Even though you have sufficient numbers of candidates, are you finding the right people? Hiring the right people can be as difficult and time consuming as searching for a shiny, sharp needle in the middle of a haystack.
Over the past 5 years most companies have been comfortable with the quantity of candidates available to fill openings. During this time difficulty in filling openings remained at a historically low level. When the job market is tight, applicants applying are not always suited to positions advertised resulting in sifting through dozens or even hundreds of resumes, culling out those suited for interviews. Companies are in this conundrum now, and you realize there is huge risk associated with ignoring quality, when quantity is sufficient. Assuming a large number of applications will result in finding employees with the critical skills to be successful is a risky and costly supposition. Because of this recent history, most companies have lost focus in recruitment and selection, assuming there will be plenty of talent available whenever they need it.
Upon further probing, many companies are citing increasing difficulties attracting the “right” employees, those with the critical skills a company needs to compete in its market. Over the past five years this difficulty has continued to increase even though there are plenty of candidates available for the “average” job.
For example, a national hospitality company was easily able to fill 2,200 open sales positions last year. However, performance was still down. By focusing their recruiting and selection process on the critical skills needed and communicating their true employee value proposition to those candidates with the “right” skills, they were able to increase production in the first three months over 50%. There is a direct relationship between hiring the “right” salesperson and corresponding revenue / revenue increase. Moreover, recruiting the “right” salesperson is not easy and can’t be based on a single message to all recruits.
So what must your company do to be successful attracting the highly qualified candidate to apply/join you? It starts from the moment you make contact with them. These candidates have certain expectations that must be met in order to become their employer of choice. Highly skilled candidates are no longer willing to spend 45 minutes on a company web site filling out information without getting something in return. Companies must make their job search and talent attraction system interactive and engaging. It must also be adaptive in such a way that candidates are getting the information based on what their motivators and interests are. Only then will candidates be willing to engage in the more formal application process and invest time in finding out whether there is a fit with the organization and what they need in an employer.
To learn more about automated, adaptive video interviewing via the web as a recruiting tool please contact us today. In addition, read our recent white paper - Which is More Important – the Candidate or Recruiter Experience?
Given the sophistication of technology available today, one would think that companies would do a remarkable job communicating with their job prospects throughout the entire recruiting process.
You would think that they would do an even better job of telling candidates about their employee value proposition from the beginning.
Ideally you would also think that they could make quick decisions and let candidates know the status of their decision making process in an ongoing manner.
In fact, for over 80% of companies recruiting - this isn’t true.
Even with sophisticated Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), staffing operations within companies do a poor job catering to their job candidates (i.e., their consumers), and despite the fact almost all companies use some form of an ATS. However most companies implement an ATS to make the job of collecting data, processing data, and reporting easier for their company personnel, often times at the frustration of the job candidate.
Today’s web generation of job seekers have different expectations. Five years ago, when job candidates began to apply online it was still ok to ask them to spend 45 minutes going through an online, text-based job application before even telling them about the company. Today it is not. Job seekers are still willing to spend a little bit of time to determine if the company is right for them, however, they expect something in return – information about why this is a good place for them to work. If they don’t find that employee value proposition quickly you will lose them. They also want a process that is interactive and makes use of video (or audio). And this doesn’t mean solely choosing one of 10 employee testimonials to hear. It means they want someone to tell them about what’s most important to them.
If your application process is still relying on having someone find a job opening, register to apply, apply through a text-based application, and then at the end send them an automated email thanking them for their time - then you will be in trouble in the near future. The war for talent is as active as ever and those that adjust their processes to meet the needs of their consumers (i.e., job applicants) will win. Make sure you create an interactive, engaging, and informative application process
To read more about this topic download our latest whitepaper, “Which is More Important – the Candidate or the Recruiter Experience?”
When it comes to the early stages of acquiring talent most companies have it WRONG. Most companies are using outdated technology, and more importantly outdated methods to actively engage with job candidates. Today’s candidates expect more from companies and those companies that are on the forefront of using new recruiting techniques will win the continuing war for talent.
As part of a large research project, AlignMark assessed and evaluated over 100 online applications from well-known companies across a variety of industries. This is the first installment of our findings.
Company Online Applications
Most businesses have implemented at least an online application process (96%). However there are still 4% of businesses which had no online process at all, and a much greater number of business (36%) that had an online process for only “higher level” jobs (e.g., management and above). In fact, the majority of companies in the retail industry still require candidates at the associate level to simply “show up” at the store to talk with a manager.
Job Seekers Expectations
Today’s job seekers (especially passive ones) are looking for an experience where they can learn about the company and job opportunities without having to invest too much time and without having to share personal information upfront. Over 95% of the businesses with an online process required the candidate to “register” before actually starting the application process. While information is included in a careers page most passive job seekers do not want to “register” first, they’d rather learn first and make an educated decision on whether it’s worth going further or not.
Engaging Job Seekers with Multi-Media
Obviously companies are beginning to understand that video and audio are more engaging formats vs. reading rows of text on a web site. Multi-Media assets play a large role in application appeal yet only 36% of companies included any use of audio or video. Of the 36%, only 27% of those included multi-media assets into their actual application process (used in the assessment process); the other 73% only included a branding video on their career tab.
While the use of video is growing the interactivity of the process is non-existent. 99% of companies have not designed their application to interact and respond to what the job seeker actually wants to learn about. If you’re wondering how this can be done the answer is simple, ASK THEM. Based on questions of the job seeker the message back to them should be tailored to their responses. Give them the information they want to hear. Right now companies are treating the application process as “the same shoe fits all.”
These are just a few of the high level finding in our study. We’ll be publishing many more over the coming weeks. For more findings continue to follow our blog or contact us for a full report when it becomes available.
For additional information and statistics, you can download our recent white paper, Talent Acquisition – The Power of Social Media and the Internet
An automated online interview is a web based, video “interview” simulation or interaction that is the first line of contact with a prospect. It does not replace an Applicant Tracking System (ATS); rather it improves the job seeker experience. It is an engaging medium for the job seeker and an excellent tool for the company to communicate how and why they are the employer of choice.
With any new technology and paradigm shift there will be questions and unknowns. This blog examines five unknown or misunderstood benefits of an automated online interview.
5 Unknown Benefits:
- It’s personal
- Less costly
- Live person interviews are not necessary for every job candidate
- It complements an ATS
- Provides value to both candidate and employer
Unknown Benefit #1 – It’s personal
- Applicant expectations are different today. Most candidates want instant feedback, answers to their specific questions and to interact with technology versus live people. Just look at the increase in phone texts and emails as a primary means of communications. Candidates also want to get some information based on their needs and interests before they give a lot of personal information. And while reading text messages are good for short pieces of information, watching and interacting with an automated interviewer via the web is much better than the alternative.
Unknown Benefit #2 – Less costly (with a strong ROI)
- Not only is it less costly on a direct cost basis, it provides many more benefits that lead to an increased return on investment. Improved time to fill positions, the ability to hire a better quality candidate, improved interview to selection ratios are only a few of the monetary benefits of using this technology.
Unknown Benefit #3 – Live person interviews are not necessary for every job candidate
- Candidates use the internet for scheduling dinner reservations, ordering food, shopping, and much more. They don’t like leaving messages and having to get “called back.” They want instant feedback no matter how it’s delivered versus hearing from an interviewer that someone will get back with them if they qualify.
- They don’t want to have a live conversation with someone until they are ready. And in fact, right now job seekers have to wait longer to speak with a live person. By the time the specific job is found, the applicant registers on the ATS, completes the application, and waits for it to be reviewed much more time will have passed.
- Qualified candidates will actually get to speak with a live person quicker than they would have otherwise, and that’s best for the company. The company finds and is able to hire the qualified job candidate much quicker than using the traditional hiring practices because they are not spending time with people that cannot meet the job expectations.
Unknown Benefit #4 – It complements an ATS
- Today’s applicant tracking systems are becoming more and more sophisticated, yet, the basic purpose is to manage the job posting and application process. However, the ATS is not meant to show video, to have active and differential messaging based on the needs of the applicant, to do “active recruiting of passive job seekers,” etc. And in fact, these two systems are very complementary; the automated interview can meet the needs of the passive job seeker which in turn will make it more desirable for them to complete the online application process.
Unknown Benefit #5 - It’s provides value to both candidate and employer
- With the war for talent, today more than ever it is important to present your brand and employee value proposition to job candidates as early in the talent acquisition process as possible. There is a value on being able to find a higher quality candidate that is not currently looking for a job. There is value in being able to identify high potential candidates very early in the sourcing process and making sure they get to the front of the recruiting line. There is value in creating an appealing process for the expectations of the “web generation,” and much more.
Online automated interviews will become much more common in the near future. They will change the hiring process which has been stagnant for years now. And they will provide significantly greater value to almost all organizations. To read more about online interviews, view our most recent blog Talent Acquisition Paradigm Shift.
For more information on automated online interviews, visit Online Interview Simulation to view sample demos and additional white papers on Talent Management and social media recruiting.
Today’s talent acquisition practices will soon be outdated and ineffective. It’s time for a paradigm shift in talent acquisition practices especially given how people are using social media, technology available and the ever increasing need to manage resources better. Companies that undergo this paradigm shift will be the leaders when it comes to finding and hiring the right talent.
Current challenges for talent acquisition:
Attracting passive job seekers
Converting prospects (that we want) to choose us as their employer of choice
Efficient processing of candidates – being able to do more with less resources
Creating an applicant experience that meets the expectations of the Web Generation.
A majority of recruiting and selection websites (career pages) follow the same structure and contain the following characteristics which are counterproductive to meeting your talent acquisition goals:
Information dump and information overload – too much information for candidates to dig through on company’s career sites
Exact same information presented to each candidate
Asking for a lot of information without giving anything in return
The content and information rarely, if ever, changes
It is not a fun or engaging experience
Currently the candidate has to:
- Find the job
- Choose to apply
- Complete the applicant tracking system (ATS) registration
- Complete an online application
- Candidate may or may not be invited to the first HR interview
If the interview happens, basic information is gathered, minimum qualifications are verified, salary expectations may be set and a simple work history is discussed. As illustrated in the chart below, with a traditional talent acquisition process there is little or no screening done and again it’s typically characterized as “one-way” data gathering on the part of the company.
This traditional process must change. There is no reason that technology can’t be used to combine aspects of the online application and first HR interview, and add to it a much more engaging and interactive experience for the job candidate—creating the paradigm shift to a new process.
Most passive job seekers are not willing to invest this much time and effort applying to a job using traditional processes without something in return first. By using technology, an interview that is interactive, standardized, objective, and simulated can fill in certain gaps. This process allows for a fun, engaging experience which matches responses to the specific needs of each candidate.
The adaptive nature of a new process like this allows you to find what motivates the candidate, shows your organization’s value proposition based on those motivators, and keeps you from wasting time explaining things and gathering data that have no relevance to the candidate.
Make sure your web practices include the following:
Use of audio and graphics or video
Provide a give and take with relevant information
Make sure your employee value proposition is customized to the needs of the candidate and fully explained early in the recruiting process
Make information the candidate is searching for very easy to find (or hear with audio)
For more information on automated online interviews, visit Online Interview Simulation to view sample demos and additional white papers on Talent Management and social media recruiting.
Technology is transforming talent acquisition rapidly. Some technology applications are gimmicks and some provide a real benefit and a return on investment.
While a remote interview delivered via the internet does provide some convenience and cost savings, it’s really no different in substance than a live interview. In fact, there are potential downsides of the remote interview as well. For example, if a third party is conducting the interview, the quality of the interview will not be as good as using your own internal managers/recruiters that are best familiar with your company, its culture and its value proposition.
But you still need to ask: Where is that initial interview in your overall process?
Applicant tracking systems (ATS) were built to manage the job posting but are now expanding to deliver assessment questions, publish job descriptions and much more. As a result, many companies are ending up with an online application process that is cluttered, and requires too much information from the job seeker. In turn, many quality candidates drop out of the process because it’s requiring the job seeker to sift through too much information and provide too much detail in order to show interest in the job.
Technology is needed to transform the talent acquisition process versus simply improving an existing process. It can replace the first interview, saving companies significant resources and provide so many additional benefits than the traditional interview and/or “fill out this application.” Technology is necessary to change the way information is delivered and the quality of information provided. When evaluating the quality of your talent acquisition process use the following chart to see if your solution will meet your future needs.
Does your solution provide?
Appeal to “new generation” of applicants
Does your system use the latest technology, video, and is it interactive based on candidate needs
Highly individualized and personalized. Differential messaging customizing the experience to each applicants’ needs
Quality of information collected
Is information collected highly relevant, consistent, objectively evaluated, and used real time to guide next questions, responses and steps in the process
Convenience / Time to complete first interview
24 x 7 On demand interviewing. Candidates proceed to next step automatically when they qualify
Cost / Savings
Use technology when possible to replace someone’s time. Save significant money from interviewing and hiring only candidates that are “best fits” for your company
Treatment of High Potentials
Identify them during the process, communicate to them differently, and provide different next steps for them
Quality of Candidate
Become the employer of choice for those candidates you choose
Feedback to Candidates
Immediate for all candidates. Feedback for unqualified candidates is positive. Treats all candidates as customers
An automated online interview with differential questioning is one solution that meets the above criteria. An automated interview is a way to:
- Transform the hiring process to be engaging to applicants
- Communicate your employer brand and employee value proposition early in the recruiting process
- Perform a quality interview with pre-qualified and knowledgeable candidates because your recruiters are interviewing only candidates that meet your company’s criteria
Click here to learn more about an automated online interview and to see an example.
Resumes are misleading. You know it, I know it, HR departments and the recruiters know it—but the software technology that scans the resumes doesn’t know it. In fact, did you know that resume fraud alone is costing businesses an estimated $600 billion annually, or about $4,500 per employee? (The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, 2002 study)
According to Hire Right, 80% of resumes are misleading -- that’s a bit daunting. The chart below illistrates the major offenses of misleading resumes.
Furthermore, EmployeeScreenIQ’s research yields a 52% discrepancy rate between what an applicant claims about their education and work experience and what they find when they verify such information. Online profiles (such as LinkedIn) are starting to matter more; granted profiles can be misleading as well. But typically given the peer group a candidate is in and the very nature that it is viewable by others, they tend to be more realistic.
Moreover, talent acquisition technologies including applicant tracking systems (ATS) have been slow to adapt to the online profile – there’s still the “click here” to upload your resume. Candidates and technology will push for a change or improvement in this process. Candidates want the experience that allows for easy integration of the online profile to their employer of choice.
So what does this all mean for the employer who wants to find quality candidates?
- While resumes are still a necessary evil for most, don’t assume your ATS will adequately source the right candidates (resumes) based on the job description provided. ATS are becoming outdated in terms of search capabilities with changes in marketplace—just in job titles/descriptions alone. For example a job description that is looking for statisticians will not find highly competent data modelers (i.e., today’s statisticians). So if your company is using applicant tracking systems (ATS) to sort resumes based on keywords and a few questions, then you are missing a lot of quality candidates, and in today’s times who can afford to do that.
- Advertising and job boards alone will not reach the qualified candidates--The Facebook generation expects relevant engagement.
- Employer Value Proposition/Branding is critical—get your message across to candidates, be able to realistically share a preview to working with your company.
- Use an online system that allows you to present your company value proposition based on each individual candidates’ needs. In addition, use technology to cost effectively screen out unqualified candidates and screen in those desirable prospects.
- Narrow down your search and assess the candidates—don’t rely only on resumes and interviews—check their skills using a validated assessment.
While screening resumes will likely continue to be a practice in the next 5 years of job applications, and some companies may use automation tools to help scan resumes to match key words, the best match overall is an immediate opportunity to engage with a prospect, find out their true abilities and availability for current job openings and engage real time, online with the prospective candidate.
For more information on social hiring, please download our latest whitepaper, The Role of Social Media in Finding and Hiring the Right Talent, or contact us to discuss this topic . In addition, check out AlignMark’s blog on the Ten Truths About Social Hiring.
1) Social Hiring is fast becoming the leading source for talent, supplanting “headhunters”, consultants and job boards. In the near future, most leads for talent will come from “Extended Referrals” as employee referrals will extend beyond employees to include company’s alumnus, employees’ alumnus’s, creating an “extended social network” expanding the reach of a company by 100 times.
2) The majority of passive job seekers are finding jobs through the Social Hiring route vs. job boards and consultants combined.
3) Social Hiring applications will become the platform of choice for candidates as they provide higher privacy to candidates vs. posting resumes on job boards. Candidates will become more empowered “customers”. Job prospects will have increased access to jobs and more information on those jobs, salary and benefits, and the companies they’re evaluating.
4) Facebook will become the dominant talent sourcing social media platform, followed by LinkedIn and perhaps Google Plus thus replacing job boards.
5) Social Hiring Applications (SHAs) (built on social media platforms) are the most efficient (submission per fill) and cost effective channel for generating talent leads, seeking and engaging with your talent community in a private and secure fashion.
6) Job boards will have to reinvent themselves to define value for their customers, both in terms of quality and financial cost. Recruitment companies will have to become more quality focused versus throwing resumes at clients hoping some will stick.
7) Companies that empower their employees (through Social Hiring Technology and exciting referral marketing programs and rewards) will win the war for talent.
8) Talent Acquisition Managers will talk about recruitment becoming a profit center vs. cost center as Social Hiring Technology will generate significant savings in hiring costs.
9) Companies will start getting rated by their candidate community about their hiring process and culture, and this information will be made available to future candidates through the same application.
10) Smaller companies will have the same access to referrals because of extended referral networks.
For more information on social hiring, please download our latest whitepaper, The Role of Social Media in Finding and Hiring the Right Talent, or contact us to discuss this topic . In addition, check out AlignMark’s newest product in the social hiring space—leveraging the employee referral networks and Facebook.
Social media marketing isn't the only thing on the rise these days--so is social media recruiting. It's not surprising considering how successful social media marketing can be for businesses with a few well-planned strategies in mind. Why not apply that same social technology towards recruiting new Gen Web talent?
There are a plethora of strategies for social media recruiting, but let's focus on the five that will have the greatest ROI for a company in terms of Gen Web recruitment:
- Support existing traditional strategies--don't replace them!
It's not cost-effective to completely overhaul an existing hiring system that has working components. Job boards aren't obsolete--they're another piece of the puzzle. Recognize the differences between traditional and social media recruiting and the advantages to each. Job boards give a broad spectrum of talent--social media hones that selection.
- Branding is key.
A brand matters just as much for sales as it does for finding fresh talent. Having a positive brand in social media circles attracts driven employees. How many top programmers are looking at smaller, unknown tech firms when Google or Facebook are offering cutting-edge jobs on the same boards? Social media can allow companies to see trends in targeted workforce interests to brand themselves as an enticing counter-offer to the recruiting competition.
- Social Media Recruiting is more than micro-blogging.
Gen Web's: viewing photos and videos, reading blogs, listening to music, and much, much more--but it's sharing all of this through integrated social media networks. A multi-platform strategy is needed to access these channels and navigate the wealth of candidate data. Company blogging alone won't bring successful, long-term employees that drive sales for a business.
- You might not be hiring--but social media is!
Traditional recruitment campaigns are a lot of work and investment that take serious time to find the right candidates--and then they end. The advantage of maintaining a strong social media presence is passive recruitment. A company may not be hiring, but social media allows recruiters to keep a working organic database of Gen Web candidates for when it's ready.
- Current employees are integral to a campaign.
Leverage the clout of current employees in the social media realm. Convince them to support their company in their own social networks and actively participate in their company's own social media interactions. Public employee opinions resonate with Gen Web as a trustworthy company assessment when looking for employment opportunities.
Five Steps to Hiring Better Salespeople
Traditional hiring methods aren’t enough anymore. Especially when it comes to recruitment and selection of salespeople, you need to find the right overall match for your company. Ability and past experience are good, but equally important is the potential to thrive in your business environment.
A holistic approach is essential in today’s complex and rapidly-changing business environment. And a more fully integrated process will enable you to achieve profitable, long-term results.
1. Use all the tools available
Hiring is essentially marketing. You want to attract the most promising prospects, but to close the sale you have to sell your company as a desirable workplace. Limiting your search or failing to promote your company as a great place to work could cause you to miss out on someone truly special.
Use every avenue to find prospects. Savvy professionals are online, and social media can be an effective means of inbound recruiting. Even your own employees can be valuable recruiters.
You can’t “just tell” if someone is the right choice. Well-planned recruitment, selection and sales assessment strategies create a comprehensive process that will assure a higher success rate. Incorporating technology and online tools into your application procedures refines the winnowing process, assessing knowledge and competency but also key personal traits and values that best fit your company.
2. You need a plan and specific processes
In effect, recruitment and selection are a matter of data management. Using all available tools to optimize that process and streamline your procedures will give you the most compelling results. Since you’re hiring a “whole person,” base your plan on company goals and culture as well as job-specific requirements.
Pre-screening tools and skills testing, especially things like specialized sales assessment, can provide the greatest insight regarding each applicant’s relevant abilities and likely success. Assessments generate factual data and ameliorate the inherent subjectivity of the hiring process, and even many “fit” characteristics can actually be measured. Using predictive analysis to evaluate information enables you to see more clearly which individuals will probably succeed in your organization. Personal interviews allow you to drill down even more.
A strategic recruitment and selection plan can save time for recruiters and avoid inadvertently overlooking great candidates.
3. Create a talent plan
Think of it as “asset management.” A targeted employee development program supports corporate as well as hiring success by identifying specific talent needs, including key sales-related competencies. High-performing salespeople have several common characteristics you’ll want to look for in new people, because hiring the right salesperson can give your company strategic and tactical advantages in addition to generating revenue and profit.
Inventory talents available within your current staff, identify gaps that should be filled as well as future needs, and create a dashboard to track assessment and performance.
4. Build on what you have
Keep the good ones, and work to make them better. People-centric companies generally perform better, so include staff in thinking and planning.
Treat prospective employees well, too. Failure to appropriately communicate with applicants can damage your reputation and brand, your workplace allure.
5. Measure success
Every company defines “success” differently. Knowing which skills and personalities blend best within your company will help uncover top quality applicants. Systematically gather and analyze data, using key performance indicators.
Hiring mistakes are extremely costly. Relevant data and effective analysis help manage risk and significantly reduce these avoidable costs by more accurately predicting good choices.
You’re sifting for gold, and you have to work within an HR budget that may be constrained. Focusing on recruitment and selection of the best salespeople with the best company fit will greatly improve retention and build long-term success.