Humanize every step of the employee experience. That was the grand theme of this year’s opening keynote just over a week ago at ERE Expo 2011 Spring by Matthew Jeffery, global director of talent brand for Electronic Arts, titled “Recruitment 3.0: Why traditional recruiters will be replaced by ‘emotional marketers.’” His speech emphasized the importance of emotionally connecting with candidates and employees alike and creating talent communities via social, mobile, cloud and collaboration technology and activities.
Some of us have been advocating such an approach for years, but we’ve been the early adopters while everyone else was still on the front end of the mainstream. Yes, the front end of mainstream. It was refreshing to me that the collective energy of the attendees at the conference — from VPs of talent acquisition and HR to recruiting directors to corporate recruiters — was buzzing with enthusiasm for adopting more progressive strategies.
Finally, the glacial pace of change in our industry is about to speed up. Emotional connectivity, meet hip and fresh technology; this change aligns with my Ventana Research agenda this year (see “Reimagining Talent Management and Technology in 2011”), and I’m really excited about the benchmark research we’re going to undertake this year.
I believe that talent management must be reimagined so organizations can acquire, empower and retain talent more effectively. To work, this reimagining must include the right talent acquisition and management technology, which can help your organization screen, assess and select the very best talent; manage the inordinate amount of data you now collect to assess, appraise and train those currently in your employ; and in collaboration with Finance and operations, analyze all your workforce data to manage your entire business and retain your top talent.
Five fairly new but maturing business technologies can enhance our abilities to do these things: business collaboration, social media, analytics, business mobility and cloud computing. In this context, I want to profile some of the companies I met with recently, all of which fit into my idea of talent management reimagined and utilize at least some of the technologies listed above. While talent management suites have been maturing over the years, recruiting technology has only just begun to innovate and change the way we recruit and hire.
Social recruiting has taken the field of talent acquisition by storm and for good reason. Social networking has connected the world in ways undreamed of since the Internet became widely used in the mid-1990s, and proprietary recruiting technologies such as Jobvite Source and Jobvite Hire enable companies, candidates and employees alike to source and track directly from their online networks and internal talent pools. Referrals, CRM systems, applicant tracking software and robust recruiting and hiring analytics are all very capable, and facilitating this human interaction online is critical for humanizing an employer’s brand and creating Jeffery’s emotional connections between employer, candidate and employee. Jobvite partners with SuccessFactors and its Business Execution (BizX) Suite, and its APIs work with both HRMS and talent management systems as well as job search engines and social networks.
Jobs2Web also taps the power of social networks, in aggregating where and how companies post their jobs and source their candidates. From search engines to social networks to employee referrals to research portals to mobile recruiting to sourcing past applicants, Jobs2Web’s recruiting marketing platform leads the way in automating how recruiters attract potential talent. The platform includes measurement capabilities in its Recruiting Dashboard – analytics that most competing products lack. The reports and analytics in the dashboard track all sourcing and recruiting activities and combine them into talent supply chain metrics in an easy and intuitive format.
Talent Technology’s Talemetry Suite, which my colleague reviewed in detail in February, offers a unified and consistent method for recruiters and hiring managers to seek talent. The Talemetry suite contains applications to broadcast openings and match, profile, apply and connect talent to an organization’s hiring and applicant tracking process. Like products from Jobvite and Jobs2Web, the broadcast application provides a single method to post a position to Internet and corporate job boards and internal employee portals. The matching application provides the ability to search and rank candidates among millions of resumes across various networks, along with ability to save records of these efforts for auditing and compliance purposes. The connect application promotes the user organization’s brand and open positions to social media and Internet-based portals. The apply application imports candidates’ information, including from social media, into applicant tracking and hiring applications. The profile application compiles all the available information and summarizes it for recruiting and hiring managers. Each of these modules brings a simple approach similar to those of Facebook or LinkedIn. Unlike its competitors, Talent Tech has developed a unified sourcing and recruiting solution.
Traditional reference checks don’t add much value to the hiring decision – typically you ask candidates to provide three (coached) professional and/or personal references who may or may not be able to answer questions beyond where someone worked, in what capacity and for how long. Even for those who can answer more fully, the conversation tends to be brief and full of fluff. Now talent management industry veteran Yves Lermusi has used recent technology and research in expert performance and neuroscience to develop two compatible products, Pre-Hire Checkup and 360 Checkup. The first allows recruiters to ask candidates to invite their professional networks to provide a more complete review and report. The 360 Checkup product does the same for current employees. You can read about Yves’ methodology and research behind the products in his book Reference Check 2.0.
I first viewed the HireVue Interview Management platform last December at the HR Demo Show. It was interesting because video is barely utilized by HR and recruiting professionals, and HireVue has been changing the video landscape with high-quality production, sharing and tracking tools. The growth of global mobility and the virtual workforce has forced companies to find interviewing methods in the final candidate stages that offer cost-effective alternatives to costly face-to-face interviews. HireVue’s online Interview Management Platform gives hiring professionals the ability to schedule and capture video interviews and then evaluate candidates over the Internet. It also manages collaboration and workflow across decentralized, multiple location and/or global organizations, supporting faster, better informed hiring decisions. Partnerships with Taleo and PreVisor help solidify HireVue’s position as the leader in video interviewing and assessing, although there are many competitors in this space.
These types of technologies are giving recruiting and hiring professionals the time and tools to humanize their activities and their employer brands and to connect emotionally with candidates. Those who aren’t taking advantage of them risk losing out on the best talent and further hobble their short-term hiring and long-term retention goals.
Team - Ventana Research