When you are battling for talent in a highly competitive environment, you are likely to encounter more than your share of failures. In fact, because underperformance in recruiting is so common, I am constantly surprised when corporate recruiting leaders have no formal process for identifying specifically why their current recruiting efforts don’t produce their desired level of results. The formal method for identifying the factors that cause a process to fail is known as “failure analysis.” But unfortunately, even though it is used throughout business, failure analysis is seldom applied to the recruiting process.
I was recently reminded of the need for failure analysis while researching the extensive recruiting problems of oil and gas firms in the booming area around Alberta, Canada. I’ll be presenting my recruiting solutions at the Talent Hub Conference, Metropolitan Centre in Calgary, on Wednesday, September 19, 2012. But if you’re not involved in the petroleum industry, don’t worry because the same failure identification and prospect research processes can and should be used in any industry. If you’re unfamiliar with the term “prospect research” it is a form of market research which involves the use of surveys and interviews to identify what worked and what didn’t work during the recruiting process and precisely what factors attract and turn off top prospects.