All posts by Todd

Todd is a member of StaffingSoft Training Team.
StaffingSoft is an enterprise-wide Applicant Tracking System ("ATS") / Recruiting Software featuring a suite of tools that effectively integrate and manage talent recruiting, retention, and management from internal staff, to outside vendors, to candidates globally.

Average Time to Hire

Finding the right talent on time has an impact on a business bottom line. HR professionals have a responsibility to minimize business interruption and reduce the risk caused by having open positions. This means reducing the amount of time a position becomes available to the day a new employee starts, although there are many tools to measure the time to fill a position but there is not a set average time to hire that applies to all industries.  There are too many variables depending on the market, the position, company’s location, the time it takes you to research the resource, advertise, head hunt etc…. Unfortunately you can not put specific metrics into place to calculate that. You can maybe estimate it.

For example, IT positions will take longer to fill than clerk positions. High volume/low complexity jobs, such as call center operators, will be hired much quicker than Healthcare certified positions. At very high-level stats average time to hire may be between 21-30 days for non-exempt, 40-45 days for exempt, 60 days for Manager level, 90 days for Director level and 120-180 days for VP level.

Time to hire appear to be one of the more poorly understood metrics in the field of staffing.  The first thing to acknowledge when looking at time to hire is that it is primarily a measure of staffing speed; it is not necessarily associated with candidate quality. There is little value in making bad hires quickly, and the emphasis time to hire places on time over quality significantly limits its value for measuring staffing performance. Simply put, time to hire is grossly inadequate for evaluating overall staffing effectiveness. However, it does provide useful information for evaluating staffing efficiency. Like most staffing metrics, time to hire also suffers from poor definition.

For example, some organizations measure time to hire starting with the initial approval of a requisition, while others don’t start measuring it until a requisition has been assigned to a recruiter or posted to a career site. One of the most critical difference in time-to-hire definitions is whether to stop measuring when an offer is secured from an approved candidate or to include the time that elapses between when a candidate accepts an offer and when they actually start the job (these metrics are more appropriately referred to as “time to fill” and “time to start,” respectively).

Some variables that affect time to start may not affect time to fill, and vice verse. For example, company policies restricting internal employees from transferring to new positions until replacements are found for their current roles may radically lengthen time to start, but could have little effect on time to fill.

Ignoring these variables could result in a company falsely assuming that staffing performance is high because time-to-hire numbers are low, when in actuality their staffing practices may be systematically hindering company performance. Making the effort to clearly define and understand metrics such as time-to-fill and time-to-start will not only improve understanding of staffing performance, but can also lead to somewhat counterintuitive but highly profitable changes in staffing strategies.

How much personal information is too much for a professional social networking?

Social media is becoming a vital form of connecting in personal and professional circles of our lives in recent years.  As the number of members to these social networking increases by each minute, It is almost inevitable not to be part of this new exciting trend.  

Professional social network websites such as LinkedIn offers its members the greatest gift of exposure to new connections and businesses at no cost.  It provides great opportunities to companies and professionals to market their services, increase awareness of their offering, and building professional relationships. 

The first place the colleague, acquaintances or prospective clients, will look for is your personal profile where they learn about your background, interest and professional expertise. 

Here comes the question that how much of personal information you are willing to share about yourself on professional networking websites.   

Some strongly believe that there should not be a cross passing between personal and professional social networking and in business context it simply not appropriate to divulge your personal daily life events with the world at large.  They further argue that keeping a positive professional online reputation on social media’s has a strong impact on the way you are being viewed in the social online medias by your prospective clients.

However, there are others who don’t mind to cross the line and share more about themselves on their professional social websites.  They also strongly believe that opening up parts of their personal life to their professional social networking circle will generate trust.  As prospective clients gain an insight to their personal life on daily basis, the relationship become stronger and the probability of making the sales will increase.  

Bottom line, the best practice is to use common sense and stay away from just sharing too much personal information that will effect negatively on your professional online reputation.

What Is the Best Way to Use LinkedIn as a Recruiting Tool?

First and for most, is to complete your profile so others can know you better. Your Summary should be well written since that is what people look at first.

 Following link is a good reading on how to optimize your profile: 

Make sure to provide links back to your organization’s website for additional information and/or additional job opportunities that aren’t listed on the social networking sites. It’s important to integrate social networking efforts to the branding and recruitment efforts in which your organization is engaged.

Integrating the various recruitment strategies already in place with social networking provides companies with more value for all their recruitment efforts and strengthens their brand with job applicants, customers and other important stakeholders. Using the company logo, colors, a consistent message, and critical links to the organization’s website pages of interest to active and passive jobseekers ties the social networking efforts to the rest of the organization’s recruitment efforts.

Create a personalized email invitation to include reason you wish to connect. Make it easy for the person to remember you and accept your invitation. Email it to all the prospective candidates so that they can link to you, this way you will build your popularity with no cost simply because they link to you instead of you linking to them. 

Join relevant groups and get involved with people that you can connect with and get to know. Be sincere about helping and people will approach you! 

Building credibility through recommendations and a great summary. Use the Questions and Answers feature to quickly establish yourself as an expert in your field. 

If you are your own boss and have your own business, you will get the most benefit from LinkedIn if you treat it like a marketing channel but using the language of networking. Similar to website linking the more websites link to your website the better ranking your website will have. Therefore you can drive people closer to you by networking to develop valued relationships so you can leverage those marketing efforts to produce the best results.

How to write better job description

A well define job description can attract qualified candidates faster!

If you want to find candidates who can start work with no learning curve, fit into your organization, get the job done, and exceed your highest expectations, then don’t underestimate the importance of knowing how to write a job description.

It’s crucial that you make writing job descriptions part of your overall business planning effort. You can’t simply start thinking about job descriptions every time you have a specific search to conduct for a hiring requisition.

You need to embed preparation of job descriptions within your human resources department as a central and fundamental basis for running HR. Take the time to write job descriptions for every position in your organization, not just the ones you are currently hiring for.

The job description needs to communicate clearly and concisely what responsibilities and tasks the job entails and to indicate the key qualifications of the job – the basic requirements (specific credentials or skills) – and, if possible, the attributes that underlie superior performance.

Don’t rely solely on past job description’s history as you’re creating the new job description. Focus instead on what the job needs to be in light of the company’s current needs and long-term objectives.

Job Description should have the following sections:

  • The Opportunity – this section should include basic information about the position: job title, a short description of the job and its purpose, company name, geographic location, branch or department, supervisor’s job title, salary target, special benefits, special requirements such as drug testing or security clearance.
  • Required Skills – This is where you define the skills, abilities, and attributes that the candidate needs to have. You may want to create a matrix that includes the following information: the competency; the experience, education or certification that is required; finally, specify to whether the competency is a required or if it is preferred.

A well-written job description consists of more than a laundry list of the tasks and responsibilities that the job entails. It should reflect a sense of priorities. It needs to be written clearly in simple language, contain information but not opinions or judgments, and avoid using words with “company specific” meanings. A well-written comprehensive job description for a management position might typically be about one to three pages in length.

Credentials (such as degrees and licenses) are absolute necessities in some jobs. You want to make sure whatever credentials you request should have a direct bearing on the candidate’s ability to become a top performer.

A job description should define what the person will actually do. Define the job qualifications such as skills, attributes, or credentials a person needs to perform the job. Clarify the actual tasks and responsibilities within the job description before you start thinking about what special attributes will be needed by the person who will be fulfilling those responsibilities.

Recruiting Trend for 2011

Is the economy recovering from the depth of the recession? What are the recruiting trends for 2011?

The economy will begin slowly to emerge in 2011 and some employers are becoming excited about possible job openings! Early findings suggest that opportunities will emerge but employers are hesitant to crank-up hiring. Be prepared for more uncertainty – seniors need to be ready for a sudden possible shift and internships are becoming high stake events! The college segment of the market is poised to rebound this year. While overall hiring across all degrees is expected to increase, hiring at the Bachelor’s level is expected to increase. Led by upturns in hiring in manufacturing, professional and scientific services, the federal government, and large commercial banks, the Bachelor’s market will enjoy its first expansion in two years. With this good news comes a word of caution. This step is the first out of a deep hole; yet, many organizations are still not in a position to contribute positively to hiring. 

The recruiting Trends for 2011:

  • Social Media – LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter have grown and many candidates using them on daily bases, the Twitter has grown form 300,00 users to well over one billion users, recruiters will use social medias more aggressively in 2011 to find passive candidates.

  • Job Boards – Although not as popular as once they used to be but still fairly common to find active candidates.  Job boards won’t disappear and die any time soon but the time large companies posting hundreds of job postings on a single job board under an unlimited package are nearly gone. Most Companies are now splitting their job board dollars between niche sites, social media sites and everyone uses LinkedIn for certain category levels.  LinkedIn is currently second-to-none, in my opinion.  Job Boards with strong reputations such as Monster and CareerBuilder and Nice Job boards with collaboration with aggregators will continue to succeed.  Those boards that are now incorporating more recruiter-like services like personalized short-listing, reference checking, and job post writing will succeed even better

  • Mobile Recruiting – Mobile Recruiting will be used more in 2011.  Candidates will respond to the latest positions being texted to them via their Smartphone as soon as they become available.  Companies with openings, or job boards, or Facebook Fan Pages will have the ability to simultaneously upload through an application (app or ATS system) to their users Smartphone as soon as a new job posting appears anywhere. Preliminary screening questions to be answering by a mobile phone.  Every online presence your company has for the purpose of recruiting must be configured in such a way that it can be read easily on a mobile device.  Mobile Phone and the development of new applications for recruiting will only increase in 2011. 

  • Virtual Job fairs – Imagine for a second being able to recruit job seekers all over the country in just one day, but without ever having to leave your office. What would this mean to your bottom line? Virtual career fairs provide an opportunity for employers and job seekers to meet and interact as if face to face, but from the comfort and convenience of their home or office. Career fairs for the most part are simply resume exchange opportunities, and if this is the case, this can be accomplished virtually.