Topgrading® A to Z: Tips for Shortlisting A Players

March 1, 2013

“Interviews with non-promising candidates, resumes full of hype…”

These are embarrassing to companies, costing them a lot of time and money. Their HR staff may be wondering every day how to gain good insights into candidates.

en world is recommending Topgrading Methods to help reduce the burden on HR staff. Designed to ensure the successful hiring of top talent, Topgrading Methods incorporate tools for shortlisting A players before the interview process.

  • Topgrading Career History Form

Topgrading Methods use a unique form called the Topgrading Career History Form to facilitate pre-screening based on job applications. When candidates’ resumes are received, the Topgrading Career History Form is sent to the candidates, asking them to complete and send back the form.

The Topgrading Career History Form requests the following information, among others:

ž Full compensation history

ž Boss ratings

ž True reasons for leaving jobs

ž Likes and dislikes in jobs

ž Self-appraisal

The form also contains a statement that just before a job offer the candidate must arrange personal reference calls with former bosses. Whether those reference calls are actually conducted depends on a case by case basis. The statement is designed to motivate candidates to be willing to tell the truth.





  • Telephone Screening Interview

Once the completed Topgrading Career History Form, which provides a rough portrait of the candidate, are at hand, a telephone screening interview is conducted before inviting the candidate in for in-depth interviews. In this simplified interview HR staff verbally explain the job in more detail, and if the candidate is still interested, ask about reasons for job changes, successes and failures in jobs, and others. These preparatory steps ensure that almost every candidate who subsequently comes in for in-depth interviews is a high performer, making it possible to avoid wasting time interviewing non-high performers.

If you are interested learning more, we invite you to download the free e-book Topgrading101 (available in both English and Japanese).

For more information about how you can use Topgrading to hire, train and retain A-Players, contact Craig Saphin, Certified Topgrading Trainer, on +81-3-3289-3101,

*Topgrading is a registered trademark of Topgrading Inc.