I want to start with stating the obvious – neither recruitment nor HR technologies are “broken.” There are quite a few HR influencers and vendors out in the market which are dedicating many resources into telling you how your current processes and technologies are broken. I don’t blame them, they have their own agenda, and even if their argument is valid in a certain scope, the situation is not as bleak as they describe.
Between HR professionals, HR technology, and the rest of the world – a lot can go wrong. And it does. However, for the most part, candidates are getting hired and the world is still turning. As with every complex process, we can always aspire be more effective and efficient at what we do. Nowadays, whenever something does not work properly, we immediately look for a technological solution. The promise of tools that can streamline our entire hiring process and foster collaboration between candidates, hiring managers, and recruiters, is captivating, but often makes us forget the real reasons behind our challenges.
Good user interface and user experience can go a long way in helping you do your job more efficiently, but at the end of the day, the technology you have is only as good as the people using it. That is always a problem with collaborative technology – your ability to control it and utilize it to its fullest is limited to the technology’s integration with organizational processes and the level of engagement of your colleagues.
Even organizations which integrated top-notch technology and have learned to utilize it perfectly, the recruitment process is far from ideal. Once we accept technology is not the end-all solution for our recruitment ailments, we can start discussing a few very practical and low-tech solutions that can easily help us tackle some of the challenges we face daily. In my previous entry I stated the importance of communication between recruitment and other functions in the organization. This can’t be stressed enough because that lack of communication is the main grief hiring managers have with recruiters.
The Client is Always Right and that Client is the Hiring Manager
I’m speaking with many executives and hiring managers and they all share one thing – they want to communicate better with you. They need you and your best judgment. Communication helps them deliver better job descriptions and requirements, and in turn, helps you find a suitable talent more easily. Of course, the better you know the hiring manager personally, the easier it is for you to make a successful hire (try to think why employee referral works better than most other hiring techniques).
Hiring managers must be an integral part of the hiring process from the get go. They need to see the candidates, talk with them, and estimate their cultural and social fit to their team. In the candidate’s eyes, recruiters are the barrier between them and the job they want, but the involvement of a hiring manager gives a feeling of involvement and engagement and increases your chances of landing the talent you want in a competitive market.
Don’t Forget Social Media
From your perspective, other than your customers (hiring managers), another function you want to work closely with is the social media specialist, for employer branding. Depending on your budget, employer branding may be an inherently HR function, or one that requires collaboration with the marketing team. If employer branding is not something that you dedicate time to – you might want to reconsider. Countless articles stress its importance on sourcing and retaining good talent. Spending big bucks on an employer branding software is not necessarily something you need, but may be a wise investment if you wish to scale the branding process.
Recruiting Process is Complex, Communication Makes it Easier
Technology is there to enable more efficient performance. It cannot replace most of us. It will not create communication and teamwork where they don’t exist, even if it is called collaborative software or social media. The more complex the process is (and hiring is a very complex process), the more things can go wrong, and the more information and communication go a long way to overcome your daily challenges.