Posts tagged ‘management consulting firm’

December 16, 2014

12 Days of Talent – Day 1 Part 2 – HR’s Top Priority for 2015 – Authenticity

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The Future of Talent Lies in Embracing Authenticity

By Joe Minaudo, The Talent Company

As organizations continue to compete for talent, in my view, there is a critical driver that many organizations overlook: whether or not their people, culture and brand are perceived as authentic. 

Why does authenticity matter now more than ever?  It’s because of our increasingly networked world. Nearly every one of your candidates, employees, customers and vendors is being asked what they think about your company. If the message is positive (i.e. if your organization is perceived to be genuine), you have an immense advantage over your competition. However, if the message is negative and your organization is being criticized on various social media and networking sites, then your ability to attract talent becomes much harder.

Tips for Embracing Authenticity

If you think that your organization has some work to do in this area, then the good news is that enabling authenticity is neither costly nor challenging. Here are 7 tips that I have recommended to help my clients transform how they are perceived:

Treat Each Candidate Interaction as the Last One – Ever!

Yes, it is important to try and keep the candidate pipeline full. But in my opinion it is even more important to focus incessantly on treating each candidate interaction as your last one – ever!  That is, you should view each visit to your career site, email sent, phone call made, interview completed and referral introduction as a key opportunity to convey that your organization strives for and cares about authenticity and all of its attributes, such as care, enthusiasm, professionalism, quality and leadership. Leveraging every touch point in this way is the best way to build authenticity into your organization.

Turn Executives into Authenticity Champions

Your executives are (or should be) your biggest champions. How passionate are they about engaging and elevating your organization’s talent? In other words, is talent management a key theme on the executive agenda? Is it a priority in the boardroom?  Leaders need to be authentically waving the organization’s flag at all times.

Ensure that Managers and Supervisors Play a Role

Managers need to be trained and supported on how to demonstrate and distribute authenticity through all levels of the organization. A key element of this is engaging employees, and ensuring that they feel valued. Its simple; if employees are engaged and feel valued, there is a direct correlation to company’s increased performance and client satisfaction.

It’s a continuous effort of process improvement

Organizations invest millions of dollars into getting customer care and retention right. And while you do not need to spend millions on your talent function, you certainly do need to ensure your talent function is fit for purpose. It takes time and should be part of an ongoing commitment – not a one-time-event. Authenticity takes time to build up and must be continuously supported or else it will diminish.

Make Candidate Care and Experience a Priority

Just like a visitor in a hotel, your candidates – both internally and externally – should feel like a valued guest. Every interaction should be designed for a positive experience, from initial contact to communicating why they were unsuccessful during the interview process.

Ensure that your External Brand Mirrors your Internal Experience

Frankly, there is no point in marketing your organization as a top employer if candidates and employees do not support that claim. Nobody benefits when a new hire feels like he or she has been deceived because the external brand does not mirror the internal experience. When that happens, it is only a matter of time before the employee leaves; or worse, they stay and contribute to a culture of disengagement.  Your organization has to feel and show like it is a great place to work. That’s the path to authenticity.

A Little Humility Goes a Long Way

No matter how admirable an organization may be, and how often it is ranked as a “best employer” or “most trusted brand,” there is always room for improvement. Organizational perfection may be an inspiring vision, but it is not a realistic expectation.

So, if you detect gaps in your talent function, or you get specific feedback from a candidate that their experience with your organization was memorable for all of the wrong reasons, then instead of hitting the panic or the denial button, humbly take ownership of the problem and explore what can be done to solve it. Sometimes simply saying sorry and promising to do better can turn a vicious critic into a future prospect.

Organizations must continue adjusting in an increasingly competitive and complex talent market. And while there are many factors and variables to consider, in my view authenticity is often overlooked as a critical driver; one that not only makes the process of attracting, engaging and retaining talent easier, but much more enjoyably as well!

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Joe Minaudo is the leader of the Recruitment Strategy and Transformation practice with The Talent Company (www.thetalent.co), a human resources consulting firm that works closely with clients to develop, optimize and innovate their Recruitment and Talent practices. Joe possesses more than 15 years of recruitment, talent management and workforce planning experience. He has lead recruitment and workforce planning functions for both international and global Big 4 consulting firms. Joe can be found at the following social tools LinkedIn and Twitter.

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 16, 2014

12 Days of Talent: Day 1 Part 1 – HR’s Top Priorities for 2015 – Be the Business

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HR’s Top Priority for 2015 – Be the Business

By Gord MacDonald, The Talent Company

What should HR’s top priority for 2015 be? For me, it comes down to being an effective “business consultant”.  I recently read the term in a Deloitte University Press article on Human Capital Trends and instantly liked it.  A business consultant is someone who helps a company grow and maintain profitability. HR can do this by implementing a people strategy that enables employees to deliver on business strategy. With that in mind, HR should focus on the following in 2015:

1.   How often do you hear Finance or IT departments yearning about how they would like to be a “strategic partner”? They don’t, they just do it. In a recent SHRM (Society for Human Resources Management) poll in the U.S., “more than six out of ten HR professionals agreed that their head of HR was strongly involved in business decisions at the board level”. Let’s stop wasting our energy on this, agree HR is at the table, and move forward. HR gains a trusted business consultant role when we stop the HR “speak” and use the business “speak”. We gain the business speak, by understanding the business model (get friendly with the head of finance!) and forging strong relationships with the business’ leadership team and CEO.

2.   As business consultant’s we must demonstrate unfailing expertise in the 5 – C’s of business consulting:

*Providing Credible people leadership to the company, with an emphasis on the “human” versus the “capital” side of human capital.

*Building a Collaborative company culture.

*Leveraging the uniqueness of the company Culture. Doing what is right for the company.

*Influencing appropriate Change  management at the organizational level.

*Knowing what Customers, want from the business

3.  Implementing a people plan that focuses on:

  • HR Service Delivery – enabling employees through effective systems, processes, and programs reflective of the company
  • Talent Management – recruitment, development and retention of key people

 

Focusing on these priorities will help ensure HR business consultants are successfully contributing to company growth and profitability.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of HR’s Top Priority in 2015 tomorrow.

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Gord MacDonald specializes in providing executive-level HR expertise to organizations where HR leadership is needed on an advisory, interim, contract or project basis. Through The Talent Company, and his own consulting firm HR Solutions, he works with a diverse range of businesses to develop and implement human capital strategies in support of business issues. He has in-depth experience across: Human Capital Strategy; Building Talent and Strong Teams; Building Strong Corporate Cultures; Employee Engagement;  Leading Change; Employee Communications; and, Delivering Tangible Results. Prior to moving in to consulting, Gord held HR leadership roles  at LoyaltyOne, American Express, Hogg Robinson and Genworth Canada. Gord can be found on LinkedIn and Twitter.

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 15, 2014

12 Days of Talent: Day 2 – 2 Outcome-Focused Recruitment Metrics

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2  Outcome-Focused Recruitment Metrics

How many of us in recruiting are getting too caught up in recruitment metrics these days? We seem to feel that having data on every move a recruiter makes will lead to a better recruitment function. Are we focused on too many metrics in recruitment and are we in fact slowing down the overall effectiveness of our function by creating a too heavily measured environment? And do our business leaders really care about all of these metrics?

We need to be concerned with the engagement levels of our recruiters who are in my opinion the most important factor in an effective recruitment function. Recruiters are getting frustrated with the increased level of measures being used to evaluate their performance. They dislike the increased time it is taking them away from core recruiting to provide data inputs used for reporting. We can’t forget about the importance of the engagement of our recruiters and ensuring metrics aren’t becoming a barrier or blockage to successful recruiting. We also don’t want to build an environment for our recruiters that make them feel and perform as if they are working in a call centre.

Don’t get me wrong, metrics can be a great way to tell a story or use to analyze potential problems within a recruitment function but I continue to hear stories of recruitment functions getting too caught up with metrics and spending too much time generating fancy looking reports full of data that they think the business wants to see.

Let’s think of what is important from the business perspective – which should be what is the true outcome of our work and our impact to the organization’s bottom line.  That’s all they truly want to hear from us.  They aren’t interested in the thirty page presentation on how we decreased their cost per hire by 10% or improved the interview to hire ratio by 20%.

Our businesses all feel the pressure from their shareholders, their employees and their customers.  So from a business perspective, my 2 most important measures of recruitment are:

  • Quality of Hire
  • Service Delivery Excellence

Quality of Hire

This should measure the true outcome of the new hire’s performance and the direct impact to the organization’s bottom line. This measure can be taken in the new hires first 6 months or 1 year. Simply prequalify the primary goals or targets of the new hire with the hiring leader prior to hiring for the role. Did the new hire meet, exceed, or fail to meet these goals or targets. If the new hire exceeded their goals, what was the direct impact to the organization – this is the ultimate outcome and my recommended measure of recruitment success.

Recruiter Service Delivery

This should measure how effective the recruiter was in delivering the recruitment service to their client, the hiring leader. This measure should be taken following the new hires start with the organization and can be done using a simple survey asking if the recruiter met, exceeded, or failed to meet their expectations in terms of process and outcome.  Expectation setting with hiring leaders is a major component of this measure and only helps when measuring a hiring leader’s satisfaction with the performance of the recruiter and the function.  A great tool for recruiters to use with their hiring leaders is a service level agreement which sets the expectations of the relationship and service on both sides.

So the next time you are looking through endless pages of recruitment data, ask yourself is this the data most important to me and the business?

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Simon Parkin is the Practice Leader for HR, Recruitment and Talent Management Solutions at The Talent Company – www.thetalent.co  Simon is recognized as a global thought leader in the acquisition and management of talent and has successfully transformed the Talent function for organizations of all sizes. Simon works closely with clients to build, develop and innovate their Recruitment, Talent and HR functions. He is a former global leader of Recruitment and Talent for a Fortune 100 company. Simon is a featured speaker at a number of HR and Recruitment conferences across North America and an author of many acclaimed articles on innovative Recruitment, Talent and HR trends and best practices. Simon’s full profile can be found at http://ca.linkedin.com/in/simonparkin1 and he can be reached at simon.parkin@thetalent.co

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 12, 2014

12 Days of Talent: Day 3 – The 3 Steps in Talent Optimization

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The 3 Steps in Talent Optimization

First of all, what is Talent Optimization?

I get asked this question often and usually by individuals who confuse it with the function of talent development or talent management within their organization.

My definition of Talent Optimization is simply the alignment between the business strategy and the plan for your most important organizational asset, your talent.

It involves three critical steps:

  1. Start with your business strategy and assess its impacts on your talent needs.

The business strategy needs to be at the core of talent optimization.  The business strategy has to drive the desired organization talent outcomes.  Every talent initiative your organization develops, sponsors and participates in must be steered directly from where the business wants to go.  Without this alignment back to your business strategy your organization is simply wasting its time, efforts and money for initiatives that aren’t supporting what is important to your organization’s success.  So many companies have invested heavily in talent focused programs and initiatives over the years which look great…..but many times when I ask them why the created the program they aren’t able to align the purpose of their high visibility programs back to the business strategy.  Simply put, these companies have spent lots of money on “window dressings” and failed to focus their investments into ones that will shape their organization’s talent to where it needs to go.

  1. Assess your current talent to effectively understand current skills and capabilities.

Similar to analyzing the value of an organization’s asset, understanding your organization’s own talent and their capabilities is another critical factor within talent optimization.  Companies need to properly gauge their own talent’s skills, abilities, and limitations to effectively understand the gaps between their current talent and the desired skills and abilities needed to successfully achieve their business strategy and goals.  Very few companies are able to do this successfully.  Most companies understand the skills and competencies needed within each role but fail to understand the full capabilities and experiences of the talent working within that role.  Companies recruit and hire simply to fill their roles and fail to recognize the other skills, abilities and experiences of the new hire beyond the requirements the role.  There are so many great tools and technologies available for organizations to gain a better understanding of their talent which is essential to building an effective organization talent strategy and plan.

  1. Move, develop and recruit talent successfully to meet the organizational needs and goals.

An organization’s ability to effectively move, develop and recruit talent is the third critical factor for an organization to optimize talent.  Companies must be self-aware and understand their true capabilities within talent management, talent development and talent acquisition.  An organization who isn’t effective in managing and developing their own talent will need to rely more on hiring new talent to fulfill the requirements of the business strategy.  The organization must understand the limitations of their talent function and make the appropriate decision to either invest quickly in resolving their functional deficiencies or work around them.

Talent optimization starts at the top of the organization and shouldn’t be just another HR exercise which the executive team and the rest of the organization isn’t fully supporting.  Talent optimization is an organizational function – not just an HR function.

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Simon Parkin is the Practice Leader for HR, Recruitment and Talent Management Solutions at The Talent Company – www.thetalent.co  Simon is recognized as a global thought leader in the acquisition and management of talent and has successfully transformed the Talent function for organizations of all sizes. Simon works closely with clients to build, develop and innovate their Recruitment, Talent and HR functions. He is a former global leader of Recruitment and Talent for a Fortune 100 company. Simon is a featured speaker at a number of HR and Recruitment conferences across North America and an author of many acclaimed articles on innovative Recruitment, Talent and HR trends and best practices. Simon’s full profile can be found at http://ca.linkedin.com/in/simonparkin1 and he can be reached at simon.parkin@thetalent.co

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 11, 2014

12 Days of Talent: Day 4 – 4 Reasons Why Onboarding Is Your Competitive Advantage

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4 Reasons Why Onboarding Is Your Competitive Advantage

In a world of hyper efficiency and doing more with less, Onboarding for most is an aspect focused on short-term tasks and getting a new hire settled in. It often starts with being brought to their desk, given a laptop, asked to setup their voicemail, email and then of course, the journey starts to fill out copious forms and reading through mind numbing company documents that “help you get familiar with us”. Our view is that this common approach is too systematic and critically void of what Onboarding is truly supposed to be – a human experience.

Onboarding is not a checklist, nor should it be an attempt to get a new hire to a desk and setup. It is a unique opportunity to show your new member that your external brand mirrors your internal brand. What is promoted externally as a wonderful place to build a career is not only words on a website but is in fact tangible and can be experienced within every aspect of your organization. Additionally, Onboarding should be an experience that provides a new employee with the opportunity to engage, socialize, understand your company’s culture and embrace its core values.

For the few that recognize Onboarding as a competitive edge, it is considered a series of milestones that can often last up to one year. For these exemplars, Onboarding includes mentoring and coaching, networking opportunities, formal goal setting, training, development plans and it is integrated into the talent management process and part of the overall talent strategy. Executing on this well not only produces an engaged employee but it also generates the following:

  1. New brand ambassadors for your company and, hopefully, a source for new and otherwise untapped candidate pipelines
  2. Valuable competitive and industry intelligence
  3. Robustness in your talent management program as existing employees are given opportunities to expand their skills beyond functional areas
  4. Leadership becoming more “connected” to their employee base.

Within these organizations, Onboarding is a shared accountability. It is not the responsibility of HR but rather includes the contribution of many. More importantly, the onus resides with the performance manager to ensure the new hire has a successful first year.

Companies that view Onboarding as a set of painful steps facilitated by checklists are missing out on a unique opportunity. It is a short window of opportunity that provides you with a chance to connect, engage and develop the talent that you have hired, not another number that is added to a report.

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Joe Minaudo is the leader of the Recruitment Strategy and Transformation practice with The Talent Company (www.thetalent.co), a human resources consulting firm that works closely with clients to develop, optimize and innovate their Recruitment and Talent practices. Joe possesses more than 15 years of recruitment, talent management and workforce planning experience. He has lead recruitment and workforce planning functions for both international and global Big 4 consulting firms. Joe can be found at the following social tools LinkedIn and Twitter.

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 10, 2014

12 Days of Talent: Day 5 – 5 Steps To Building Proactive Pipelines of External Talent

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5 Steps To Building Proactive Pipelines of External Talent

One of the continuing challenges facing the Recruitment function is moving from the traditional, reactive and primarily transactional focus to a proactive and enhanced recruitment model.

Think about when you sit down with your hiring leaders to scope a new open position and the role details. When you ask the hiring leaders for a proposed start date for a new hire, how many of them responded with “ASAP” or “yesterday”? How many of your hiring leaders complain about the time it takes to recruit talent externally? And how many of us recruiters continue to get frustrated with these unrealistic pressures from hiring leaders? We know that for the most part, top external talent just doesn’t fall into our laps.

Effective sourcing takes time especially for tougher and more specialized positions to fill.

Over the past few years, I have been working with clients to build and develop effective proactive pipelines of top external talent. Building this type of pipeline isn’t for the light-hearted; it takes time and effort and requires planning, proper resourcing, as well as a skilled recruiter. The planning and the resourcing are the keys to success – proactive pipelining cannot be successfully implemented without the appropriate amount of time devoted to this initiative by a skilled sourcer and recruiter.

The return on investment of proactive pipelining is more than worth the effort. I have witnessed first-hand the enhanced quality of hire via this proactive channel as time is no longer the recruiter’s enemy. Beyond quality of hire, the average time to fill a position is reduced by on average 10-12 days as the sourcing of the top external talent has already been completed prior to the position becoming open.

So how do you get started with building these proactive pipelines of external talent? I look at it as a simple 5 step process:

Plan

Identify

Build

Manage

Execute

 

#1 – Plan

By far the most important step of this process is the planning. Within the planning stage you need to determine what position or positions you plan on building these pipelines for. I would recommend selecting only a few positions, those you and your business deem “critical” to your organization’s success and bottom line either now or within the next year. Determining what positions are “critical” is a difficult task. If you ask any hiring leader they will say that all of their open positions are “critical”. This will force you to walk a political tight rope to prioritize “criticalness”. You should work with the top-level business leaders to determine which positions they think are “critical”. Once you have your critical position(s) identified, you need to invest your time into understanding all about the position and why it would be attractive to potential candidates. Remember, as it is proactive, you are recruiting for a position that isn’t currently open. Knowing all the features and the upside of the position will allow you to effectively sell the potential opportunity to the top talent.

#2 – Identify

Once the planning is complete it is time to identify the top external talent in the market. This is where your skills as a top recruiter will come into play and requires you to be at the top of your game. I always go by the rule that the majority of the top talent in the external market is passive and not actively searching for a new opportunity. Your typical transactional and reactive recruitment sourcing channels won’t effectively work, so don’t count on simply posting the position to job boards as a solution to attract top talent. Be aggressive. Use your networks and referrals to determine who is at the top of their field within the market. Who is the top talent at your competition, or within a recognized leading top talent organization within your geographic area? Get out of the office and do some true recruiting to identify those resources outside your organization that will bring value and success to your company.

 #3 – Build

This is when you worry about getting them interested and excited about your organization. You have identified the individuals you think are the best of the best for the skill set you are looking for. Now it is time to determine the ideal approach to contact and sell to this talent in order to effectively build your proactive pipeline. Again, this is where a recruiter must be a “salesperson” and effectively sell the talent on the organization and the opportunities potentially coming in the future. You must be honest and set expectations that you are recruiting proactively for future opportunities and they have been identified to you as top talent within the market. Don’t be too aggressive with the candidate and always ask if it is alright to keep in touch within an agreed upon timeframe. Also use this opportunity to network further and ask for referrals for other positions you are recruiting for. Be careful to ensure the communication with these candidates is very positive and is a “win-win” for both the candidate and you as the recruiter.

#4 – Manage

By “Manage”, I mean, effectively manage your pipelined candidates. You need to ensure you nurture and speak with your pipelined candidates on a regular basis as was established and agreed upon when you first spoke with the candidates. If possible use technology to effectively document and track your pipeline – this is where a CRM tool could be effectively used by recruiters similar to the way salespeople use this tool for building and managing sales pipelines.

Steps 2, 3 and 4 are ongoing. You should always be on the lookout for new top talent externally and ensure you are effectively building and managing your pipelines. Again, this is an investment and will pay off when your organization most needs it to.

#5 – Execute

Step 5 is sometimes forgotten and it is simply to execute once one of your critical positions becomes open. Your sourcing is hopefully already complete and now when your hiring leaders answer your “when would you like the person to start” with “ASAP” you can pull out a slate of pre-sourced and qualified top external talent and sit back and relax………ok, maybe not relax but you will be feeling very good about your efforts as will your business leaders.

And of course, you need to continually monitor the success of your proactive pipelining efforts – how are you going to show your business leaders the ROI of your efforts?

Obviously there are many more details within each of these 5 steps to effectively build proactive pipelines of external talent and I hope this high level description provides insight into how to further add value to your organization’s hunt for key talent.

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 Simon Parkin is the Practice Leader for HR, Recruitment and Talent Management Solutions at The Talent Company – www.thetalent.co  Simon is recognized as a global thought leader in the acquisition and management of talent and has successfully transformed the Talent function for organizations of all sizes. Simon works closely with clients to build, develop and innovate their Recruitment, Talent and HR functions. He is a former global leader of Recruitment and Talent for a Fortune 100 company. Simon is a featured speaker at a number of HR and Recruitment conferences across North America and an author of many acclaimed articles on innovative Recruitment, Talent and HR trends and best practices. Simon’s full profile can be found at http://ca.linkedin.com/in/simonparkin1 and he can be reached at simon.parkin@thetalent.co

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 9, 2014

12 Days of Talent: Day 6 – The Top 6 HR Disciplines with the Greatest Impact On Revenue

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As a Talent Acquisition advisor to a number of the largest organizations in the world, it still surprises me on the number of organizations of all sizes who fail to see the importance and the impact of Recruitment (and the other “talent” related functions) to their bottom line.  In a time when the business is pressing Human Resources to do a better job of quantifying their impact to the organization, there are still so many HR functions simply not investing enough into their recruitment practices.

One of my favourite studies showing the direct impact of Recruitment to an organization’s bottom line was done in 2012 by The Boston Consulting Group.  Here is a snapshot from the study of the top 6 HR Disciplines and their corresponding impacts on Revenue Growth and Profit Margin for the organization:

HR Discipline Impact on Revenue Growth Impact on Profit Margin
1. Recruitment 3.5x 2.0x
2. Onboarding 2.5x 1.9x
3. Managing Talent 2.2x 2.1x
4. Employer Branding 2.4x 1.8x
5. Performance Mgmt & Rewards 2.1x 2.0x
6. Leadership Effectiveness 2.1x 1.8x

Source:    Boston Consulting Group – 2012

 

If HR were a business and this research was presented to HR showing the impact of each of their HR divisions, as a business it would be a no-brainer which divisions they would invest the most money and time into.

In the past few years, we have worked with a growing number of HR leaders who are slowly recognizing the importance of investing properly into their recruitment talent and practices.  Many organizations and HR functions ask us to help them understand why their recruitment efforts continue to fall short – for the most part, the answer is usually due to their limited capacity and capabilities. This is where we are engaged to help them turn their function around.  Without the proper investment in your recruitment function, you will fail to take advantage of one of the major drivers within HR to make a significant impact to your organization’s bottom line.

 

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 Simon Parkin is the Practice Leader for HR, Recruitment and Talent Management Solutions at The Talent Company – www.thetalent.co  Simon is recognized as a global thought leader in the acquisition and management of talent and has successfully transformed the Talent function for organizations of all sizes. Simon works closely with clients to build, develop and innovate their Recruitment, Talent and HR functions. He is a former global leader of Recruitment and Talent for a Fortune 100 company. Simon is a featured speaker at a number of HR and Recruitment conferences across North America and an author of many acclaimed articles on innovative Recruitment, Talent and HR trends and best practices. Simon’s full profile can be found at http://ca.linkedin.com/in/simonparkin1 and he can be reached at simon.parkin@thetalent.co

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

 

 

 

 

December 8, 2014

The Talent Company’s 12 Days of Talent: Day 7 – 7 Reasons Why Recruitment Should Partner with Marketing

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7 Reasons Why Recruitment Should Partner with Marketing

Every organization reaches a point where its ability to attract new talent demands a new, creative approach. The old way simply doesn’t cut it anymore, and hiring managers grow impatient. So where does one find new inspiration?

Acquiring talent is undeniably similar to marketing. In marketing, as in finding talent, customers (and candidates) must be engaged, convinced and nurtured before a sale (or hire) is completed.

Ultimately, any organization that is struggling to keep up and compete for talent would be remiss to not leverage its internal marketing expertise. Here are a few marketing themes to help reposition an organization on a path to success:

  1. Create a positive experience every time. Some of the largest organizations in the world spend millions of dollars to ensure that customer touch points are positive – which, ultimately, improves the customer experience and drives up revenue. The same principle can be applied to the candidate interview experience. The consequences of a poor interview experience last far beyond the interview itself, as colleagues, friends and family surely come to know about it. It’s key for organizations to ensure that every candidate interaction is positive.
  2. Use job posting titles to engage. A job title is an opportunity to stand out and engage talent. How can any recruiter expect to engage quality talent with a title as unoriginal as Network Administrator? Organizations should use this opportunity (or “copy space” as marketers refer to it) to educate candidates on what makes the organization unique and sets it apart. For example World Class International Organization in Search of Network Infrastructure Star is sure to get much more positive attention – not to mention clicks and inquiries.
  3. Leverage other channels. Attracting talent these days is so competitive, that in many organizations opportunities remain unfilled for months. However, with the volume of tools and people available, there’s no reason for this! I have over 1,000 connections on LinkedIn, who, in turn, connect me to nearly 1,600,000 people (via extended networks). That’s a lot of extra people to help put an opportunity in front of the right candidate. Don’t forget to engage your extended network and ask for help to spread the word! A word of caution however: reciprocity is key. You, too, must be willing to share opportunities when asked. Another channel to consider is recruitment vendors. They’re an extension of an organization. Just remember that to ensure that they have the right collateral and share appropriate messaging on your organizations behalf.
  4. Create content worth sharing. Content (such as a job description) should do more than just communicate job details. Rather, it can be used to establish brand, convey key differentiators, and elevate an organization as a leading employer – provided, of course, that the content is worth sharing. If so, then one of the most potent and inexpensive ways to spread the word is through social media; especially now that integrated communication features such as Share, Like, Re-Tweet and Pin It make it effortless for people to share compelling content.
  5. Repeat and schedule updates. Another great social media feature is the ability to strategically position content in front of a target market when they’re most likely to read it. Many social media aggregators make it easy to schedule and repeatedly distribute content. It’s like running a 30-second commercial during the Super Bowl because the content is distributed to a targeted and engaged audience. And best of all, it’s free!
  6. Build and foster communities. A well-developed community engages people and allows them to remain connected to an organization’s brand. Communities come in different forms and sizes, including simple LinkedIn groups and Facebook pages, to comprehensive alumni programs that provide key market updates, attract new talent, and foster new business leads. A well-maintained community builds brand awareness, creates interest, and can be a fantastic source for new and engaged candidates.
  7. Conduct market research. Prior to entering a new market or launching a new product, organizations conduct research to understand market influences, identify obstacles to success, and discover how to best position their product or service. Talent attraction can certainly follow that lead. It amazes me how often talent is described as “one of the top two most important assets for an organization,” and yet it’s rarely given the same resources and budget as a marketing strategy. Market research enables organizations to gain insights on what influences and motivates top talent to consider new career opportunities.

While each of the themes above are beneficial, frankly, the only way to measurably take recruiting to the next level is to embed the principles of marketing within every aspect of an organization’s talent attraction strategy. This includes identifying, engaging, nurturing, and onboarding talent.

Of course, all of this begs the question: “What about organizations that lack the required marketing resources, or whose marketing department barely helps out with simple branding initiatives — let alone all of this extra talent attraction stuff?”

This is a valid concern and common challenge. To find an answer, I consulted a number of marketing leaders within my network. All of their feedback boiled down to this: talent attraction functions must do their homework, build a business case, and convince leadership that it is a worthy investment for additional marketing resources and budget.

In addition, organizations are wise to socialize what they want to achieve by seeking the advice of marketing leaders – because they likely know how, and how not, to proceed. At the same time, bringing marketing leaders into the conversation helps build early consensus and support, which is typically a deciding factor to the executive who will (or won’t) be releasing the additional budget.

In conclusion, as the global economy continues to improve, the fight for talent will grow with intensity. It will be a difficult challenge for many companies. Traditional methods of attracting talent are becoming less useful, and so the need for a different approach is growing. And on a humanistic level, how we interact has also evolved as social media empowers the average person to become more collaborative, bold and influential as opinions are voiced live and with a global reach. One poor interview experience with a candidate, and hundreds — if not thousands — will know about it in a matter of days (sometimes hours).

What this also means is that the close alignment between marketing and talent attraction needs to be more prevalent – and not just to avoid negative candidate feedback, but as a means to better understand and engage hard-to-find talent tactically and strategically.

My opinion is that we hit an inflexion point a while ago, and that talent attraction’s next frontier is clearly a partnership with marketing.

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Joe Minaudo is the leader of the Recruitment Strategy and Transformation practice with The Talent Company (www.thetalent.co), a human resources consulting firm that works closely with clients to develop, optimize and innovate their HR, Recruitment and Talent practices. Joe possesses more than 15 years of recruitment, talent management and workforce planning experience. He has lead recruitment and workforce planning functions for both international and global Big 4 consulting firms. Joe can be found at the following social tools LinkedIn and Twitter.

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 5, 2014

12 Days of Talent: Day 8 – 8 Practices to Develop Your Leaders

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8 Practices to Develop Your Leaders

The success of any organization is highly dependent on its leaders. While there is no substitute for choosing the right leaders to begin with, leaders can become more successful through the development of a sound leadership development strategy that utilizes a number of the practices identified below.  Leadership development has been linked as a positive financial driver and a true competitive edge between companies that have strong leadership development programs and to those that do not.

Fresh from the results of The Talent Company’s Pulse on Leadership study, we asked the study’s participants what are the top practices their organization’s use to develop leaders.

Here are the Top 8 organizational practices used to develop leaders:

#8 – Mentorship – Mentorship refers to a professional developmental relationship in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person helps a less experienced or less knowledgeable person.  For leadership development purposes there is value in leaders or potential leaders being on both sides of a mentoring relationship.  They can gain from the experience and insight from a more experienced leader who is their mentor or develop leadership qualities through being a mentor to a less experienced employee.

#7 – 360-Degree Feedback – Research has consistently shown that 360-degree feedback is one of the most effective tools available for developing leaders. The main benefit is that it develops the essential self-awareness that motivates people to understand and ultimately develop themselves.

#6 – Rotational Assignments – Leaders gain knowledge and skills by learning different roles and/or facets of the organization over a set period of time.  These assignments enhance a leader’s knowledge, accomplishments, reach, impact, and influence across different aspects of their organization.

#5 – Executive Education – These are the academic programs at business schools worldwide for executives, business leaders and managers.  Many of the schools offer customized programs, which are tailored for the leaders within a specific organization.  Customized programs help organizations increase leadership capability by combining the science of business and performance management into specialized programs that enable leaders to develop new knowledge, skills and attitudes.

#4 – Stretch Assignments – The stretch assignment is a project or task given to leaders or potential new leaders which are beyond their current knowledge, skill level and comfort zone.  The stretch assignment challenges leaders by placing them into uncomfortable situations in order to learn and grow.

#3 – Action learning – Action learning involves putting participants into teams and having each team solve a real strategic challenge for their organization. The outcome is typically a recommendation to senior management that is either accepted or rejected. With the right levels of guidance, studies have shown action learning to be one of the most powerful leadership development practices available.

#2 – Executive Coaching – Having a great personal coach can be far more powerful than attending the best training. More and more organizations are making use of personal coaching for leadership development. Key ingredients of a great coach are training, relevant experience and objectivity.

#1 – A combination of all or a few of the leadership development practices identified above – The top organizations recognized for their strong leadership development programs utilize a combination of a number of leadership development practices identified above.

 

Leadership doesn’t come naturally to everyone, and it can’t be learned overnight. For an organization to be successful at developing their leader, you must approach it as a long-term journey of continuous growth and development.  Stay tuned for more results from The Talent Company’s Pulse on Leadership study.

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Simon Parkin is the Practice Leader for Recruitment, Talent and HR Solutions at The Talent Company – www.thetalent.co  Simon is recognized as a global thought leader in the acquisition and management of talent and has successfully transformed the Talent function for organizations of all sizes. Simon works closely with clients to build, develop and innovate their Recruitment, Talent and HR functions. He is a former global leader of Recruitment and Talent for a Fortune 100 company. Simon is a featured speaker at a number of HR and Recruitment conferences across North America and an author of many acclaimed articles on innovative Recruitment, Talent and HR trends and best practices. Simon’s full profile can be found athttp://ca.linkedin.com/in/simonparkin1

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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December 3, 2014

The Talent Company’s 12 Days of Talent: Day 10 – 10 Ways To Use An Executive Coach

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10 Ways To Use An Executive Coach

Executive coaching is a partnership between an individual and their coach. The basic premise in coaching is that we are all capable and creative. Coaching is a deliberate process used to harness this capability and creativity to enhance an individual’s ability to accomplish their goals. In coaching an individual’s decisions and actions remain their own; through the coaching process they are held accountable for keeping their commitments through a confidential and trusting relationship with the coach.

Coaching takes place through a series of interactive conversations that are scheduled on a regular basis either in face to face meetings or via phone. The conversations are focused on what the individual needs to accomplish. The coaching interaction helps individuals leverage their skills and knowledge to move forward with their goals, it allows participants to focus. A Coach creates a safe environment to listen, ask questions, reflect back, challenge and acknowledge the individual. A Coach will champion, advocate and provide authentic feedback to support the individual’s growth and development.

How could you use an Executive Coach?

  1. Develop vision and goals
  2. As a sounding board; explore possibilities & building on past success
  3. Facilitate the brainstorming of strategies and/or action plans, including creating realistic timelines and understand/anticipate obstacles that could prevent the desired outcomes
  4. Help you learn a new skill and/or develop a competency
  5. For authentic feedback, encouragement and validation
  6. Support successful role transition
  7. Gain insights including different perspectives into yourself and your business relationships and situations
  8. Help you maintain your commitment, focus and clarity throughout the journey
  9. To assess and improve important working relationships
  10. Encourage you to sustain a behavioural change

The impact of coaching can be profound, both for individuals and organizations. Proven benefits have included improved employee engagement and leadership capacity, leaders delivering on individual and organizational goals, greater management effectiveness, quicker transition periods for leaders moving to new positions, improved communications, and stronger working relationships.

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The Talent Company works with organizations across North America providing an established Executive Coaching Practice with a full roster of experienced and certified Coaches to meet all of our clients needs.  For more information on our Executive Coaching Practice please visit http://thetalent.co/executive-coaching/ or contact Kathleen Jinkerson directly at 1-866-612-7119.

The Talent Company is a human resources consulting firm that work closely with clients to develop, optimize and innovate their HR, Leadership and Talent practices.  The Talent Company is comprised of leading Human Resources, Talent, Recruitment, Leadership, Compensation and Total Rewards experts with proven track records of client and organizational success. Our collective resources, vast experience, and extensive industry knowledge enhance our ability to deliver outstanding value to our clients.  As human resources leaders with in-depth experience at a number of global organizations, strong reputations for HR and Talent excellence, we possess the proven experience to execute on your needs. We have “walked a mile in our clients’ shoes”.

For more information on The Talent Company and our 12 Days of Talent project, visit www.thetalent.co

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