Quit hiring like the Flintstones

03242015aIn our world in helping companies improve hiring outcomes, we work with people at multiple levels that have a range of opinions on how hiring should be done.  Maybe you experience this as well, as it is very common for opinions to be formed and ingrained as fact based on their past history and experiences.  But what I always find interesting is even though the majority of people understand how recruiting has changed and evolved, there are still the late followers who see hiring as it was 5-8 years ago.  You know who they are and probably have one or two within your company that still believe talent is easy to find, resumes/CV’s come from newspaper ads, job boards, and headhunters.

But…. before you judge, check yourself.  You may not be checking the mail every week, but are you still running a post and pray strategy, or thinking LinkedIn is the end-all-be-all, or relying on headhunters to work their “special top secret network” to get you candidates?  If you answered yes to at least two of these, then you are at risk of falling behind to your competitors, who are becoming more proactive to win over the same talent you need.

I get it.   It’s easy to get comfortable, and to be fair, resources provided to Talent Acquisition teams have been lean since 2008, thereby leaving Talent Royalty-Free (RF) Clip Art Illustration of a Caveman Using StoneAcquisition to do the best they can with small budgets impacting their lack of people, tools, and process to get the outcomes needed by the business. Overworked, under resourced, and under-utilized has been the symptoms of the Great Recession.

So what can you do bring change and improvement to an organization that hasn’t seen the dramatic market changes over the last five years in sourcing, recruiting/attracting, and assessing talent?  If they are still stuck in 1999, then they haven’t seen how to win the talent war with the right people, processes, and systems in place, thereby making hiring outcomes better, faster and cheaper.

  1. Seek to Understand: Recognizing this is an issue of change management means you will first need to understand their world and thought process in order to align your future solution with their beliefs and tenets they hold true from the past. By gaining their opinion on what needs changed and why, they will have a voice in improving the process for better outcomes and establishes trust with your key stakeholders to insure implementation compliance/support.
  2. Become a Trusted Advisor: by providing data with analysis to support your program, make sure your rationale aligns the data with implications and impact on business outcomes. When there is no clear connection, change and improvements will stall. What clearly needs to come across is how the innovations in sourcing via Talent Intelligence tools and innovations in proactive recruiting via Talent Pipelining has turned recruiting into a competitive advantage vs. reactive overhead.
  3. Process. Process: most critical to improvements is process. Process in sourcing, process in attracting, process in screening/assessing, process in interviewing, and process in onboarding.   Make clear how the process works and how long it will take in each of these stage gates, along with contingency plans (ie: headhunters, employee referrals, or other tools) just in case market conditions dictate a more aggressive approach.

10102014bChanging behavior is one of the most difficult challenges for leaders in talent acquisition.  It takes a well thought out plan and the courage to tackle issues that have been in place for a long period of time.   In the end, how you bring people along with your ideas will, over time, bring speed and quality improvements to your program, thereby winning better talent and the respect from your organization by adding true business value.

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