairman Colin Powell and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg all say to pick a job that you love. But it's easier said than done, especially when there are many more unemployed Americans than there are jobs.

Peter Cappelli talks to host Tess Vigeland about why computer screening makes it actually more difficult for employers to find the elusive "purple squirrel." What is the purple squirrel you ask?

"The completely unusual person who is just perfect for the job," Cappelli said.

Capelli teaches management at the Wharton School and says the fundamentals of hiring are broken. He goes into depth about this problem in his new book "Why Good People Can't Get Jobs." Computers are all wrong to find that perfect employee, yet more than ever, companies are dependent on technology to find them the employees. They may get breadth, but not a lot of depth.

Listen to the audio above to learn more about how computer screening works and how to successfully land a job -- or at least how to stay in the running.

About the author

Tess Vigeland is the host of Marketplace Money, where she takes a deep dive into why we do what we do with our money.
Image of Why Good People Can't Get Jobs: The Skills Gap and What Companies Can Do About It
Author: Peter Cappelli
Publisher: Wharton Digital Press (2012)
Binding: Paperback, 128 pages

Comments

I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...