Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Social Recruiting...Good & Bad Guys

This was an excerpt from my thoughts on the @Animal Radio Show http://bit.ly/4khIBF.

I really am searching for what the Social Media Recruiters do and how they do it. Techniques, questions, recruiting skills.

Am I the only one that feels this way? Why do Personal Branding experts choose not to respond to a request for help in leveraging a relationship to facilitate gaining information? Inquiring minds would like to know...just saying.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Warm Cold Call for the Passive Candidate

I have never liked the phrase Cold Call. When I was trained to become a Recruiter, we learned to use the phrase Warm Call. Well, after all, that is what the inititial call is isn't it? If the call is cold you will, well be cold. The candidate or client for that matter will be cold. It is really that simple. I don't need any "guru" to tell me differently.

I was recently interviewed on the @Animal Radio Show http://snurl.com/fzl4i. During the interview I was asked to Warm Call a Passive Candidate. This was unrehearsed and improvised. Here is the 10 minute audio clip http://cli.gs/coldcall. I will let the clip speak for itself and allow you to think what you would like to. The Passive Candidate is Craig Fisher of http://www.alistsolutions.com/ and @Fishdogs.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Social Recruiting...all that Twitters may not be a Glitter

After I participated in the @animal http://cli.gs/DBSPy9 Radio Show I became more introspective about how I use Social Media as a Social Recruiting tool. What do I use SM for? How do I integrate SM with Full Life Cycle Recruiting? How do I use SM to source new Client Partners and new Human Capital Partners? I am defining SM as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, YouTube and Blogs. I am sure there are more, but for the sake of this article these will suffice. I have my own bias of LinkedIn, Twitter, Blogs and telephone with a healthy component of Boolean Searches to glean information.

What happens after I Source Human Capital Partners and Client Partners using all of these SM tools? Is my work completed? Do I simply introduce the two to each other and receive compensation, a multitude of referrals for new business and move to the next project?

I think not. As a Human Capital Specialist I must build a relationship personally with the Human Capital Partner and Client Partner, This relationship is built on trust. I establish this thru frequent, meaningful and professional contact with both parties. I ask the questions embedded with the Power Words "Who, What, Why, Where When and How of both Partners. I discuss with them how I have conducted myself in similar scenarios. I assist them in identifying and defining their challenges and how my brand can meet those challenges by eliciting their buy in. We create a partnership. My skills facilitate this, not SM. SM maybe the delivery mechanism for this, but SM does not make it happen. I use SM as a way of verifying what was agreed upon, better said I use email to verify and validate the level of commitment of all involved. I use the telephone to actually build the relationships with my Partners, wow what a surprise-:)! A series of in person meetings when possible is the best way, but present day logistics make this challenging. Together with my Partners we measure our progress, make adjustments and achieve our mutual goal; the hire.

My skills at asking questions as a Human Capital Specialist, which include the use of Social Media, may qualify me as a Social Recruiter. But I was successfully recruiting by using my social skills long before the Social Media tools existed as many of you were. Now we have evolved and adapted. Social Darwinism applied to Human Capital Acquisition and Client Partner development?

That is my take.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Some Thoughts on Social Recruiting

In case you have not heard, there is a Group on Twitter #socialrecruiting. This appears to be have been spawned by @dmanaster of ERE fame and @scottbaxt as far as I can determine. Another great site for this @socrecruiting. Follow these people and Sites.

This is a terrific and timely idea for the direction that the two disciplines of Social Media are heading or should I say colliding. This could very well be the “Big Bang” theory we have been seeking in Social Media and Recruiting.

How do we leverage the best of both disciplines? I have some thoughts. These thoughts are mine and in no way reflect the thoughts of anyone mentioned in this brief paper aimed at stimulating discussion.

We need to partner with the Social Media influencers and all of the experts in Social Media to leverage their clients for us to have an impact on Social Recruiting. We need a workable alliance of SM and Recruiting voices to develop an infrastructure that will allow us all to be successful in providing high quality cost effective solutions to our clients for Human Capital Sourcing and Acquisition and Social Media services. The time appears to be right for a radical shift in the thinking of corporate America on how to attract and retain Talent. Much is written about this daily. We need a blueprint and we need builders to execute this blueprint. Social Recruiting can be this blueprint. The manner in which these highly experienced and intelligent professional interact with their clients will enable us to leverage our Recruiting agenda. Without this partnering endorsement and our own efforts and experience in alliance we will have a much more difficult task ahead of us

We need people with strong influential Recruiting voices, who are willing to share their experience. We need the best of both SM and Recruiting for a thesis, antithesis synthesis to occur (my apology to Hegel) for a powerful solution to our challenge. The SM relationships and expertise and our Recruiting relationships and expertise are the mechanism for entry into the conscious of an enlightened Corporate America. We need to identify companies conducting business in the SM space being responsive to their customers by going where their customers are and listening to them. This will be paramount for our collective success.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Dreaded Word...Metrics

In my experience most Recruiters or Human Capital Sourcing and Talent Acquisition Specialists (I like writing that:)) dread the word Metrics. I will agree that in our profession the most basic Metric is number of hires in a defined time frame ie 30, 60, 90 etc days. Oversimplified? Yes I do believe it is.

Metrics is much more than that. Metrics, when used correctly, is a road map for the successful hires. Allow me to outline some KPIs.
  • Date position was opened and made available to the Talent Pool.
  • Number of Candidate Partners applied thru the ATS and whatever other tool (s) used ie Job Boards.
  • Number of Candidate Partners Sourced, this includes passive candidates.
  • Number of employee referred Candidate Partners. I have seen numbers that indicate 30% or more of a company's hires take place thru this mechanism.
  • Number of Internal Candidate Partners.
  • Number of Candidate Partners interviewed by the Recruiter.
  • Number of Recruiter Candidate Partners that were interviewed submitted to the Hiring Manager Partner.
  • Number of days from when the Candidate Partner applied to the interview with the Recruiter.
  • Number of days from when the Candidate Partner was interviewed by the Hiring Manger Partner.
  • Number of days for the Hiring Manager Partner to make an offer to the Candidate Partner.
  • Number days from when the Candidate Partner, who was made the offer, applied to the position.
  • Number of days from when the offer was extended to the Candidate Partner to accept or decline the offer.

There are many ways for us to dissect and analyze this data. These are by no means all of the KPIs, but this does give us an impetuous for discussion. An Excel spread sheet can be built to record and average this data quite readily. This data can be a powerful tool for Recruiters, HR Partners and Hiring Manager Partners to analyze "productive activity".

Friday, February 27, 2009

Thoughts on where we are........

I am very confused. Not that is not a normal state of mind for me lately, but more so than ever. My confusion is about the current state of our profession. There are many excellent Recruiters, Talent Acquisition Specialists and Sourcers employed and looking for employment. From the many on line resources we have access to we all see much of the same information regarding all of the open positions in virtually every occupation. We are all overwhelmed with 24x7 information from all media with unemployment figures. Most recently 667,000 claims last week.

Have you all noticed that there are so many openings and so many potential candidates: I ask who is going to work? Who is putting these candidates to work? I had a very interesting conversation the other day with Ami Givertz from RecruitingBlogs.com. Ami is a very intelligent person. He mentioned that there is a geographical push at work here. As they say in Real Estate; “location, location, location.” The jobs just are not where the people are for the most part or vice versa. I agree very strongly with this. There are many qualified candidates that simply cannot relocate for a variety of reasons. Oh yeah, has anyone relocated recently and had to move an entire household? The cost is staggering. From what I know, a company is not going to pay relocation for an Oracle DBA or an SAP person. You all understand this.

This is the background for what my issue is: What can Recruiters do about this? I have no answer but I do have some thoughts about this. Deeply engage your candidate partner in the entire process of what they are experiencing and expecting. Be responsive to the candidate partner. Work diligently with your client partner to help the Hiring Manager or HR person understand that feedback from them is crucial to the candidate and in filling the position. Set a schedule with both the candidate partner and the client partner for when you will be expecting feedback to share with both partners. Be transparent with the candidate partner and client partner. At all costs avoid the Black Hole; Information flowing only in one direction.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Creating a Positive Candidate Recruiter User Experience

I have been thinking about many things and experiencing “Web 2.0 overload” in my attempts to secure a new position and get my own enterprise off the ground. While some of what I am going to discuss here is obvious, I feel compelled to write about it.

There was an excellent discussion on RecruitingBlogs.com started by Jennifer LaVigne entitled “Cold calling and your best pick up line.” There were insightful comments from every smart person that participated in the discussion. What made me think the most was the comment from Jerry Albright. Actually, it was Jerry's use of one word “WORDS” that was the trigger. I don’t know Jennifer or Jerry or any of the others that commented. But I want to thank all of them for inducing me to share some thoughts about what I think we actually do with the candidates we partner with.

I ask every Candidate that I partner with “What do you not like about working with Recruiters?” The answer (s) to this question will give you the key in how to partner with that candidate and become their trusted advisor.

Upon your initial contact with the candidate, do you ask How the candidate is today, How is their day going? Do you ask about their interests and take some time to get to know them before explaining your agenda or elevator speech? Do you share some information about yourself and who you are and what you are doing? The candidate wants to know that you are a person that will be professionally empathetic to them.

I have a rule: “I recruit the way in which I want to be recruited.” There is never an exception.

Be honest with the Candidate. I cannot stress this enough.

I spend time walking the candidate thru the current state of their job search or if they are a passive candidate what it would take for them to become an active candidate. I pose “what if" questions during this conversation. I ask the following: “What are you hoping to find in your next position that you do have in your current one? Why did you accept your current position? Have you developed decision criteria for your next position? How do I Recruit you?” I discuss their answers in detail. This helps me develop a picture of the candidate. It is also fun! I summarize this and confirm in an email.

I discuss in detail what their compensation expectation for the position is. I confirm an agreement on compensation with the candidate in email.

How frequently should we follow up with each other and how will we do that? I use Web 2.0 technologies, but the telephone is the best tool available for the Recruiter and the candidate

I make certain that I have of their updated contact information and that they have mine (home and cell phone, email that is not your current employers Twitter and IM ID). If it is only the candidate’s email, I would be concerned.

I inform the candidate that I will not send resume to any companies without their permission.I give the candidate the Web site address for the client company. Do your home work! Research the company. When I have secured an interview I give the candidate the name(s) and titles of the person(s) they will be interviewing with and what the interviewing process is. I instruct them to Google the names of the interviewer(s). Search LinkedIn for the interviewer’s name and read their profile. How the candidate responds to this will give you an indication of how strong your partnership with them is.

I offer suggestions as to what questions to expect on the interview. I typically ask; “How do you handle the telephone/ in person interview?” I discuss their reply in detail.

I set a follow up time after the interview to debrief the candidate.

I know that some of this is obvious and I have left much out, but I think we all need to think about what we are doing with our candidates and how we partner with them.


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Tao of The Hire

Somewhere a True Believer is training to recruit your candidate. He is training with minimal food or water, in austere conditions, training day and night. The only thing clean on him is his phone and his Web 2.0 gear. He doesn't worry about what workout to do - his ruck weighs what it weighs, his runs end when his Candidate is hired and the Hiring Manager's need is filled.

This True Believer is not concerned about 'how hard it is;' he knows either he wins or he does not. He doesn't go home at 17:00, he is home. He knows only The Cause.

Still want to quit?

Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely judicious in how you communicate, even to the point of soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of your relationships with you partners; Hiring Managers and Candidates.

Better stop short than fill to the brim. Over sharpen the blade, and the edge will soon blunt. Amass a store of gold and jade, and no one can protect it. Claim wealth and titles, and disaster will follow. Retire when the work is done. This is the way of your Hire.

With apologies to Lao Tzu and Sun Tzu.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Our Customer, The Hiring Manager

The most important skill in your repertoire is your ability to build credibility with the Hiring Managers and become a "trusted advisor." This is paramount to our success as Recruiters. The Hiring Manager is our customer. Without a Partnership with the Hiring Manager we cannot be successful. It is that simple.

The Hiring Manager needs to know that you have developed a strong working relationship with the candidate on everything the candidate needs to be closed on and the candidate has a basic understanding of the position.

If the Hiring Manager does not believe in you and your candidate your chances for success are diminished greatly. Simply put, you will not schedule any interviews and you will not facilitate any hires.

One of the best ways of building credibility with the Hiring Manager is to take an active interest in the Hiring Manager’s line of business. Find out from the Hiring Manger what he or she views as their major challenges and why would someone want to work for them. Ask the Hiring Manager to meet his most successful people. If you are asked to call the candidate, do so as quickly as possible and give the feedback as quickly as possible. This is a great way to verify what you have done and build credibility with your customer.

The most effective way to “build a placement” is to dialogue with the Hiring Manager about what you are doing and what feedback you are receiving from the candidates.

Some of the techniques I have found to be helpful are the following; determine with the Hiring Manager why I candidate is a fit or not, weekly feedback thru email or a meeting (depending on the logistics), only forwarding candidates that fit the parameters developed with the Hiring Manager and HONESTY which is the most important.