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Advice and How-Tos

A Job Post Should Look Its Sunday Best

by Dec 17, 2014, 5:06 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-25 at 4.06.38 AMThe human brain processes images in a different way than text. Images create stronger associations and they apparently improve retention of the associated text by up to 42 percent. Text with images included is even perceived to be more trustworthy and valuable. Are we so shallow? Well, yes, we are.

Advertising has long used powerful images at the core of its dark arts — across all types of media. The story is not told in words. The malnourished African child asking for a donation. The gorgeous film star modelling the latest perfume. The college boys enjoying a Friday night pizza. These images stick in our heads forever.

What should it be so different with a job ad? keep reading…

Perhaps Talent Acquisition Departments Are Wishing for Something They Already Have

by Dec 16, 2014, 5:52 am ET

track recruiting performanceCome on, admit it. If you are like the rest of us, you have, at some point in time, indulged in wishful thinking about what to ask for if a genie appeared to grant three wishes with no limitations. So, what if Aladdin did actually appear from out of his bottle promising to fulfill three recruitment-related wishes, unencumbered by the dreary realities of limited resources or an ever-shrinking budget? What would you wish for? keep reading…

Are Firms ‘Kicking the Can Down The Road’ So They Can Pay STEM Women Less?

by Dec 15, 2014, 5:40 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-12-11 at 11.55.57 AMConsider the possibility that thousands of STEM women are literally missing out on billions of dollars in higher salaries as a result of the recent actions by tech firms.

Everyone knows that many of the larger tech firms have recently released their employee diversity numbers.

Obviously releasing this data was a positive move that resulted in an expanded discussion around the need to increase the number of STEM women employees at tech firms. But what most analysts have missed is the realization that, almost universally, the response to this shortage of women in tech firms has been some variation of a long-term “increase-the-supply” solution. In my book, increasing the supply is code for “doesn’t increase your salary costs.” This is what would occur if every firm instead solved its shortage problem with a short-term solution. This would involve actively recruiting STEM women away from other firms, because that competition would have the effect of immediately driving up the salaries of women.

Waiting 5+ Years for the Employees You Need Wouldn’t Be the Normal Response keep reading…

Stop Talking About Cost of Living and Start Talking About Standard of Living

by Dec 12, 2014, 5:15 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 2.17.36 PMTrying to sell a relocating candidate on a lower compensation than what they make today, based on a lower cost of living, is a common closing technique in our industry. However, this is a pretty common miss in recruiting, but in my experience it is also a pretty easy fix. When attempting to get candidates to commit to relocation we most often go through a version of the “Ben Franklin close” — list pros and cons and hope that there are more pros.

I’ve recruited all over the world, and oftentimes when we are looking to differentiate one place from another, the concept of “cost of living” bubbles up high on the list either as a pro or a con. Emerging or developing markets, as well as rural markets often point to this as a great reason to move there and plant your stake in their community. It sounds good. Who wouldn’t want a lower cost of living?  However, most often it’s used by organizations in those markets to try and hire talent that would command a higher market price elsewhere in a fashion that drives their compensation down to the new location’s cost of living index. This, my friends, is a classic logical fallacy. keep reading…

Employers Say Employer Branding Is Working

by Dec 10, 2014, 12:34 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-12-06 at 9.34.52 AMMost companies say their employer branding is successful, and 9 out of 10 small companies feel that way.

That’s according to a new survey of 100 professionals, from HR directors to recruiting consultants to CEOs.

While there are some great insights from polls and white papers that talk to what goes into a compelling employment brand (recognition, rewards, career opportunities, culture, etc.) there is surprisingly little about how companies conduct their employer branding/employer value proposition initiatives.

That’s why earlier this year we looked at how organizations plan, execute, and assess their employer branding. Here are some of its most significant findings. keep reading…

Why You Should Never Lose Your Identity When Recruiting

by Dec 9, 2014, 5:43 am ET

EREConf14_footerWhat makes a recruiter stand out: It’s a culmination of their personal experiences, intellect, intuition, and what made them who they are today. I call this experiencing rites of passage. Aristotle said, “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” Recruiting is not a transaction. The military teaches that attention to detail is critical in all actions performed. This is where the wheat is separated for the chaff. If a seasoned recruiter doesn’t see a full, professional representation on a resume — it speaks a lot of the candidate. If the skill set is essential, maybe it is a matter of spending some time with the candidate to educate them on the importance of a well-defined resume.

When you’re in the people business, it’s all about understanding an organization’s needs and improving the return on human capital. Statistics reflect that the best hires are typically referrals. There are obviously a number of reasons why, but one is that an existing employee can comprehend a person’s motivational fit and drivers to the point that they’re confident the candidate will be interested and contribute to the results. Recruiters can do this with both internal and external candidates.

The same thing goes for establishing relationships with people and understanding the ‘who’ vs. throwing resumes at the wall. keep reading…

The Top 12 Most Effective But Easy-to-Implement Recruiting Tools

by Dec 8, 2014, 5:46 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 1.11.42 PMCorporate recruiting leaders and recruiters, as well as hiring managers who operate in small businesses, are constantly searching for new and effective recruiting approaches. There is certainly no shortage of new and emerging recruiting approaches, but unfortunately, most of the approaches that you are likely to run across are either expensive, overly complicated, or they are extremely difficult to implement. So if you’re looking for highly effective but cheap and easy-to-implement recruiting tools, here is a descriptive list of my top 12. Each one has already been proven effective, so you won’t be the first to try it.

The Top 12 Highly Effective But Cheap and Easy-to-Implement Recruiting Tools keep reading…

How to Hire Visionaries for High-growth Companies

by Dec 4, 2014, 5:41 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-25 at 12.53.32 PM

If you’re a funded startup, in a turnaround, experiencing an uptick in growth, going through an acquisition, or on the cusp of something new that will change your business dramatically — hiring visionary people who can lead your company through growth can be a major challenge. When I worked at a well-known fashion company, the business planned to open 500 new stores within two years. I was tasked with hiring an inventory manager who could handle the current workload while making sure this person would be able to triple their workflow and amount of responsibility in the near future. Then and since I’ve worked for Seven Step, I have often had to figure out how to get people to trust me and inspire them to take a journey with a growing company that is more promise than anything else.

Here is what I’ve learned. keep reading…

5 Reasons Your Job Posts Aren’t Working

by Dec 3, 2014, 5:52 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-11 at 3.28.04 PMAlthough the title of this article promises five reasons why your job posts aren’t working, there is really one big reason: The best candidates always come through referrals. As a matter of fact, that’s where we get roughly 80 percent of our candidates.

That being said, sometimes you’ve tapped out your networks and you need to advertise your job opening across the Internet. When push has thus come to shove, here are the five top job post mistakes to avoid. keep reading…

There Is Little Recruiting Competition During December … So Be Bold and Seize a Great Opportunity

by Dec 1, 2014, 5:05 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-23 at 5.24.51 PMBetween Thanksgiving and the rest of the year in the Silicon Valley and in many other geographic areas around the U.S., it is mostly a dead period for recruiting. But recruiting leaders should realize that failing to recruit during this period is a huge missed opportunity, simply because the recruiting competition is mostly inactive during this extended period. This lack of competition makes recruiting even more essential for smaller firms and those without a strong employer brand simply because the major firms (with powerful employer brands that are difficult to compete against) are on the sidelines. keep reading…

Speed Up Hiring Without Compromising Quality

by Nov 28, 2014, 5:26 am ET

Earlier this year, Dr. John Sullivan wrote a piece for ERE detailing the top 12 reasons why slow hiring damages recruiting – and hurts business results. Sullivan quotes a candidate who dropped out of the running for a coveted position because the hiring manager took too long to respond:

It’s not like I need their job. If it takes them a week to respond to a resume like mine for a job of this importance, they’re not the kind of company I want to work for. I move fast, and I can already see that my style wouldn’t fit in their culture. – Wind River Associates

It’s true that slow hiring puts you at a big disadvantage in the recruiting process. As Dr. Sullivan argues, moving too slowly can lead you to miss out on top candidates, lose revenue and productivity, and even damage your reputation as an employer and an organization. And with average time to fill at 25 days, its longest duration since 2001, there’s a good chance that many companies are feeling these effects.

However, there’s also risk involved when it comes to hiring too quickly. If you make an impulsive decision because you’re worried about losing a candidate to another company, you could end up hiring a candidate who’s a bad fit — and who ends up being a bad investment.

When it comes to hiring, talent acquisition professionals should follow the Goldilocks principle. The hiring process shouldn’t be too slow, and it shouldn’t be too fast.

The right pace depends on several things: the size of your organization, your company culture, the position you’re hiring for, and even the individual candidate. A company with 10 employees may want to spend more time getting to know a candidate than a company with 500 employees. Some candidates may seem like a perfect fit right away, while others may take several rounds of interviews.

To get the top talent — and ensure that they’re a good fit for your company, find the right pace for your hiring process.

Below are a few things to remember to help you do just that. keep reading…

The Battle for Global Recruiting Domination: Indeed vs. LinkedIn

by Nov 27, 2014, 5:45 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-06 at 7.45.45 AMWith over 300 million profiles and presence in 200 countries, LinkedIn seems to be the dominant player for global recruitment. But there is competition from a new kid on the block. Indeed. With a presence in 50 countries, 28 languages, millions of CVs, and at least 140 million job seekers monthly, Indeed seems to be the biggest competitor and the first player that really gives access to the complete global market.

Developments at Indeed and LinkedIn keep reading…

6 Great Hiring Quotes From the Book “Decisive”

by Nov 26, 2014, 5:27 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 8.37.20 PMI just finished reading the book Decisive by Dan and Chip Heath, authors of business best-sellers Made to Stick and Switch, and thought the content was vital to hiring managers. I was relieved that many of the decision-making principles detailed in the book mirror the Hire Like You Just Beat Cancer method my team developed through many years of experience — lots of successful hires and learning from hires who didn’t pan out.

Nearly every concept in “Decisive” could be integrated into your hiring process, but a few sections directly addressed hiring. Here are some of the top hiring quotes from “Decisive,” followed by some commentary: keep reading…

Raise the Grade on Recruitment Performance With Quarterly Incentives

by Nov 25, 2014, 5:55 am ET

EREConf14_footerBased on my experience, both as a former HR executive and as an agency owner, I believe corporate recruitment can be enhanced by borrowing strategies from well-managed agencies (and vice versa). For example, during my time at Dendrite, our recruiting staff was highly effective and engaged. Their success was a result of an agency-inspired, detailed, bonus structure, measured through hard and soft data that was tied to quarterly performance.

Detractors of this model have their concerns: ill-conceived benchmarks and fluctuations in business cycles can cause morale problems for those whose compensation is tied to performance. Others contend that it is impossible to set hiring metrics that fairly measure performance since there are so many players responsible for the ultimate outcome of hiring. Our winning process at Dendrite addressed these concerns. keep reading…

Hire to Hurt: the Boldest Recruiting Strategy of Them All

by Nov 24, 2014, 5:56 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-20 at 8.01.16 AMThe recruiting function is unique among business functions because almost no one in recruiting can actually name even a handful of the different strategies that are available to the chief recruiting leader. But this article is not about the complete list of recruiting strategies (it can be found here), but instead it is about which strategy from among the 20+ possibilities is the boldest and most aggressive recruiting strategy.

The “Hire to Hurt” strategy (or H2H for short) is the most aggressive for a variety of reasons. The first is that the name alone sends chills through the risk adverse in recruiting. The name of the strategy is also clearly indicative of its chief goal, which is to “identify key talent and then directly hire them away to the point where your H2H hiring actually hurts the competitor’s business results.”

It’s a two-for-one deal. Not only does your firm get top quality talent but simultaneously your top competitors’ lose key talent. As one CEO put it, “I really like that strategy; our ship rises while their ship sinks” (Incidentally, the No. 2 most aggressive recruiting strategy is “make other firms your farm team”.)

Join the Team, Because Every Other Business Function Already Tries to Hurt the Competitors keep reading…

Millennials and Leadership: What It All Means

by Nov 21, 2014, 6:14 am ET
leadership graph

Millennials: What do you consider most attractive in a manager/ leader role?

For the last decade or so, it seems that just about everyone has been talking about the millennial generation. They’re spoiled, they’re lazy. They shirk responsibility while also demanding rapid career advancement. They’re idealists, they have unrealistic expectations about work, they never grow up. They want work/life balance, they crave feedback, they quickly jump from job to job.

There is a lot of information out there, as well as a lot of stereotypes — and for many of you who recruit, hire, and work alongside millennials, you’ve probably experienced some of this first hand. You’ve probably also experienced another side of millennials — one that is eager, quick thinking, passionate, and ambitious.

In an effort to get to the root of this generation, Universum, INSEAD, and the HEAD Foundation recently partnered to conduct the largest global survey of millennials. Some of the results confirmed what we already knew to be true — millennials do want work/life balance! — while others revealed some real surprises. keep reading…

The Scoop on the Millennial Workforce: What Business Leaders Need to Know

by Nov 21, 2014, 5:51 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 12.52.22 PMMore than 1.6 million students graduated from college this year and many are still searching for their first post-college jobs. If you’re running a business and looking to hire, wouldn’t you want to hear how these millennials have performed on the job or in the classroom — straight from the mouths of those who have worked with them, supervised them, and taught them? It just might help you pick a winner out of the crowd.

In fact, past performance is one of the best indicators of future workplace success, so we got the inside scoop from references for thousands of entry-level job candidates — mostly the candidates’ previous managers and professors. What we learned might surprise you. keep reading…

Getting the Big Picture: Visual Content Is Critical to Building Engagement

by Nov 20, 2014, 5:33 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-16 at 8.32.44 PMLately the fastest-growing social networks are those that emphasize visual content. Instagram is the fastest-growing social network, followed by Tumblr and Pinterest. Data from Statista shows that people spend more time on Pinterest (1 hour 17 minutes per month) than on Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace, and Google+ combined. On Facebook pictures and photos make up 75 percent of the content and produce an 87 percent engagement rate(as measured by likes and comments). Adding a video or photo URL to a tweet increases retweeting by 28-35 percent.

It seems a picture really is worth a thousand words. Recognizing this fact and taking advantage of it in recruitment marketing can be a big help to recruiters who are sourcing on social networks. keep reading…

Do Companies Make the Most of Their Employer Brands?

by Nov 18, 2014, 6:44 am ET

Campaign marketing managerBranding goes beyond messaging and includes a company’s products and services as well. The same goes for employer branding. Can Yelp employees rate their jobs on Yelp? Do Glassdoor Employees rate their experiences on Glassdoor? Can you drop your resumé into a Dropbox to apply for their jobs?

Can You Apply for a Job at Twitter With a Tweet? keep reading…

We’re Improving Recruiting Without Long Memos, Long Meetings, and Long Plans

by Nov 18, 2014, 12:01 am ET

Screen Shot 2014-11-06 at 11.01.51 AMI am fortunate to be part of an elite talent acquisition team at Spectrum Health. We are a team that gets results, results generated through recruiters who are passionate about excellence. The fun part is improvement.

We’re improving through recruiters driving change and functioning as front-line influencers. The road from good to elite comes with obstacles, but it doesn’t need to come with a 3-5 year implementation plan.

Below are tips on how to change quickly and why change should be implemented without relying on memos. keep reading…