Predictive Index Tests- How Should Employers Use Them?

I’d be willing to bet at some point in time, you have been laying around on a lazy Sunday, scrolling through facebook, and you’ve clicked on a test. “What Flavor Ice Cream Are You”, or “What is your spirit Animal?” We all know those silly tests, and for some reason people do enjoy taking them. In my thirteen years in the recruiting business, I have personally begun to see more and more companies RELYING on predictive index testing to help make crucial hiring decisions. The latest research suggests that thousands of companies and more than 18 Million candidates took a predictive index test, in some form, while interviewing for a job in 2020. Should we be using these assessments to make critical hiring decisions? That’s a loaded question, but I think the answer lies somewhere in the middle.

There are pros to using a behavioral index test or a cognitive index test. They give the interviewer a sneak peak behind the curtain of who is sitting in front of them. Advocates say it helps remove bias from the interview process and can give an employer a set of data they otherwise would not have on where a candidate’s strengths and weaknesses may lie. There are also cons to these assessments. Candidates can lie and fake answers which completely would make the rest of the interview process flawed. These assessments also do not give the employer the whole picture of a candidate- just specific traits on how they portray themselves. Some people argue the tests can, by nature, be discriminatory. So how should we use them? Or better yet, how should we NOT use them?

If you are currently using a predictive index tests early on in your interview process, I think that’s a fine thing to do. However, if you are then using these assessments to weed out candidates early on in the process, you are doing it all wrong. Very wrong. And I can guarantee it is having a negative impact on your companies hiring practices. Companies selling these tools will tell you that the tests can remove unsuitable candidates early on in the process, therefore saving you time, and leaving you with the best talent pool possible for your open position. They are selling you a lie. What you should be doing with the assessments is analyzing them prior to the next step of the process. Understanding the personality, cognitive ability, or behavioral tendencies of a candidate prior to an interview, gives you, the Hiring Manager, an advantage in the interview. It should help guide the interview process and help guide the questions that you ask. It should be just one, of many variables, you are considering throughout the process. If you are eliminating candidates before giving them the chance to present themselves in person, you are doing your company a disservice and potentially missing out on the best person for your opening.

Hiring is about getting to know people. Understanding what makes a person tick. Predictive Index tests can be a part of that process, but far too often companies are replacing the human part of the interview process and thats a big mistake. Good luck in your searches in 2021!

For more information about how Cornerstone Recruiting can help you hire the best possible candidate for your open positions, please visit us at

Cornerstone Hires Mike Murphy to Account Manager/Construction Recruiting Role

Please allow us to introduce Mike Murphy to you, as he has joined the Cornerstone family in an Account Manager/Construction Recruiter role. Mike comes to us after spending more than 10 years as a PGA Head Golf Professional in Bel Air, MD. In his former role, he was in charge of day to day operations, developing and implementing business plans, overseeing hiring and training, and most importantly providing exceptional customer service to members, guests, and vendors.

Mike has quickly shown significant value to our team and we couldn’t be more excited to have the opportunity to work with him. He brings a work ethic through the door every day that raises the bar, and a natural commitment to customer service that we expect for our clients and candidates.

We asked Mike about his decision to join Cornerstone and he said- “I am happy to join a team where I can continue to grow professionally under the support and guidance of industry leaders. I have followed the company, saw the growth from the outside looking in, and knew I could really contribute. I felt it was the right time for me to be a part of it. I couldn’t be more excited for what 2021 and beyond will bring.”

Mike will be focused on recruiting and managing accounts in the skilled trades, construction, and property management sectors while utilizing his large personal and professional network to help grow our business. Please reach out and congratulate Mike on his new position. You can reach him at

Cornerstone Recruiting is the leading construction recruitment agency in Maryland. We offer customizable recruiting solutions for the Construction, Skilled Trade, Manufacturing, Accounting & Finance, and Facility Management industries. Fore more information, please visit our website at

Cornerstone Announces 2020 Recruiter of The Year

Cornerstone is proud to announce that due to his dedication, hard work, and unwillingness to cave to the challenges of an extremely tumultuous year, Luther O’Bryant has been awarded with the 2020 “Recruiter of The Year” Award. In a year where a global pandemic forced construction shutdowns across the country, unemployment to skyrocket, and left Hiring Managers uncertain of their companies future, Luther exhibited a determined focus and a commitment to keep moving forward. We are grateful for your contributions to our company this past year.

Luther finished the year with a clean sweep. He generated the most fees per quarter, in every quarter of the year, placing nearly 30 direct placements with our clients. He also did so in unprecedented fashion, making placements all across the board, from skilled trade candidates making $20/hr to an Executive in NYC with a total package of over $400K/year.

Upon being awarded “Recruiter of The Year” we sat down and talked to Luther about what he attributes to his stellar year.

“I just focused on the little things. Following up on questions, giving feedback, and always making sure clients and candidates were kept in the loop. I set a standard for myself on the number of calls & emails I send out a day and made myself available after hours to speak with candidates. Working in a commission position, I learned that I can captain my own ship, create my own schedule, focus on what’s hot during the key hours and then sprinkle in time on potential opportunities in my down time. I also realized there are plenty of positions that need to be filled and I know that it only takes one good call or message to connect and create opportunity for clients, candidates, and myself.”

In recognition of his hard work and success, Luther was awarded bonuses every quarter and will be enjoying an all expenses paid vacation for two to an all inclusive resort of his choosing. If you’d like to collaborate with Luther and see how he can help you, please reach out to him at

Homebuilders Are Struggling To Find Skilled Workers

It’s a struggle we hear all too often, and we hear it a lot as headhunters in the construction industry. It goes against all logic, especially this past year when unemployment rocketed up, due to the pandemic. It left many Homebuilders scratching their heads….”Why can’t we find skilled workers?”

“A survey by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) found that builders’ top concern is labor, with 85% expecting future cost and availability problems, up from 13% in 2011. It’s a conundrum that predates the pandemic, but one that’s certainly been exacerbated by it. While unemployment peaked at almost 15% in 2020, empty construction jobs nevertheless hovered between 223,000-332,000- about the same number of open slots back when unemployment was only 4.1%. So what gives?”

Hear what business owners and industry experts are saying:

The Art of Landing the Passive Job Seeker

Finding and hiring talent is hard. Finding and hiring passive talent is harder. But in today’s competitive job markets if you aren’t targeting passive talent it is costing you more than you probably realize. Researcher’s from LinkedIn found that only 12% of the talent market is actively seeking work, while the large majority of professionals, 73% to be exact, are not actively seeking jobs. Think about that. Roughly 8 out of 10 people will not respond to your job post. Why would any company want to limit themselves to the 1 or 2 of disgruntled job seekers who are currently unhappy in their career? Does that sound like the best candidate to you? It may be, but you would be fooling yourself to believe it’s a winning strategy.

We work with hundreds of companies across the country- we know what works, we know what doesn’t. We’ve seen it all so to speak. As an Executive Search firm who prides themselves on landing passive talent for our clients- let us offer you some suggestions as you begin to think about your hiring strategies for 2021.

#1- ENGAGE A NICHE RECRUITING FIRM IN YOUR INDUSTRY– A truly niche recruiting firm who has spent years recruiting within your specific industry can be invaluable to your hiring strategy. They will uncover passive job seekers that you want to hire. They will set the stage for the interview process by selling your story, your culture, and your opportunities. They will vet candidates backgrounds and skills. They will give you a true picture of what is driving this candidates interest. All of these things, in turn, make your life as a Hiring Manager easier, and will give you more time to focus on driving profits.

#2- STOP NEEDING A MINIMUM NUMBER OF INTERVIEWS BEFORE MAKING A HIRING DECISION– I can’t stress this enough. Like I mentioned before, we’ve hired thousands of people for our clients throughout the years. I can assure you, the best way to lose a passive job seeker is to make them wait while you try to meet your antiquated interview quota. If you interview a passive job seeker and you think they are perfect for your company- act immediately. Do not let them leave the interview without an understanding that an offer is coming.

#3- ENGAGE YOUR CURRENT STAFF– Happy employees are tremendous ambassadors for your brand. It’s simple and true. Word of mouth or employee referrals are effective, but not only that, they are also free. Learning of a job at your company from a current employee can be an easy way to tap into the passive talent market without spending a dime.

#4- BE OPEN TO GIVING THEM WHAT THEY CURRENTLY DON’T HAVE– A recruiter makes this easy. This is some of the most valuable information a recruiter can provide a Hiring Manager. After all, at the end of the day, this is why the passive job seeker’s ears are open. Understand their pain points. Be creative and provide solutions for them, if possible. If you are not open to meeting the needs of a passive job seeker- you can bet your competitors are. I promise you. They are.

#5- BE IN A HURRY BUT NOT IN A RUSH– If a passive job seeker is brought to your attention or shows interest in a position with your company, act quickly. Be flexible with your interview availability- be open to an evening or weekend and start with a phone call. Do not give them a chance to rethink their decision or worse yet, look at other competitors job opportunities. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying to completely turn your interview process on its head for a passive candidate. Go through all the steps you do for all of your interviews, but do it with purpose. The longer the downtime in between steps, the less of a chance it ends in a hire.

If you want more passive candidates for your company’s job openings- please reach out to Cornerstone Recruiting today. For a full listing of the industries we serve, please visit our website at

How to Ace a Virtual Interview

There is no question that Covid-19 has changed our lives, likely forever, in all sorts of ways. The hiring process is no exception. Traditionally, candidates could go online, punch in some keywords that match their job search, and apply to jobs that best fit their skill sets. While that may still be the same, what happens from there, we believe, may have changed permanently. Don’t get me wrong, YES, there is no substitution for the tried and true face to face interview- but you may need to ace your virtual interview first.

Don’t be afraid if you have never done one before, follow this advice from The Muse and you will be masking up for an in person interview in no time. Click this link for full article;

Cornerstone Launches Accounting & Finance Division


Forest Hill based Cornerstone Recruiting has spent nearly 20 years building a national brand in the construction, skilled trades, and manufacturing recruiting industries.  

We are excited to announce that, due to our tremendous growth, we are expanding our service offerings to better accommodate our client’s needs, which moving forward, will include all Accounting & Finance related positions.

Leading the new division will be Pauline Wheeler, Accounting & Finance recruiting veteran. Pauline’s career spans over 20 years in recruiting management, more than half of which was spent with nationally recognized accounting & finance staffing leader, Robert Half International. Pauline brings a wealth of industry knowledge and employee development experience that will have an immediate impact on operations moving forward.

Cornerstone Chief Executive Officer, Charlie Dougherty, said: It has always been a goal of ours to open an accounting & finance division within Cornerstone. When the opportunity to partner with a proven leader like Pauline presented itself, we knew the time was now to launch the new division.”

Cornerstone’s customized recruiting options now include: contingency search for executive staff, contingency search for skilled trades workers, temporary staffing, HR outsourcing, recruiting-on-demand, RPO (recruitment process outsourcing), and Onsite recruiting.

For more information on our services, or general questions on how Cornerstone Recruiting can customize a solution for your staffing needs, please visit our website at or reach out directly to Charlie Dougherty at


What’s in store for the construction industry Under Joe Biden?

With the inauguration of a new administration quickly approaching, it is fair to wonder how new leadership will impact the construction industry. Many industry influencers agree that a large infrastructure bill is long overdue. Jimmy Christianson, VP of Government Affairs at the Associated General Contractors of America, is very optimistic that the Biden/Harris administration will target the construction industry to create jobs and opportunities. Is a $2 Trillion infrastructure bill on the horizon? For full story and details clock here:

Should I Accept A Counter Offer? No.

Let’s say you’ve been with a company for a while. A couple of years. Maybe more. There were good times. But lately, something just feels off. You’re bored, disengaged, and you can’t seem to motivate yourself to love the job and the company the way you used to. You start looking (very casually, mind you), for a new job. You start by reading up on the smartest ways to find better opportunities and grab some free tools on streamlining the job search. You’re very busy, so you look when you can.

Eventually, you hit a match. The new opportunity isn’t perfect (no job or employer is), but the company’s mission and the role excite you — and you’re craving a change. A chance to develop a whole new set of skills. The ability to expand your network and collaborate with different people. You get the offer. The pay is good. More than you’re making. The benefits are roughly the same. The work is interesting and cutting-edge. You decide to take the job. You’ve resolved that it’s time to move on.

Check out this article outlining why you should never look back.