Category Archives: Talent Acquisition

What The Heck Is Candidate Experience?

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Well, it’s that time of year. All kinds of new research reports are being published – the kinds of reports that we collect and never seem to have enough time to read. We’ve all got them on our hard drives. But here’s one you’ll download and read. Multiple times. The information is that useful!

Of course, I’m talking about the Candidate Experience 2016 report. It’s here! Talent Board, the non-profit organization behind the data collection, research, and report, has stepped up to the plate again. As background, Talent Board, was founded by Gerry Crispin, Elaine Orler, and Ed Newman, in 2010 to “recognize the candidate experience offered by companies throughout the entire recruitment cycle and to forever change the manner in which job candidates are treated.” Starting first with the North America market, it has since grown to include the United Kingdom, EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa), as well as the Asia Pacific region. I’ll share information from the North America market, but know that there are layers of data and analysis that are truly global in their reach.

For 2016, data were collected from 183,000 candidates who applied to more than 240 organizations who wanted to know what their candidates thought about their experience as employment candidates.

Broken down into three major sections – Attract, Recruit, and Hire – the data collected are fascinating. Within these three sections are subsections that cover the complete candidate experience:  Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing and Sourcing in the Attract section; Apply, Screen and Disposition, and Interview and Select in the Recruit section; and Offer, Onboarding and New Hire in the Hire section. Within each of these subsections the data and analysis (and case studies), are all organized with the following structure:

  • What It Is
  • What Candidates Want
  • What Employers Are Doing
  • Key Recommendations: What CandE Award Winners Do Better

This structure makes reading the analysis and report easy. Although 114 pages long, it’s easy to work through the material because of its organization. You won’t probably read this in one sitting, but its structure makes it easy to come back and continue reading.

Case studies include organizations like Capital One, CH2M, Delta Airlines, GE, Informatica, and several others. This is good stuff, folks. It shows how leading organizations are thinking about and executing on their need for talent in new and highly impactful ways. Charts abound and they are easy to read and understand, and easy to translate into new approaches and actions in your organization.

Perhaps the simplest graphs that create the case for attending to the candidate experience are these:

cande-report-2016

They create the critical business case for investing in the experience of your employment candidates – just as you would invest in the experience of your employees or customers. Pretty simple stuff. Simple, and hard to execute. The beauty of this report – and the attending webinars, awards, and activities – is that the data and analysis show clearly what strategies are working and what the impact of those strategies are in an increasingly critical market demographic:  your potential employees.

If you aren’t familiar with “candidate experience,” read this report. If you are familiar with “candidate experience,” get involved. The resources provided through Talent Board are extensive. Attending to the experience of your candidates could make the difference in your talent acquisition strategies and plans. And your ability to deliver the foundation for your organization’s growth:  the right people with the right skills at the right time.

 

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Filed under Candidate Experience, CareerXroads, China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, Demographics, Ed Newman, Elaine Orler, Employer Branding, Gerry Crispin, HR Analytics, HR Data, HR Trends, Selection, Talent Acquisition

Talent Acquisition the Data-Driven Way

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Visier’s The Demand for Data-Driven Talent Acquisition report is a very quick read and gives some interesting data to consider as you plan for your 2017 talent acquisition activities. The opening paragraph of this short white paper sets the stage for some interesting data points:

“With countless recruiting-related technologies and assessment options on the market, business leaders might expect that measuring the long-term impact of talent acquisition is a practice that’s well-established and effective. A survey of hiring managers, however, suggests that the reality is just the opposite.”

The bottom line is that still, after massive investments in recruiting technology, it’s still tough to predict the long-term quality of hires. And measuring the impact of the recruiting process is becoming job #1 for many recruiting organizations because their clients, hiring managers, are expecting more.

200 hiring managers from across the U.S. – from a number of industries – took a survey in October 2016. All of the respondents were from organizations employing more than 8,000 people with over $1 billion in annual revenue. The size of the responding employers may well be irrelevant in the discussion of talent acquisition and what continues to challenge organizations of all sizes.

The report is fairly straightforward – just 8 questions are reported in this paper. Two that stuck out to me are pretty obvious, but also pretty revealing:

visier-3

It’s no surprise that managers in larger organizations – remember the respondents were hiring managers not HR or recruiting professionals – want the recruiting process to be improved. Other questions and data in the report show why that would be the case. Hiring managers in larger organizations appear to be challenged by the effectiveness of their recruitment support teams. But beyond finding the right people who will stay in the job, hiring managers also want more data-driven processes when looking for new talent. Data-driven business processes abound in larger organizations and hiring managers are expressing deep interest (70% of them!) in employing data-driven processes for talent acquisition. Makes sense to me.

Visier publishes these bite sized reports fairly often and I enjoy reading them. They open windows of simple (and sometimes all too obvious) insight that can be quite useful.

 

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Filed under Big Data and HR, China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, Hiring, HR Analytics, Recruiting, Recruiting Trends, Talent Acquisition, Visier

Talent Acquisition Systems

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Aptitude Research Partners recently published a thorough analysis of the Talent Acquisition landscape. It is a thing of beauty. If you’re looking for an ATS, if you’re thinking about your talent acquisition processes, if you’re wondering who does what to whom in the talent acquisition space, this report is a must-read. It’s meaty, it’s thorough, it’s a complete overview of the providers in the space.

It identifies 10 trends that you must know if you’re tinkering with your processes and systems:

  1. The need for simplicity
  2. Interview scheduling is a “must have”
  3. Do not leave the platform
  4. Recruitment marketing is a critical investment
  5. Not enough candidate feedback
  6. Reporting must be simple
  7. Services integrated into the technology deal
  8. More collaboration between recruiters and managers
  9. High volume is still a differentiator
  10. The marketplace is confusing

While some of those topics are a little opaque, you’ll be glad you investigated them.

But my favorite part of the report was the graphic showing the full HR technology landscape. Take a look:

Aptitude Research 1

This is one of the best one picture overviews of the HCM landscape. While you’re working on the talent acquisition sliver. Don’t lose sight of the rest of the pie!

Madeline Laurano and her analysts have outdone themselves. And they’ve done you a big solid. Take a look at the full report. You’ll be glad you did.

 

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Filed under Aptitude Research Partners, China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, HR Technology, HRM Technology, Madeline Laurano, Mollie Lombardi, Recruiting Technology, Talent Acquisition

Employer Branding Now

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Universum, the global employer branding and market research organization, recently published a new report on the state of employer branding practices. It’s good. If you’re unclear about what employer branding is, this report is for you. If you’re involved – at all – with talent acquisition, this report is for you. If you’ve created your EVP (employee value proposition) and are headed into activation, this report is for you. Because talent is everything in today’s hyper competitive global marketplace, employer branding is becoming a critical part of talent strategy.

The report, Employer Branding Now, is a comprehensive review of what leading organizations around the world are doing to become more successful in connecting with the talent they need. Without giving away the store, the following graph shows how overall investments in recruitment channels are shifting. No surprise that investments in social channels are increasing, along with employee referral programs and alumni networks. On the other side of the coin, it’s probably not surprising that print advertising is sinking rapidly. And while you may have thought job boards were dead, that just isn’t the case. But check out the third-party recruiter channel. Are you surprised?

Universum EBnow

Food for thought here, I think!

The report is the outcome of a yearly survey of approximately 2,500 employer branding managers from around the world. The respondents represent a wide range of industries, and include 100 of the FORTUNE 500.

The actionable insights that conclude the report give helpful direction to those in the thick of employer branding activation, as well as those just starting to work on their EVP:

  1. Create closer alignment between employer brand priorities and talent priorities.

  2. Fully leverage the power of EVPs to deliver greater employer brand focus and impact.

  3. Balance brand consistency with talent segmentation and local targeting.

  4. Invest in quality social media content (no longer a side order, now the meat of the day).

  5. Invest in analytics – effective employer brand strategies are increasingly numbers driven.

The report is delivered in a colorful and easy to read eBook format. It’s a good read with attractive and easily understood graphs and data points. You can get it here.

 

Full disclosure: I chair Universum’s North America Board.

 

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Filed under China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, Employer Branding, FORTUNE Magazine, Global Human Capital, HR Analytics, Human Resources, Recruiting, Social Recruiting, Talent Acquisition, Universum

Racing For Talent

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Sometimes research results are organized in complex and hard to consume ways. We’ve all seen those reports, academic treatises and white papers. And then, all too rarely, there are research results that are organized and easily consumable. Here’s one of the good ones: Randstad Sourceright’s 2016 Talent Trends Report. Not only is the information easily accessed, it has a catchy organizing principle: Formula One racing. I know, it seems a bit of a stretch, but it actually works quite well – and Randstad has been the official partner of the Williams Martini Racing Team since 2006. So there’s that.

The report organizes Randstad’s findings into 5 themes, and each theme has a number of trends that their research has identified. Each trend takes a page, and at the end of each theme there is theme/survey summary. The graphics are good and easily understood, and data are compelling. Truly, there’s a nugget (or 3 or 8) for everyone who touches talent.

The 5 themes are:

  1. Navigating a dynamic course
  2. Relying on an agile team
  3. A holistic approach powers talent capabilities
  4. Execute winning tactics
  5. Firing on all cylinders accelerates talent strategy

So those all fit into the racing formula, but it’s the trends that are really compelling. The trends identified within the first and last themes were the most interesting to me:

  1. Navigating a dynamic course
  • Talent is king
  • The impact of regulations on gig workers
  • Talent scarcity threatens business
  • Prepare for a demographic time bomb
  • Reverse brain drain accelerates
  • Employers look to global mobility for talent

We know about all of these trends – or, at least we should. And each trend is supported by data, real world examples and tips for aligning your business and HR practices to support your success. Very useful.

The fifth theme breaks down in the following way:

  1. Firing on all cylinders accelerates talent strategy
  • The evolution of total talent analytics
  • Technology redefines the meaning of remote working
  • Gamification goes mainstream
  • HR accelerates the Internet of Things
  • HR technology integration remains the holy grail
  • Workforce automation heats up
  • Sourcing methodologies and human intelligence become more intertwined

The graph below, in the Theme 1 Summary, is a sample of the kinds of survey responses Randstad collected. And, if you need a wakeup call about the impact of talent scarcity, here it is:

Randstad Talent

Look at the adverse consequences of not having access to the talent you need: threatened leadership continuity and succession, disrupted existing businesses, limited business growth, and delayed product/services launches. These are enormous impacts to the bottom line and future of your organization. If you ever needed data to support greater investment in talent acquistion resources, this would be it.

And in the Theme 5 Summary, this graph looks at which HR technologies are actually enhancing the attraction of quality talent:

Randstad Talent 2

Have you checked out recruitment marketing platforms? How robust are your talent analytics dashboards? Do you provide candidates self-service tools? These are all working for employers around the world in helping to effectively combat talent scarcity.

This is a data-rich, insight-rich report. It’s beautifully organized, the insights are easily consumed, and the data are depicted in simple and engaging visuals. I like this report. A lot. And I suspect I will revisit it more than once.

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Filed under China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, HR Analytics, HR Data, Randstad Sourceright, Recruiting, Talent Acquisition, Talent Management

Employee Referrals Are Gold

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And this is why culture matters…

CareerXroads 2015 SOH

In Gerry Crispin and Chris Hoyt’s final Source of Hire lab report, the big headline is that culture matters. They don’t say it, but what they say leaves no doubt. And it’s really no big surprise, really, but CareerXRoads reports that almost 30% of their Colloquium members hire between 26-50% of their candidates from employee referrals.

It’s not hard, folks. As the talent supply continues to tighten up, your own employees are the go-to (and most cost effective source for candidates. And if your employees are looking for a job somewhere else (anywhere but here!), what is the likelihood they’ll refer the best of their connections to your company? You know the answer.

CareerXRoads has been a lone voice in the wilderness touting the value (and high incidence) of employee referrals. This report lays it out clearly, although I’m not sure the word culture is ever mentioned: employees who feel strongly positive about the culture of their organization will invite their friends, family and acquaintances to join them. It’s about the work, the boss, the innovation and collaboration, the communication, the appreciation, the respect. It’s about the culture.

No way around it:  culture matters.

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Filed under CareerXroads, China Gorman, Chris Hoyt, Culture, Data Point Tuesday, Employee Referrals, Gerry Crispin, Talent Acquisition, Uncategorized

Sometimes it IS about the methodology!

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There’s no denying that Linkedin is a 600 pound gorilla in the talent acquisition space. But as I write that, I wonder in what space exactly Linkedin is. Wikipedia says Linkedin is a business-oriented social networking service. Linkedin says it’s the world’s largest professional network with 380 milllion members. Is it the ultimate job board? Is it an employer branding consulting firm? Is it a talent research firm? Is it a recruiting company? Maybe it’s all those things. Maybe it’s none of those things and it’s something else altogether. But whatever it is, I think we’d all agree that it’s big, it seems to be influential, lots of companies in the talent space are afraid of it, and most professionals – all over the world – wouldn’t look for a job without it.

So I read with interest Linkedin’s new report, Global Recruiting Trends 2016. It’s a quick read with some interesting data. The report sections are:

  • Introduction

  • Key takeaways

  • Quality of hire: The magic metric

  • Employee referrals: On the rise

  • Employer brand: A cross-functional priority

  • Retention and internal mobility: Time to align

  • Parting thoughts

  • Methodology

I like simple and straight forward reports like this. They tell you what the headlines are, give you charts and graphs that are easily understood, and then they end with a summary and the description of their methodology.

So the highlights are these:

  • Quality of hire is most important to talent acquisition practitioners, but there isn’t a lot of agreement on how to measure it
  • The use of employee referral programs is continuing to increase
  • Other functions, most notably Marketing, are getting in on the Employer Branding act

That’s about it. Not really surprising. But here is the really interesting part to me: the methodology.

  1. It’s a global survey – 3,894 talent acquisition decision makers in corporate HR departments who have some stake in the recruitment budget took the survey.
  2. Those responders were Linkedin members.
  3. They were from all over the world (see below).

Linkedin 2016 survey footprint

Although the report doesn’t specify that the numbers shown by country represent the number of survey respondents by country, we must assume that is the case. And if it is, I find it fascinating that only 200 U.S. respondents were included. It’s true this is a global survey. And it’s also true that the world of talent does not revolve around the U.S. But when 400 U.K. responses, 300 Australia/New Zealand responses and 231 Brazil responses are included – and only 200 U.S. responses were included – I’m not sure whether this analysis is compelling. The U.S. has ~7 milllion organizations; the U.K. has ~ 4 million; Australia and New Zealad have ~ 2 million; Brazil has ~1 million.

I’m not arguing that there are too many respondents from countries other than the U.S. There are some incredible talent innovations emerging all over the world in countries like India, Brazil and China. I’m positioning, rather, that there are too few respondents utilized from the U.S. I’m pretty sure that if the survey had included 400, or even 500, talent leaders from the U.S. instead of 200, the results would have been different. It’s hard to say how different, but different nonetheless. Having a more representative national sample vis a vis other nations would make the conclusions more compelling.

With a hat tip to Laurie Ruettimann, this raises the issue that we have to be mindful of the results of vendor research analysis. When sample size is too small, or when questions are ambiguous, or when the answer selections are biased (which they almost always are in vendor sponsored research), we really do need to take the results and analysis with a grain of salt.

There are interesting analyses and conclusions here that are worthwhile. But I wouldn’t build my budget from this report if I were a talent leader in the U.S. I appreciate that Linkedin, the world’s largest professional network – or whatever it is, is asking its members questions related to the talent acquisition challenges with which every employer around the world is grappling. And it’s interesting to see the results country by country. I’m just not sure the U.S. data are solid enough on which to build action.

What do you think?

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Filed under China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, HR Data, Laurie Ruettimann, Linkedin, Quality of Hire, Talent Acquisition

Boomerangs Are Coming Back! (See what I did there?)

data point tuesday_500It used to be that being a “job hopper” was a bad thing. Employers wouldn’t touch someone who moved around a lot. And employees almost never wanted to go back to a former employer. They had good reasons for leaving. Today, however, most understand that boomerangs are a fact of life. But what if someone who left your organization in good standing applies for a job and wants to return today? Will you hold his/her decision to leave against them? Or will you think that their pathway to productivity will be shorter because they already know the culture and the ropes?

Workforce Institute LogoThose are among the questions that were asked in a recent survey by the Workforce Institute at Kronos Inc. and WorkplaceTrends.com. More than 1,800 HR professionals, people managers and employees were surveyed and the results show a shift in attitude regarding the desirability of rehiring former employees.

Some of the highlights from the survey results include:

  • Organizations and workers alike are coming around on rehiring former employees.
  • Boomerangs are creating increased – and unexpected – competition for job seekers as the hiring market continues to improve.
  • Familiarity, easier training, and knowledge of the former employer are benefits for boomerangs and organizations – yet some concerns still linger.
  • HR says it has a strategy for maintaining relationships with former employees, but workers and managers disagree.

The first three findings are pretty predictable, I think. But the fourth shows some interesting opportunities for HR to communicate more strategically to their important stakeholders.

The study showed that while organizations appear to more open to hiring boomerangs, 80% of employees report that former employers do not have a strategy in place to encourage them to return. Additionally, 64% believe that there doesn’t appear to be a strategy for maintaining a relationship once they depart. And, finally, nearly half of managers say their organization has no alumni relationship strategy.

Contrast these findings with HR’s report that they use multiple strategies for keeping in touch with former high-performing employees – like email newsletters (45%), recruiters (30%), and alumni groups (27%). A focus on cultivating alumni groups appear to be more common than managers or employees believe, with Facebook as the most favored social platform (42%). Email (39%) and LinkedIn (33%) are also frequently used alumni relationship platform hosts.

HR clearly has an opportunity to engage both the people managers and high performing employees in their organizations around the topic of keeping former employees tethered to the organization through alumni relationship building.

Joyce Maroney, Director of The Workforce Institute at Kronos believes this:

“With this boomerang trend on the rise, it’s more important than ever for organizations to create a culture that engages employees – even long after they’ve gone – and organizations should consider how the boomerang employee factor should affect their off-boarding and alumni communications strategies for top performers.”

Joyce is right. In the increasingly tough talent supply/demand landscape, employers can’t afford to overlook any part of the talent pool when seeking new employees. Boomerangs have a lot going for them and they should be kept top of mind by managers and talent acquisition professionals alike.

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Filed under Boomerangs, China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, Joyce Maroney, Kronos, Talent Acquisition, Workforce Institute

CEOs Get It. Do HR Leaders?

data point tuesday_500Here’s another survey analysis and report that should be required reading for all HR professionals: pwc’s 18th Annual Global CEO Survey. The survey looks at how business leaders are finding new ways to compete in “an era of unprecedented digital change.” I know, it sounds like another consulting firm’s move to make the complicated even more complicated and gin up their sales. But I didn’t find this analysis to be that. Instead, I found it useful to put context around some of our biggest challenges and opportunities. 1,322 CEOs in 77 countries were interviewed: 125 in Central and Eastern Europe; 459 in Asia Pacific, 94 in the Middle East and Africa; 330 in Western Europe; 167 in Latin America and 147 in North America. This was truly a global survey.

The survey findings are grouped into 5 themes:

  • Growth
  • Competition
  • Technology
  • Partnering
  • Diversity

The first four themes are fairly predictable – and they all have some impact on talent strategies and HR functions – but the fifth, Diversity, might be a surprise to you. Think about it. More than 1,300 CEOs around the world were interviewed for this survey. Would you have predicted that Diversity was among the 5 most critical themes to emerge? You might have hoped for it, but would you have predicted it?

This survey analysis report is a roadmap for HR to anticipate what’s coming in terms of focus and strategy from the CEO. The report is not long. You could read it in an hour. And come away with some critical new business perspectives that will make your HR strategies and plans align with the real world – as your CEO sees it – and support your business’s growth plans.

I’ll share just two graphics that I found interesting. The first shows the range of risks that CEOs are beginning to be concerned about:

pwc CEO Survey June 30 2015CEOs were asked how concerned they were about a list of potential economic, policy, social and business threats to their organization’s growth prospects. You can see the list above. Do you see that the threat of not having access to necessary skills is a greater threat then cyber security? Than the speed of technological change? Than Geopolitical uncertainty? Do you see that of the list they could choose from, CEOs chose the threat of not having access to necessary skills as the second most concerning threat to their organization’s growth processes?

That seems big to me. So, are your talent acquisition, development and retention strategies and programs developing fast enough to address this concern?

The second chart I will share shows just how all-pervasive and consistent the lack of talent concern is for CEOs:

pwc CEO Survey 2 June 30 2015The question posed to these CEOs was “what one capability do you think will be most critical for tomorrow’s CEO’s to cultivate?” The choices were:

  • Innovation
  • Leadership
  • Strategic Thinking
  • Customer Focus
  • Collaboration
  • Digital Astuteness
  • Personal Qualities (e.g. honesty, integrity)
  • Adaptability
  • Knowledge and Skills
  • Talent Acquisition and Management

It wasn’t surprising to me that out of that list of 10 critical future CEO capabilities that Strategic Thinking would be first on the list of necessary capabilities. And it’s first by a mile. But look at what is in second place: Talent Acquisition and Management! I’ll bet you wouldn’t have predicted that.

This suggests to me that CEOs see lack of skills as such a big concern that they are going to involved personally with reducing that threat. Are you ready for your CEO to be actively involved in setting and executing your talent acquisition and development strategy? I’m not thinking that their involvement would be a bad thing. Quite the contrary. But I’m not sure the average HR department is ready to add their CEO to the team.

In my mind, these two graphs, and the subtext of the survey report, show that talent is becoming one of the most critical competitive advantages for business growth worldwide. And CEOs know it. The lack of talent/skills is clearly being evaluated by CEOs all over the world – in every sector and in every size of business – as their Achilles Heel. So CEOs get it. The big question is, does HR get it?

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Filed under CEOs pwc, China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, Diversity, HR, Strategy, Talent Acquisition, Talent development

Where Do Candidates Come From?

data point tuesday_500 There is a robust conversation in the talent arena about “candidate experience” led largely by Gerry Crispin and Elaine Orler, founders of the Talent Board and the Candidate Experience Awards (#CandE). There are lots of opinions about whether ensuring that candidates for hire have a high quality experience is meaningful. Some think the juice isn’t worth the squeeze. But I think most believe treating candidates like consumers is smart business. Two new vendor publications discuss aspects of candidate experience:

  1. Creating a 21st Century Application Process from RolePoint, and
  2. Beyond Employees: Employee Referral Programs Redefined from Smashfly

Both reports were published within the last month and contain analysis of current data. The Rolepoint whitepaper was written by global recruiting legend Bill Boorman. It highlights Intuit’s approach to embracing a social approach to the apply process, with a particular focus on making the application process streamlined and device agnostic “with equal attention paid to user experience and interface on both desktop and mobile.” Bill is a legend for a reason and his approach to this topic in the whitepaper is compelling. The Smashfly presentation provides insight into the employee/candidate referral landscape with some interesting data:

  • 77% of organizations currently have a formal referral program

  • 32% of new hires come from referrals on average, and rate highest in quality among sources of hire

  • 57% of organizations limit their referral program to employees only

  • 43% extend their program beyond employees to include alumni, contractors, customers, vendors and/or partners

  • Analysis shows those that reach beyond employees get 28% more hires from referrals and 8% better quality candidates

This survey data is interesting, and I key in on the 4th bullet. Extending referrals into other stakeholder groups makes a great deal of sense – and correlates to higher quality candidates. Take a look below: Smashfly May 19 2015 If you’re in the 23% of employers without a candidate referral program, this might be a wake up and smell the coffee moment. If you’re in the 57% of organizations limiting referrals to employees only, this might be a pedal to the metal moment. Either way, whether you’re recruiting programmers, developers, customer service agents, nurses, marketers, HR professionals or executives, approaching your trusted partners – including employees – for referrals makes good, logical sense. And treating potential candidates like consumers, that is, making it as easy for them to press the “apply” button as it is to press the “buy” button seems like a tenant from Econ 101. Check out these reports from Rolepoint and Smashfly.

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Filed under Bill Boorman, Candidate Experience, China Gorman, Data Point Tuesday, Elaine Orler, Employee Referrals, Gerry Crispin, Rolepoint, Smashfly, Talent Acquisition