The 4 year review cycle: Why recruiting doesn’t have that luxury

With the polls for this year’s Presidential Election open and closing today, we should know tomorrow who our next President will be for the next four years.  As a nation we’ve had four years to evaluate the current president and now have a big decision to make.  Do we believe in the status quo and what the incumbent will be able to do off his experience or do we believe that the upstart will be able to accomplish more with his new perspective?  This is a decision every voter will make today (and I do encourage you to vote) and it is a similar decision recruiting organizations face all the time.  Although recruiting organizations don’t have the luxury of evaluating for 4 years.

Should we keep our current processes (and technology) or should we go with a new solution?


The question takes many forms

When organizations face the question above it comes in many different variations.  It can be an apples to apples comparison between two similar vendors where you go over price and functionality differences (i.e. global job distribution).  It can be a deep look into your processes to determine what you can improve in your current process and if your current technology supports this.  It can be a conscious decision to begin adding new recruiting initiatives (i.e. social, CRM or mobile recruiting) to your recruitment strategy and deciding what technology you need to make it successful.

No matter what the real question is, it usually comes down to improving your process and looking to get more out of your current recruitment marketing strategy and technology.


A Changing Recruiting Environment

The recruiting environment is becoming more and more competitive by the day and the amount of options and strategies available to recruiting organizations is staggering.  Gone are the days of post and pray models and organizations are beginning to think (or already have) more strategically about the initiatives they are using to find qualified talent.

Over the past few years (and I’m sure going forward), the way candidates interact and engage with recruiting organizations is consistently changing.  From how they finds your jobs (job boards, social networks, Google / SEO) to how they build relationships with and get information about working at organizations (Social, Career Site, Talent Network, Glassdoor, etc.) to how they want to apply and view your jobs (PC, Tablets, Mobile).  The ways and platforms utilized by job seekers are continually evolving and it’s important to stay on top of all the ways you interact with these candidates.  This not only includes the sources you use for candidates to find your job opportunities or the web sourcing techniques you use to find quality candidates but also the way you brand and sell your organization so that a candidate makes the decision to work for your company.

It’s integral for your organization to understand this changing nature of interaction with candidates and to make sure your strategy and resources provide you with the flexibility and foresight to take advantage and stay relevant with how you find talent.


Making sure your strategy is not behind the 8 ball

Doing what has always been done is not a strategy and probably not one that leads to success.  There is a need to stay forward thinking and remain in touch with what’s on the leading edge of the space.

But what can you do to make sure that you are remaining in tune with the new and innovative.  Here are a few recommendations:

  • Keep an ear out:  This can mean a few things.  From attending conferences, listening to webcasts, talking to other practitioners and/or reading news and blogs.  All you are doing here is getting information and understanding the possibilities that are out there and trending in the industry.  It’s from this knowledge that you can start thinking about how some of these initiatives can fit in your process and strategy.
  • Identify Trendsetters: In any space, there will be a group of innovators that take the lead from an innovation and technology perspective.  These are companies that you should identify and reach out to about their process.  In most cases, they will be more than happy to give you an overview of what they are doing and you can then use this information to determine how you might be able to use some of these concepts to enhance your own strategy.
  • Follow Consumer Behaviors: As your marketing and sales teams evolve their go to market strategies, you’ll be able to see first hand the newest conversion methods that are being used.  It will also let you identify trends such as social, mobile or in metrics that are emerging among the candidates that you are trying to recruit.  Many of these strategies and trends can and should be adapted to your recruitment marketing strategy to ensure your strategy is consistent with how candidates are interacting with your employer brand now and in the future.
  • Evaluate Technology: As you think about evolving your strategy it’s important to understand the breadth and capabilities of your existing technology.  Determine how you are currently using it and figure out if it supports where you are taking your strategy and is flexible enough to take advantage of new trends in the marketplace.  With this, you should also be keeping tabs on new and innovative technologies that are growing in the space and make sure you understand what is available from a technology perspective.


Consistent evaluation to make positive changes

We need to consistently look to improve what we do from a recruiting standpoint.  And it is through this goal that we always come back to the question “what are we doing today and how can we do it better?”.

4 years is a lifetime in recruiting and that’s why it’s important to consistently evaluate your process and everything that helps drive it on a shorter timeline.  This includes not only your overarching strategy but the technology and initiatives that help facilitate and elevate it.  Whether it’s quarterly or yearly, it’s crucial to have an evaluation process that really determines if you are focusing on the right things and have the right resources and tools to be successful.

If the answer is no, let’s hope you’ve already done the groundwork to understand what you can do to improve your process and what strategies and technology you can implement to ensure you meet your overall goals.

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