Hear this: A study found no significant correlation between an employee’s prior work experience and their performance in a new organization.
The study showed no correlation with retention either! This kills our misconception that work experience will immediately lead to a successful hire.
Instead, they found out that pre-hire experience was not a good predictor of future behaviour. So it won’t necessarily determine the success of a candidate.
At Hiredly, we’ve hired many talented team members who began with no work or industry experience and are now soaring at what they do (and we couldn’t imagine the team without them!)
Here are 5 reasons why we’re enthusiastic about hiring people with no work or industry experience:
They have relevant transferable skills
If they have the relevant hard skills needed for the job, there’s no reason to reject them for having no industry experience.
Our Analyst Developer, Luke Wong was a Chemical Engineer with no industry experience in Web Development when we met him. But besides his strong portfolio (which he worked on to switch his career), he owed a lot of his current skills to his previous experience in Chemical Engineering.
“A large part of what I learned when I did Chemical Engineering was problem-solving,” Luke says, demonstrating his process for breaking down problems into smaller chunks.
This method of tackling issues proved useful when it came to bug fixes and the development of new features. That’s not all, though.
“Chemical Engineering also gave me a good foundation of programming and logic. It gave me a good starting point to learning Web Development.”
They are adaptable
Someone who’s making a change in their career knows the challenges they’re signing up for.
Most candidates with no industry experience have made peace with the fact that there will be vast changes in their work environment and way of working.
But besides transferable hard skills like Luke’s, soft skills acquired from previous experiences can be just as crucial for your company.
Our Sales Operation wizard Hafiz Noriman’s work at Hiredly is anything but easy. But he credits his Architecture background for his ability to adapt to challenging and fast-changing situations.
“Having an Architecture background helped me adapt to high-pressure situations. I’m able to attend to last-minute changes, make big decisions and work with a lot less supervision.”
When hiring a candidate, look out for common values and soft skills in mind. For some, technical skills can be trained but a bad attitude or work ethic can be tough habits to break.
They are passionate & eager to learn
It’s time to give candidates with no experience a chance to impress you.
As an economics graduate, our Creative Producer Huda Hakim always had an affinity for anything creative. So pivoting her career to design and videography was a natural next step.
In preparation, she picked up much-needed skills before applying to Hiredly. While she passed the skill test, our CEO, Derek still had some reservations.
“When Hiredly hired me, my skills and portfolio weren’t the best. But I had potential. Ultimately my work ethic, determination and eagerness to learn managed to win them over. I’ve proven myself since then!”
But what propelled her skills was a combination of her ferocious tenacity and Hiredly’s structured learning program. “Hiredly’s structured learning gave me time to brush up on my skills and catch up with what the company needed from me,” she says.
In her 4th year at the company, Huda is a huge asset to our video production team and provides valuable guidance to her team members.
And true to her constant thirst to learn something new, she is now exploring Digital Art as part of her structured learning!
They will make you better leaders
For Creative Team Lead, Teoh Diane, making an industry switch seems unthinkable. Having studied film and worked at an advertising agency before joining Hiredly, doing something uncreative isn’t something she can imagine for herself.
But she did have to train members who have had very different career paths.
Still, she insists on prioritizing a good attitude and willingness to learn when hiring, eyeing for potential rather than a certain amount of work experience.
We asked Diane how leading team members with no experience affected her leadership:
“In so many ways it has helped me become a better leader. Their initial limitations forced me to evaluate the way I lead and to adapt to people with different learning paces.”
They’re surprisingly easier to train
In more ways than one, someone with no work or industry experience is easier to train than candidates who do. According to Diane,
“I’ve had to find creative ways to train my team. To some, no-experience candidates may seem difficult to train at first, but I’ve found that it can be easier than training someone already experienced!”
According to Harvard Business Review, previous work experience could even hurt work performance if they don’t operate in the same culture as your team. Experienced candidates who carry preconceived notions that are hard to shake can be poorer at accepting feedback, new information or new ways of working.
Think about it: What better way to instil an employee with your way of working and company culture than with someone who is essentially a blank canvas?
With an ongoing skills shortage in Malaysia, many employers can’t afford alienate potential candidates who’d excel even without work experience.
Allow your company to unearth hidden gems by focusing on hiring based on attitude, skills and traits instead of work experience.
Expand the pool of talent today and hire no-experience candidates.
Join our #NoExperienceNeeded campaign and get your jobs promoted to actively seeking candidates for absolutely free.
Here’s how you can take part:
All you have to do is include the below snippet to your job of choice’s job description:
Candidates with no experience are welcome to try and apply! [Part of Hiredly’s #NoExperienceNeeded Campaign – hiredly.com/noexpneeded]
The job posting must fulfil the following criteria:
- Full-time role
- Not an internship
- No working experience required