Siemens solves skills crisis by scrapping the CV, hiring for critical roles in 41 days instead of 200 days


Find out how we helped Siemens save time and increase applications by hiring for potential 
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Siemens’ results:


days of recruiters' time saved 


gender split for the final group of interviewees 


completion rate for the assessment

Meet Siemens:

Siemens is a global engineering and technology company transforming the world with purpose by combining the real and the digital worlds in addressing some of the world's biggest challenges.




Engineering & Manufacturing

The Challenge The Outcome
Business critical roles were vacant for over 200 days due to a low volume of applications and poor-quality candidates.  Filled critical roles with high-quality candidates in just 41 days using hiring for potential recruitment methods.



Jon Turner, the Managing Director of Siemens Electrification and Automation (part of Siemens Smart Infrastructure), had always been passionate about hiring the right people. As an innovative leader looking to do things differently, he came to Arctic Shores to improve the hiring process for several business-critical Project Engineer roles. They had multiple vacancies for this type of role –– some of which had been open for over 200 days. 

Aside from filling this business-critical role, Jon wanted to move away from traditional recruitment methods and a reliance on CVs, as he suspected this was hindering the recruitment process.
Siemens wanted to emphasise potential over qualifications or experience to broaden their talent pool, a key need as part of the Siemens group's digital transformation agenda. Like many engineering firms, improving workforce diversity, specifically female representation, was also a critical priority for Siemens. 


“Like many businesses, we’ve found it really challenging to find the best available talent in recent times; this why we looked to Arctic Shores for help” 

Jon Turner, MD of Siemens Electrification and Automation Business


As a result, Arctic Shores was tasked with addressing three critical pain points: 

  • expand the talent pool they were tapping into
  • encourage more females to apply for engineering roles
  • reduce cost and time to hire

“If you keep doing the same things, you will get the same results. Everybody is going with the bucket to the same well. We wanted to go to a different well with a different bucket”

Jon Turner, MD of Siemens Electrification and Automation Business


Using the Arctic Shores playbook for CV-less hiring and task-based assessment, Jon set about switching the focus and set-up of the Siemens recruitment process from being experience-centric to being skills-centric.

The first and most important step was tackling internal reluctance to shift away from CV-centric hiring and to get Siemens’ in-house teams to buy into a new approach. That’s why Jon invited an experienced Arctic Shores Business Psychologist to speak to his team and explain why a new approach was necessary and possible. That’s when James, a forward-thinking hiring manager, volunteered to try this pioneering new approach and help the rest of the business figure out if it could work at Siemens. 

James worked with an Arctic Shores Business Psychologist to revamp the Project Engineer job description. Together, they shifted the selection criteria from focusing on technical tasks and experience to focusing on competencies, capabilities and transferable skills.

The most controversial step of this process was to change the job advert to state that no previous experience was required –– this was completely different to all other Siemens EA job adverts. Like many hiring managers, this felt like it could be a big risk for James and open the floodgates to lots of poor applications. Fortunately, the Arctic Shores team were able to assure him that our task-based assessment meant we had a way to address this.

The last piece in the redesign of the process was the face-to-face interviews, where a structured interview that was fair, consistent, and bespoke to the role was created. To demonstrate a skill, candidates were asked to plan a project, adjust to a change, and present it to the interviewers to get a realistic, highly valid example of work quality. A scoring grid on good, average and poor answers was used to ensure consistency. 

The hardest part in all of this for James was to resist the temptation to look up candidates on LinkedIn before the interviews.


“We took 8 candidates to interview and if we could have hired everyone we would have! The quality of candidates was extremely high with Arctic Shores” 

Jon Turner, MD of Siemens Electrification and Automation Business


James and Jon were amazed by the quality of the 8 candidates who had been brought forward to interview through this pioneering CV-Less hiring approach. 

Considering only 16% of engineers in the UK are female, the Siemens results of a 50:50 gender split at the final interview stage for this position was a true testament to the role of CV-less hiring in helping organisations attract and hire diverse talent. Of the 8, four were women, and four were men.

None of the 8 candidates would have been invited to interview based on their CVs - one worked for KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken), one for Aldi, and one was an internal apprentice. Previously these candidates would never have met the traditional job description and would likely have been put off from applying. The ‘no CV required’ statement encouraged candidates to apply regardless of their backgrounds and helped James and Jon find high-quality candidates with exactly the right transferable skills in the process.

Overall, the project addressed all of the key pain points Jon had asked Arctic Shores to address:

  • Broaden the talent pool: Implementing the Arctic Shores playbook for CV-Less Hiring widened the Siemens talent pool, attracting 542% more applications (533 candidates applied compared to 83 with the Siemens original job advert) from diverse backgrounds, roles and sectors. 
  • Improve diversity: the final interview panel was an equal mix of men and women, and the breadth of talent was greater than they had imagined was possible for this type of role.
  • Reduce costs and time to hire: the new recruitment process resulted in two hires in 41 days, an improvement compared to the 242 hours of manual CV screening and telephone interviews that had gone before –– giving the talent acquisition team time back to focus on other, critical work. 


Finally, the new process was well received by candidates –– an important metric for Siemens’ Employer brand in the market. 91% of candidates completed the assessment, and of those that did, 85% reported the assessment reflected positively on Siemens with comments like “The Assessment was a great way to gain feedback on natural behaviours and an innovative approach to the application process”.

Overall the project showed that a new CV-less hiring approach was effective for Siemens –– it delivered a step change in the quality and diversity of candidates. Ultimately, it got people into business-critical roles faster than the Siemens team could have ever imagined. 

Both Jon and James were able to advocate for this approach to the wider business, and Siemens has now decided to roll out the Arctic Shores playbook for CV-less hiring across a number of other roles. What’s more, Hiring for Potential has been cemented as a critical step in Siemen's digitisation strategy.



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