Hiring: The tools you need to succeed

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In the search to discover the best talent, data and AI are playing an increasingly important role. But how do you ensure you get the most from these new techniques?

It’s now possible to use technology to predict just how long a person will stay in your organisation – and to do that before you’ve even hired them for that role. The future is happening right now. The question is: how do you best utilise this technology – and the skills it demands – to ensure your business attracts, recruits and retains the very best talent?

We’ve already looked at how technology and trends towards greater diversity are impacting the way organisations look to recruit global talent. The move is definitely towards a more dynamic and strategic approach, aligning talent acquisition to the long-term needs of the business. It’s not enough to create a job ad and then wait for the talent to come to you.

Every one of your competitors is doing the same thing. You need to be smarter and quicker. So what are the skills needed to succeed – and what should be in every recruiter’s toolkit? Remember too that these do not work in isolation. You need to combine them all to have the greatest impact on the future talent acquisition strategy of your business.

Talent sourcing and nurture

The pool of excellent candidates is not infinite. Yet 38% of employers around the world report talent shortages*. Technology has the power to not only help you find candidates faster, but also let you build networks of potential applicants – pools of talent which you can develop a relationship with, finding out more about them and sharing stories and content in return. For example, 79% of people who follow your organisation on social media have an interest in working for you. That’s before you’ve begun to reach out to them – which is the next vital step.

Communications

Are you making the best impression? What do potential applicants know about you? Your reputation as a business goes beyond your history and your products and services; it’s about your reputation, and about how people perceive your brand – emotionally, instinctively and intellectually – including those who use your products, see your marketing and talk to others about you. This reputation is your brand. It’s a powerful and almost mystical force, not least in how you are perceived as an employer by former, current and future employees.

It’s not enough therefore to merely have a website. It’s now all about engagement on a range of levels and through a variety of means, and leveraging that engagement to reach out to potential candidates. There are people out there who value your brand and actively want to hear from you. All you need are the tools to manage that and you’re well on your way to building your own talent pool. Our own research suggests that people who follow your brand are 62% more likely to respond to a communication from you. Not only that, but 61% would share that information with their own networks.

Project management

You need tools to take the ‘grunt’ out of ‘grunt work’. And not only to streamline the process, but also to make it work smarter at each and every stage – from identification of a talent prospect to smoothing the on-boarding process and even working smarter to retain that talent. But it’s not just about managing basic processes. AI and data tools have the power to transform the way you identify talent needs within your business. But they also help you identify just which candidates have the skills you need, and bring those candidates to you, creating a pipeline of talent which you can then nurture.

Marketing

You need to draw the best people to you, and to do that you need tools which enable you to build your employer brand as an attractive future work destination. Candidates want to see what it’s like to work for you, so show them by profiling employees and showcasing just what they do and how that makes a real difference to your business. You can even bring together the candidate with employees they might know who already work at your organisation. When it comes to finding out about an organisation’s work environment, people are three times more likely to believe what an employee says than what the CEO has to say.

Social recruiting

Just how savvy is your use of social recruiting? Over half (56%) of recruiters say social media channels are now the best source they have of quality candidates. You need to maximise this to go from good to great in terms of your social recruitment strategies. You need to create a profile for your business brand which shows just what makes it a unique place to work. Your aim is to open a door for discussions with future employees. Social media is the first place they will search for background, so you need to ensure that it works as hard as it can to not only attract them, but to make them want to stay in touch. Once they are doing that, they are not only more likely to be open to communications from you but, according to our own research, they are 40% more likely to apply for a job with your organisation.

Data analytics

Numbers and data help you drive better decisions, and they also help you build credibility as a trusted talent advisor. By analysing data on your followers you can start to build a picture of their demographics by job function, industry, seniority and company size – all of which is useful data to help you further refine the way you engage and build relationships with them. At every step it’s about using technology to build a more effective model of just what your business needs, and then using that template to create and nurture that pool of talent which will become an effective pipeline of future hires.

HR is moving fast. Where once it might have been seen as a merely transactional player, it is now a key strategic partner in driving an organisation’s search for the very best people. All future business's success is dependent on finding and retaining the best talent. To do that requires the technology to not only build and project your unique business proposition, but to create links out to the people who could help you transform that proposition into a reality. You can’t wait for them to come to you. Rather you have to go out and find them, develop those important relationships now and create a pipeline of talent. The good news is that this technology is available right now. So what are you waiting for? The future of hiring starts right here.

Richard Liddington is senior manager, talent acquisition at Linkedin

*All statistics in the article are taken from 'The Small Business Guide to Modern Recruiting' on Linkedin

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