Author: Joe Thurman, Founder of JobberTechTalk
Talent and Recruiting Redefined – Agile Recruiting Processes
Currently, IT departments view recruiting as an ongoing cycle lacking structure and process. This is not to say that the company does not have a recruiting “process,” this is to say that they look at the process all wrong. Many companies and hiring managers fail because they maintain failure as a viable option and outcome for their process. They simply throw up their hands and say, “We just can’t find the right person!”
Because recruiting is viewed as soft with no defined milestones or deadlines there is a high probability for inefficient delivery metrics. Think of each position as a project. The output of that project must be conclusive.
Organizations must create a structure and process that enables their team to move candidates through the process quickly and successfully, thus ensuring the ability to be competitive in the current IT recruiting market.
There are several key areas that we believe the Executive Team must be willing to address in an effort to make this a reality.
Waterfall Doesn’t Work…Agile Recruiting Must be Adopted and Understood
The Waterfall method comes from the software development world. Basically, development progress flows downhill like a waterfall through sequential and clearly defined phases from conception to maintenance. This can also end up in causing a flood, meaning recruiters turn on the faucet when they get a job order and get hundreds of hits at once.
In contrast, agile recruiting follows the same process as agile software development. There are small planned wins along the way, continuous communication, and the ability to adapt to changing requirements. Agile is a pretty big buzzword, and a lot of companies say they do it, but few really get it. The idea with agile recruiting is that the recruiter and the hiring manager have to be in constant communication, and learning and adapting to changes in the job description in order to ensure the best candidate is placed.
Managers need to understand that there is an expectation for conclusive success. No one would allow multiple software projects to fail in a company, and the same should go for recruiting. You should expect that you will find a successful candidate without going through multiple failures first. Remember, losing an employee is incredibly costly so it pays to do it right the first time.
One important way to ensure success is to put appropriate deadlines in place for each step of the recruiting “project.” Having these measurable wins along the way, and understanding how each step contributes to the overall success of the project, should help ensure you hire the right candidate.
Manage the Flow
Just like project teams, recruiting groups and hiring managers have a certain capacity and when overloaded their performance goes down. When processes fail projects struggle. Like I mentioned with the Waterfall model, too much causes a flood and no one can manage the deluge of candidates correctly. Thus, too often a poor fit gets the job offer and leaves within 6 months, leaving the company in a constant recruitment cycle. This is not a sustainable method.
A good process will help manage the flow. Also, you shouldn’t start recruiting the day you need a new person to start. This is a process that should be well-planned out because recruiting can take months to complete.
Control the Conversation
Another way to improve and redefine your recruiting process is to make sure everyone involved understands the message. Just like when you are marketing yourself to a customer – you have to make sure everyone understands, believes in and communicates the same message about your company. Confusion about this leads to either new employees quitting, or not taking the job offer at all.
There is no doubt about it, recruiting these days is a hard business. Changing your view of the process can help.