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Search for Employees Like Your Would Find an NFL Coach

October 21, 2013 Leave a comment

hiring star employeesIt’s critical and cost-effective to have processes in place to attract, hire, train and retain employees – your organization’s most valuable resource. Applicant tracking systems (ATS) streamline the recruiting and hiring process by replacing the do-it-yourself spreadsheets and logbooks with a comprehensive and easy to use platform. Want to hire a superstar employee? Believe it or not, if you follow the same rules laid out by NFL draft lead writer Matt Miller in his article “Rules to Follow When Hiring an NFL Head Coach” and an applicant tracking system, you can’t go wrong. Rule #1: “Never hire a college coach who didn’t dominate at that level.” A potential employee who has not excelled in their current position cannot be expected to perform well in a different or more advanced position if their skill set does not match the skill set required. ATS assists you in determining if a potential employee can do the job required using metrics you specify. Rule #2: “Never hire a Bill Belichick coordinator.” Effective hiring processes provides a clearer picture of an employee’s potential based on their skills and their performance. This prevents hiring someone for a position beyond their abilities, skill set or training. Rule #3: “Do hire former Pac-12 coaches.” You know what has proven to work in the past. Using this knowledge, you can identify and specifically focus on the best venues to find talent that has proven to effectively serve the needs of your company. Rule #4: “Always hire a defensive coordinator over an offensive coordinator.” Rather than attacking the hiring process with spreadsheets and logbooks, create a professional career site targeted to your specific recruiting needs giving you the competitive edge in every hiring situation. Rule #5: “Never hire a former NFL player.” Applicant tracking systems makes it easy to see which applicant has taken the time to educate and train themselves to comprehend the full extent of the job because all the information about them is immediately available to you. You can easily track their successes and their skills to determine if they are capable of performing at the level your company requires. Rule #6: “Do hire former NFL quarterbacks.” When looking for star employees, technologies such as applicant tracking systems will enable you to identify team players who have successfully served in leadership roles where much was accomplished both by the team and the individual. Rule #7: “Never hire an SEC head coach.” ATS systems allow you to define your specific criteria enabling you to rely on your experience of what has not worked in the past preventing you from repeating the same mistake twice. Rule #8: “Always be open to new ideas.” An applicant tracking system and other technolgies can benefit your company by enabling you to focus your time and resources on strategic and effective recruiting solutions to attract superstar employees. It’s a win for everyone!

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Making a Match: Companies and Developers

May 3, 2013 Leave a comment

Many high tech companies are finding it hard to find good talent. If you fall into this category, you may struggle with giving developers and other tech applicants a reason to apply to your job when companies like Facebook and Google have so many perks. You don’t have to install a slide in your office, but you do have to start using more technology in your hiring process.

For years now, when people want to find love, they go to sites like eHarmony because of the tech-savvy algorithms used to pair people that mesh well together. It has cut down on the dating scene and helped many people to form successful marriages.

When you think about it, pairing a company with a developer is a lot like a marriage. If you’re still on the dating scene, trying to find the right partner, it might be time for you to think like eHarmony and all of the other sites and create an algorithm.

If you live in New York City or San Francisco, you can use the GroupTalent algorithm that allows developers and companies to be paired based upon talent. The platform has proven to be very effective and can solve a lot of the hiring problems you have faced in the past.

The technology is also great for developers who want to “try before they buy.” Basically, it allows developers to try out a company for a short-term project. This would be beneficial to you, as well, to see how well the person does within your business model. If neither of you are happy, you part ways and go on with the next match.

The medical industry has been doing this for years with the locum tenens. Short-term roles are filled by people in the interim while a doctor or nurse is away for some reason. Most locum tenens are proving themselves while at the facility and often are given a job offer at the end of their term because of how well they have proven themselves. The same concept applies with you.

Technology is a useful tool and many companies are learning how to use it in order to obtain the perfect match. By using an Applicant Tracking System, you can do the same thing. This software would allow you to search for various features and characteristics of those who are applying to your positions. This will allow you to pick and choose from those who are applying to you so you can ensure you get a better match for your business.

When it comes down to it, you have to make sure your business has an attractive offer for applicants. While you can use technology to narrow down your options, you still have to get the best of the best sending their resume and information to you.

Baby Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y or Millennials – How to Hire Them All

April 19, 2013 Leave a comment

Cliff Oxford caused quite a stir recently when he suggested in a New York Times article that entrepreneurs running fast-growth companies should shy away from hiring baby boomers. In a nutshell, Oxford believes that boomers, who he refers to as the parents of Gen X and Gen Y employees, expect too much money, are distracted by outside commitments, are unwilling to take risks, are clueless about social media, and want to be pampered with perks such as corner offices.

Instead, Oxford recommends that fast-growth companies concentrate on hiring what he calls “Great Recession Graduates” who had to forgo out-of-state schools and wait on tables during college after their parents (those baby boomers) drained their savings and retirement accounts to survive.

Although Oxford admits that some boomers can still thrive in fast-growth companies, he seems to have forgotten that boomers are the ones who brought the personal computers, the World Wide Web, the cell phones, and GPS required by social media into the world. Those creative people were once like the current crop of graduates – young, eager, and unafraid of risks. In addition, most of them attended state colleges and waited on tables to help pay the bills.

On the other hand, Oxford does make some good points. It’s important that recruiters and HR managers hire people who will fit well with the culture of their company. Most companies find the best hiring strategies balance the experience and stability of older workers with the fresh ideas of recent graduates and less-experienced employees.

Fast-growth companies operating on a shoestring will place more value on employees that can and will work for lower salaries in return for a potentially larger reward later. Thus, recruiters and HR personnel at fast-growth companies may want to focus resources on recent college graduates who are happy to have a first job and are willing to work hard because they don’t yet have families that produce the “outside commitments” that Oxford denigrates.

Regardless of a company’s hiring strategy, HR specialists need to be aware of new technologies available to help find and hire the best people for the job. HR departments are increasingly replacing expensive recruiting fairs, newspaper ad campaigns, and clunky paper-based hiring systems with web-based tools that create an Applicant Tracking System. In addition to automating and streamlining hiring processes, these tools use integrated social media strategies to announce openings and attract applicants, a technique that will appeal to upcoming and recent college graduates who communicate primarily through social media.

How to Use Social Media for the Best Hiring Results

April 4, 2013 Leave a comment

social media hiring & recruitingHiring practices for human resources departments and hiring managers are evolving. It is important that you stay on top of these developments to find and attract the top talent for your company. There are many tools emerging that help people connect and inform each other about their professional experience. How do you know which ones to use and how much value to place on the information that is available from them?

Evaluating these mechanisms can seem to take as long as the evaluating the job applicants you want to bring onto the team. However, we have to go where the people are in order to keep current and get the most out of the field of potential employees. If you aren’t moving at the speed of the best applicants when they check in on your and your company would they evaluate it as their best potential place of employment? Methods for hiring that are antiquated send signals that your company might still be operating like it is the stone age, in which case candidates might look to companies that reflect more modern technological savvy.

As always, it can be hard to know what social interaction are legitimately valuable from a distance and which are just chatter on the airwaves. Does your company currently take advantage of social media to except applications or seek out people that might be a good fit? There are many ways you can use social media to find employees but some a designed to connect professionals. Others can provide a lot of usual information for those in human resources. Hiring is a complex process, making sure that no one is wasting their time is important on both sides of the meeting table.

Services such as Klout and Kred are excellent ways for people to centralize and measure their connections plus social interactions into a standardized form that others can participate in as well. The upside to these services is that they offer a metric that is attempting to be a reflection of the aggregate value of how influential or reputable an individual may be in comparison to other candidates in the field applicants. One negative element is that applicants that do not engage with a professional online community will have lower scores than those that are taking the time to reach out. Hiring staffers could interpret this person as being less valuable than someone with a higher community score but this does not truly mean they would are less qualified. Of course, in this age there are many places looking for employees that openly evangelize.

Many companies are using applicant tracking software, especially systems that have social media hiring features. This technology allows companies to track an applicant across the web and to corroborate information for themselves. In this way it is possible to customize a solution that works for a particular set of needs which are not those of a social network outside of the company.

Great Hires Go The Distance

March 22, 2013 Leave a comment

great hiresHiring the right employees is the first step to building a great company. But finding the right people is only half the battle, you also have to make sure that you can keep them. It doesn’t do your business any good to find and train great new employees, only to have them turn around and leave for something else.  In fact that type of hiring practice can end up sinking a company.

Attracting and keeping great employees is all about innovation. That means learning and adapting to changes and challenges in every aspect of the business, from including the way you hiring and recruit new employees. Hiring the right employees can be a big part of that innovation and making sure that your employees stick around

Hiring the right employees is not just about hiring the employees who have the fanciest credentials and the most degrees. It is also about making sure that those employees fit in well with your company. That means your new recruits must be just as excited about the work your company is doing as you are about hiring them. If they are not excited about the work, chances are they won’t stick around long enough for it to be worth hiring them.

It’s also important to for the company to create an atmosphere of excitement and enthusiasm. If the employees who currently work at your company aren’t excited to come into work or at least act like they are excited to be there, it will be next to impossible to find enthusiastic, committed new hires who want to stick around and grow with your company.

But figuring out which applicants those might be can be just as hard as attracting them. This is why it is so important to stay up to date with the latest hiring techniques and practices in order to stay innovative and have a leg up ahead of the competition. Your competitors also want to hire the best most enthusiastic employees without having to try and poach them from you later. They are sure to be using up to date, state of the art technology and techniques to find and hire new recruits, and you don’t want to be left in the dust just because you are using the same tired old tricks.

Many companies are using some form of applicant tracking system to help them find, recruit and hire the best applicants for the job. This technology is a database filled with names, resumes, and other important information about applicants and potential applicants.   The top of the line ATS makes your hiring process more efficient – it lets your company become a lean, mean hiring machine.   By staying on top of hiring technology you are ensuring that your company will find and retain the best employees, and therefore stay healthy and productive.

Make Your Hiring Manager’s Job Easier

February 22, 2013 Leave a comment

A HR (Human Resources) manager has one of the more complicated jobs in any office environment. The person in this position is often tasked with staffing the office and keeping track of benefits and programs for employees. In large offices, the HR manager may have an assistant or assistants helping him or her with this job, while in smaller businesses this is a one-person job. No matter how big or small the company, the HR Manager can use some help to get the job done right.

Luckily, there are many programs and tools available to a HR Manager that will make the job easier. There are simple programs and spreadsheets that nearly every company can utilize as well as more complex programs that may only apply to the largest firms. One of the most useful tools for an HR Manager is an ATS system. ATS, or applicant tracking system helps automate many of the recruiting tasks that an HR manager has on his or her plate.

What Does an ATS do?

While each of these programs is slightly different, the basic idea is that it collects data about potential employees, either through applicants or data mining efforts and spins it into an easy to read and understand format for the HR Manager.

In many cases, this system can take care of the process from beginning to end. This may mean that the system posts recruitment information and applicants can provide information directly to the system. After a set period of time, the system mines the information and provides it to the HR Manager.

What are the Benefits?

The main benefit for the HR manager is it saves him or her from sorting through endless resumes looking for the couple that may actually be valid candidates. Those candidates who are not qualified will never cause the HR manager any difficulty. This is very important when the HR manager is hiring for several positions at the same time. Without a doubt, it can make a big difference. According to the SearchCIO website, it’s estimated that around half of all medium sized businesses use these tools to streamline the hiring process for HR managers.

As you can see, there are many things that a HR manager needs to do to keep his or her company well-staffed and all employees happy. Utilizing tools, such as an ATS system, is one way to make the process easier and improves the process for everyone involved.

Is Internal Referral Hiring The Best Way to Find Talent?

February 8, 2013 Leave a comment

referral hiring ATSThere’s a well known saying in the job market; “It’s not what you know, it’s who you,” and in today’s market that has never been more true. More than ever, it’s important for companies to not only keep track of who they hire, but also where they find their candidates. With so many variables involved, external resumes, various job boards, social networks, and referrals, having an effective applicant tracking system in place is vital when it comes to verifying which methods work best for your company.

A recent New York Times article profiled a large employer that receives nearly half of their new hires from employee referrals. According to this and other employers it is these recruits that are the cream that rises to the top of the crop.

But does knowing someone necessarily make a person a good candidate? In many cases it does. John Sullivan, an HR consultant that teaches management at San Francisco State University calls the job board, Monster.com, Monster.ugly and says that it carries a stigma. He also says sending a resume without a connection, preferably someone within the company, is like sending it to a “black hole.” While it does make things more difficult for the long term unemployed, it does bring in higher quality candidates. Those who spend time not using their skills do lose them, and often their network.

When companies do take the risk and hire someone who has been unemployed for an extended period of time, they often pay for it, because the employee may not be as skilled as they believe they are, and may not stay in the position either from their own admittance of their shortcoming, or because the employer recognizes that keeping them employed is no longer cost effective. Hiring a new person not only means paying their salary, but also paying for their training, background checks, and other assessments. In 2007, Training magazine reported that even established employees cost companies an average of $12,000 per year in training. That just increases for new or “rusty” workers. When over 600 CEOs were interviewed by Harvard Business School about hiring midlevel managers, they reported that it normally took more than six months just to break even.

While internal referrals are a good way to go, and do account for about half of new hires. Some hiring segments simply aren’t tracked effectively by most companies, notably contingent workers, such as temporary contract workers and freelancers, are often not tracked at all. While many companies don’t seem to make this a high priority, those who do include these workers as a part of their applicant tracking system find that they represented around 13% with the number expected to grow, Since these workers are hired for more focused tasks, employers are often able to identify a worker’s potential without making the investment of full on training. It also gets workers a chance to meet and network with others for future referral opportunities.

For many companies, internal referrals may be the way to go, however not all companies are the same. To find what works best in your organization it is important to track your own hiring process and evaluate the data specific to you.