BW 35 Virtual Recruiting Part 1 | BrainWorks

Virtual Recruiting and Hiring 1: The Scorecard

As the Covid pandemic continues and remains unpredictable, virtual recruiting and hiring is increasing in importance. With the likelihood that lessons learned during the pandemic will make mixed or “hybrid” (in-person and virtual) the new reality of doing business, it’s unlikely that we will return to 100% in person.

Actually, virtual recruiting has its advantages as well as its shortcomings, and the shortcomings can be overcome to make virtual a method that is at least as good as in-person and in some aspects better. For example, it allows you to interview a range of candidates that is geographically unlimited, without the expense and disruption of bringing a candidate to you. Second, if one follows a rigorous and data-driven approach, the results of virtual recruiting are as good as in-person.

Effective virtual recruiting starts with creating a Scorecard. The Scorecard describes the mission for the position, outcomes that must be accomplished, and competencies that fit with both the culture of the company and the role:

Mission: The Essence of the Job

The mission is the job’s core purpose. It is the essence of the job, stated so that everyone understands why the hire is important. It is written in plain language and delineates the specialties you will be looking for in a candidate.


Outcomes describe what needs to be accomplished in the role. Most jobs have three to eight outcomes, ranked by order of importance. By being rigorous and specific about outcomes, you make it clear to all concerned exactly what you are looking for in a candidate.

Statements of outcomes should avoid focusing on activities (what the person hired will be doing) in favor of achievements (what the person will be accomplishing). To make the outcomes as objective and observable as possible, follow the familiar formula for SMART goals:

Specific – specify exactly the criteria that will show the outcome was achieved.

Measurable – quantitative measurement (dollars, market share, units manufactured or sold, etc.) vs qualitative measurements are critical.

Actionable – outcomes are the result of actions – if a clear action path cannot be identified, the outcome is not achievable.

Relevant – it should be clear how outcomes relate to the overall strategy and mission of the company.

Time-bound – outcomes should have a specific time component – to be complete by or before a specified time.

Competencies: Relevant skills and experience:

Competencies define how a new hire will be expected to operate in the fulfillment of the job and the achievement of the outcomes. Competencies include “skill” and “will” components. Skill competencies include technical areas and related areas. Will competencies are sometimes referred to as “discretionary effort,” i.e. areas that the person brings that are not essential on the technical but are important to achieving the outcomes. These include efficiency, integrity, initiative, leadership, follow-through on commitments, strategic thinking, teamwork, and many more. By and large, it is the “will” competencies that will determine how a person will fit with the culture of the organization.

In their book Who: The A Method for Hiring, authors: Geoff Smart and Randy Street suggest that scorecards are the guardians of the culture. They encapsulate on paper the unwritten dynamics that make the company what it is, and they ensure you think about those things with every hiring decision.

Properly constructed and used, scorecards provide a framework for virtual hiring that allows decisions that maximize data and minimize “gut feeling.”

Next time: Virtual Recruiting and Hiring 2:The Interview



BrainWorks is a prominent boutique executive search firm offering a 29-year track record of successfully sourcing and placing top talent. By harnessing proven strategies, collaborating with stakeholders, and leveraging a diverse and talented candidate network, BrainWorks helps businesses find, attract, and ultimately hire talented professionals that create differentiated results. To learn more about how Brainworks can help you, contact us.

Back to BrainWorks Blog