Millennials, Millennials, Millennials! (Or, How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Next Generation)February 08, 2017 by Anna Peters
Guest writer Joshua Danson, Director of Content Marketing at Achievers
For a Gen-X professional like myself, all the recent talk about millennials in the workforce can make you feel a little bit like Jan from the Brady Bunch when it seemed like all she ever heard about was, “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!”. These days, it’s almost impossible to pick up an HR trade publication or even a top-tier business publication and NOT read something about, “Millennials this,” or, “Millennials that.” With all this talk about millennials, if you are not part of the generation that was born between 1980-2000, it’s hard not to feel like the neglected middle child. Except it’s not our metaphorical over-achieving older sibling who’s getting all the attention, it’s our hipper, hungrier, younger relation that’s nipping at our heels, hogging the spotlight and challenging our assumptions.
But the truth of the matter is, with millennials making up more than 50 percent of the workforce and growing (they surpassed that milestone in 2015, according to Pew), there is no longer any denying the current and ongoing impact they are having on the way businesses operate today. And that’s a good thing. Millennials are precipitating change in many important and significant ways, I would argue for the better.
As baby boomers continue to retire, companies are facing the challenge of attracting and retaining millennials to replenish their ranks. With this backdrop, understanding the kind of corporate culture millennials desire and the forces that motivate them is key. But when you dig a little deeper, you will find that many of the same forces that motivate millennials also have a broader positive impact on the entire workforce, no matter their generation or demographic.
Millennials: They aren’t as different as you think
There has been a lot of talk about how millennials are different from other generations, but the latest studies show that may not really be the case. The differences between the older and younger generations have more to do with age and life stages than with the different generational experiences they had growing up.
Millennials share many of the same long-term career goals as older workers. These include making a positive impact on their organization, helping to solve social and environmental problems, and working with diverse people. They also want to work with the best, be passionate, develop expertise and leadership capabilities, and achieve both financial security and work–life balance. In fact, only a few percentage points separate the number of millennials, gen-Xers, and baby boomers who claim these as their top goals.
That doesn’t mean that companies don’t need to adjust and evolve to attract and retain millennials; it just means that the changes they make will resonate with, and increase employee engagement among, all their employees, not just the youngest. And while there are technology solutions that can help out in this area, technology alone won’t compensate for a corporate culture that doesn’t focus on showing workers true appreciation.
How to stop worrying and embrace the millennial transformation
If you’re a business looking to boost millennial appeal and improve overall employee engagement, consider making the following changes:
Emphasize a broader purpose. Create excitement around the company’s mission and purpose by connecting to broader social causes and cultural movements.
Encourage collaboration. Break down silos and encourage collaboration between diverse teams across your organization. Use team-building activities to help employees get to know each other and build interdepartmental connections.
Provide frequent feedback. Recognize contributions. Encourage employees to develop their skills and expertise by providing with training opportunities along with frequent feedback. Create a culture that recognizes and rewards achievements.
Provide opportunity. Look for employees who are ready to take leadership positions and give them the chance to show what they can do. Hire and promote from within rather than bringing in outside experts.
Reward and recognize. According to the “Happy Millennials” Employee Happiness Survey, 64% of millennials want to be recognized for personal accomplishments, but 39% of them report that their companies don’t offer any rewards or recognition. Show employees you appreciate and value their hard work by recognizing and rewarding their efforts and achievements.
Getting the most out of millennials and other generations in the workforce requires creating a culture that encourages, supports and rewards success. When companies do this it has a positive ripple effect across the entire organization, regardless of generation. So don’t fear or resent the millennial onslaught. Embrace them and the positive changes they are bringing to a workplace near you.
Josh is Director of Content Marketing at Achievers. An accomplished marketing and communications professional with more than 20 years’ experience in the fields of marketing and PR, Josh graduated from Kenyon College and lives in San Francisco with his wife and 9 year-old daughter. In addition to work and family, he is passionate about music, politics and fly fishing (not necessarily in that order). Twitter: @dansonshoes
January 20, 2017 by Anna Peters
If you think rugby has nothing to do with recruitment, think again. A Rugby championship was the unique solution to a recruitment challenge that Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company encountered. Jessica Choi, Assistant Vice President of Talent Acquisition and Diversity, shared details with College Recruiter.
What challenges was Penn Mutual facing that prompted the unique solution of sponsoring the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship?
LIMRA states that the current average age of a financial adviser is 56 years old.1 From an industry perspective, we needed to find a way to connect with recent graduates and college students in order to get in front of the new generation of financial advisers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 300,000 advisers will be retiring over the next 10 years, which means there will be a 27 percent increase in adviser roles in this space.2 This is a tremendous opportunity for the life insurance industry, and connecting with the rugby community has been a great way for us to engage with college campuses and their students, coaches and administration in a different way. The rugby community is so welcoming and enthusiastic and has been a positive recruiting partner for us in this space.
What does the Collegiate Rugby Championship say about what it’s like to work with Penn Mutual?
The number one response that we get from the participants of the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship and outside rugby events is, “Thank you.” Because of our true support of the game and through our partnership with United World Sports, we have been able to make an impact on the growth of rugby in the United States. Rugby continues to grow and we are optimistic that we can provide career opportunities for ruggers, whether they are students, new graduates or alumni.
What changes has the company seen since starting its rugby sponsorship, in terms of hiring trends?
In terms of hiring trends, we take on a multi-faceted approach, so we employ other efforts in addition to rugby. We hired a chief marketing and digital officer because we strive to be a progressive company with a social engagement strategy. Typically you don’t see an executive with “digital” in his or her job title. Through our omnichannel marketing strategy and increased social media presence, we feel as though anyone who is engaged with us knows that we are growing and hiring.
We have also changed from recruiting talent to attracting talent. We now get more phone calls from talent, asking about the organization more than ever before. I believe it’s because we’ve shifted the model in terms of attracting, not recruiting, talent to Penn Mutual.
Why are relationships important at Penn Mutual, and how does the company live that value?
Focusing on relationships is one of our core values at Penn Mutual. One of the things that differentiates Penn Mutual from other companies is the fact that we live and breathe our values every day. My fellow colleagues live their passion and everyone is truly passionate about our purpose to empower our clients to live life with confidence. We’ve all been able to learn about the impact life insurance makes on people’s lives and we utilize different techniques to keep the company moving forward in innovative ways. We truly live the company’s values and feel a sense of belonging at the company.
What are Penn Mutual’s overall college recruitment strategies? Continue Reading
January 18, 2017 by Anna Peters
Guest writer Ascan Koerner, University of Minnesota
For employers who look exclusively for STEM backgrounds to fill their positions, they are missing out on a wide pool of qualified candidates. Students with a liberal arts degree offer distinct advantages, and employers should not overlook them.
Technical and engineering skills may fit only the short term
The technical and engineering skills that get a student hired initially often have an expiration date. Those skills unfortunately may also fall victim to automation. A recent study by Carl Frey and Michael Osboren of Oxford University suggested that 47% of all employment in the U.S. is at risk of being replaced by automation, including many mid-level technical and engineering positions.
Skills most in need are not technical, but soft
Even more importantly from a career development perspective, technical skills alone often are insufficient to help employees advance their careers. Almost invariably, career advancement means to take on managerial and planning responsibilities. Those leadership positions require not technical skill but so-called soft skills. Soft skills include critical thinking, being able work in a group, interpersonal communication, leadership, and complex problem solving. No surprise that according to a recent survey of the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the four most sought after skills of recent graduates are not technical, but critical thinking/problem-solving, work ethic, teamwork, and strong oral and written communication. A recent study conducted by Indeed.com reports that 64% of “opportunity jobs” (those with high and growing wages) require complex problem solving skills.
Liberal arts programs prepare students for leadership
It is precisely in these areas where students with a liberal arts education have distinct advantages over their more technically educated peers. Indeed, at the core of a liberal arts education is building skills such as problem-solving, communication, leadership, engaging diversity, and ethical decision making. Liberal arts programs uniquely prepare graduates for leadership and managerial roles in organizations. Liberal arts students are also used to using their skills in various contexts, preparing them to better deal with uncertainty. Given the long-term unpredictability of today’s business climate, this adaptability is critical. Furthermore, liberal arts college are also committed to diversity and uniquely prepare students to learn and interact with students from a wide variety of backgrounds. It is no surprise that liberal arts graduates are disproportionately represented in the c-suites of the nation’s largest and most innovative corporations.
Liberal arts graduates are life-long learners
A final strength of liberal arts graduates that is often overlooked by recruiters is their ability to acquire new skills and to engage in life-long learning. Even if liberal arts graduates need more initial training for a position that requires specific technical skills, they have all the attributes that will make them successful in the long run. Not only do they tend to advance more readily in their careers, they also are more likely to stay with their employers and contribute significantly to the long-term success of their organizations.
Colleges want to help connect liberal arts to careers
Increasingly, colleges and universities are becoming more aware of how a liberal arts education contributes to career success. They are beginning to engage students and employers in conversations about the distinct advantages of liberal arts degrees. For example, the College of Liberal Arts of the University of Minnesota recently launched a career readiness initiative. The initiative highlights ten core career competencies inherent to the liberal arts. The college offers courses and programs that allow students not only to recognize their unique skills and abilities, but also how they relate to their long term career success.
Recruiters who want to hire for the long run should pay attention to these developments and to not overlook liberal arts graduates. These young workers are viable candidates for entry-level positions, especially those that are a pipeline for leadership opportunities within their organizations.
About Ascan Koerner: Ascan is the Director of the Career Readiness Initiative at the University of Minnesota’s College of Liberal Arts. The initiative is part of the Dean’s road map for the college and aims to make CLA graduates the most desirable and best prepared graduates. In addition, Ascan is a professor and director of undergraduate studies. His research interests are family communication and communication in interpersonal relationships.
January 16, 2017 by Anna Peters
Contributing writer Ted Bauer
Turnover is a concern for businesses. While exact loss numbers around employees departing is hard to track, most CFOs agree that it hits the bottom line. There are obviously intangible issues with turnover, too. The remaining employees (a smaller number) have to share the same (or greater) workload, stressing them out. And certain employees are huge knowledge bases or social connectors. Losing them can strip your business of valuable resources well beyond any cost incurred hiring and training the replacement.
On top of all this, there is some belief that Millennials change jobs faster than Boomers. (Statistically, though, average U.S. job tenure is about 4.6 years — and in 1983, it was 3.5 years. So Millennials have actually gotten more loyal to companies.)
How can turnover be prevented, regardless of generation?
Let’s begin with a little science. Paul Zak is a specialist in researching oxytocin (a chemical in your brain). He gave a popular TED Talk in 2001. Oxytocin is one of the biggest drivers of trust-based relationships in humans, and more oxytocin release — which is tied to much greater happiness and less corporate turnover — tends to come from autonomy over work as opposed to increased compensation.
There’s Idea No. 1, then: focus less on compensation as a driver of behavior, and more on providing employees with autonomy over what they can do, i.e. do not micro-manage them at every turn.
The second idea is something called “The Hawthorne Effect.”
Per Wikipedia, the Hawthorne Effect is “when individuals modify or improve an aspect of their behavior in response to being observed.” This all comes from a place called Hawthorne Works (get it?) in Cicero, Illinois and some experiments done with light bulbs. If you make the room more bright — increase the light bulb, in other words — workers end up being more productive. But if you dim the light bulb again, productivity drops back to normal (or below-normal levels).
The modern application of the Hawthorne Effect, then, is that if you’re more responsive to worker needs, those workers will be more productive. Care about employees. Listen to them. Engage with them. Be supportive of them.
Too often, we think we can solve an issue like turnover or low employee morale/engagement with a new software suite. We can solve accounting issues that way, or even business process (BPO) concerns, but engagement and turnover are distinctly people issues. You solve people issues by investing in people, not technology. That’s the big takeaway here.
January 11, 2017 by Anna Peters
The 2016 Most Desirable Jobs survey has some surprising results. The Career Advisory Board (CAB), of which College Recruiter’s founder Steven Rothberg is a member, released the survey recently. Their intention is to advise employers, who increasingly find themselves in steep competition for qualified talent. The results include ideal job characteristics, most appealing work styles and what employees value at work. Employers will rejoice when they hear that they may not have to throw out their conventional wisdom.
One key finding that may surprise you: Millennials were more likely to want to work in an office every day than their older colleagues. We spoke with Alexandra Levit, business and workplace consultant and Career Advisory Board member. She gave us her interpretation of the survey results, including what surprised her, trends of the Millennial generation, the gig economy, and more. Watch our interview with Alexandra:
December 28, 2016 by Libby Rothberg
In today’s “Q & A with the Experts”, College Recruiter spoke with Ashley White, Human Resources Director for The American Productivity & Quality Center. We asked Ashley about how 2017 might look the same or different regarding their recruitment strategy.
What does your recruitment strategy look like for 2017?
Ashley White: For 2017, our employee engagement and retention strategy is based on “manage and measure.” Management for us means managing the employee experience from the very beginning of their employee experience. In my experience, engagement is different for each individual and organizations that “do” engagement effectively create opportunities for their teams to connect with the organization’s mission and each other in different ways (team building, social events, charitable efforts etc). We expect to continue providing all of these in 2017. For example, our managers are expected to budget for and carry out team building events each quarter with their teams. With any strategy, measurement is important to justify expenses, make improvements and chart progress. APQC will utilize an employee satisfaction survey done twice annually to capture this data. The ongoing challenge with surveys is ensuring that you’ve crafted the questions so that you receive valuable feedback that creates actionable results. With that said, we will spend time utilizing best practice research to guide our question selection.
Ashley White is the Human Resources Director for APQC (The American Productivity & Quality Center). She manages all aspects of human resources including benefits, compensation, recruiting, and strategies. She also leads the APQC operations team that focuses on developing next-generation leaders within the organization. APQC is a non-profit that produces some of the leading benchmarking and best practices research around talent management and other business topics. Connect with Ashley on LinkedIn.
November 29, 2016 by Matt Krumrie
Google. Microsoft. Deloitte. PwC. Cisco. Domino’s Pizza. Marriott International.
Those are just some of the employers using gamification in recruiting. What is gamification?
According to recruiterbox.com, Gamification is the concept which uses game theory, mechanics and game designs to digitally engage and motivate people to achieve their goals. According to this Society of Human Resources Management article, “Recruiting experts say gamification can stir people’s interest in job openings, project an innovative image of an employer, and deliver accurate previews of applicants’ future job performance.”
John Findlay, co-founder of Launchfire, a digital engagement shop that turns boring content and mandatory training materials into a fun, easy-to-digest, game-based learning experience, agrees. Recent college grads are a tech-focused generation and the use of mobile, video, virtual reality and gamification go a long way in recruiting and assessing recent college grads and entry-level job seekers, he says.
“Today’s employers face the challenge of recruiting and hiring recent college grads and Millennials, the largest generational demographic in the American workforce,” said Findlay. “Many companies are finding that using game-based learning and gamification, which integrate points, badges, competition and role-playing, can be used to effectively attract and assess candidates.”
“It was all the rage, especially in the IT industry, where technical skills change fast and traditional resumes don’t always tell the depth of job seekers skills,” says Kirk.
Gamification is commonly used in IT. Want to recruit a top coder? Run a competition to find them, says Kirk. But it’s also being used in many other industries, like hospitality. Marriott International created a recruiting game to attract Millennials called My Marriott Hotel. This game was delivered through Facebook, and according to the SHRM, allows candidates to experience what it’s like to manage a hotel restaurant kitchen before moving on to other areas of hotel operations. Players create their own virtual restaurant, where they buy equipment and ingredients on a budget, hire and train employees, and serve guests. Participants earn points for happy customers and lose points for poor service. They also are rewarded when their operation turns a profit. Continue Reading
November 11, 2016 by Anna Peters
In a scramble to create more inclusive workplaces, many companies have implemented mentoring programs. The programs live in the Diversity and Inclusion space because often, minorities and women benefit the most from having a mentor. Research by Catalyst has found that female employees with mentors increase their salaries by 27% compared to women who do not have a mentor. Having mentors, says Kerry Stakem at PricewaterhouseCoopers, is “like having your own board of directors.” Depending on your situation, you seek help from different board members. If you have or want a mentoring program, think through these tips and examples.
Set your objective. “One of the main mistakes many organizations make when starting a mentoring program is not having a goal or program objective,” says Lori Long. Long is a business professor at Baldwin Wallace University who specializes in understanding and promoting effective workplace management. There are four objectives commonly found among mentoring programs, according to research done by APQC. Those are: “the transfer of discipline-specific knowledge; career pathing and counseling; the development of business acumen and soft skills; and the dissemination of “insider knowledge” about an organization’s structure, norms, culture, and professional networks.”
Get everyone involved. Even if your program is intended to help women and minorities catch up to their White male counterparts, you should include all employees in the program. “Often companies may only provide the opportunity to participate in the program to certain groups of employees, thus excluding some employees that may really benefit from such a program,” says Long. Plus, given the disproportionate number of White males in senior leadership, you likely need their participation as mentors. It’s a numbers game.
Many companies, such as PricewaterhouseCoopers and Boston Consulting Group, assign mentors to all employees. To make a match, organizations may use demographic or personality questionnaires. Lori Long says that one approach is “to host mentoring networking events to allow potential mentors and mentees to meet each other informally. Then the program can ask mentees to request their preferred mentors. “She believes mentees should make the request. The formality of the networking event can ease the intimidation of asking someone “Will you be my mentor?”
PwC recognizes that not all matches are made in heaven. Employees can change their mentor every year during PwC’s open enrollment. Kerry Stakem, PwC’s Northeast Talent Acquisition Leader, says “If it’s not working then it’s doing neither side any good.” If an employee swaps their mentor for someone who they prefer, their buy-in goes up and participation becomes more voluntary. A voluntary evolution of the mentor-mentee relationship is key. They will naturally build a trusting relationship.
Mentoring can evolve into sponsorship and advocacy. If the mentor-mentee relationship goes well, the mentor can become more of a sponsor. While a mentor can be passively available to guide their mentees’ development, a sponsor is more active. Lori Long says that the “sponsor’s role is much more proactive and can usually have a more significant impact on one’s movement within an organization. “ A mentor is good. Even better is a sponsor, and a real advocate is ideal.
At BCG, Matt Krentz leads the Global People Team. Their mentors, he says, are responsible for tracking their mentee’s engagement and watching for someone in the company who can be a sponsor, and hopefully an advocate. An advocate is someone who more naturally puts themselves on the line for someone else.
It should be reciprocal. Advocates and sponsors should benefit from the relationship too. Employees being advocated for should help their advocates look good. Kerry Stakem says that aside from the warm fuzzies of helping others develop, mentoring others builds her own leadership and listening skills.
One company that is doing this right is Sodexo. They have programs for mentoring women at all levels, from entry-level to senior management. Here’s what they do for their entry-level hires (excerpt from BCG’s recent report, “The Rewards of an Engaged Female Workforce“):
“French food services and facilities management company Sodexo is globally recognized for its commitment to diversity. …Sodexo launched mentorship programs at all levels, many targeting high-potential women and focused on operational roles. For example, promising junior women are offered networking opportunities and exposure to female leaders through virtual webinars. …“It’s a high-touch process,” says Anand, “but that level of people investment is part of our culture.” …Selected employees get matched to senior mentors, who are chosen through a similarly rigorous process and trained in good mentorship practices. The program matches people across business lines to ensure broad exposure for mentees. Most important, it works: women in the program are promoted significantly faster than their peers.”
If your goal is to create a more inclusive workplace, a mentoring program can be part of the solution, but not the whole solution. Inclusion must be a core value and be integrated into the fabric of the organization.
Lori Long is a Professor at Baldwin Wallace University and instructs courses in human resources and general management. She holds a Ph.D. in Business Administration and is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources through the Human Resource Certification Institute. Lori is also the President of LK Consulting, LLC, a human resource management consulting firm and she is the author of “The Parent’s Guide to Family Friendly Work” (Career Press, 2007). Connect with Lori on LinkedIn.
Kerry Stakem is the Northeast Market Sourcing Leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers with specialties in Assurance, Tax and Advisory Recruiting. She is excited by opportunities to connect people with their passions through her work. Connect with Kerry on LinkedIn.
Matt Krentz joined The Boston Consulting Group in 1983. He is a Chicago based Senior Partner and head of the firm’s Global People Team, which is responsible for attracting, developing, and retaining top talent across all cohorts. He is also a member of BCG’s Executive and Operating Committees, as well as the Consumer and People & Organization practice areas. Connect with Matt on LinkedIn.
October 14, 2016 by Anna Peters
No doubt you’re familiar with the job-hopping trend that Millennials are known for. How do you increase your retention of entry-level hires? Wendy Stoner, Director for the Office of Emerging Talent Development at GSA, knows how. She leads a Leadership Development program to engage entry-level hires. She calls the two-week on-boarding Career 101. “Millennials like to be part of a cohort,” she says. “They don’t like to be on their own,” so the new employees work together along two training tacks.
They receive technical training to prepare them for the functions of their jobs. In addition, and perhaps more importantly, they learn soft skills like professional communication, presentation and negotiation skills, and how to have a critical conversation in the workplace. They watch videos and practice role play to prepare them for working with people whose backgrounds and working style differ from their own. Also, GSA delivers the Myers-Briggs personality indicator to explain why coworkers’ behaviors may differ, and how to work with them.
Generational differences? You don’t say.
The Careerstone Group designed GSA’s training in response to the inter-generational issues we all hear about. You know some of the complaints. Baby Boomers complain about Millennials’ informal communication (they write emails like text messages, Boomers say). And Millennials complain about Baby Boomers’ work ethic (keeping long hours doesn’t mean you’re more productive, Millennials say). During their Career 101, new GSA employees learn to articulate what these generational differences are, and understand the different values that cause differences in behavior.
Don’t stop at on-boarding.
Stoner says GSA invests in engagement beyond the first two weeks. They put their entry-level hires on a two-year rotational track that exposes them to different areas of their field. For example, a new hire in finance may rotate to learn about formulating budgets, executing them, strategic planning and more. Not only does this prepare them for a variety of possible jobs, but it clearly demonstrates that they care about employees’ development. GSA wants employees to discover what job appeals to them most. “I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I was that age,” Stoner remarks, so it is only fair to facilitate employees’ learning for a couple years.
Nothing counts without an open culture
Formal training can transfer plenty of knowledge, but without an open company culture that embraces all employees, that training can fall flat. Stoner says, “Your culture needs to be open to listening to them and hearing their ideas.” She says GSA recognizes that good ideas can come from anyone, regardless of where they sit on the org chart. Their investment and openness pay off. GSA retains 93% of entry-level hires during their first two years–pretty impressive for the new job-hopping norm. Engaging Millennials doesn’t have to be hard. Stoner says, “We want them know they are coming into a company that does value their development. Millennials are eager, knowing that a company will make an investment in them.”
Wendy Stoner will be a panelist at this December’s College Recruiting Bootcamp. She serves as GSA’s Director for the Office of Emerging Talent Development within the Office of Human Resources Management. She strives to create an environment of highly engaged employees dedicated to accomplishing GSA’s mission and has successfully recruited hundreds of highly talented recent graduates prepared to tackle GSA’s business challenges. Stoner’s work is helping GSA fuel the pipeline to meet the agency’s future leadership and succession planning needs. Connect with Wendy on LinkedIn.
September 07, 2016 by Matt Krumrie
Five years ago, Steven Rothberg, founder of CollegeRecruiter.com, rarely heard employers talk about using analytics or data when making hiring decisions.
“Now I can hardly walk down the hall at a recruiting conference or spend 30 minutes on a call with a client and not hear some reference to it,” says Rothberg. “There is no doubt that HR professionals recognize the value in using data-driven decisions, but probably fewer than one percent of employers are good at it.”
Ian Cook, Head of Workforce Solutions at Visier, a company that develops cloud-based applications that enable HR professionals to answer workforce strategy questions, talked about the impact of analytics, specifically to campus recruiting and the hiring of recent college grads, in the College Recruiter article Analytics, data changing way employers recruit, hire college graduates.
“This is no longer a nice to have,” Cook said in that article, referring to the use analytics and data to drive recruiting and hiring decisions. “Everyone knows the game has changed, and if you are not using analytics to play the best you can then you will be left behind.”
The reality is, if you are not using analytics and data, your competitor who already is using analytics to recruit and hire recent college grads and entry-level job seekers probably has already interviewed or hired that candidate that may have once been interested in your company.
“If you don’t dive into analytics, then you are increasing the likelihood that your competitor will be able to scoop up all the great talent that you need,” says Cook.
The move to using big data and analytics for campus recruiting, hiring recent college grads or entry-level employees has been met with resistance by both small and large employers. Many of those employers believe their campus recruiting efforts, combined with a strong social media outreach, and robust campus careers page, drives success recruiting recent college grads or entry-level job seekers.
“We do hear the ‘our college recruiting program is a well-oiled machine’ from some employers,” says Rothberg.
But at the same time, both small and large employers are now successfully using analytics and data to drive hiring decisions. That list includes these three well-known companies:
Enterprise Rent-A-Car: Dylan Schweitzer of Enterprise Rent-A-Car spoke publicly about how they use data to track their sources of hire and that allows them to reduce their spend on schools, job boards, and other sources which are more expensive than their other sources.
Lockheed Martin: Alton Fox of Lockheed Martin mentioned at TalentBlend 2016 that they’re shifting more and more of their university relations budget toward job boards and other virtual sourcing tools because the cost-of-hire is far lower AND the employees are far more productive.
Uber: Uber tests, tests, and tests some more with different job titles, geographic targeting, job descriptions, landing pages, and more. They work with a wide variety of media partners and many of those partners are paid on a performance basis, so if the ads they run work well then Uber keeps working with the media partner and probably increases how much they spend with that partner, says Rothberg. If the ads don’t work well, Uber shifts those resources to better performing sourcing tools.
Using analytics and data to make recruiting and hiring decisions should be viewed as a way to bridge the gaps that can be cause with human oversight or human error. Analytics and data also provide a unique insight that has never been available before. So why not use analytics and data when making hiring decisions?
Many organizations are focused on analyzing candidates, such as by resume parsing or extended social profile analyses, in order to improve their likelihood of landing a great hire, says Cook. Others are taking a more strategic approach and attempting to analyze the workflow and outputs of the recruiting function.
They are looking at questions such as:
- Can we recruit faster?
- Are we spending our sourcing dollars in the right place?
- If we change up our process, do fewer people abandon their applications?
- Which sources consistently produce employees who stay and perform?
These are complex questions involving multiple data sources, but they are all are aligned to ensuring the function is delivering what the business needs.
“Predominantly, we see industries that need to recruit a lot of high value talent being early adopters or ahead of the game when it comes to talent analytics,” says Cook. “Organizations that hire lots of software engineers or technical medical staff or specialists with financial skills understand the value that comes from being data-driven as opposed to following the old ‘post and hope’ model.”
College Recruiter has been using analytics and data for years, providing employers with specific and organized reports to help achieve their recruiting and hiring goals. But many recruiters and HR professionals simply fear change, or the challenge of implementing analytics into the decision-making process.
“The biggest reason that I see employers resisting the use of data and analytics is the fear of math,” says Rothberg.
Here is an example: Rothberg recently asked the head of HR for a 5,000-employee company if they would like a detailed proposal that walked through the outcomes of the various recruitment advertising packages being considered. This proposal included projections on the number of candidates that would be sent to that company’s applicant tracking system from College Recruiter, how many would apply, how many would be hired, time-to-hire, and cost-per-hire.
“She asked what I needed and I asked her how many people she wanted to hire and over how many months,” recalls Rothberg. “She didn’t know. I asked how many applications she would expect to generate for every 1,000 clicks we sent to her ATS. She didn’t know. I asked how many hires she would make for every 100 applications. She didn’t know. As unfortunate as all of that was, she didn’t want to know. She was the head of HR for a 5,000 person company and she didn’t want to admit that math scared her.”
Don’t let analytics scare you. Employers, both large and small, are using analytics to drive talent decisions. Dive in, before your competitors steals your next great hire.
“We can always find ways to save a little money, hire a little faster, diversify a little more, and hire people who perform a little better and are retained for a little longer,” says Rothberg. “Data and analytics help us identify those areas where we can improve, whether there is only minor or vast room for improvement.”
Wondering how analytics can help drive your recruiting decisions and successes? Contact College Recruiter today to learn more, and be sure to Check out our blog and follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel.