Tag Archives: recruiting

Choosing the Proper Recruiting Model To Assist Your Company with Hiring

Choosing the proper recruiting model to work with your company is not an easy task. Many companies feel that all recruiting models are the same; when in fact there are vast differences. Let’s start with an explanation of the two most common recruiting models:
Continue reading Choosing the Proper Recruiting Model To Assist Your Company with Hiring

Winning Recruiting Strategies For A Tight Job Market

For those of you in the “trenches” of daily recruiting, it is pretty obvious that the job market has become very tight for many positions; especially many technical roles. Gone are the days from a couple of years ago when a company could just run an Internet ad for a position and get several great candidates who applied. This was the case, but not in this market. Candidates have or are gaining the advantage in the market.
Continue reading Winning Recruiting Strategies For A Tight Job Market

Recruiting Strategies To Assist in Filling Hard-To-Find Technical Positions

Anyone who has been hiring recently knows that it is becoming tougher and tougher to find good candidates for tough-to-fill technical positions. Examples of these position are found in Information Technology, Software Engineering, as well as other disciplines.

We’re in a tightening labor market where the candidates, not the companies, are beginning to get the upper hand. It’s happening slowly but surely and, with the economy improving, it is only going to get worse. I see recruiters struggling because companies don’t yet recognize this shift in the market. The mindset of hiring managers is still to ask recruiters to provide multiple candidates who met their “must have” criteria (usually a length list).
Continue reading Recruiting Strategies To Assist in Filling Hard-To-Find Technical Positions

How To Attract The Best Talent To Your Company

The key to success in attracting top talent is to make your company an employer of choice. A company must set itself up as a solid, well-organized enterprise and create compelling reasons for top-notch professionals to work there. Those reasons can include excellent compensation and benefits, advancement opportunities, regularly scheduled performance reviews, and other popular perks such as flextime.

Finding the top talent is often a difficult task. Most often, these individuals are not actively seeking new employment. That means companies have to dig deeper to find the top 5 percent. Direct hiring from primary competitors is a company’s best strategy. This involves sophisticated networking and sales ability.

One networking tactic is to determine which of your current employees have already come to you from key competitors. Ask them whom they would recommend hiring from those competitors. Even if a top candidate is ultimately not interested in your position, he or she may be able to refer someone else.

Typically, companies don’t part with top talent. This talent is often well compensated, which makes the stakes higher. In addition, a company will fight to keep them. Therefore, you must be able to offer something that their current employer doesn’t satisfy, such as a new technology or–best of all–a compelling company vision.

Communication With Candidates

Throughout my years in recruiting, I have always strived to communicate well with my candidates. I know that this has been appreciated, because I have received many compliments from various candidates who appreciate me keeping them in the loop as to where things stand with a certain position.

My philosophy is simple: I look at candidates as an “asset” and someone that I want to build a relationship with. I know that candidates realize that I am just the conduit between them and the company and that the company makes the final determination on how they want to hire. However, my goal is to keep the candidates as informed as possible. If I cannot help them with this particular job; it is possible that I can help them in the future (even years down the road). With technology the way it is today, it is pretty simple to stay in touch with candidates if you want to make the effort and value the relationship.

Excellent communication with candidates not only builds goodwill with your candidate base, but it also serves to build your brand. Hopefully, this will stay in the mind of a candidate if you ever reach out to them in the future.

Should I Pay Someone To Help Me Find My Next Job?

I get asked by candidates quite often if they can pay me to help them find their next job.  I tell those candidates that 99% of recruiters (including myself) are paid by the client when we make a placement.  Companies come to a specific recruiter and engage his or her services to recruit specific talent to fill specific roles.  Generally, recruiters do not work as “talent agents” to represent individual candidates to “shop” them around to various companies.  I will never accept money from a candidate in order to help them find a role.  I don’t feel that it is morally right to do this.

However, there are firms out there that will charge candidates really good money to represent them in their job search.  Under the guise of “Career Counseling”,  these firms will help candidates put together a resume, coach them on how to interview, and then tell the candidates that they will market their resume to various companies and recruiters.  There is a substantial fee for all this so-called service.  In addition, these firms generally get the candidates to sign an agreement that the candidate will owe a certain additional fee to the Career Counseling company if the candidate finds a job, whether the Career Counseling firm helps makes the placement or not.

There is something wrong about this business model where you lead the candidate on to think that your firm will open up doors for them and never do.

My advice to candidates is NEVER pay anyone to help you find your next job.  It may be OK to pay someone a small fee to assist you to prepare and/or update your resume, but most recruiters that I know, will give advice to candidates for free.  In addition, there are a lot of free templates online that a candidate can use to prepare their resume.

 

 

Job Seekers-Expanding Your Social Media Brand

More and more recruiters are finding candidates through social media than the traditional job boards.  Most people have heard of LinkedIn which remains the most popular site for recruiters when they search for candidates.  It is a must for all active and passive job seekers to have an up-to-date LinkedIn profile.

I came across a new site the other day called beBee www.bebee.com which seems to offer a lot of promise.  While it is not nearly as well-known as LinkedIn, it seems like a site that most potential job seekers should be on.

beBee is a Personal Branding Platform founded by serial-entrepreneurs Javier Cámara and Juan Imaz.   The network was created to allow people to showcase and share their personal brand and market themselves to employers, clients, customers, vendors and media in their respective industries. beBee allows users to network with each other through common personal and professional interests, uniting their personal and professional lives in one place.

The startup was established in February 2015, and originally launched in English, Spanish and Portuguese before expanding in French, Italian, German and Russian in 2016. beBee has more than 11.5 million users and is aiming to have 40 million users by 2018.

While my experience with beBee is limited, it seems like a well-managed and easy-to-use site.

Creating Job Advertisements to Attract Stars!

Think of your job postings  the same way that you think of any advertisement that you see on TV, online, or in print.  Boring advertisements won’t catch the eye of the intended consumer, much the same as a boring job posting won’t catch the eye of the stars that you are trying to attract.  You need to give these stars a very good reason to want to interview with your company and leave the relative comfort of their existing jobs.

Creating compelling job advertisements will take you some time and effort, but in the long run, this time and effort will really pay off as the quality level of the applicants should significantly improve.

Below are some best practices that I have put together to assist you in crafting job advertisements that will attract and excite potential star applicants.

1. Research What Leading Companies Are Doing

Want some ideas of how other industry leaders are crafting their job advertisements? Then, look online at various job posting sites to see what your competition and leading companies are doing in developing their ads. It seems like a pretty easy way for you to get some general competitive intelligence as well as some great ideas for your advertisements.  Doing this research also may assist to get your creative juices flowing!

2. Know Your Target Audience

What type of skills or background are you trying to attract with your job advertisements?  Job ads which try to attractive information technology applicants or engineering applicants should not look the same as ads which try to attract sales applicants. Technology and engineering applicants are generally excited more about your technology versus sales applicants who may be focused on both the technology as well as your customer base.

3. Why Do I Want to Work For Your Company?

This is probably the most important piece to your job advertisement.  Stars will generally only leave their current company if they see another company who has a more exciting technology or product as well having as a smart and passionate team that is working to develop and sell such a technology or product.  Stars don’t leave to go to a boring job!  Stars sometimes hit a “rut” in their current job and may poke around to see “what else is out there”.  The opportunity to become part of an exciting company and work as part of a smart and creative team would be very appealing and exciting.

You need to be able to point out all the pluses with what your company is doing (e.g. describing your exciting  technology or service, some background on your workforce, any awards that your company, product or work culture has won, etc.)   Don’t be shy in your description!  Feel free to brag!

4. Develop a Descriptive Job Title

Boring job advertisement titles (such as Senior Engineer or Sales Representative) won’t tell your target audience anything about your company or the actual job itself.  A sharp title such as Senior Engineer-Designing Cutting Edge Consumer Electronics Technology will certainly catch someone’s eye; more than likely these will be the top folks that you are seeking for the role.  A secondary reason for having a more descriptive title is for SEO purposes as people search for the jobs online.  The more keywords in the title that correspond to the type of candidate that you are seeking will raise the odds of the top stars spotting your ad.

5. Creative Description of Duties, Projects

Too many job advertisements read like boiler plate job descriptions.  While you need some “job description verbiage” in any job advertisement, you need to take the time to specifically and creatively describe the role’s duties and describe any products or projects that the role will work on.

One other pet peeve of mine as I see this a lot is don’t include a sentence at the end of the duties that says “Other Duties As Required”.  What does this tell anyone?  It is quite boring and actually takes away from any creative flow to your ad.

6. Accurately Describe Essential versus Nice-To-Have Skills

Again, just like the job duties section of the ad, take the time to accurate describe what are the ESSENTIAL Must-Have skills to be successful in the role versus the NICE-to-Have skills.  I see too many job advertisement skills sections that contain a long list of must have skills that makes it virtually impossible that your company will find some who is a master at all these skills.  In fact, not separating the must-have skills from the nice-to-have skills will be a turn off for many applicants applying for the role.

By following these six steps, you can optimize your job advertisements and help ensure a higher level of applicant quality.

Resume Format-Best Practices

I have heard for years that the traditional resume would eventually be replaced.   Sites such as LinkedIn have certainly come close to replicating or potentially replacing the traditional resume.   However, the traditional resume still holds much value, and I don’t see it going away anytime soon.

So, if the resume still is an important piece in a candidate’s job search, what format is the best?

I am still a big fan of the traditional chronological format. Some resume creators champion the skills-based format; however, most employers don’t like this format as it can be used to cover employment gaps in a candidate’s work history.   I also don’t feel that a candidate needs to engage a Resume Consultant and spend hundreds or thousands of dollars to develop a resume or online resume website.  There is a lot of free information and templates online that a job seeker can use to develop a resume.

My rule of thumb to candidates that I speak with is that you cannot have a “one size fits all resume”.   The job market is so competitive today and employers are so specific in what they want, that a job seeker needs to customize their resume for each job that they apply to. How is this done?   The job seeker can develop a resume, but then will need to “tweak” their resume based on the job posting that they are applying to.   Make sure to use the key words found in the job description as many internal company recruiters used Boolean based searches to locate candidates in their company’s Applicant Tracking Systems.   As long as you can back up anything that you put on your resume, this customizing is a smart move.

I am also asked by candidates on the proper length of a resume. There seems to be a misconception that you need to limit your resume to two pages.   While two pages would be ideal, it is very difficult for an experienced candidate to keep a resume to two pages.   Three pages is certainly fine.   For scientific or research candidates, the length of your resume would certainly be longer because you will need to include information such as patents, publications, or speaking events.

Make sure to include a descriptive sentence or two under each employer that you work for as many people may not know about each employer that you worked for.   Also, include the month and year for the start and end of each employment. It also doesn’t hurt to include GPA information under each degree that you have.   I am also a big fan of cover letters which can be tailored for each job that you apply to.

Remember, your resume is just a door opener for you.   A well-written resume should great improve your chances of success.

Employee Referral Programs-The Best Way to Hire Stars!

Now that the talent pool for certain roles (for example software engineers) is very tight, it is time to create or dust off your employee referral program if your company has not already done so.

For those who do not know,  an employee referral program is a program, where employees recommend qualified friends, relatives or colleagues.  Such a program can be an excellent source of candidates and eventually hires. For the employee whose recommendation leads to a hire, there will be various rewards.

Hand writing Referrals with blue marker on transparent wipe board.
Hand writing Referrals with blue marker on transparent wipe board.

Setting up a program is pretty easy.  By researching the Internet, you will be able to find samples of guidelines used by other companies.  Also, you will be able to find software that can help you administer and manage the program.

Once your program is established, each company should make sure that the program provides enough incentive for your employees to want to participate. Referral awards should fall into the $1,000 to $5,000 per hire to make your employees hungry to make the referrals. In addition, it would be great for companies to set up two annual drawings at the end of the year; one for the pool of employees who had a successful referral hire and one for those employees who participated in the program but who did not have a hire. You should make the prizes substantial such a trips, iPads, etc. to encourage participation.

You will find a well-run employee referral program to be your most cost-effective hiring tool as well as the program that produces the highest quality hires.

So, turn your staff into a recruiting team and watch those tough to fill positions get filled!