Blog: All eyes and ears on the recruiters

Talent Acquisition

All eyes and ears on the recruiters

f you want to know what is happening in the market, talk to the recruiters, says Prithvi Shergill
All eyes and ears on the recruiters

In the olden times, miners used to carry a canary. The canary was the first to die if there was no air or the quality of air was low in the mines; this would alert the miners about the danger ahead. Hiring is like the “canary” of the organisation. If you want to know about what is happening in the market, talk to the recruiters. To know where the business is heading, the first place to start is actually hiring.

A few things that have changed in the recruitment function in the last few years:

1) Today hiring is an economic conversation, on economic fulfillment. The recruiters have the opportunity to really impact the bottom line and top line by hiring the right person at the right time, so managers will surely want to hear what works and what doesn’t from recruiters. Change the conversations to work in partnership and increase economic fulfillment.

2) There are so many new tools and platforms that are emerging that it is difficult to keep updating oneself about them. Recruitment tools have shifted: There are many opportunities now in social media, new platforms and niche skills sites. The question is: Have we shifted our behaviours and practices with the evolution of tools and platforms?

3) The need of the hour is to look at capability of the recruiters. Today, talent is available anywhere, anytime, then why do many leaders still say skill shortages are the biggest business challenge. Are we as recruiters capable to deliver in the same context as they see the environment?

Unfortunately, what has not changed in many organisations is the fact that recruitment is not incorporated early enough in the business strategy. At HCL, Shergill shares, HR is co-leading the discussion with business. Based on the capability – capacity and ability to deliver, HR can lead recommendations in terms of enabling business strategy. “I cannot emphasise that enough. Whenever recruitment is not integrated early enough with the business, the recruitment delivery will struggle,” Shergill adds.

So how do you develop an effective recruitment strategy?

Spend time with the business leader: The most important way to build a recruitment strategy is for the recruiter to spend time with the business leader to find out the business requirements. This will only happen if the recruiter actively takes steps to make it happen. Additionally, they need to look at what is priority, what is possible, what is optimal and make sure that the process has checks and balances, to ensure efficiency and effectiveness.

Integrate talent acquisition with organisation's strategy: Craft a EVP for different segments and different countries, build talent communities to interact with current and prospective employees and what value you give them, increase investment in technology (focus on applicant engagement, use application tracking systems), focus on diversity (shape the proposition to the diverse needs of your candidates?), develop capabilities of the recruitment team (put in place a recruitment certification program and a recruitment incentive plan). But, make sure you have the basics in placeā€¦

There are many important basic foundations of evolving practices in recruitment. It starts with the recruiters’ ability to keep data and information handy. Shergill said a lot of data and information are in emails and that is really not a way to create a knowledge depository. Technology can help in making that transition happen but recruiters need to buy in the need to adopt technology. That is not an easy task for a recruiter as there is a tendency to believe that what has worked in the past is good enough for the future.

Culture, engagement, great policies and HR processes will be the foundation of a successful referral program. It is a fact that engaged and happy employees will refer others. Engagement provides a consistent experience of the employer brand and this will help you tap into passive job seekers that could be a great source of interested candidates. Lastly, don't treat social media as another job board; it is about engagement and conversation.

The HCL Way

For HCL, “Ideapreneurship” is the foundation of our culture and the talent acquisition function and its internal recruiters represent that to candidates as well as the extended network of partners that support in the recruitment execution. The basic premise is that the TA function needs to focus on increasing the value zone for all stakeholders (candidates, partners). Four tenants form “Employee First, Customer Second” and this is how they apply in the recruitment process:

  1. Create a need for change for candidates: Simplify the roles so people (candidates and partners) understand what the new role being offered really means and why it is attractive. Make it simple.
  2. Create the culture for change: Make sure that you hunt and tell the candidate what is good at HCL as employer and what will be different. The most successful recruiters are those that are transparent and honest.
  3. Building structures for change: Create process and technology frameworks that support execution.
  4. Transferring responsibility of change: Make sure that each employee feels that s/he represents the organisation. Each employee should feel that they own the company and its success.
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Topics: Talent Acquisition

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