Recruiting Facts: People Actually Like It When You Want Them…

If I hear one more person tell me that candidates don’t like phone calls, I’m going to shove a phone up your…

I’m not the smartest cat, but I know a couple of things.  Here are a few things I know:

1. You can’t taste the difference of well Gin and high-end Gin after 4 Gin and Tonics.

2. French Fries, Onion rings and Tator Tots taste great fried and taste awful baked.

3. Great tasting chocolate is the reason women can be single. (okay, I stole that one from my wife!)

4. Candidates with car trouble are lying.

5. People like to be told that you want them for a job! It’s flattering. It makes them feel important. It makes them feel valued. They love to listen to what you have to say, regardless of how satisfied they are in their job.

If I called you right now with a job that was something you have always wanted, guess what would happen?  You would call me back. You would call me back almost instantly. You would run out to your car, telling the receptionist on the way out you have an urgent personal call, to hear what I have to say.

Those people. Those thought leaders. Those idiots, who are telling you candidates don’t like phone calls are LIARS!

Why are they lying to you? Here is why I think they are probably lying to you:

1. They are lazy and hope the internet will solve all of their problems.

2. They are hoping to talk the world into believing you never have to make a phone call to get a job.

3. They are scared.

I did a survey where I asked 100 people, mostly millennials, (all potential candidates, since all people are potential candidates) if I called you with your “Dream Job”, would you either pick up my call or call me back?  Would you like to know the results?

100 out of 100 said they would pick up my call or call me back! 100%!

Recruiters who say candidates don’t like phone calls are not recruiters, they’re administrative professionals. Pay them accordingly.

The #1 Holiday Gift For Recruiting and TA pros Worldwide!

When I worked at Applebee’s in HR we talked about terminations as giving someone a “gift”. Every time I tell someone this, they kind of chuckle. “Yeah! Great ‘gift’ I get fired!”

Of course, there’s an explanation.

Imagine you are working in your dream job (whatever that job might be). You love your job. You love the people you work with. You feel valued. You do great work. The hours work well for you. The location works well for you. You have a really good balance. You are in your dream job.

Now, imagine the opposite. You hate your job. You can’t even stand getting out of bed in the morning, knowing you have to go to ‘that’ job. You don’t like the people you work for. You can’t stand your leadership team. It’s too far away from home. Nothing seems to be right. As such, you probably aren’t giving 100%. You probably aren’t performing at your best. You will probably be fired.

The person who is miserable and not performing in their job needs a gift. That gift is we stop kidding ourselves that this will work out and we terminate them so that they now have the time and motivation to go find that dream job! A job they love! We all deserve that gift! Our life is so much better when we are working at a job we love. It’s a true gift.

So, what’s the #1 gift for Recruiting and TA Pros!?

No, it’s not to terminate them!

It’s to buy my book! The Talent Fix! Yay! It’s back in stock over at Amazon just in time for the holidays, and you can order it in bulk right now! If you want to buy signed copies for your team – send me a note (timsackett@comcast.net) and we can work out the details! I’ll even personalize them with funny messages if you send me what you want to say!

Dear Tina,

I can’t think of a more amazing recruiter who has ever graced the

earth. The world is a better place because you’re in it. Last night, 

I wept with joy from the idea of “you”! 

Tim (but really fancy signature type “Tim”)

You like what I did there!? 😉 It’s really the gift that keeps giving all year long!

Also, you should probably fire some folks who aren’t performing well and hate their job! They will not consider it a gift in the moment, but if they are lucky enough to find that awesome dream job, a job they love, eventually they might come to see it as the best gift they were ever given!

You’re Going to Jail because of your LinkedIn Profile Pic!

Breaking News from down under! An Australian woman lied on her resume and used a fake picture on her LinkedIn profile and those facts were used in a trial where she was sentenced to over a year in jail! Let’s face it Australia is kind of like the Florida of countries.

From the article:

Veronica Hilda Theriault, 46, was convicted Tuesday of deception, dishonesty, and abuse of public office, relating to her 2017 application for the chief information officer role, which came with an annual salary of 270,000 Australian dollars (US$185,000).
Theriault worked in the position with South Australia’s Department of the Premier and Cabinet for over a month and earned about 33,000 Australian dollars ($22,500) before being fired.
She pleaded guilty to all charges and received a 25-month sentence with a non-parole period of a year…The court heard that she submitted a fraudulent resume to the department with false information relating to her education and prior employment. After she was granted an interview, she also posed as a previous employer during a reference check, in which she “gave glowing feedback” about her own performance.
But the lies didn’t end there. In earlier submissions, the court heard that Theriault used a photo of supermodel Kate Upton as her LinkedIn profile photo, according to CNN affiliate 7 News.

Can you imagine if we put people in jail for lying on their resume or using doppelganger photos on their LinkedIn profile!?! Half of our employees would be in jail!

Well, don’t think it can’t happen in the US! This position was for the Australian government. Turns out, if you lie to the government when getting a job, you might end up in jail! Not only in Australia but pretty much every country! I can only imagine how many employees of the US government, state and local governments, who have access to secret level information who have ‘exaggerated’ on their resume! It has to be upwards of 20% or more.

Now, this person flat out lied and probably has some severe mental issues. Which begs the question, how the heck could this happen for such a high-level position?

Quite simply, Malcolm Gladwell wrote an entire book (Talking to Strangers) about this simple idea. We all, all of us, default to truth. We believe what people are telling us, and we are awful at spotting liars. The higher the level of position, the worse we get. “Oh, she has an outstanding resume and background and education and she looks just like Kate Upton! She must be telling us the truth!”

We. Are. Stupid.

Once we actually come to grips with this fact, we might get slightly better at talent selection and interviewing. We assume everyone is telling us the truth when we interview them. We rarely believe someone is lying. “Oh, they wouldn’t lie, they really want this position! And I know her cousin, and she goes to church, and…” We are all biased in this same way. We do not want to believe someone would lie to us.

I think it would actually do some good if we started putting people in jail or lying on their resume, or at the very least for using LinkedIn profile pics that look nothing like you do now! “Oh, Hi…you’re “Tim”!? I didn’t recognize you, I mean immediately!” (Internal voice – “with that extra 25 pounds and no hair, from your LI profile pic that is clearly ten years old!)

I want to be the HR leader at court for the case where we’re trying to put someone away for their stupid, fake LI profile pic! That’s the pinnacle of HR!

College Students Have No Idea You Want to Recruit Them!

For part of my career, I did the standard corporate college recruiting gig. It sounds “super-cool” when you first think about it. “Wait, I get to fly around the country and go the best college campuses and recruit people who actually want to be recruited?!”

The reality is college recruiting as a corporate recruiter is much less sexy. Think a lot of Courtyard Marriotts, a pizza, and a six-pack, while you watch crapping hotel TV and follow up on work email. Then wake up early and get to the next campus. You quickly begin to hate travel, hate college campuses and miss actually being in the office!

But, corporations believe they must be on campus to recruit the best and brightest college students. Here where the problem begins. College students don’t even know you’re there! A recent study by Walker Sands found out that the majority of college students don’t even know you were on campus:

Walker Sands’ new Perceptions of Consulting Careers study, 56 percent of college students don’t even know if consulting firms recruit at their school. On top of that, 82 percent feel that major firms only recruit from a limited group of select universities.
Okay, this study focused on consulting firms, but the reality is the students don’t really know the difference between Deloitte and Dell when it comes to getting a job!
What can you do to make your company stand out and be remembered while you’re on campus? Try these five things:
1. Develop a Pre-visit communication strategy. Work with the schools you want to recruit from most to find out how you can get your message in front of them (email, text, the student newspaper, geo-targeted social media campaign, billboards on campus, etc.). Each school has a way to reach every student, you need to find out what that is, and how you can tap into that, even it costs a little money.
2. Come in early and take over classes in the majors you’re most interested in. Professors are like most people, they don’t want to work hard if they don’t have to. So, if you build 45 minutes of great content, most Professors will let you ‘guest’ lecture as long as it’s not one big sales pitch. Come up with great contact professors will find valuable for their students, then go deliver it the day before the major career fair. Then invite each class to come see you.
3. Make a splash in high traffic areas on the day of your visit. College kids haven’t changed much, they like free food and drink, free stuff, basically anything free! So, find the highest traffic area on campus and give away free stuff college kids will like. If you’re only interested in one specific school within the university, find out where those students hang out.
4. Stay a day later after everyone else leaves. Whether it’s the day after or even another time altogether, find a time to be on campus when you don’t have any competition to getting your message out. 99% of employers only show up on career fair day. Stand out and be the employer that is there when no one else is!
5. Post-visit communication strategy. Most organizations never contact the students who show interest in them after they leave campus.  They’ll contact a handful of the ones who stood out to them, but so is every other employer. Recruiting kids after you leave is more important than the time you spend on campus. Most kids will see 20+ employers and will only remember a couple. If you stalk them after the fact, they’ll remember you!

Can we stop using the phrase “Top Talent”!?

Rant warning! Proceed with caution! 
First off the vast majority of us wouldn’t know top talent for a specific position if it came up and slapped us in the face. What we know are people/candidates that are actually open to listening to what we have open right now.
“Pipelining top talent” makes you sound like a psychopath! You truly have no idea who is the most talented person in your market for a certain position. Absolutely no idea! And every technology that says they can tell you who is the most talented is lying to you, they can just tell you who is probably more talented amongst a group of known candidates.
But somehow you believe you not only have one “top talented” person but now you have a complete pipeline of top talent? Shut up! You look like an idiot! What you have is a list of people who might work for your position, but you truly have no idea if they’re ax murders or super talented in the skill set they’re telling you they have.
Hopefully, you get lucky and make a good hire that will produce good work. Every once in a while we hit the jackpot and find a person who truly seems better than the rest we have on the team. But we only hire “top talent” is the biggest lie we currently tell ourselves in talent acquisition!
We don’t actually go out and hire “top” talent. We go out and look for people who can do the job we have open at the time we have it open, who are also open to our average pay, average benefits, average leadership, average culture, and location. Let’s not kid ourselves, about 80% of us are average, so are slightly better, some are slightly worse.
“Top Talent”… Give me a freaking break!
“Hire Sally she’s Top Talent!” “Hire Jimmy he’s Top Talent!” Do you know who’s not top talent? The person using the phrase “Top Talent”!?
I love it when I see an agency have some stupid 4 part process or plan or dumb little 4 P’s of how we hire the Top Talent in the industry. Psychopaths! They aren’t doing anything but posting jobs and hitting their databases to find out who might actually be open to taking the interview. Top Talent? How about “might show up for the interview” talent!
“No, Tim! We use the 4 P’s, it’s a proven process to uncover top talent!” What are the 4 P’s? It doesn’t matter! Because it’s all B.S., made up to make you believe there’s some secret sauce. The secret sauce is they picked up the phone and called people instead of waiting around for someone who’s out of work to find your opening and apply.
“You can use our A.I. driven technology that uncovers and delivers right to your inbox the “Top Talent” your company is searching for!”  It reaches out to everyone, finds out who is interested, finds out who meets your qualifications, and sends them to you. Top Talent? Or warm body talent? They both mean the same thing.
Okay – I’m done. Not really, but I have some “top talent” I need to go searching for…

Words matter! If you want more gender diversity in your applicants!

New data study released by LinkedIn this week titled “Language Matters Gender Diversity Report” has some awesome insight to how the words we use in job descriptions and job postings have a dramatic impact to who actually applies to jobs. We’ve known some of this for a while, but the LinkedIn data is very robust and compelling at a new level.

Some highlights from the report:

– Women are 16% less likely to apply to a job after viewing it than men.

– Research shows that when words like “aggressive” are used in a job description to describe a company’s workplace, 44% of women (and 33% of men) would be discouraged from applying.

– 25% of women would be discouraged from working somewhere described as “demanding”.

– 61% of women associate the term “soft skills” as a female-gender preferred role vs. 52% for men.

– Women are 4 times more likely to want to be perceived as ‘collaborative’ in the workplace.

So, how do you put all of this into practice?

The reality is the words we choose, thinking these words are going to get us the dynamic talent we desire, might actually be hurting our ability to get the dynamic, gender-inclusive talent we desire. There are a number of technologies on the market currently that can help with the wording (Textio is probably the most known).

The data is very clear, the language you use on your job postings and job descriptions will attract or detract certain people from applying. Want to give yourself a chance to get more females to apply, use phrases like “soft skills” or “collaborative” as a desired skill set you’re looking for. Don’t use words like “aggressive” and “demanding” or you’re more likely to get fewer females to apply, and there are a whole host of these types of words.

If you can’t afford the technology that will help you catch this language, I would ask for help from females in your organization (not necessarily in HR) to give you feedback around language and suggestions for things that would get them to be more likely to apply. I find most employees welcome the chance to give TA and HR feedback about our work! 😉

What we know is cutting and pasting the same job description you’ve used since 2004 isn’t working or helping. Most job descriptions, even today, are written in a male-dominated voice that discourages females from applying. It’s very hard to read and see, but the data is screaming at us that it’s a problem that we aren’t paying attention to. We all (male, female, non-binary, etc.) all write in a male-dominated voice because that’s how we’ve been trained to write. That’s what we read. So, it’s natural for us. It’s unnatural for us to change it. Welcome to bias in hiring.

 

@ZipRecruiter Launches a New Product to Help Get Candidates Recruited by You!

I’ve been trying to tell people for the past year or so that you shouldn’t be sleeping on ZipRecruiter. They have quietly been working on their tech with their heads down and they might currently be the best value recruiting product on the planet that no one is really talking about.

Well, yesterday they launched another product enhancement that is an AI-based matching technology to help candidates get recruited by organizations. Check it out:

The company’s AI-powered matching technology now instantly presents strong-fit potential candidates to hiring managers who post a job on ZipRecruiter. Employers can signal their interest with a single click, and ZipRecruiter connects the two sides to fast-track the hiring process.

“The number one job seeker complaint is applying to jobs and hearing nothing back,” said Ian Siegel, ZipRecruiter Co-Founder and CEO. “We’ve flipped the process on its head by letting employers initiate first contact. Job seekers can, of course, still apply to jobs, but now employers have the option to, in effect, apply to job seekers.” 

The product debuted in early April. During that month, 624,000 job seekers received outreach from employers, contributing to a 13% month-over-month increase in hires* across ZipRecruiter.

Here’s what Zip has figured out. The single most powerful recruiting tool any organization has is its ability to make candidates feel wanted. Sure they can make more candidates apply to your jobs, but what candidates really want is for you to want them. That’s a powerful attraction component that we miss when all we think about is getting more applies.

Having AI reach out and match candidates and give your recruiters the ability with one touch to show interest will deliver a highly engaged candidate that matches the needs of the position. With really very little effort on your teams part to get it all started.

Good, solid candidates, the kind that doesn’t need to apply to jobs, want to be wanted. We all want to be wanted.

Now, this might sound like recruiting 101, but the sad fact is most corporate recruiting, especially for SMBs, is just post and pray. Post a job on a site like Zip and pray someone will apply. This doesn’t work when there are over 6 million jobs out there for candidates to apply to! We have to show candidates we are interested in them and ZipRecruiter has created a technology that will make this simple and efficient.

Take a look and check it out, well worth a demo. ZipRecruiter is very inexpensive to test, so there’s really no reason not to.

Transform Recruitment Marketing Live Stream Registration is Now Open! (Free!)

June 20-21st I’ll be in Boston as the Emcee at Transform Recruitment Marketing conference. This is the 5th year of Transform and I’m super excited to be attending, but also super excited that Transform has opened up this conference to a virtual audience for those who can’t attend in person, for free!

I’m constantly speaking and writing about all kinds of Recruitment Marketing tactics, ideas, and strategies. It’s still a very new and fast evolving function within talent acquisition. What I love about Transform is they’ve gone out and really worked to bring in actual corporate TA pros who are recruitment marketing practitioners to share what they are doing and what’s working for them!

The 2019 Transform conference will have speakers from: Delta Airlines (“The Kid” – Holland Dombeck), Intel, CVS, Washington Post, IBM, Sprint, Fiserv, Cox, etc. It’s loaded with practitioners sharing all of their secrets and best practices around recruitment marketing and talent attraction.

So, what do I expect to learn at this year’s Transform?

– Connecting Employee Experience and Candidate Experience

– Next generation Talent Analytics

– Increasing Conversion Ratios of Career site Visitors

– How do we recruit Gen Z vs. all the rest

– Enabling and Sustaining Your RM Strategy

– Activating Talent Communities at Scale

Plus so much more!

I love that Transform is opening up the content to a virtual audience. Let’s be honest, so many of us just can’t afford to attend a live event each year, or you already have planned a different event. Is it the same as being there in person, no, but in TA we make do with the resources we have! If you get the chance to come next year, the real miss of not being there in person is building the connections and community of other like-minded folks that you can share and build ideas from. It’s really the reason we all go to live events!

Register for the Free Virtual Transform Recruitment Marketing Conference (who won’t get all of the content, let’s be fair some great folks paid a ton of money to be with me in Boston at the Live event, but you’ll get a lot!) Already thousands have registered, so I know this content is needed by so many!

 

6 Reasons Your Organization is Failing at Recruiting

I’m out in San Francisco this week teaching a class on Talent Acquisition to some great Pros and Leaders who are doing all they can to learn more and help their organization succeed. The class is part of the process for SHRM’s Specialty Credential in Talent Acquisition.  Part of the process is two days of deep learning with an ‘expert’ instructor in-person or virtually. Apparently, the expert instructor got hit by a bus, so they tapped me on the shoulder!

The course is designed for corporate HR pros and leaders who want to get better at TA. This is modern material, designed to help individuals begin to build out a modern recruiting practice. It helps build a foundation in the right way on what best practice organizations are doing in their TA shops right now.

I love spending time with HR and TA pros who just want to learn and get better. Who want to help their organizations be better. It might be one of the funniest things I do all year! At the same time, it might be one of the most frustrating because I see and feel their struggles!

What I find is almost all organizations fail at recruiting for basically the same reasons. Here are those reasons:

1. We fail in recruiting because we are trying to be like everyone else and afraid to stand out from the other competitors for talent in our market. Yes, this is mostly employment branding and recruitment marketing, but it speaks to basic risk aversion we struggle to overcome in traditional HR. What I find is most c-suite executives welcome this risk, but no one is giving them options.

2. We are flat out not persistent enough going after the talent we want. Great recruiting is about pursuing great talent. I married way above my pay grade! The only reason I was able to land my wife was that I didn’t give up. We all want to be wanted. Most corporate HR and TA pros give up on pursuing talent because they initially say they aren’t interested. That should just get us going!

3. We aren’t letting potential candidates know who we really are. Guess what, when you come here you’re going to have to work and we don’t allow you to have pet pigs. Sorry. I mean, we’ll still have fun, challenging work and we’ll support the heck out of your development, but this isn’t a playground, this is a business. If that sounds like you, we will love you and you will love us! It’s okay to help some talent self-select out of coming to work for you. I don’t want to attract every candidate. I want to attract candidates who want us and we want them!

4. We hear your advice, but we just suck at actually executing it because we are busy. Too busy to get better. I hear all the time from leaders that they would love to do all this cool stuff, but they just don’t have the time. So, I ask, are you successful? No, we are broken. So, you would rather stay broken then fix your shop? Well, we still have to keep doing what we are doing. No, you don’t. You can stop. That is an actual option if you let everyone know you have a plan and this is the plan to finally get fixed!

5. We fail because we don’t fully believe we are responsible. Ouch, that one hurts me, because I’ve actually been fully in that position. Someone finally gave me the title but somehow I felt like I still wasn’t really in control. Turns out, I was, but if I wasn’t going to take control, others above me were going to, since someone had to. Ugh. Once I took control, everyone around me and above me gave me full support.

6. We haven’t figured out how to use our network for good. I’ve been royally screwed by people that I networked with, only to watch them f@ck me over and take (Hi! Z.A., you prick!). Yes, this happens. I’ve also reached heights in my career that would never be possible if I didn’t have all of you helping me along the way. I see way too many pros scared that if they share, especially locally in their market, someone will steal their great ideas and secret sauce. So, they don’t and they miss out on so much good in the world! Go share, exchange ideas, and keep doing it, especially with those who reciprocate!

To my first SHRM TA Credential SFO class – go out into the world and do better recruiting! Also, don’t hesitate to reach out to me when you need a little help!

Your Weekly Dose of HR Tech: I Failed @SHRM’s new Talent Acquisition Credential!

So, you guys know I wrote a book, right? A book on talent acquisition! I truly believe I actually know something about Talent Acquisition and Recruiting! So, it came as a pretty big shock when I took SHRM’s new TA Specialty Credential and Failed It! Well, kind of…

I’m the President of the Association of Talent Acquisition Professionals (ATAP), so I have a real interest in training and learning programs for talent acquisition. Also, because I’ve been in the TA space for a couple of decades I wanted to take the TA credential cold. No studying. Don’t even look at the materials or what it involves. If I’m good, I should still be able to pass it, right?

Right away I knew I made a mistake. Part of it is just simple word usage. What I might call something, the instructional designers at SHRM call it something else. Another part of it is how the material is taught. What’s the most important of the following four….? Well, I might believe something is more important based on my experience and situation, but if I actually studied the material and took the two-day course, I would know what was ‘the’ most important based on how the material was put together.

All of that being said, I was really impressed with the questions! 

Every single question (there’s 50 that you take for the test) were really legitimate TA questions, and the questions were designed around a really modern, up to date talent acquisition function. The questions spanned a broad area of TA from workforce planning, to recruitment marketing, to sourcing, to technology.

Now, you also have to put this into perspective. SHRM didn’t launch this believing a micro-certification was the answer to educating someone to take the credential course, pass the test, and then go run a Fortune 500 TA shop. The credential is meant to help educate an HR professional who is moving into TA, or works as the sole HR pro/leader of a company that also has TA responsibility. So, you might only be doing TA as part of your role.

I’m actually teaching one of these SHRM TA credential courses in San Francisco May 13-14th. That was the main reason and desire for me to take the exam, I wanted to see what those going through the program would experience, and I can confidently say that if someone goes through and does the self-paced modules, does the two-day workshop, studies, and passes the exam, I would feel very comfortable that they have a working knowledge of how a modern-day TA department functions!

The reality is no one certification, credential, training course, etc. is going to make you an expert. You become an expert by doing many of these things and becoming a continual learner. What I love about SHRM Speciality TA Credential is that it exposes HR pros to a new world in a way that lets them know what’s important in talent acquisition, some baseline knowledge, and teaches them how to pursue each part further for expertise.

So, who should take the SHRM TA Credential?

  1. HR Pros who don’t have TA background, but want to expand their tools across HR.
  2. HR Pros/leaders who have TA as part of their function and they don’t feel comfortable in the modern world of recruiting
  3. Corporate TA pros/leaders who feel behind and want some freshening up of their skills.

I think this is a great development opportunity for HR Pros who are looking to develop themselves for future promotion. Having a Talent Acquisition skill set, with your HR skill set, is a differentiator when it comes to hiring HR leaders. Modern organizations are desperate for great TA, and for HR Leaders who understand how to leverage the TA function to drive business success.

So, for all those who love to dump on SHRM for being dated or behind the times, Kudos SHRM! Your TA Specialty Credential is something that is really helpful to individuals and organizations looking to modernize their TA practices!