Quality: You Can’t Discuss the ‘How’ if You Don’t Agree on the ‘What’

Of all the metrics recruiters and employers debate, “quality” is at the heart of every conversation.

Many recruiters and employers accept that measures of recruiting success will in some form be linked to either cost, time, or quality. Whether digging into a hiring manager’s satisfaction or a client’s perception of how well the recruiting function has performed, these three elements are always underscored.

Debates over cost and time however tend to be over how they are calculated and how relevant they are. People agree on what should be measured.

By contrast, whenever the subject of quality enters into the mix, and even though no one ever seems to question its importance, just try and any get any two people to agree on what should be measured. You’ll find a dozen competing answers.

No standard definition exists for measuring a quality hire or even consistently tackling how to come up with an approach you can take home to operationally define an internal definition. There is certainly no lack of opinion, and just no common agreement that is testable … yet.

At ERE in Atlanta this October, let’s take a crack at it with a panel I’m moderating with five staffing leaders … all current or former practitioners whose (partial) list of employers — where they have held recruiting leadership positions include (in alphabetical order): ADP, Avanade, Deloitte, BASF, Bausch & Lomb, GE, Hitachi, Hilton, IFF, Invitrogen, J&J, McKesson, Microsoft, PWC, and RIM.

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I have the easy job of asking the questions. Add to that the value-add of dozens more practitioners in the room whose passion for this subject equals those on the panel and perhaps we can put more of a stake in this elusive metric. Who knows: maybe the International Standards Organization is next.

If you can’t be there in person, what questions would you ask? What answer have you sought? What measure have you successfully tested?

Even better, be there and ask for yourself.

Gerry Crispin, is an internationally recognized speaker, author, and thought leader. He seeks to understand how firms design and build staffing processes, the technology to enhance them and the systems to manage them. He is also committed to writing, researching, and sharing his adventures, opinions and observations about evolving staffing models with the HR profession, clients and friends. He and his partner, Mark Mehler, created CareerXroads® and the CareerXroads Colloquium with one goal in mind: critically analyzing corporate recruiting issues from a tactical yet strategic perspective. Learn more at CareerXroads