Written by: Tim Saumier, CEO
As a follow up to our series over the past couple of months, this is Part III (Part I, Part II) in our series evaluating what it takes to put a true Integrated Talent Chain in place and make it a competitive weapon for your company. Now that we have an understanding of current inventory and forecasted needs as well as turnover, let’s talk about what it takes to attract talent.
Question 1 – Do you have an Employment Brand?
What exactly does this mean? I boil it down to this one statement – it is why people come to work for your company and ultimately why they stay. They may not stay forever but there is something that attracted them. A fancy brand, cool products, great giveaways, a specific location, the opportunities, the career pathing, the industry, etc. These are all examples of why people join companies and defining what is very unique about your company is important in defining who you are. A good place to start is a clear Mission that is meaningful and impactful to a person’s life. Talk about what you are trying to do as a company – your Vision. Make sure people understand your Core Values & Beliefs. From there you can then decipher the answer to your Employment Brand and learn how to share it appropriately. My warning to you is a cool product is not the answer; free coffee is not the answer; ping pong is not the answer – it is something much more impactful that stands the test of time. Yes it will be tweaked as time progresses but the core of who you are should not. This can be a very challenging exercise to go through as you have to get in touch with what is really the purpose of your business.
Question 2 – Do you have a clear Talent Acquisition Process?
You want to frustrate high potential talent, have an unclear, ever changing process with no repeatability and no speed. This is where most companies fail miserably. First their posture is to start from an arrogant perspective (my opinion) where they believe the talent will wait on them and they need to demonstrate their value to the company only when in reality when you are pursuing high potential talent it’s always a two way process. Here’s my position on the process:
- It should be well defined using standard work such that wherever a person interviews in the world they will have the same experience
- Right up front – when you first speak to the individual, layout the process and make it very clear to them what they should expect as it pertains to steps & timeline. I can only think of one client in our lineup that I can honestly say does a good job of this. Most companies miss this mark.
- As part of the process it needs to be swift and decisive. If the process is well documented up front, you can move people through the process at a good pace and make a decisive yes or no – if it’s a maybe it’s a no. I have heard the term “keep them warm” over a 100 times in my career – this is a joke. When I hear this I tell the individual to move on.
- Don’t start the process unless you have preauthorization to hire someone. It’s a waste of time to get someone to the final stage of the interviews only to put them in a holding pattern while you run it up the presumable ladder for approval. This should be a foregone conclusion that you can hire this person. World class is the person leaves your building with an offer in hand. I’ve seen a lot of this 1 up process instilled over the years where the hiring manager is required to interview the person and weigh in on the decision. This is a failure as you are not fixing the process but rather inspecting every product.
- If more than a few people have to interview the person like the boss’s boss as an example you have the wrong leader in the hiring capacity – replace them or replace yourself.
- Don’t let perfection get in the way of getting better. There is no perfect person out there. Your focus should be on the journey at hand which is getting better daily.
Question 3 – Do you have the capacity to recruit & develop talent?
Recruiting good talent is difficult. It’s not about finding a resume online or a LinkedIn profile that’s looks good that makes it difficult. It’s a courting process just like it would be looking for a lifelong partner. It takes a lot work to source, call, qualify, recruit, attract and get the person on-boarded. When I hear an internal recruiter tell me they are personally working 20+ jobs at the same time, it’s a recipe for disaster. In my office, we estimate that a professional recruiter (working 50 hours/week) can work between 4-7 orders at any given time and actually have an impact. Especially given the amount of non-value added things that have been added to the process with applicant tracking systems, etc. I feel bad for most internal recruiters because of the unrealistic expectations put on them. If you’re going to get serious about recruiting you need to have the proper capacity with the proper tools and skills to be successful.
Now you’ve spent all this time, effort, money, etc. to get this talent aboard what are you going to do to keep them? I’m talking about a formal Talent Development process in which I will discuss in Part 4.
Again, I welcome your thoughts and feedback on anything. This is one man’s opinion on the Integrated Talent Chain. You can find me on LinkedIn and at Twitter you can find me at @timsaumierTI. Also, you can learn more about TYGES at www.TYGES.com, on Twitter @TYGESInt, or here on our blog.
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