5 Tips to Improve Communication in the Recruitment Process
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

HR professionals need to balance a couple of very big essentials during the recruitment process. Speed and proper communication are two of those that can be challenging to implement at the same time.

Effective communication, however, plays a role in boosting effectiveness. By zooming in on the right candidates and making the onboarding process seamless.

Talent shortage is a massive issue today and almost 73 per cent of employers report difficulties in filling positions. At the same time, employee engagement is lower than ever before. Disengaged employees cost businesses up to 550 billion dollars per year – a massive amount that can be reduced through better communication about expectations and roles on both parts.

So, what does it take to make the recruitment process more informative, more tailored and more effective? Here are some of the strategies that HR professionals can rely on to improve their communication efforts.

 

Data Collection

Good communication is heavily dependent on going into every meeting fully prepared.

Luckily, various technologies can be employed today to gather relevant data.

The recruitment process needs to be digitized and optimized, reducing the paper clutter that HR professionals go through. When the right HR software is utilized, it can also analyze current metrics and candidate trends. This will ensure better preparedness over the course of the recruitment process.

Gathering information about candidates to advance is equally important and there are multiple strategies to employ for the purpose.

 

Online Communication Is More Important Than Ever Before

Everyone is online – a fact that recruiters need to account for when communicating.

If seniors can meet each other online on dating websites, recruiters also have to be present across platforms to streamline and speed up the collection of information.

Social media platforms like LinkedIn have already pretty much become the standard in the recruitment realm. It’s also common for companies to employ live streaming and video calls, making it easier for candidates to schedule interviews in a comfortable way.

The current worldwide situation and the coronavirus pandemic are changing the way we live and the way we work. It is anticipated to have a profound effect on the ways that interviews are being carried out and onboarding is occurring.

Making use of digital technologies right now will exponentially maximize communication capabilities in a cost-efficient, tailored way that all businesses can benefit from.

 

Maximising candidate engagement

 

Automation for Some Immediacy

Certain aspects of recruitment process communication can be automated, freeing up human resources for the more strategic tasks at hand.

When a human being has to go through every single step, some processes can be needlessly prolonged. This is why tech can be employed once again to automate a few steps and give HR professionals a breather.

Here’s a very simple example of how communication automation can occur.

After a person has sent in an email with their application, they could receive an automated response. The automatic email can shed a bit more light on the company culture, the onboarding process and the additional steps that the candidate will have to go through in case they’re considered relevant for the position.

While this is a very basic example of how recruitment communication can be automated, it paints a clear picture of how everything can be sped up and simplified for the purpose of simpler, quicker and more efficient processes.

 

Always Have a Timeline for Replies and Processes

Many people who apply for specific positions complain that they never hear back from recruiters or that they hear back too long after the initial contact.

Every recruiter needs to set strict timelines for responding and for staging out the recruitment processes.

Having automation in place will take a lot of the administrative burden off your shoulders. This way, you can focus on setting a timeline for responding and completing every single step of the candidate filtering out process.

While such timeframes are more or less guidelines, they create a sense of urgency and move the communication forward. Our minds are wired to perform better when a deadline is in place and the rule does apply to corporate communication.

 

Clarifying Roles within the Hiring Team

The final tip is purely organizational but it can have some impact on the quality of communication within the recruitment team itself, as well as with candidates.

It’s very important to clarify the role of every single member of the human resources department.

Very often, there are implied roles and responsibilities that may be taken on by more than one person. Not only are such processes ineffective, but they can also lead to reduced productivity and serious mistakes down the line.

If there’s a lack of clarity, the department will need to address this internally before a recruitment campaign is initiated. What’s the role of the hiring manager? Does the team have a senior leader at all? Who’s leading the interview process and how are they communicating with everybody else?

These are just a few of the key questions that need to be addressed for proper responsibility allocation. When recruitment team members have a clear idea about their role in the department, they can start communicating more effectively with everyone involved in the process.

Improved communication can speed up recruitment and save a company tons of money. The recruitment team must work to address any ambiguities as soon as possible. Such processes are far from expensive and when carried out correctly, they can contribute to profound operational efficiency in the future.

 

Author’s bio

Ben Brown is a freelance writer and a content manager at dating site DoULikeSenior

 

Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that can streamline and revolutionise your recruitment. To discuss what we can to for your recruitment strategy, and find out more about our fully integrated communication tools, book a demo by clicking here.

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Ben Brown


Ben Brown is freelance writer and a content manager at dating site DoULikeSenior with top notch communication  skills. He enjoys learning new things and learning more about people from all over the world. His passion and diligence enable him to consistently grow and improve both himself and his career.


4 strategies to get the best talent for your small business
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

Did you know that unemployment rates in the UK are now at their lowest since the 1970s? This is obviously great news for the economy but presents a big challenge when it comes to hiring the best talent for your company. With the job market now being candidate-driven, finding the right people for your organisation can be harder than ever before.

We all know how important it is to have the best people working for you. With a talented and motivated team on board, your business stands the best chance of being successful. In that sense, employees are your most valuable asset, and care must be taken to recruit and retain them just as much as generating sales or managing finances.

So, are you doing all of the following?

 

Review your HR approach

A new recruitment drive is all very well but before you start thinking about hiring new employees, are you sure you’re doing everything you can for your internal staff retention and development? There’s little point hiring new people if they won’t stay with the business long enough for you to reap the benefits.

Business Coach and Online Educator Rob da Costa suggests the following talent retention incentives in one of his recent blog posts:

  • A focus on education
  • Salary increases based on merit
  • Flexible working conditions
  • Attractive benefits package
  • Pointing out future possibilities
  • Promoting from within
  • Investing in quality managers

Take a look at your team and ask yourself how happy and engaged your workforce is. Are you training them, promoting them, rewarding them appropriately? Do you have a positive company culture? In a job seekers’ market, it’s not just job seekers who are being harder to please. Your existing staff may consider changing jobs if they feel more valued elsewhere.

 

Invest in your company culture

Company culture is a big and growing topic that you cannot afford to neglect. It’s a magic formula that goes like this: Get your business model and your internal culture right and you’ll be surprised just how quickly word gets around that your company is the place to be.

When your candidates, employees, customers and the public interact with your business, what’s their experience? The way your company is perceived hinges on its internal culture and how this is managed. Everything follows from here – from team engagement and productivity to employee happiness, staff retention, and business success.

Identifying and developing your company’s brand doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does have to be done. Here are four things you should be doing:

  • Build authentic and meaningful recognition and reward into your company culture to meet your employees’ needs to be recognised for their efforts and achievements, and drive performance, staff retention and employee engagement.
  • Build strong teams that collaborate eagerly, communicate openly, trust each other’s views and are motivated to engage in best performance. Team building shouldn’t be a one-off activity, day-to-day reinforcement may be needed to create a collaborative work culture.
  • Build a flexible work environment, allowing and trusting your staff to choose when, where and how they work. This freedom coupled with personal accountability strengthens your work culture by encouraging happier, higher-performing teams.
  • Create a caring culture that genuinely looks after its employees and goes beyond the norm. X, Y, Z generations want to know that you will look after their best interests and care for them, especially in their hour of need. Employees now prefer healthy food and access to help and advice over a beer fridge or pool table.

 

Company culture

 

Recruit with precision and focus

If there are no internal candidates you can promote to the vacancy, outside recruitment is going to be your next step. Start with a clear job description and be focused on what exactly you are looking for in the right candidate, and what you are going to offer.

The customary ‘spray and pray’ efforts of yesteryear will no longer cut it in a job market where candidates can afford to be choosy. With so many other companies competing for the highest calibre candidates, your job advert needs to stand out for all the right reasons.

In order to reach the right people, you need to know where to find them. Social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook, are an excellent place to start engaging with potential candidates. There are plenty of specialist organisations and software tools to help you with this. You could also partner with a recruitment consultant who will have the time and resources to dig deep into the job market on your behalf.

 

Ensure a positive candidate experience

Once you have shortlisted your best candidates for an interview, follow through with a carefully prepared and organised meeting. It’s amazing how many companies invest time and effort into recruiting candidates, yet blow their chances on the day. A good candidate will know if they’re being fobbed off with an ad hoc interview.

A negative candidate experience is unlikely to lead to the result you are seeking. Worse still, a disappointed candidate may share his experience on online platforms. Poor feedback may discourage others from joining your company and negatively impact on your brand.

According to recent figures, a positive experience will make the job candidate about 1/3 more likely to accept your job offer. You are selling your company, so you should put your best people in front of the candidates that you want to impress. Confident, ambitious job seekers will have plenty of other opportunities on the table, so do your best to woo them.

 

Written By Annie Button

 

Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that can streamline and revolutionise your recruitment. To find out what we can to for your recruitment strategy, book a demo by clicking here.

 

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Annie Button


Annie Button is a Portsmouth based writer and recent graduate. Annie has written for various online and print publications, she specialises in business, recruitment and career development.


You’re Probably Addressing Workplace Diversity All Wrong. Here’s What You Should Be Doing Instead
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

You’re Probably Addressing Workplace Diversity All Wrong. Here’s What You Should Be Doing Instead by Brad Wayland

These days, it seems as though inclusiveness is the golden goose for human resources, particularly those operating in technology. The problem is that most businesses go about it in entirely the wrong way, falling into toxic traps like hiring quotas and tokenism. This needs to change.

 

Diversity hire. 

How does that phrase make you feel? If you’re anything like me, not great. For one, it’s dehumanizing, reducing a new employee down to a single label, ignoring everything else about their accomplishments and who they are as a person.

You’re hiring them because of a quality over which they have no control rather than because of what they can do.

You’re no longer hiring  Kristin the Data Scientist, who graduated with top marks from Stanford. She’s Kristin the woman.  You aren’t hiring Greg the Marketing Director, with over ten years of experience and a master’s in Marketing Science from Columbia. You’re hiring Greg the black man.  You’re not hiring Lucas because he graduated from New York University and worked on Wall Street. You’re doing it because he’s gay, and you have a quota to fill.

You get the idea.

“I’m a dream hire for most technology companies,” writes Jori Ford,  Senior Director of Content and SEO at peer-to-peer G2 Crowd. “In an industry dominated by white, straight males, a lesbian with both black and Korean heritage checks a lot of boxes. And that’s the problem. In response to the demand for more diverse hiring practices, technology firms have resorted to quotas that ultimately miss the point.”

But isn’t it admirable to seek out men and women who are traditionally underrepresented in your industry?

Yes, but you need to be doing it for the right reasons. Not to fulfil some bogus corporate initiative or make your business look better in the eyes of investors and customers. And not with a focus that begins and ends at hiring and retention.

You should hire someone underrepresented because they might bring a unique perspective to your workplace. You should hire them because discrimination is harmful to everyone, at every level of a business. But most importantly, you should do it if you genuinely believe they’re the best candidate for the job. 

 

Health & Wellbeing Group

 

Rethinking your approach

There’s another angle to this whole conversation, as well. Simply bringing in a diversity hire will not make your workplace more diverse. Diversity requires that your organization rethink its values and mission. Here’s how:

• Work within your organization to find out what preconceptions your people hold about others, and why. Negative stereotypes do not develop in a vacuum, and challenging them is the first step to fostering greater inclusiveness.

• Look at your employees as people rather than resources, and ensure your colleagues do the same. Empathic leadership, as noted by tech publication CIO, is at the core of inclusiveness.

• Make diversity an ongoing effort rather than a single initiative, and focus on retention as well as hiring. Culture is not something that can be changed overnight, nor can inclusiveness be assured by handing out a few pamphlets.

• For the hiring process, consider implementing a blind evaluation phase. Your hiring department will look exclusively at each candidate’s credentials, without knowing anything else about their identity.

When you hire someone to fulfil a quota or simply for the sake of having a more diverse workplace, you’re putting the cart before the horse.  Diversity and inclusiveness aren’t something that can be automated, nor can they be dealt with through spreadsheets. Understanding that is the only way you’ll make your workplace genuinely inclusive.

 

About the Author

Brad Wayland is the Chief Strategy Officer at BlueCotton, a site with high-quality, easy-to-design custom t-shirts.

 

Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that will streamline and revolutionise your recruitment strategy.

To find out how we can tailor our services to match your recruitment needs, including reducing selection bias, click here.

 

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Brad Wayland


Brad Wayland is the Chief Strategy Officer at BlueCotton, a site with high-quality, easy-to-design custom t-shirts.


How to attract the best talent in a candidate-short market
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

Does your business have a recruitment plan? Sensible preparation could help you over the line in the dash for talent as we find ourselves in a candidate-short market.

New research by the Korn Ferry Institute predicts a major recruitment crisis with a significant future shortage of skilled workers. The study estimates that by 2030 the global talent shortage could reach 85.2 million people, costing companies trillions in lost business opportunities.

The United States financial services sector is projected to suffer the most, while European financial centres, like the UK and Germany, could struggle to retain their global positions due to the looming skilled-talent shortage.

Strategic action to address this is essential and it should start now. Business leaders who move talent acquisition to the top of their agenda will be in the best position to compete for scarce talent in the future.

In this article, I’ll be looking at what businesses can do to attract talent in a candidate-light market.

 

Talent Attraction

 

1. Consider in-house recruitment or outsource to a specialist recruiter

Agency recruitment isn’t always all it is cracked up to be. For a start, how can an agency know everything about your business? Deciding who should handle your recruitment isn’t an easy decision and there are pros and cons for seeking talent yourself or using an outside recruiting team that is dedicated to looking after your recruitment needs.

One of the biggest arguments for keeping recruitment in-house is to avoid huge recruitment fees. Mike Knivett, MD at Artemis Marketing, found using external agencies costly and not always successful in finding exactly the right candidate.

“We decided to bring recruitment in-house and hired a specialist on a part-time basis to help us. Since our recruitment specialist, Caroline, has been on board we have successfully recruited some amazing people who are exactly the right fit for us. Caroline has been able to work closely with us to really understand our culture and business needs.”

If you do decide to use an agency, it is a good idea to partner with one that has a high level of specialism suited to your business needs. This should at least ensure you get access to the right pool of talent. By working with the same recruiter, they can also get to know you and your business and ensure that there is a good cultural fit, in addition to having the right skills and experience.

 

2. Use social media to reach out

Social media is being used like never before in the race to find talent. Building your reputation online is by far the easiest way to reach the talent pool of the future. Millennials and Gen Z will soon become the biggest cohorts in the labour market.

Both groups embrace social media as their main form of communication. Millennials tend to use Facebook and Instagram, while Gen Z also uses Instagram, they also watch YouTube and communicate via Snapchat. Be mindful though, that social media is great for communication and establishing your brand, but not always as a stand-alone job advertising media.

See more about how Millennials and Generation Z use social media here.

 

3. Develop talent from within

70% of respondents to a Global Human Capital Trends survey by Deloitte cited recruitment as a critical issue when it comes to effective growth. High rates of employee-initiated turnover, low unemployment and the accelerating adoption of automation, which is creating intense demands for technical skills that don’t exist in today’s workforce, are making the job of finding qualified talent harder.

If talent shortage predictions are true, businesses will need a robust training and development programme to teach the skills they need in business. In fact, there are already enough talent shortages across more than 500 recognised skillsets to warrant adopting a fresh approach to attracting and retaining staff.

Internal talent mobility isn’t a new idea, but it is an area that isn’t tapped enough. According to Deloitte, reskilling an internal hire can be done for as little as one-sixth of hiring an external candidate. Emphasizing internal promotions illustrates to your employees they have a future in your business. This will go a long way in addressing the talent shortage and improve staff retention.

The national apprenticeship program and levy are all designed to encourage businesses to recruit ‘out of education’ and look outside of the obvious skillsets, in order to address similar issues. Expect to see this type of strategy become central to most larger organisations growth plans in the future.

 

4. Set up an employee referral system

You may not realise it, but your employees are an untapped resource when it comes to finding new talent. Your employees have an established network of friends and associates. They understand your business and are in a position to filter potential recruits to you with the appropriate skills and competencies. This could be one of your best recruiting tools.

 

5. Invest in culture

Your business will only become a magnet for talent if potential candidates hear good things about you. Salaries are no longer enough in isolation to entice the best people. Talented individuals are looking for companies with a strong and positive culture.

Things like Corporate Social Responsibility, business ethics and a caring and supportive environment are increasingly important and often mean more than salary. Wellbeing programs and robust learning and development opportunities are also on the list of must-haves that candidates are looking for in a company.

The future shortage of talent isn’t an industry-specific problem. Whatever your business, whatever the sector, you should be identifying business strengths to ensure you can attract candidates ahead of your competitors. You will, of course, also need to work hard at retention strategies too, which means an increasing focus on culture.

Ignore the recruitment problem and your business will suffer. The digital age means businesses with poor culture are being exposed like never before.

 

About the Author:

Annie Button is a Portsmouth based writer and recent graduate. Annie has written for various online and print publications, she specialises in business, Recruitment and career development’.

More articles by Annie Button

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If you want to take action and plan for your recruitment future, then get in touch and arrange a free, no-obligation online demonstration of our services

 

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Annie Button


Annie Button is a Portsmouth based writer and recent graduate. Annie has written for various online and print publications, she specialises in business, recruitment and career development.


Job Skills Needed for HR Leaders of the Future
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

Job Skills Needed for HR Leaders of the Future by Lars Schmidt.

Human resources originally evolved out of a personnel-based function rooted in administrative and compliance-driven tasks that historically haven’t been perceived as adding value to organisations in the same way that sales, marketing, or engineering do. And if you dissect old-school HR teams, you’ll find many practitioners who’ve spent most of their careers in the field; career paths have tended to be linear, rising from coordinator to manager, ultimately all the way up to the top chief human resources officer (CHRO). This career path meant the function was rarely infused with perspectives and practices from outside the field, and often led to insular ideas on what it means for an HR professional to support the business.

Times are changing. According to a report last year issued by HR Open Source (HROS), the community platform for HR professionals that I co-founded, 68% of current HR professionals have worked in fields outside of human resources. Inevitably, they’re steadily cross-pollinating the HR function with new skills and ideas that organizations should be all too eager to embrace. Still, modern HR requires more than a semantic shift from “human resources” to “people operations.” It requires broader capabilities and job skills than have typically been demanded of HR professionals in the past–allowing them to tackle critical issues ranging from sexual harassment to emerging recruiting technologies, not to mention a business and industry acumen to rival their executive peers.

 

Talent Attraction

 

With those needs in mind, here are a few big-ticket skills that HR leaders will need in order to adapt to the future of work.

 

Creativity

Something transformative seems to have happened over the last decade or so. As the field of “employer branding” matured, HR added a rarely used term to describe itself: “creative.” HR is now on the front lines of most company’s branding efforts, telling stories and shaping prospective hires’ perceptions of what it’s like to work in your organization. That’s pushing HR professionals to coordinate with marketing teams, making sure the organization’s people narratives support and align with its consumer branding. As a result, modern HR leaders need to think much more creatively than their predecessors. They should understand social media and digital engagement as well as the types of compelling and authentic messages to attract the right talent.

 

Learning Agility

According to HR tech analyst William Tincup, there are over 24,000 HR software tools on the market today, with recent estimates valuing the market at some $400 billion. Artificial intelligence, bots, blockchain, automation, and technologies are rapidly transforming the HR technology ecosystem. But that’s no guarantee they’ll all be adopted, let alone implemented properly. Indeed, separating hype from substance and finding effective ways to harness emerging technologies in order to execute an effective people strategy is now a vital skill. This is particularly true in small to mid-size organizations where HR leaders often run lean teams without dedicated HR analysts to advise them.

 

Storytelling

Any effective leader who represents and manages employees needs great communication skills, and HR leaders are no exception. But skill with narratives that can influence and engage people–both inside and outside the organization–will be even more vital in the future. As human resources become an ever more public-facing function, HR leaders will need to be able to articulate an organization’s value propositions as an employer, not just as a company that sells a product or service. And being able to connect with a broad range of audiences through compelling stories is key. It’s what inspires people to rally behind a company’s mission and purpose–and, ultimately, decide to apply to jobs there and stick around once hired.

 

Business and Data Acumen

While hardly a new skill set for HR executives, the complexity of modern business and the expectation that HR leaders will be trusted advisers to the CEO, make deeper business and operational knowledge all the more critical. Effective HR leaders now need a strong grasp of their organisations’ business model and market strategy, industry dynamics and competitive landscape, and how all those components impact human capital–from hiring and performance to diversity and inclusion. What’s more, HR leaders will need to develop adaptable people strategies that can evolve with the business.

So it’s no surprise that one of the most significant shifts in the field over recent years is the focus on data. In the recent HROS report, “people analytics” was the field with the highest increase in expected impact (22%) among HR professionals, 48% of whom said their organizations planned to invest in people-analytics software over the next three years. This means that modern HR leaders have growing access to enormous amounts of data on recruitment, retention, performance, productivity, employee satisfaction, and more. How they gather, evaluate, and ultimately interpret that data to drive their strategy is what’s really important.

 

Conclusion

This list of emerging job skills for HR leaders is far from comprehensive. Empathy, compassion, emotional intelligence, knowledge of diversity and inclusion issues, coaching, and more are all vital elements of HR’s expanding role. Which traits might be more critical than others may depend on the leader, the company, and its culture. Still, a broad skill set is vital–not just to bring HR out of the back-of-house position where it’s long languished, but to bring entire companies forward into the future, too.

By Lars Schmidt

Originally published by CareerXroads Talent Community blog

 

Offering support for both recruiters and on-site HR workforces, Smart Recruit Online helps businesses find and hire the best talent more efficiently. To see how SRO can improve your talent acquisition, campaign management, and candidate screening workflows, book a demo today. 

 

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Lars Schmidt


Lars is the Founder and Principal of Amplify, a growth catalyst for 21st Century HR.


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