the doctor realizes just how limited the supply of top Procurement talent is, and how tempted you might be to hire any apparent “talent” that you come across, especially if you get the okay among constant (brain-dead) hiring and training budget cuts (when Procurement is one of the few organizations that can consistently deliver a return many times it’s operational cost), but when you are filling your Procurement roles, chances are that at least one of them is going to be an TQ-heavy role. And whereas you can replace Procurement knowledge with IQ, you can’t replace Technical Knowledge with IQ, at least not quickly.
This is important because, given how important it is for a new hire to fit in, a company is often ready to hire the minute a candidate comes along that:
- has the personality that fits the corporate culture,
- has influential charisma, and
- has intellectual potential.
or, in other words, has the right EQ.
This is important, and should be the deciding factor among multiple candidates that can do the job, but you should first make sure the candidate can do the job she is being hired for. If it is highly technical in nature (i.e. leading the implementation and customization of a new S2P system to support organizational processes and transform them along the way), then she needs to be rather technical in her background and have a good knowledge of what the systems can do, how they do it, and what the organization will need from them.
These are not basic Procurement skills or category expertise that can be taught to any candidate with a high IQ, some common sense, and a background in the industry. These are skills that typically take years of training and experience to develop.
In other words, before hiring, first
- clearly identify the role that needs to be filled
- the key technical / experiential skill sets that are needed
- what, if anything, can be made up with in-house / third party training if the candidate has the right IQ and work ethic
and limit consideration to those candidates. At this point, you can let EQ prevail (even if one candidate would take 6 weeks of training and another 6 hours, because even if a candidate required no training, the wrong attitude would prevent that candidate from ever fitting in). But not before. Remember that before you get overzealous. At the end of the day, the job needs to get done, and the perfect candidate is not the perfect candidate if he can’t do the job.