Recruiting Trends

They say we’re in a candidate-driven market.

They say that the candidate picks the employer, not the other way around.

With the use of social media to advertise your position, comes the added amount of candidates seeking work at your organization. Are they quality candidates? Do you have a quality company? How do you stand out to create the kind of experience that will entice a candidate to come to your organization, apply, accept an offer, refer others, and stay for the long haul?

Make sure that you are truly comparing the resumes you receive to the job descriptions you write.  Make sure that you are in as much contact as possible with your applicants. I know that when you receive hundreds of resumes that this may not be easy, but even a standard response email is better than being ghosted by a potential employer.

Candidate Experience

One of the trends that are really important in recruiting is the candidate experience. This occurs at the beginning of sourcing through the onboarding process. How does the candidate feel about their experience with you? What is their overall perception of your company based on these experiences?

I briefly mentioned above about being ghosted. This occurs way more often than you think. This is not the kind of experience that an applicant wants when job hunting. The applicant tracking systems also have a login and password. So think about the potentially large amount of ATS systems that a job hunter is having to navigate. Sometimes a text message on the progress of an application is appreciated more than an employee having to remember the login credentials for each ATS to find out where they are in the process or if they have been declined without so much as an email. Pay the extra money to set up this type of text programming for your candidates to enhance their experience with you.

What is the importance of the candidate experience?

If your candidate, now employee, has had a satisfying experience they will refer others to your company.

Their great experience along with the culture of your organization gives them the confidence to refer people they know to your company. They expect that you will treat them the same way they were treated.

If their experience is far from satisfactory, the organization could potentially lose a lot of money. Companies with a bad reputation will lose employees, or worse.

Job seekers won’t take jobs with companies that have a bad reputation. The result of this is that there will be limited or no employee referrals. If the culture of your organization is such that no referrals are coming in, then you must reevaluate what your mission is in order to gain the trust of your employees and create the type of experiences that translate to more referrals, candidates, and new hires.

Is It Happy Hour Yet?

Why do we limit happiness to an hour?

We have all been there; It’s Monday afternoon and the first day of the workweek, already you and your colleagues are itching to get to happy hour to bitch about your day. Why aren’t we happy at work?

Now, I’m not saying that leadership should have an open bar in the office, but the atmosphere obviously requires an upgrade if by 10:00 am your team needs a collective drink.

Of course, what I’m talking about is company culture. Is yours so bad that your team would rather be buzzed to cope? How can you change it?

The Bartender is Essentially your HR Director

The bartender is always there to listen. Listen to your troubles and offer tools to cope. The difference is, they are handing out rum and cola, where your HR team can provide tools like mediation, suggestions for improvement, and company-wide training.  Now, HR can’t solve all the problems of corporate unhappiness alone. To change the culture and make things “happy” again, you must start at the top and require buy-in from your leadership. Communicate with the workers to find out what they think can be improved. Reevaluate the mission of the organization or write a new one.

Don’t Belly up to the Bar, Raise it.

  • Raise the bar on the expected behavior of the team at all levels
  • Raise the bar on the benefits you offer
  • Raise the bar on the compensation you provide

Expect Results to change, but not immediately. Like a fine wine, culture change takes time and nurturing.

Cheers to You!

You have gone through the process of culture change. You have partnered with your HR Director and created an atmosphere that your employees can enjoy. You have asked for feedback and listened to your team members to provide better products and services for them and their families. Great job! This rounds on me!

What Does “Being a Team Player” Really Mean?

To some, it could be as simple as showing up for work when scheduled, on-time, and with little to no mistakes.

For others, it means taking extra shifts, always being that extra pair of hands, and staying late.

How do our expectations as employers differ from our staff when it comes to this? Are we expecting too much? After all, we are paying them to show up every day, on-time, and do a good job for us.

Should we expect more? If we do expect more, are we being fair? Is that expectation causing overall stress to the team, and will that added stress end up hurting the morale and decrease productivity?

I believe there is a balance to find when evaluating who a team player is. If everyone is present and completing their tasks in an efficient manner without extra supervision and mistakes, then we have a solid team. A “working machine”, if you will. For most companies, this is the ideal model. It is when we begin to get greedy with our staff and start adding duties without adding compensation or additional team members, that we see a disruption in that working machine we had earlier.

We tell our people to suck it up and “be a team player”, when really that’s what they were doing in the first place.

We are so used to fixing things that we don’t stop to take a good look when things are running smoothly.

My challenge to you is to:

  • Thank your team members now rather than apologizing to them when you have to ask them to cover for staff you have lost
  • Re-evaluate your criteria for what a “team player” means to you and your organization
  • Give out verbal accolades to the team and individuals. Be fair, consistent, and inclusive to all
  • Re-train any outliers, so they learn what your new criteria is for the team to succeed

Enjoy it when you have that moment to breathe and not worry. It does happen, you just have to see it.

Hot Topic: Diversity and Inclusion

I would like to have a conversation with you. Show of hands…How many of you feel that your organization is diverse and inclusive?

How many of you have had training on it?

Today we’re going to discuss ideas of what you can do for your white employees and your employees of color.

One of the most awkward things you’ll be hearing from me are the words “white people”. Yes, I know its cringe worthy but it has to become normal because white people are in the majority of roles such as managers, supervisors, and executives. Even the majority of most organizations.

Fortune 500 magazine wrote that white men account for 72% of corporate leadership. 73% of the senior executives of men and women are white. The rest are 21% Asian, 2% Black, 6% Two or more races, 2% Native American, and 1% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander. This is just a look at only 16 of the 500 Fortune 500 companies that reported.

Most would say that HR is responsible for leading diversity efforts. It takes more than just HR. It involves management and the C-Suite to be motivated diversity leaders.

Why is this so important?

So how do we show the leadership why this is so important? Education. We need to really learn the history of how institutional racism began in our country around 300 years ago. Once you have shown the history of how the white man has oppressed people of color and not just by slavery, we can see how ingrained it is in our daily lives.

It is important to teach your entire team because it honestly isn’t what we learned in school and from my experience, depending on where you grew up, the history lessons varied greatly. My team members were shocked at our country’s history and stated that they never learned in school what we were taught during this training.

So after we learned the history of institutional racism what do we do to fix it? Well let me say in our lifetime we will not fix it no matter how hard we want to and believe me you will want to. If this has been going on for 300 years, how can we expect to fix it overnight.

Here is what we can do.

We can create an atmosphere and attitude of inclusion that creates an environment at work that you can be proud of. You can change your recruiting processes. Are you recruiting for diversity? I know you want to hire the best person for the job. So are you making sure the opportunity is open to all people and gathering a diverse pool of candidates to choose from? Committees: Do you have a diversity and inclusion committee? Is there a specific goal that the committee is trying to reach? Is the committee following the mission and vision of the organization?

Mission and Vision

Is your company’s mission and vision inclusive? That’s a big question. We have talked about company culture before and how the mission and vision needs to be easily stated by your team. So answer this question? If you asked your team members if they felt that your organization is diverse and inclusive would their answer be what you are looking for? Maybe it’s time for a complete overhaul.

I want this to be a thought provoking article. It is only a little bit of information of what you can do. I want you to look at your organization and see if you can mix it up and do at least one thing differently. Hire a diversity consultant. Hire a diversity director. Organize a committee. Change your recruitment strategy. Just make a change for the better and keep going. Keep changing, keep getting better. If you show your employees, customers, and vendors that you are pro-diversity then others will follow suit. More and more companies will do what you are doing. Every little bit helps. Diversity and Inclusion is not something that every stops. You must keep working on it. Every. Single. Day.

Best to Work For?

We’d all like to say that we are the best company to work for or an “Employer of Choice”. The reality is that the only way to really know or find out if you are is through open communication, employee engagement surveys, and a constant dialogue with your team members.

Communication

You must first build a trust with your employees. In my opinion this always starts with communication. That can mean via an intranet for the staff (provided they all have access to it); a monthly or bi-monthly all-staff meeting; departmental meetings with supervisors, managers, and directors passing along information, goals, and accomplishments; or group email announcements (again, the employees must have access).

If you have diversity in your organization, English will most likely be a second language and need to be taken into consideration when creating an article or group emails for all-staff distribution. You must be sensitive to all employees in the organization.

Meat and Potatoes

The next items are the intrinsic and extrinsic values the employees need to have in order to feel safe in your workplace. We have covered these meat and potato items before but a short list here doesn’t hurt to repeat.

  • Compensation
  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Recognition

Mission and Vision

Does the organization have a clear mission and vision that could be stated by any employee in the company at all levels? If not, then that should be your priority. It shouldn’t be more than a sentence or two and should be verbalized and demonstrated from the executives through the entire management team. You must model the behavior you wish t see from your team.

This mission and vision statement is the foundation of your culture. Look at the tenure of your employees. Are you tapping into their knowledge of the organization? It is very likely that they were here before you and have a lot to say. Give them a safe place to say it.

Recognition

Recognition is a key component towards a good culture and a great place to work. Don’t use it as a tool to tame the troops. Recognition has to be genuine and I have recently read a book on the five “love” languages of recognition in the workplace. Not all of your team members are going to appreciate a gift card. Especially since they will have to taxed for it.

Some employees just want you to personally say “Thank you” to them. Others might appreciate a nod in a staff newsletter or department meeting. Knowing what your team members appreciate is part of the solution to being a great place to work. It means you are paying attention and are invested in them. They see it. They see almost everything you do or at least their perception of what you do.

Employee Engagement Surveys

The best advice I can give is to really make the survey as easy and anonymous as possible. You don’t want your team to answer the questions the way they “think” you want them answered. You want them to give you real, straight feedback. The Good, Bad, and the Ugly. It might sting a bit but this is how an organization that is truly committed to culture change will find out the best they have to offer and the worst. This will make you an employer of choice. Suck it up and do it right.