How to Use Knockout Questions

Setting up questions that will automatically disqualify candidates based on a certain set of criteria is easy and takes just a couple minutes. Knockout questions will auto-flag any candidates that have answered incorrectly to your disqualifying criteria, and you can also set them up to auto-reject any candidates to remove them out of the running immediately. 

You can use our built-in profile questions, or go ahead and create your own custom questionnaire. We will walk through setting up your knockout questions on the job application, and then on a custom questionnaire. We'll also go through how to tell if a candidate has been auto-rejected and where you can see whether a candidate has been auto-flagged.

Note: Knockout questions have a two-step functionality: (1) Adding Knockout Questions to the Application (2) Auto-rejecting a candidate who answers a knockout question insufficiently

How to add knockout questions to canned profile questions

  1. First head over to Application tab on a job. This can be found by:
    • Clicking the job title under Jobs
    • Click Edit Job
    • Click the Application tab
  2. Pick which profile question should become a knockout question by clicking the pencil icon in the banner of "Candidate Profile Questions".
    • Note: There are only certain canned profile questions that allow a "Knockout Question" functionality, specifically because they have a "dropdown answer type":
      • Highest Education Attained

      • Citizen/Employment Status

      • Age 18/or older

      • Work Weekends

      • Work Evenings

      • Work Overtime

      • Willing to Relocate 

      • Valid Driver's License AND Commercial Driver's license

      • Felony Conviction


3. After selecting the questions to be part of your application, click SAVE CHANGES.

4. In the list of canned questions, select the dropdown carrot next to the specific question to "add disqualifying answer(s)" to the question and click the flag icon. (image below)



How to add knockout questions to custom questionnaires

You can also add knockout questions to your own custom questionnaires. Custom questionnaires are found under Settings>Templates and can be created by Super Admins, Recruiting Admins, and Super Users.

  1. Click Add Question to create a new question on your questionnaire, or select the actions dropdown arrow to Edit Question if you want to add a disqualifying answer to a question you've already created
  2. Click the flag to mark which answer should disqualify the candidate
  3. Click Save Question

How to add auto-rejection to your knockout questions

Please note: This only pertains to questionnaires sent within the application itself, not a questionnaire sent after a candidate applies

To add auto-rejection to your knockout questions first, add in a knockout question by following the above set of steps. 

  1. Click Actions on the red banner notifying you of the number of knockout questions on your application
  2. Click Auto-reject Candidate
  3. Select which disposition they will be auto-rejected to from the drop-down arrow
  4. Trigger any emails associated with this Not Hired disposition with a delay, or choose to not send any emails by selecting Never from the dropdown
  5. Click Save Action to add in auto-rejection!

Now candidates who incorrectly answer your knockout question will be flagged as having been auto-rejected on their candidate profile and will be automatically dispositioned based on your selection. They will not show up in your new candidates and will go straight into a Not Hired disposition. You can edit or remove this action by clicking the pencil or trash can.


Frequently Asked Questions

How can I tell whether or not a candidate has been auto-rejected?

Candidates that are auto-rejected are flagged next to their name on the candidate profile. You can see a tag that says AUTO-REJECTED. 

Where can I see if a candidate submitted a disqualifying answer?

On the candidate profile in the Profile tab, there is a Job Application section where you can view all the answers to a candidate's profile questions. Knockout questions are flagged and highlighted in red if the candidate answered incorrectly.

Why don't I see the option to add knockout questions to my questionnaires? 

If your account is on a HERO subscription, this plan does not include extra add-on features including knockout questions.

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