All posts tagged: speed

Get Jobseekers to Help You Speed Up Hiring

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Quickening the pace of hiring remains a hot topic and rightly so. The time it takes to fill a job grows year after year.

Many ideas on faster hiring are focused on the employer. But what about jobseekers? Sustainable speed can only be achieved if both sides of the hiring equation are addressed.

Here are 4 things jobseekers can do (and you can suggest they do) that increase hiring speed and improve selection accuracy.

Eliminate misinformation
Recurring media reports from a variety of sources indicate that two-thirds or more of resumes contain misinformation. This frequent inaccuracy has elicited a knee-jerk response by companies—it’s assumed that resumes have exaggerations or flat-out lies and that these lies continue during interviews. To manage this, companies slow down the process and dive deep to find these erroneous details. Instead of hiring being built on trust, it’s a tedious process filled with suspicion and doubt.

Combat this misinformation head on. Inform jobseekers that you’re not seeking perfect people, but people who perfectly represent themselves on paper and in conversations. Share examples of how you’ve hired less than perfect people and helped them advance their careers. Make your company a place where potential hires can be safely transparent.

Avoid spraying and praying
Like a farmer spreading manure to fertilize plants, many job candidates are spraying their resumes far and wide, praying one will take root and land them an opportunity. Employers end up buried in a pile of resumes, many of which are a crappy fit (pun intended). Sorting through this takes time, and time kills making good hires. Especially when a talented person, who was at the bottom of the pile, is snapped up by a faster competitor.

Encourage jobseekers to take a more targeted approach to their search. Start by setting and communicating boundaries early. For example, in the content on your job opportunities landing page make it clear that you’ll only consider and respond to candidates who match required qualifications. Repeatedly reinforce and re-communicate this boundary. Popular places for doing so are on the page where candidates enter work history and just above the final “Submit” button for their application.

Offer proof instead of promises
Talk is cheap, especially when answering questions during interviews. Answering an interviewer’s questions may create a feel good moment, but these answers offer nothing in the way of proof of fit. That’s why so many good interviews turn into bad hires. Candidates talk themselves into the role, one that wasn’t a fit after all.

Have each candidate offer proof in place of promises that he or she will fit in. Instead of letting a candidate tell you how she’d solve a problem, have her show you in a role play. Rather than asking about his top skills, have him demonstrate those skills by performing sample work. Require the candidate to go beyond sharing stories of how she works well with others and let her show you how she’ll collaborate with your current team. Showing, instead of telling, provides proof for making an informed decision.

Make better choices
Searching for a job is an emotional experience. Too often feelings trump facts, prompting the jobseeker to accept a role because if feels right versus doing so because it is truly the right fit.

Teach jobseekers how to make decisions rooted in facts instead of feelings. One approach is to ask the candidate to make a list of dealmakers (must-haves) and dealbreakers (must-not haves) and send it to you for discussion during a phone interview. Compare the list to the job and your company. Let people know where things match up and where they don’t. With eyes wide open, you both get to make an informed choice of whether to move forward or not.

Helping jobseekers should be a top priority for everyone involved in hiring. Putting people to work is one way. Guiding them in how they seek work is another. Seize every opportunity you can to inform and educate jobseekers about their role in increasing speed and improving accuracy during the hiring experience. Your role in hiring gives you a unique opportunity to exert your influence beyond just filling the next job. Use that influence to make jobseekers better at their part of the hiring process. You’ll be giving them a gift that serves them the remainder of their careers.

Scott WintripGet Jobseekers to Help You Speed Up Hiring
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Overcoming Resistance of Faster Hiring

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People often resist change, especially when you try to change a longstanding way of doing something. This is certainly true in recruiting and hiring. Speeding up the process can be met with intense resistance. Case in point…

At a meeting of the leadership team of a health insurance company, Paul thought the idea of fast hiring was “repulsive.” As we discussed how to plan the process, Paul started making passive-aggressive comments. After he said, “What’s next? We’re going to replace our employees with robots, like in that Will Smith movie?” I knew our discussion wasn’t addressing all of his concerns. I asked Paul to explain.

“People aren’t products,” he said angrily. “I can’t believe we’re even discussing such a dehumanizing approach. Picking the right people takes time. Interviews, even if they last all day, are a good investment of our time. We must make sure we’re picking the best people. Besides, good candidates won’t want to be rushed through the process. I’m finding this whole conversation repulsive. I’m sure my team will feel the same way.”           

Instead of trying to convince Paul to change his mind, I decided to let him change it himself.

“Paul, thanks for your honesty. I bet you’re not the only one with concerns about a faster approach.” Two other leaders nodded their heads in agreement. “What would you need to determine if this could work for the company?”

Paul thoughtfully paused before responding, “I’d need to see proof. Absolute proof that this will work for us.”

That led to a conversation about rolling out a faster hiring process on a limited basis to start. Two leaders, who didn’t share Paul’s concerns, agreed to test the process. Choosing a job common to both of their departments, we designed a plan and timeline that could be implemented without interrupting day-to-day business. Two other leaders, including Paul, were designated as auditors, outside observers who would monitor and document the pros and cons as the process was rolled out.

I met again with the leadership team after the beginning of the rollout. The two managers testing the process gave updates, sharing mostly positive news. They had made a few missteps along the way; however, both were upbeat. Both had filled two open jobs and lined up several additional candidates in their pipelines as potential future hires.

During their updates, I watched Paul out of the corner of my eye. He spent the entire time looking down at his notes. He appeared angry, even angrier than when he shared his concerns in our first meeting. I learned why when it was Paul’s turn to share pros and cons as an auditor of the test.

“I hate being wrong,” he said. “But, there it is. I was flat out wrong. There was nothing dehumanizing about a faster approach. If anything, it enabled interviewers to focus on people, not process. This shorter, simpler process allowed them to get to know each other better. Our new hires told me they loved our efficient process, and that it was a factor in choosing to work here.”

When recruiting and hiring, speed and accuracy are not mutually exclusive. Nor are speed and intimacy. A well-designed, well-executed hiring process allows people to be fully present and have conversations that matter. These interactions build trust as candidates learn they are dealing with confident professionals, and hiring managers discover which candidates are ready to make a job change. This trust becomes the foundation for the employment relationship, one built on a professionally intimate hiring experience.

To help navigate through resistance as you work to speed up hiring in your organization, do one or more the following:

Support people in changing their own mind
Trying to convince someone to see things differently is hard, sometimes impossible. Instead, let him or her do the heavy lifting. Ask a question like I did of Paul: What would you need to determine if faster hiring could work for your company? Integrate the responses into additional questions until you understand the root of the resistance and what will make it go away.

Suggest a limited approach
Resistance isn’t always about the change itself. There are times when people want to change but are fearful of the overwhelm it may cause. A limited scope can help. Start with one role; run a short-term test; bring in outside help to lighten the load. By working together, you can drive forward a faster hiring process without driving people crazy with overwhelm and fear.

Find a different path
Sometimes the path of least resistance is another person. Seek out an early adopter in your organization, someone who’s known for being first in line to implement new ideas. Work together to plan and execute the rollout. Make adjustments as you learn what works and what does not. Once the speedier process is in place and producing positive results, ask your early adopter to share their experience with others. Nothing enrolls doubters faster than proof positive.

Resistance is futile (yes, for you Star Trek fans, that was intentional), especially when you’re the one trying to overcome it. Don’t go it alone and avoid doing all the heavy lifting. Effective hiring is a team sport. Speeding up hiring requires a team effort.

Scott WintripOvercoming Resistance of Faster Hiring
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Improve The Efficiency Of Your Recruiting Process With These 4 Steps

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Talent fuels the success of your organization. That’s why your process must be efficient. In this episode, I detail the four steps for improving recruiting and hiring efficiency.

Scott WintripImprove The Efficiency Of Your Recruiting Process With These 4 Steps
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Want to Hire Faster? Eliminate These 3 Obstacles.

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Many organizations are struggling to fill open positions. It takes them weeks or months to fill just one job. The skills shortage often gets the blame. Because there are more jobs than people to fill them, leaders have come to expect that hiring will be a time-consuming challenge.

Another group of companies is having a different hiring experience. These organizations fill their open seats with relative ease and speed, even though there aren’t enough qualified people to go around. What makes these organizations different isn’t their reputation, location, work environment, or pay and benefits. It’s how they’ve chosen to address the talent shortage. They’ve overcome three common obstacles that slow down fast hiring.

THE REAL PROBLEM
While the global talent shortage is an ongoing reality, it’s not the real problem. The skills shortage is merely a challenge that can be solved by a better process.

The critical problem—the only one you can control—is having the right kind of hiring process. The right process taps into a sufficient pool of talent and efficiently moves candidates toward hire.

To fill jobs quickly with top talent, your hiring process must overcome these three obstacles.

Obstacle #1: Tapping into a candidate pool that’s too small
If you asked employers why they can’t fill jobs, over a third will tell you they’re not getting enough applicants, or they’re getting no applicants at all. Yet, only 10 percent of these employers leverage untapped talent pools.

Faster hiring requires mass: You must build a critical mass of candidates to select from. Building mass requires tapping into overlooked pools of people.

To determine if your organization is tapping into a candidate pool that’s too small, take these three steps.

Step #1: Review the eight talent streams
There are eight streams of talent. Each stream provides access to unique people. Compare these streams to how your company acquires candidates.

Step #2: Determine which streams lead to successful hires
Review your organization’s hires over the past six to 12 months. Note which streams these hires came from and which streams didn’t produce any successful hires.

Step #3: Assess which streams are being under-used or overlooked
Every talent stream should be producing candidates, some of whom become quality hires. Those that don’t are under-used or overlooked.

Obstacle #2: Employing interviewing methods that are inaccurate and slow
During typical interviews, candidates are on their best behavior. As a result, interviews are often a poor barometer as to who will fail or succeed in a given role. Some “newer” interview methods, such as behavioral interviewing, have only made the process longer. Hundreds of books and articles have been written on how to beat behavioral interviews. These books and articles demonstrate simple methods for telling interviewers exactly what they want to hear.

Interviews cannot be a conceptual exercise. They must allow you to see proof then-and-there that a candidate can do the job and do it well.

Take time to evaluate the speed and accuracy of your interviewing methods by reviewing each step of the process, evaluating the effectiveness of techniques used by interviewers. Answer these questions.

  • Does the interviewing technique consistently uncover irrefutable proof about a candidate’s fitness for the job?
  • If “no,” how can we replace or eliminate that technique to get a better result?
  • If “yes,” what can we do to streamline this technique and still get the same consistent irrefutable proof?

Obstacle #3: Failing to build and maintain a prospective employee pipeline
When a seat opens suddenly, the amount of activity it generates can feel overwhelming. Without an active talent pipeline, a frantic dance ensues. Managers have to handle extra work as the company tries to find suitable candidates. Days later, schedules have to be coordinated for phone screenings and interviews. Work piles up, good candidates take other jobs, and nerves fray.

Maintaining a pipeline of ready-to-hire prospective employees eliminates the dance. When jobs open, there’s no rush, panic, or chaos. Instead, you can hire from your overflowing pipeline.

It’s vital that your organization assess its pipelining strategies. Starting with the most critical roles in your organization, answer these questions.

  • For each role, how many people are ready to hire right now?
  • For any roles where there aren’t people ready to hire now, where is the pipelining process failing? For example, are there viable candidates who are stuck at the interview stage? Is there a lack of suitable candidates to interview? Is recruiting failing to generate candidates? Use what you learn to address those process problems.

Speed is no longer a competitive advantage. In today’s fast-paced competitive world, it’s a requirement for doing business and hiring quality employees. The importance of having talented people exactly when they’re needed makes fast and accurate hiring a strategic imperative.

Scott WintripWant to Hire Faster? Eliminate These 3 Obstacles.
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Got Election Fatigue? Channel It Into Hiring Speed

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Got Election Fatigue?

We’re days away from the end of one of the longest, most painful hiring processes I’ve ever seen in my entire life. Next Tuesday, November 8th, it’ll finally be over. One of two candidates will get the job.

You guessed it, right? I’m talking about the Presidential Election—which I like to think of as the American people filling a soon-to-be-vacant spot in the Executive Branch of the U.S. government.

This round of Executive Branch hiring has been interesting and occasionally entertaining. But overall it’s been a slow, painful ride to get to the point where “We, the People” can offer someone the position of President of The United States.

It’s been dragging on for over a year. Many people made their choice long ago. A handful are still up in the air. They’re waiting until the last minute to decide. Why? They’re afraid of making a bad choice.

Thankfully, this chaotic, unpredictable, interminable job interview has a hard end-date. The loser will cast blame; the winner will heap praise. Pundits will analyze and say even more than they have already. I know I’m not alone in hoping we learn something from all this, and the next election won’t be quite so bad.

Well—here’s to hoping.

Believe it or not, there really are lessons to learn inside all this madness. Lessons those of us in the business world can use to hire top talent more quickly and efficiently. Here are a few:

LESSON #1: Delayed decisions don’t create better hires.

Lesson #1During this election, we’ve operated under a faulty premise. We assume the long process will result in a quality choice. How’s that working out for us? Not so well. We’ve ended up with the opposite: our final two candidates both have obvious, glaring flaws. Polls rate Clinton and Trump as the two most unsatisfactory candidates in decades.

When it comes to hiring, most organizations operate under the same faulty premise. They think the more time, money, and energy they expend, the better the hire will be. It gives them a sense of control.

But it’s a false sense of control.

Taking lots of time to hire doesn’t save companies from bad hires; it only saves people from making decisions. It’s not that these are bad people. No one wants to make a hiring mistake, so they put it off and hide behind process and procedure. I don’t blame them…they’ve simply bought into a bad idea. The old way of hiring is to keep a job open until the right person shows up. The result is long time-to-fill, lots of open seats, higher expenses, more effort, and frustrated leaders.

LESSON #2: Being slow to hire has consequences.

Lesson #2590 days and counting.

That’s how long this election has been going on. Compare that to Canada: in 2015 they took 78 days. In the U.K.: 139 days. A long election cycle is distracting, exhausting, and expensive. It keeps candidates stuck in campaign mode instead of doing the work of governing.

Slow hiring is no better. The longer it takes to hire, the longer a job remains open. Work piles up, which creates extra demand on everyone from staff to leadership. Not to mention to gradual accumulation of unnecessary expenses including but not limited to overtime, lost business, and missed opportunities.

LESSON #3: This is how it’s always been done, so it must be right.

Lesson #3During the primaries, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders touted a similar message: the status quo is broken. This resonated with millions of voters, making both campaigns more successful that anyone thought possible. However, after the primaries, both Democrats and Republicans went back to their same old tricks. The deluge of negative ads, campaign surrogates spewing soundbites on TV, and daily robocalls threatens to drive us all insane. It’s no wonder we have election fatigue. Politicians say Washington needs fixing, but they certainly aren’t interested in fixing the way they campaign.

When it comes to hiring, many organizations are no different: they keep doing things the same old way, even though the same old way is ineffective. Why? It’s easier to maintain the status quo, especially if you’re afraid changing things won’t work. Companies are stuck in the slow lane of hiring, losing valuable time and top talent to faster competitors.

Election fatigue isn’t just about the long campaign process. It’s also about powerlessness. Our powerlessness. As citizens, there’s nothing we can do. We can’t make this election any better or faster. As a business leader, however, you’re not powerless. You can make things better and faster. You have the power to effect change in your organization. What better way to channel that power than to implement a fast and efficient hiring process?

You already have a perfect example of how not to hire: the absurd, lumbering monstrosity known as the 2016 Presidential Race.

If you’d like more details on the three key fundamentals of a speedy and efficient hiring process, read When It Comes to Hiring, Top Leaders Never Go With the Flow.

 

Scott WintripGot Election Fatigue? Channel It Into Hiring Speed
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Speed Versus Haste in Hiring

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Morning Morning MessageMore of what we need or want can be acquired right now or just minutes from now. From downloads to deliveries to services on-command, the rise of the on-demand economy has made speed not just a competitive advantage. For doing business it’s a requirement.

When it comes to hiring, however, some people don’t think these “new rules” apply. They believe that speed and quality are mutually exclusive. What’s most likely happening is that they are confusing speed with haste.

There’s a big difference between speed and haste. This distinction was mentioned by Obed Louissaint, Vice President of People and Culture for IBM Watson, during a recent speech. Rather than make hasty hiring decisions, IBM has baked speed into their process for talent acquisition. 

Haste has no place in hiring. Rushed decisions often lead to poor choices. These mistakes result from an ineffective approach that wasn’t built to deliver fast and accurate hires. 

Speed is different. It is simply part of a well planned process for achieving great results quickly.

The operative words are plan and process. Fast and accurate hiring is never an accident. It happens because leaders plan for it, implement a process to achieve it, and hold staff accountable to following the plan.

Scott WintripSpeed Versus Haste in Hiring
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The Future is Talent Sufficiency, Not Talent Scarcity

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Scott's Monday Morning MessageThe CEO of Uber recently posed one of the most important questions leaders can ask about their own organizations.

Appearing during the first week of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Travis Kalanick was asked about the future of Uber. He focused on Uber Eats, an on-demand food delivery service being quietly rolled out in select cities.

Colbert, in his patently playful manner, acted as though he didn’t understand. How could Uber effectively stockpile fresh food for delivery?

After a few rounds of Colbert jabbing and Kalanick trying to explain, the Uber CEO said:

“Do you want to be part of the future or resist the future?”

Being part of the future has made Kalanick a thought leader. Instead of responding to trends, his company and other innovators (such as Apple, Tesla, and Amazon) are defining the future, right now.

Kalanick’s question, in the context of hiring, warrants time and attention:

Is your company part of the future of hiring or resisting the future?

Here are two important considerations as you ponder this question:

The Future Is About Sufficiency, Not Scarcity

There are two types of companies when it comes hiring—those that are focused on a shortage of talent and others that believe there is enough. Which one is right? Actually, both.

Focus defines strategy.

Leaders who are focused on scarcity pay more attention to the reports and statistics that prove there are shortages of talent. They create strategies that operate from a belief that there aren’t enough people to fill their jobs. Their teams can often be seen scrambling for talent, never seeming to find enough.

The leaders who focus on talent sufficiency are having a different workforce experience. They know there are more qualified people than they’ll ever need to fill their open jobs. By building a strategy that focuses on talent sufficiency, these leaders and their companies dissolve the smoke and break the mirrors. Instead of scrambling to fill seats that have been empty for weeks or even months, these companies fill jobs much more quickly.

The Future Is Fast and Only Getting Faster

Today, speed has become essential in many business transactions.

With regard to speed, Jimmy John’s, for instance, touts “freaky fast delivery.” The restaurant takes an order by phone or app, makes the sandwich, and delivers it to your office in minutes. With Amazon Dash, products like Tide and Gatorade show up at your house the same day you order them. On iTunes, you can watch movies that are currently playing in theaters.

The rise of the on-demand economy is permeating commerce and culture. Regardless of what’s being delivered, the underlying on-demand process remains the same. It is this process, when applied to hiring, that allows companies to hire with speed and accuracy.

In a wide variety of industries, including finance, healthcare, technology, staffing, and manufacturing, organizations that implement an on-demand process are dramatically decreasing time-to-fill.

 

The future has yet to be written. Which is why you can choose, right now, your focus. Sufficiency or scarcity, fast or slow—these are two of the important choices that will impact recruiting and hiring strategies and their results for years to come.

 

Scott WintripThe Future is Talent Sufficiency, Not Talent Scarcity
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Effective Hiring is Never a Solo Act

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Scott's Monday Morning MessageCompanies are remiss if they go it alone in trying to recruit good people. Most organizations are unable to fulfill all of their own needs for full-time employees and temporary help. And that is okay, as hiring is not their core business. This is why the staffing industry is a vital contributor.

Staffing and recruitment companies must do a better job of delivering services that allow their customers to always hire someone today or acquire contract talent in an instant. Almost every customer needed someone yesterday, so it makes little sense to make them wait until tomorrow.

Recruiting professionals must also deliver this same level of service to themselves. It is baffling that they often do a better job of fulfilling their customers’ needs for talent than they do for their own open seats.

Effective hiring is never done alone. It is done with accuracy, precision and speed. It is this last element, in particular, that needs quite a bit of attention.

 

 

 

Scott WintripEffective Hiring is Never a Solo Act
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The Tesla Approach to Staffing and Recruiting

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Scott's Monday Morning MessageCar fanatic or not, there is a lot to like about a Tesla and how this electric vehicle is a model for better business. Acceleration from zero to 60 miles per hour in just 3.1 seconds, which the Model S can now achieve, is the kind of rapid velocity staffing and recruitment customers can experience when firms shift from reactive to active recruiting. Most buyers need that talented person yesterday, so speeding that individual to them to start work today is how a growing number of firms are zooming past their competitors.

Even though automobile dealers have lots of power and sway (too much if you ask me), Tesla powers its sales without caving in to the traditional, commoditized dealership model, choosing instead to sell out of stores in upscale shopping malls. The best staffing and recruiting firms also avoid the commodity game by negotiating value, not price, while approaching buyers in ways that attract attention instead of repelling them from even answering the phone.

Visit one of those stories and you find that less is more when it comes to the components that allow Teslas to achieve rapid velocity. Unlike a gasoline engine with hundreds of moving parts, Tesla electric motors have only one moving piece: the rotor. It’s this lean simplicity that helps make it so fast and nimble. Getting lean in our business, especially in eliminating all the wasted time and effort in the recruiting process (called Lean Recruiting), speeds talent acquisition, allows candidates to get to work more quickly, and staffing and recruiting firms to be more equitably rewarded for the value they provide.

Acceleration, innovative selling, and lean systems―three components that make Tesla leading-edge and can make your firm a leading provider.

Scott WintripThe Tesla Approach to Staffing and Recruiting
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