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Use skills-based methods to improve your hiring process ROI and increase diversity up to 3x.

Skills-based hiring is
inclusive recruitment

There's currently a shift at play in the way we hire people - the rise of skills-based hiring. But what is the skills-based approach to recruitment, why is it becoming popular, and how does it unlock diversity, engagement and performance at scale? Let's find out.

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What is a skills-based approach?

A skills-based approach is a way of hiring that shifts from evaluating candidates based on their job titles or previous roles to assessing their core competencies and abilities. This approach centres a candidate's skills and their potential over their experience.

What is a skills-based job description?

A skills-based job description emphasises the specific transferable skills, behaviours and technical capabilities required for the role.

A skills-based job description usually consists of matrixed skills in order of priority, not a list of ideal functional requirements.

Most employers (81%) believe they should prioritise skills over degrees, but 52% still hire from degree programs because they believe it’s a less risky choice.

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What is a skills-based approach in HR?

Over 70% of people have the wrong skills for their jobs. This affects motivation, productivity, engagement and, ultimately, retention.


Progressive HR and People teams know the huge benefits of skills-based approaches because they shift dependency from personal judgements to quantifiable and auditable metrics, enabling better outcomes across their function. 

Skills gap - 70% of people don't have the right skills for their jobs - Gartner Study.png
A skills-based approach builds the most successful, high-performing teams.

Everyone has skills; we just need to get better at recognising them.

By shifting the focus from experience-matching to skills-matching in the hiring process, you can optimise your hiring teams and gain a 360-degree view of candidates by the time they join. 

“We have a skills-based talent strategy, focusing on four areas: sales, service and support, operations and software development. We have jobs in every single one of those categories that do not require degrees”

Bank of America SVP of Talent Acquisition

Christie Gragnani-Woods.

The benefits of skills-based hiring to
Talent Acquisition teams

A group of diverse colleagues sit around a table having a conversation

Talent attraction and acquisition fuel organisational growth. Adopting skills-based hiring can revolutionise these processes, improving time to hire, candidates diversity and accuracy, making them more targeted and efficient. Here are some of our favourite benefits of skills-based hiring for TA teams:

Better Candidate Matching

Traditionally, job descriptions focus on qualifications and experience. In skills-based recruitment, job descriptions focus on skills. 

Expanded Talent

When companies prioritise skills over specific qualifications or career paths, they can tap into a more diverse range of candidate pools.

Enhanced Candidate Experience

By assessing candidates based on their skills and potential, organisations can identify candidate suitability quicker and offer specific feedback in a much more meaningful and timely way.

Evaluation Bias

Skills-based hiring significantly reduces hiring process bias. Interviewers can score candidates against a consistent skills matrix, making interviews more structured and consistent,.

“Employers recognise that with the current talent shortage, skills-based hiring is the best approach for a wide range of roles with significant high-volume need and higher-than-average turnover.”

Opportunity@Work Head of People and Culture

Angela Briggs-Paige.

The benefits of skills-based hiring to 
HR teams

Skills-based hiring helps the entire HR function's objectivity by shifting the focus from opaque, opinion-based decision-making to a focus on quantifiable, data-backed decision-making. 


In HR, transitioning to a skills-based approach can usher in a new era of data-enabled decision-making and effective talent management. Let's explore how this approach can revolutionise key HR functions:

People Experience

Skills-based decision-making enables you to understand employees on a deeper level. By analysing each employee's skills and potential for growth, HR can tailor development plans that align with individual strengths and career aspirations. 

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Diversity and Inclusion

The skills-based approach is a game-changer for diversity and inclusion. Because barriers to entry are reduced, talent can be identified from a much broader pool.

Rentention - 73% of employees happy in their role and company after being hired through a

Organisational Design

Identifying and distributing skills gaps is critical for organisational growth. Skills-based practices help HR design targeted growth plans, map resources more effectively and get ahead of skills-based needs. 

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Learning & Development

Understanding an employee's strengths and growth areas is instrumental in boosting retention rates. A skills-based approach allows HR to create personalised career development plans that align with an employee's skills and aspirations.

In the quest to get great at skills-based hiring, harnessing cutting-edge technology that can support your transformation journey is paramount. Enter Clu's inclusive recruitment platform.


Clu helps companies excel in skills-based, inclusive hiring practices. By leveraging its data-driven insights and state-of-the-art skills-based features, you can move into skills-based hiring with lower risk and greater confidence.

Download our free guide

to skills-based hiring

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