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Disadvantages of a “Tortoise Mindset” Within the Hiring Process

image_016Do you remember the old adage from Aesop’s Fables, “slow but steady wins the race?” Not a bad philosophy to live by the majority of the time, however, you probably shouldn’t apply this advice to your company’s hiring process especially when you consider the toll it will take on the “candidate experience.” Research has found that companies need an average of 23 days to screen and hire new employees, which is up from 13 days in 2010 [1]. While it’s obviously important to be thorough throughout your hiring process in order to avoid costly mistakes, if the process runs too long, your company could potentially lose out on some of the best talent that’s out there.

Negative Perceptions

The longer the hiring process, the more frustrated candidates become – which will inevitably lead to negative perceptions about your company. In addition, the impression you leave may have a ripple effect on future candidates. A Robert Half study revealed that when forced to endure a lengthy hiring process, nearly 40 percent of job seekers lost interest in the position and elected to pursue other opportunities. Additionally, more than 30 percent indicated that a drawn-out process made them question whether the employer was good at making decisions in other areas of their business [2].  Many candidates view their first and only interaction with a company (during the recruitment process) as a significant indicator of what it’s like to work there – so, if it is poor, then the likelihood of applying in the future is further diminished. Talent acquisition teams trying to build a “talent community” will certainly feel this impact.

Decline in the Quality of Hire and Other Side Effects

You might assume that taking more time to make a hiring decision would result in better hires. While that might be true in some instances, it could also precipitate a falloff in candidate quality due to the fact that top candidates will take themselves out of the running and go elsewhere.  The longer the review process takes the more insecure and disillusioned your best candidates will become.  The top 10 percent of candidates are often gone from the marketplace within 10 days [3]. This is an undeniable reality. The speed at which you engage your candidates is critical when competing head to head with talent competitors. Beyond the obvious fact that you may lose some great candidates along the way, there are some potential side effects which will be felt in other areas of your business including a slowdown in innovation, production schedules, product delays, employee morale, revenue generation and a fatigued work force.

The Buyer Conclusion

Clearly, there are numerous ways in which a slow hiring process will do damage to your company from a recruitment as well as a business standpoint. Fortunately, just by making some minor adjustments, you can improve your situation quickly and rather dramatically. The easiest and perhaps least disruptive steps that can be taken to shorten your hiring cycles merely involve better communication. Did you know that approximately 75 percent of workers who utilize a variety of sources to apply for jobs never hear back from employers [4]? By keeping candidates informed and involved in the process, your organization portrays itself as effective, efficient and considerate of the people they want to join. Maintaining communication with candidates throughout the hiring process should be a priority and is the foundation of a positive relationship with current and future employees.

If you are interested in learning more about how Buyer can help streamline your hiring process, I’d love to hear from you. Contact me, Michael Wishnow, Vice President of Relationship Development, at mwishnow@BuyerAds.com. I can also be reached by my mobile (978) 985-1163 or direct at my office (857) 404-0864.

 

 

[1] https://www.wsj.com/articles/how-to-deal-with-a-long-hiring-process-1453231053

[2] http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/9330-quick-hiring-process.html

[3] https://www.eremedia.com/ere/the-top-12-reasons-why-slow-hiring-severely-damages-recruiting-and-business-results/

[4] https://www.eremedia.com/tlnt/best-ways-to-communicate-with-job-candidates-in-the-social-media-age/

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How Technology is Changing Human Resource Management

image_10Technology is changing every sector of the economy at a rapid pace. One of the biggest changes is in the way that information is shared. When human resources managers are seeking to recruit staff members, post jobs or keep track of applicants, technology is interwoven throughout every process. Consider these three ways in which technology is changing the way that your organization finds, evaluates and trains new people to work in your organization.

Recruiting Through Social Media

More than 92 percent of human resources officers report that they use social media as a recruitment tool [1]. Most adults actively participate in at least one social media network. Human resources teams can post job openings through a variety of methods on social media. They can use a person’s university affiliation, experience, likes and interests on social media as recruitment techniques. Social media also allows for the implementation of viral recruiting techniques. For example, if your company has dozens or hundreds of seasonal jobs to fill, shares and retweets on social media are fast ways to recruit the staff you need.

Digital Job Postings and Applications

Long gone are the days when you had to fax a job advertisement to the newspaper, wait for them to print it and then wait for applications to come in through snail mail. You can now use technology to almost instantaneously deliver job postings to dozens of recruitment websites, university posting services, professional networks and social media outlets. Applicants do not have to carefully print their applications. They can deliver them to you through your platform or send them electronically through email, allowing you to get responses within minutes of posting an opening.

Information Storage and Retrieval

When your recruitment strategies on social media are successful, you could end up with hundreds of applications. Technology facilitates the storage and retrieval of all of this information. When you have another, similar job opening, you can refer to your database and see which qualified applicants might fit the bill. Cloud computing makes it easy and cost-effective to store a great deal of digital information for recruiting.

[1] http://www.gethppy.com/hrtrends/technology-changing-human-resource-management

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Using Rewards & Recognition to Shape a Successful Company Culture

image_09When employees come to work on time every day, stay until the work is completed and do the job well, they deserve more than just a paycheck. Recognizing an employee’s contributions to the workplace plays a considerable role in retaining the best members of your staff. The cost of losing an employee is about one to two times his or her annual salary [1]. Consider these ways in which retaining employees through recognition and rewards is good for your bottom line and your corporate culture.

Motivation

Earning a reward, even something as simple as an “Employee of the Month” mug or a sticker for the employee’s ID card, motivates that person to continue performing at a high standard. When an employee is given a reward that is tangible and visible, other members of your workplace will see the reward. These awards could be given out monthly, quarterly or annually. This regular issuing of rewards could motivate additional members of your staff to up their performance levels in hopes of earning their own recognition.

Acknowledgement

While a private “good job” on an employee evaluation is helpful, sometimes a public acknowledgement of exemplary work is even more important and empowering to your employees. You do not have to go overboard or make a big deal, which could cause workplace resentment, but it is important to make a public acknowledgement about the contributions of employees when they go above and beyond your expectations. A moment at a monthly staff meeting for acknowledging and recognizing superior performance shows your staff that their work has not gone unnoticed.

Retention

Employees who are rewarded and recognized for their work are likely to remain in your organization. These people may become known in your workplace culture as rock stars and the go-to person for expertise and advice. Even if these well-recognized people do not become executives, they will continue to be a source of pride and inspiration for your corporation. Employees who feel valued and excited to come into work each day, anticipating recognition for their efforts, will stay at your organization for the long term.

 

[1] http://www.cio.com/article/2868419/careers-staffing/how-to-improve-employee-retention.html

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What is the Future of Applicant Tracking Systems in Recruiting?

image_16In today’s competitive economy, employers still hold the edge when it comes to filling a job that pays well and offers great benefits. These openings could attract dozens, perhaps hundreds or even thousands of applicants. Sorting through so many applications could take all of your time, which is why applicant tracking systems in recruiting are so important. As many as 50 percent of mid-size employers use these systems while up to 90 percent of large corporations use them [1]. Consider these ways that applicant tracking systems could be of use or change in the future.

Improving the Quality of New Hires

Applicant tracking systems in recruiting will continue to provide an opportunity to boost the quality of the new hires that you bring into your corporation. These tracking systems can help you to use pre-identified standards, such as certain programming languages in computer systems jobs or fluency in Spanish for sales jobs. The automatic selection of candidates with the ideal qualifications helps you to avoid wasting your time reading through applications of people who do not have what you are seeking in a new hire.

Complying with Laws

Now and into the future, you will be able to use applicant tracking systems in your recruiting procedures to comply with local, state and federal hiring requirements. For example, if your organization were to receive a complaint about the recruitment or hiring practices, you could refer to the data collected by your applicant tracking system to back up your practices and provide key details about the numbers of applicants and their demographic information.

Instantaneous Messaging with Applicants

When a fantastic application comes into your tracking system, you may want to contact that person right away and have the individual come in for an interview. The future of tracking systems will allow for instant messaging or calling of the applicant. Being able to quickly contact a fabulous candidate gives your organization the best chance of adding that person to your organization instead of letting the person slip through the cracks and end up with one of your competitors.

 

[1] http://www.hireright.com/blog/2014/02/four-key-benefits-of-an-e-recruiting-solution-ats-applicant-tracking-system/

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Building a Strong Company Blog By Including Employees as Authors

image_08Including your employees as authors on your company blog helps to build a stronger company culture. The different voices that your employees have to offer also provide your blog with a wider perspective and range of writing styles. According to Marketeer, corporate blogs with 15 posts per month generate an average of 1,200 new leads [1]. Allowing more people to participate in blog authorship can expand your reach even more.

Offering a New Perspective

Each employee in your company offers a new perspective on what it means to be a member of the organization. Writing from the same perspective all of the time can be boring to your audience. If every blog is written by the CEO, your readers will have no way to know what the rest of the people think. Allowing different employees to author blog posts shows that you value every member of your company equally. Including various employees at different levels of your company also demonstrates that every person’s voice is respected.

Exploring How Employees Joined Your Company

Companies often seem like impersonal, huge entities to the public. Including employees as authors on the company blog provides a more personal view of what happens in your company. Employees can explore their career history and how they came to be a member of your business. Each person’s career takes a different path, and this sort of biography can be fascinating for your loyal customers and business partners to read. This information also shows how your employees have the skills and experience to do their jobs.

Highlighting Employee Work

While the general public and even the other workers at your company know what the CEO, CFO and COO of your company do, they might not have a good idea of what your business analysts, customer support staff or human relations coordinators do on a daily basis. Allowing your employees to write blog posts about how they contribute to your organization highlights the fact that your company would not be what it is without everyone there working together to help the entire business succeed.
[1] http://marketeer.kapost.com/corporate-blogging-stats/

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Building a Stronger Corporate Culture Through Organizational Volunteering

image_27When people are engaged with the community and participate as citizens, the entire world benefits. Even at the organizational level, volunteering within the community helps to build a stronger corporate culture. As you develop your company’s goals and human resources programs, consider these ways in which you can build a stronger corporate culture through organizational volunteering.

Increased Employee Engagement

Organizational volunteering helps to boost employee engagement with your company. Engaged employees are happier at work and in their overall lives. Happy people are more pleasant to work with, listen better, and offer more positive interactions with coworkers, managers, and clients. According to Open Source Learning, organizations with engaged employees enjoy a 16% increase in profitability, an 18% increase in productivity, a 12% increase in consumer loyalty, and a 60% boost in the quality of the work that they perform [1].

Enhanced Social Capital

Social capital is a concept that addresses how the community sees your company. When your employees are volunteering on behalf of your organization, your name gets out there. The community sees your organization as a positive influence on the community and as an entity that is invested and cares about the people and neighborhood. When your employees see that the organization they work for is viewed positively and thought of as an asset to the community, this strengthens your corporate culture. Studies have shown that socially tied workers have higher levels of trust, are less likely to be opportunistic, and are more likely to cooperate and share information [2]. Your employees will gain pride in your organization and will feel that they are making a difference both at work and in the volunteering that they do as a part of it.

Shared Information and Skills

Organizational volunteering can also boost your corporate culture by allowing your employees to help each other develop and strengthen their soft skills. For example, sorting donations at a food bank and loading them onto shelves allows employees with strong organizing skills and stacking skills to help others. Volunteering in a community garden allows your skilled gardeners to share their knowledge of fertilizers, compost, and seeds with the rest of your staff. The sharing of information and uplifting of skills strengthens relationships, which can extend into the workplace.

[1] http://www.gordontraining.com/free-workplace-articles/productivity-profitability/#

[2] http://www.globoforce.com/gfblog/2015/social-capital-what-it-is-why-your-employees-need-it/

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Should You Seek or Avoid Recent Graduate Hires?

image_13When your organization has job openings, you may find that the applications include a slew of recent college graduates. As a human resources manager, you might be unsure of whether or not to take the risk of bringing aboard a recent graduate. Employers say they’re planning to hire slightly more fresh college graduates this spring than they did last year (5.8% more), according to a preliminary survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers [1]. Keep these pros and cons of hiring a new college grad in mind the next time your company needs to fill a staff vacancy.

Pro: Modern Skills

One reason to hire a new college graduate is that they are often familiar with current technology. New graduates are typically adept at navigating through complex software, apps and hardware. They may not need to be instructed on how to safeguard confidential data on their work-issued smartphone, tablet or laptop if they are already familiar with doing this. Recent college graduates are skilled at choosing the right piece of technology to do a certain task. Many college graduates also have relevant skills such as strong communication, a multilingual background and a broad foundation through their coursework, volunteer work and past related projects.

Pro: Salary and Benefit Expectations

Because recent college graduates usually have a shorter work history, they can be given a lower benefits package. Compared to a person who has worked for a decade or more, a new graduate may not expect a generous benefits package that includes things such as family health insurance or weeks of paid vacation. New graduates also command a lower salary compared with experienced workers. Enthusiastic graduates will often be happy to begin on a probation period or a paid internship, meaning you have some time to assess their abilities before committing to putting them on a full time salary [2]. The smaller salary and benefits expectations may make it more economical for you to hire a recent college graduate.

Con: Less Experience

New college graduates have less overall work experience. This means that they may not have developed the specific skills that your job opening requires. As a result, your current staff members may have to take time out of their busy schedules in order to bring the new hire up to speed. However, this may also be true for people who have spent many years in the workforce. Less experience may mean that new hires are more open to doing things in different ways, including the way you prefer.

 

[1] http://www.chron.com/local/education/campus-chronicles/article/Employers-plan-to-hire-more-graduating-seniors-10630079.php

[2] https://www.workitdaily.com/hiring-graduate-benefits/

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The Pros of the Telecommute Perk

image_011Telecommuting began to rise in popularity within the past decade when fuel prices soared. While it immediately benefited employees who would no longer have to spend hundreds of dollars per month to fill their gas tanks, human resources managers also began to notice benefits. Telecommuting is a growing trend – about 40% of U.S. employees are working remotely either full time or part time [1]. If you are considering implementing a telecommuting policy at your organization, keep these pros in mind when making your decisions and setting up the rules of your telecommuting program.

Efficiency

Employees who work from home may be able to start their workdays earlier and end later than they would if they had to commute. They may also experience fewer distractions, such as conversations at the water cooler or disruptions from coworkers chatting rather than working. On the other hand, employees who work at home may become distracted by household chores, the doorbell, television, and spouses or children who are also at home.

Equipment Savings

When employees work from home, your organization may be able to cut on some costs, such as utilities, office supplies and furniture. A typical business could potentially save up to $11,000 per employee per year [2]. When telecommuting employees do come into the office, they may be able to use shared work areas. This might even allow your organization to be housed in a smaller space. Keep in mind that you may have to reimburse your employees for their work-related internet fees, pay phone bills for work calls and provide them with a laptop so that they can do their work from home.

Employee Loyalty and Retaining Staff

The flexibility of being able to telecommute may help to increase the loyalty of your employees. Employees who have young children may appreciate the ability to work from home on days when their childcare center is closed or when their child is sick. You may be able to retain your staff by offering the option of telecommuting one or more days per week. Your employees are sure to enjoy the time savings and experience less stress from not having to drive in weekday rush-hour traffic. The savings on gas and wear and tear on cars also benefits your staff, who may decide to stay with you for these benefits.

[1] http://www.forbes.com/sites/mikekappel/2016/07/27/for-employee-retention-theres-no-place-like-home/#48ca551855ec

[2] http://globalworkplaceanalytics.com/telecommuting-statistics

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Promotion Versus Hiring: Deciding How to Fill Management Positions

image_28When your organization has a management position to fill, deciding how to hire for the opening can be a challenge. Promoting from within is often faster than looking outside of your organization. However, hiring from outside provides you with greater access to potential employees who may have a wider range of skills. However, there are many reasons to consider both options.

Promoting From Within

When you open up a management position to your current staff members, promoting from within can reduce the amount of time the position is vacant. There will not be a need for routine human resources activities such as checking on the applicant’s resume or references. This can reduce your hiring costs. Hiring from within means that you are already familiar with the employee’s personality, skill set and experience level. A study from Kelly-Radford found that senior executives fail, in general, 34 percent of the time when hired from the outside versus 24 percent when hired from inside your organization [1]. Promoting from within helps to boost employee loyalty, allowing your staff to do their best because of the potential to move up the corporate ladder.

Recruiting From Outside of Your Organization

Even if there are qualified candidates for a management position within your company, there are many reasons why you might want to consider outside recruitment. Bringing in a fresh perspective allows your company to increase its range of skills. Recruiting an outside candidate may also be easier on supervisors and staff who might otherwise develop a contentious relationship with internal promotions. Top talent is attracted to companies that are using best practices and offer the opportunity for growth, not companies that always want to stick with what’s safe and comfortable [2]. A new person may have more experience or relevant technological skills than the people you already employ. Outside recruitment allows you to capture the best talent from applicants locally, regionally and even internationally.

[1] http://www.ddiworld.com/ddi/media/white-papers/thecaseforinternalpromotions_wp_ddi.pdf?ext=.pdf
[2] https://www.ziprecruiter.com/blog/the-benefits-of-hiring-outside-your-industry/

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Improving Employee Retention by Building a Better Corporate Culture

image_07A positive corporate culture does more than keep management happy and demonstrate success to shareholders and investors – it also helps to retain the employees who make the organization successful. The 2016 Deloitte Millennials Survey said employees that stay within their organizations for at least five years are more likely to report a positive culture than others [1]. It’s important to pay attention to employee turnover, as the average cost of a lost employee is approximately 38 percent of the employee’s annual salary [2]. By building a better corporate culture, you can keep the top talent and experience within your organization.

Shared Priorities

A strong business culture is established upon a foundation of shared priorities. One way management can show that the concerns and priorities of the staff are important to them is by watching their pronouns. Rather than referring to employees as “them” and “they,” management can use inclusive pronouns such as “we” and “us.” Managers should also listen to employee conversations. When the staff members refer to themselves as a part of the organization, this indicates that the corporate culture is strong. An inclusive vocabulary allows for the development of shared priorities at all levels.

Listening

Successful business cultures also include listening. “When leaders share ideas and updates with their employees, open communication becomes second nature, and everyone feels equally invested in the company’s overall goals [3].” All management, from the lowest-level manager to the CEO, must spend time listening to the concerns of employees. Once concerns are heard, this gives the management the opportunity to present a thoughtful solution to the problem. Problems can be solved through respectful discussions and regular feedback to ensure that solutions are working for everyone. When ideas are heard and considered, everyone on the team will feel valued and more satisfied with their work.

Develop Bonding Opportunities

When your employees feel like they belong at your company, they will want to stay. Bonding activities as simple as walking meetings provide your staff with something to look forward to. Bigger events such as office potlucks and charity collections allow everyone to come together for a common cause. Even competitive contests can be fun, such as a contest for the best holiday decorations or the most over-the-top Christmas sweater. Bonding can also be done through shared activities. Consider having an employee volunteer day in which everyone in your organization works for a charity such as the local food bank or cleaning up a school playground or park. These simple activities allow employees, managers and leaders to come together and appreciate each person’s unique set of skills. Every person’s contribution has an exponentially positive effect on the whole organization.

 

[1] http://www.forbes.com/sites/wesgay/2016/11/29/meet-the-woman-behind-linkedins-culture/#1d429aa132c0
[2] http://www.talentculture.com/how-high-employee-turnover-hurts-your-company/
[3] https://www.fastcompany.com/3044879/hit-the-ground-running/how-to-make-your-workplace-fun-productive-and-creative