A Look Back at Some of the Biggest Recruiting Trends of 2016

During 2016 there was a continued shift in the balance of power from employer to the candidate. It has also seen a ‘war of talent’ in key sectors. Employers from most sectors reported a worrying lack of quality candidates for current vacancies and 2016 was a challenging year from a candidate attraction and recruitment point of view.

This article outlines key recruitment trends which we’ve seen happening in 2016 – and suggests key actions that companies can take to ensure they win the battle for talent to keep their businesses alive in the coming years.

1. It’s all about being Digital and Mobile

Today an increasing percentage of the candidate pool are ‘net natives’ who are wedded to mobile technology and social media; 90% of them checking their smartphones before they even get out of bed in the morning. According to a research, 86% of job hunters use a mobile device as their primary search tool and it is estimated that 70% of candidates want to apply for jobs using their mobiles; with 55% wanting to be able to submit their CV via their mobile devices. Résumés are now be displaced by constantly evolving representations of individual experiences, skills, and aptitudes that exist purely in the digital realm. Innovative tools that use social media, big data and other technologies have given tremendous insight into individual job seekers as their primary screening method. To keep up with these trends, companies have now moved towards a digital hiring model.

2. Employer Branding as a Key Selling Point

Candidates’ are acquiring more knowledge about employers because information is increasingly more readily available and accessible. The new environment has created an information avalanche, whereby candidates are empowered to consider many more employers than ever before. Savvy candidates will evaluate company brands before applying to or accepting a job, much in the same way they evaluate consumer brands when shopping. Here, identifying and broadcasting the employer’s differentiating factor is very crucial, and conveying the employer’s culture beyond the office is critical to employer brand fulfillment.

3. Focus on Passive Candidates

Approximately 75% of global candidates are considered passive job seekers. These people are employed, and not actively looking for new opportunities. If the majority of the workforce falls into the passive category, it’s safe to assume the majority of top quality hires are passive, too. Recruiting passive candidates can be hard. Talent acquisition leaders have to make an extra effort not only to identify quality passive candidates but also to reach out to them and establish a connection. If you aren’t doing this already, look for candidates through their social media profiles and anywhere else they have a web presence, since today’s professionals expect employers to search for them and take their online branding and positioning very seriously. If a passive candidate is identified as a quality hire to your company, it’s time to get proactive and treat them like a potential buyer, which means you’ve got to be in the right place at the right time. Plus, recruiters have to be equipped with the skills to convert casual lookers into something more if given the opportunity.

4. Use of Data Analytics

The use of social networks and other digital profiles as candidate search tools has opened up a much wider talent pool for recruiters to draw from, but the time it takes to do that research could end up taking hiring managers away from their most important task: actually hiring. Big data, the hottest addition to the corporate lexicon, has moved across the business spectrum into the world of hiring and talent management. For more and more companies, the hiring boss is an algorithm or a set of analytic tools. Employers must select the right tools to be able to ask better questions when hiring. Choosing the right data tool is like choosing the right social media platform; employers need to know what works best for accomplishing their specific goals. If an analysis of current efforts revealed that a posting wasn’t resulting in enough qualified applicants, the employer could adjust the hiring strategy accordingly, using insights provided by a job board such as choosing a better day to post or different keywords. In the coming years, data analytics may even help recruiters discover which passive candidates are better to approach.

If you think there’s more to this trend, please share how you think about it in the comments below.

5 Talent Metrics You Should Really Care About

Every HR leader wants some talent metrics in place. But how about in real practice?

According to research, 75% of HR leaders acknowledge metrics are important to the success of their organizations. But 51% have no formal talent metrics plan in place. Nearly 40% say they don’t have the resources to conduct sound metrics.

The truth is that there’s a striking gap between the large number of companies that recognize the importance of metrics and talent analytics and the smaller number that actually have the means and expertise to put them to use and are actually getting a lot of useful information out of their data. But data is just information captured by recruiting system or software already in place. It doesn’t tell any story. Compare data against goals or thresholds and it turns into insight. These metrics or KPIs reflect critical factors for success and help a company measure its progress towards strategic goals.

But the question we hear frequently is “We do have metrics in place. But why does it fail?”

  • The first cause is that the metrics that recruiting team use are mostly tactical or operational and executives outside of recruiting have little interest in seeing these operational results.
  • Secondly, current recruiting metrics tells you “what happened last year,” which again has little value for executives who want to know what’s going to happen next year.
  • Thirdly, after the recruiting metrics are calculated, they are reported and read by people who pays little attention to them.

Make sure your metrics are actionable, so when it indicate a problem, they should be accompanied by an action plan on how the data will be used to actually increase the business impacts of recruiting.

Here is a list of 5 metrics that can help you evaluate the success and understand the faults and weaknesses of your recruitment program so that you can correct them. Keeping tabs on these metrics will ensure you are informed as to how your business is doing on the talent management front and when the metrics are headed in the wrong direction, there needs to be an action plan with someone assigned to make sure that the data is applied in order to actually improve recruiting results.

1. Qualified Candidates per Hire

The Number of Candidates who Make it Past the First Stage of your Hiring Process

This relatively simple number tells you how many of the candidates you sourced, or who applied for your job has the skills and experience required to warrant an early conversation. Qualified candidates are similar to ‘qualified lead’ in sales and shows your interview funnel is filling up with relevant job applicants. This KPI gives you a spot check on the health of your sourcing strategies, as well as the effectiveness of your employer brand.

2. Time per Hire

Measured from sourced/applied to the acceptance of the offer by the candidate

The Time per Hire metric is about tracking the speed with which a suitable candidate moves through your hiring process once he/she has already been sourced or have applied. If you’re trying to gain insight into the recruiting team’s process and throughput or efficiency, Time per Hire does this best. You can also average this out across all roles and get a sense of the true average speed of your interview process.

3. Cost per Hire

Cost Per Hire = External Costs + Internal Costs / Total Number of Hires

Cost per Hire is consistently ranked as one of the top most helpful HR metrics. It helps you to link your recruitment endeavors to cost savings from an organization point of view and it also helps to ensure these efforts are not only feasible for the business, but on par with your industry and location. Apart from external and internal costs one should also consider the time spent throughout the hiring process of potential employees.

4. Internal vs External Hire

Internal vs External Hire is an important metric to monitor. If the majority of your hiring is external, you might not be attending to the potential of your existing personnel. Organizations should have a leadership and development program that encourages existing employees to learn and grow within the company.

5. High Performer Turnover

Total High Performer Turnover = Total High Performer Terminations/Avg. High Performer Headcount

Most everyone is familiar with overall turnover rate, and there is a lot of information on the web and in various sources and research about the impact of turnover. The real key, in good times or bad, is how many high-performing employees are leaving the company. According to one belief, high performers are more likely to stay at an organization, given that there is a clear line drawn from performance to rewards. On the other hand, high performers are more likely to leave when they feel under-rewarded or when there are greater external opportunities. Not only does turnover of high performers lead to costs due to lost productivity, recruiting, and training, but also to losses of overall organizational knowledge and leadership.