Talent Acquisition leaders and Recruiters always are in the business of catching up. They are under the constant pressure to fill requirements as of yesterday. That is a good problem for the recruiters because it keeps them in business and secondly, success in recruiting is hugely dependent on many external factors. However, this is a challenge that the business leader does not like to see on her table. So, the recruiters are often on the line of fire! The smart ones do a few things right. What are they?
Employee Referral – is this working well?
Employee referral is certainly a popular channel and it gives anywhere between 2% to 25% of hires in an organization depending upon the industry sector and the maturity level of the company. There are questions around the efficacy of this channel in terms of the quality of talent that organizations on-board, the diversity quotient of talent, organization culture and the impact on employee productivity. These are critical questions.
Organizations need to decongest this channel by thinking through these strategic questions and making the necessary course corrections along the way. Else, the channel can get into a vicious cycle and its impact is seen after 18-24 months on customer satisfaction levels, employee engagement scores and employee productivity. The bigger blow comes to light after 48 months or so in terms of succession planning.
It is important there is an agency or a person who is accountable for the channel and hence, its health and efficacy is monitored continuously. A human body needs a certain kind of care and discipline in its youth so that it stays healthy in the old age. Pretty much similarly, we have to make sure that the channel remains healthy not only for the short term but also for the long term.
Leverage on business teams!
All of us understand that the most number of employees are in the line function and we should involve them in the best possible way to solve our business challenges. We know, engaged employees turn in better results than the places where they are treated like machines working in silos. Still, the most common way of involving employees in solving the issue is to seek referrals by attractive rewards. Is this the best? Can we not go beyond the employee referral route and involve our people in the Line functions?
On numerous occasions, I have noticed that the job to fill is not very clear to the recruiter, yet she is trying all methods – the job portals, social networks, partners and so on to source candidates. The conversations with candidates remain pretty swallow; the most suitable candidate is not attracted to the job often; those who agree to interview get rejected causing loss of time and an intangible opportunity for the company; at times, the company makes a choice but may not the best, thus causing an opportunity lost. This is a huge opportunity for the Talent Acquisition Leader or the Recruiter to leverage the business team. The Line manager can be asked to interact with the recruiter in person about the job and each candidate interviewed.
When there is a will, there is a way – traditional channels of recruiting can get more effective if the clogs on the way are removed. Bring in the business team into the channel and make them play a part!
There is always a room to improve one’s understanding about the business, the challenges faced and the opportunities available. Based on the understanding of the organization’s context, recruiters can target the right areas to source candidates and communicate impactfully with potential candidates. These help building the employer brand appropriately, thus making it a long-term investment.
Talent acquisition is often a catch-up game and hence, many organizations do not have the time to strategize; some do, but most of them have no time to follow through the action steps. Though all of us know that the human capital brings the competitive edge to an organization, in practice the business leaders do not commit as much time and energy to think about acquisition of human capital as the attention to the others such as financial capital, technology investments and brand building. This might sound ironic, but it is a fact.
Leaders ought to think if their approach to acquire the best is serving them the best. They need to review the way the roles are defined, the organization is structured, the mix of sources they adopt to on-board talent and their choice of sources. They need to own up the strategic components in the process and outsource running the operational components of the machinery.
Make the talent channels complement one another and deliver a leveraged performance.