Cultural fitment and role fitment will be increasingly critical to retain talent and this will lead to technology-supported innovations such as analytics based hiring
Looking at the talent acquisition scene today, I think it needs to be approached as a human resource supply chain issue. And like in any supply chain problem, we have to look at sourcing pools, time to fulfillment, warehousing of talent, quality parameters, etc. Taking a closer look at the variables at play in this supply chain, we find four critical pointers:
Talent Reservoir: The largest talent pool is of passive candidates who form a whopping 75 per cent of the total talent pool globally. To tap this group, we see a distinct trend of employers proactively mapping top performers of their competitors and having an effective strategy for social media.
However, it is becoming increasingly tough to use social media as clutter and noise on the networks has increased with its adoption by more and more candidates and companies. Professional networks have definitely provided organizations with a platform to connect with passive candidates. At mid–senior level, head hunting is always better than gathering and researches have shown that companies who make passive candidate hiring a part of their strategy and possess better understanding of whom they wish to target are more likely to succeed in hiring quality candidates.
Warehousing of Talent: In 2015, we expect organizations to use technology more effectively to create and maintain efficiently a ready-to-use pool of candidates for quick turnaround when the need arises and especially for the critical positions within the organization. This proactive succession pipeline will become important in the coming year as well.
Quality of Hires: With 65 per cent of the business leaders in India foreseeing increased hiring activity, retaining talent is going to be a tough challenge, resulting in evolved retention practices and making it an employee’s market. Cultural fitment and role fitment will be increasingly critical and will lead to technology supported innovations such as analytics-based hiring, growing use of holistic psychometric tools, and this will definitely translate into more evolved hiring practices in 2015 and beyond.
We see two critical gaps in talent assessment practices today. One is that people conducting the interviews are not really trained to assess the skillsets of candidates professionally. More often than not, the entire interviewing process is ad hoc. Second, there is a distinct lack of awareness and/or utilization of holistic psychometric tools for assessment of functional and cultural competencies. It is also important to train both hiring managers and functional recruiters in comprehensive interviewing skills. We ourselves invest a lot in ensuring that all our recruiters undergo professional training on interviewing skills.
Again the current talent assessment practices are not geared towards extracting the maximum benefit from use of professional assessments. More often, assessments are being used in standalone silos of various HR verticals without integrating them across the value chain of Talent Management process. Holistic assessments are the need of the hour–measuring the aptitude alone does not guarantee the right attitude, whereas standalone behavioral assessments do not tell us if an individual has the aptitude in the desired ‘range’. Hence, when these standalone assessments fail to predict performance with a certain level of validity, it causes disillusionment among line managers as well as RoI oriented HR practitioners. Western countries are fast moving away from DISC-based Ipsative tools which have low RoI to various high end Normative tools like Prevue, that have better accuracy and greater RoI. But in India, this awareness is low and an average Indian recruiter still prides himself on using DISC & MBTI for hiring and selection purposes despite their low RoI.
Quality of Recruitment Partners: Companies need to work closely with and develop long term search & selection partners. In Executive Search space, clients are ready to move from unorganized vendors to professional search firms. They are willing to pay more and retain them in lieu of higher quality and holistic search and selection services. In 2015, with employer re-branding taking center stage, corporates will need to be really careful about the way they get represented through their search partners. Effective branding both internally and externally holds the promise of enhancing the applicant pool manifold.