Handling Internal Applicants in a Thoughtful Way

When an exciting leadership position opens up in your organization, it’s likely to attract one or more internal candidates.

Gabriel Lucas

Sep 21, 2021

Handling Internal Applicants in a Thoughtful Way

We always recommend allowing internal applicants to apply for any position, but we also advise clients to be thoughtful at every step. First, to protect the process itself, internal candidates should receive the same evaluation treatment as external candidates and participate in the same performance tasks. At the same time. it’s OK to have a policy such as, “all internal candidates make it to the semifinal round,” but try to have that decided and announced in advance. Second, it’s good to remind internal candidates early on that the hiring decision will ultimately go to the most qualified applicant. Finally, if an internal candidate is ultimately rejected, do so with care and empathy.  As an olive branch, employers should make every effort to invest a little more time and money into that individual’s professional growth plan.  In the end, this can be a tricky subject, so open communication and equitable treatment are paramount.

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