A couple of my hiring managers are disconnected from the reality of our current labor market–they still want to compare several top candidates before making a decision. We’re losing great candidates because it’s taking too long to try to find more candidates to compare. How do I help them understand we need to move smarter and faster?
We understand your frustration, and you’re not alone! Since you’re in the trenches of daily recruiting, you know firsthand how quickly great candidates are getting snatched up by competitors who are able to move faster in their selection process. You probably also noticed that it’s more difficult to find viable candidates for many positions because the available labor pool is small.
We can no longer post job openings and expect to be flooded with resumes. Rather, recruiters have to spend more time sourcing to identify viable passive candidates. Once we find those candidates, we need to move them through the selection process quickly or we risk losing them altogether. All of this combined heightens the need for a fast and efficient recruiting and selection process with the ability to make quick, astute hiring decisions.
So, how do you explain the reality of today’s labor market to your hiring managers? If sharing the points above doesn’t help, maybe you can try a new angle. Have you ever noticed the similarities between the recruiting process and house hunting? Ask them to recall how they approached house hunting, which often goes like this:
Step 1: You go into house hunting with a huge list of "must haves" that you simply cannot live without–just as we do when recruiting for an open position.
Step 2: You see the houses currently available on the market, which may not be nearly as many as you had hoped for, nor do they have all of your desired features. (Where are the granite countertops and hardwood floors?!) But you need to find a house, so you forge ahead to step 3!
Step 3: You do a bit of soul searching to refine and prioritize your “must haves” list to identify what’s truly most important to you and determine what you’re willing to live without or change/update yourself. (Everybody likes a DIY project, right?)
Step 4: Act fast and call in your offer immediately before someone else snatches up your next soon-to-be dream house! (You’ve learned this because it happened with the last two houses you tried to buy but took too long to decide upon and lost them to other buyers. Meanwhile, those other savvy buyers are already hosting their new housewarming parties!)
If you apply the lessons learned during the house hunting experience to your recruiting and selection process, you know you need to:
Be accurate in defining the role you’re looking to fill and the “must haves” versus “nice to haves.” Make sure your job descriptions are up to date, too.
Assess the current pool of potential candidates and connect with them quickly.
Readjust expectations and “must haves” if the labor market doesn’t meet all of your criteria. Determine critical skills needed to start, and what could possibly be trained.
Move fast on strong candidates, even if you don’t have several to compare. Don’t let your desire to shop around cause you to lose a great potential employee.
Celebrate knowing that you did your homework, understood the market, and made a smart, fast new hire!
Hopefully, this gives you a new angle for your recruiting conversations with your hiring managers. Building a strong, trusting relationship with your hiring managers will be invaluable as you navigate the waters of recruiting in today’s labor market.
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