5 Types of Applicants You Should Never Hire

When you have a position available, odds are that you’ll get all kinds of applications. Choosing the right applicant the first time around is essential, as it’s unbelievably expensive to replace an employee! And that’s not to mention the damage the wrong employee can cause before you throw them out of the building.

That’s why screening your candidates thoroughly is always a worthwhile investment. Background checks, fact-checking, and I-9 verification should always be a part of the process, or else you’re going to get stuck with a turkey or get yourself into legal trouble. To help you in your search, here are the five types of applicants to avoid hiring at all costs.


The Unprofessional

This is the person who shows up 15 minutes late to the interview or strolls in severely underdressed. If someone cares so little about a job interview that they won’t do everything possible to present a professional image, they’ll show the same lack of effort if you hire them.

The Job-Switcher

Unless you’re specifically hiring for a temporary position, it does you no good to have an employee who leaves after a few months or a year. Although this is an increasing trend among younger workers and may not be totally avoidable, you should still seek to find employees who can give you a longer commitment, when you can. Otherwise you’ll use time and money to train them, and then need to go through the hiring and training process all over again when they leave. If an applicant has a habit of bouncing from job to job, don’t expect them to stick around at your company.

The Binge Drinker

If an applicant has alcohol-related offenses on their criminal record or shows up to the interview with booze on their breath, those are huge red flags. People who can’t control their drinking are at best immature, and at worst immature. The same holds true for applicants with drug problems. As Resource points out, excessive drinking may not be a sure sign of addiction, but can lead to addiction in some people if unchecked. Don’t let these people in the building.

The Bad Mouther

Not every employer-employee relationship is going to be rosy all the time, but it’s troublesome when an applicant badmouths previous employers or current coworkers. It’s highly unprofessional and demonstrates that they don’t understand proper interview etiquette. Not only might you be opening yourself up to negative PR, but if hired, this type of hire is likely to become a gossip. According to Dave Ramsey, nothing is as toxic to your culture as gossip. Just as important is that it could very well be the applicant who was the problem, not the previous employer, especially if they seem to have had problems with all their previous employers.

The Cool But Rude Guy

It’s not hard to gauge how polite someone is when you interact with them. If you have an applicant who keeps talking over you or treats your receptionist poorly, then it’s obvious they lack interpersonal skills, and that could lead to issues when they need to work with your other employees and interact with customers.

Even if you need to get a position filled, it’s never smart to settle. Have the patience to wait for the right one. If an applicant fits into any of the categories above, steer clear of them, for the sake of your sanity. Even if they pass the stink test and aren’t an obvious unprofessional, rude, trash-talking binge drinker, you still need to screen them for less obvious issues, or you’ll wish you had.