I chuckled to myself a little as I sat in a breakout room at the CPHR annual conference.
The speaker had just asked the room: “Who here has never heard of Slack?” and most of the people in the room put up their hands.
The majority of the room was mid-to-senior level managers in HR across BC and Yukon, in industries reflective of the major economies of these two areas in Canada: health care, construction and manufacturing, natural resources, and telecommunications. Think large employers in highly regulated markets, with a perceived lean towards reliability and safety instead of disruption and risk.
I chuckled because while Slack has been around for 3 years and is not the new kid on the technology street anymore, these big players aren’t interested in the latest technology coming out of Silicon Valley. Despite that, they were all there in the breakout room to learn about disruptive techniques in the recruiting space.
Techniques are different than technology.
A way of working, a way of being, and a way of interacting with someone is different than the tool you use to do that. Technology influences our techniques (#obviously) but it’s important to note that they are still distinct.
Remember: direct snail mail is considered a “new medium” for the younger generations, while the move to email marketing was revolutionary a few years ago. So as mediums and technologies change, it’s important to stay on top of the techniques we need to know for the future.
When looking ahead at the future of recruiting, three techniques came up:
Hint: these are where to invest your investment/development dollars for your recruiting team!
1. Graphic Design
This goes beyond being able to whip up a job description that looks nice. Lean recruiting teams need to know how to create branded visual content for social platforms like Instagram and LinkedIn to advertise their people story, culture, and job openings.
Further to that, leaders in this space will need to be able to graphically show their teams results. So if you don’t know how to create a graph or infographic without using SmartArt in powerpoint …it’s time to up your graphic design skills.
2. Data Analysis
What is the size of your current qualified candidate pool? What is the close rate on each recruiter on your team? What external sources (e.g. LinkedIn job posting, career page) have led to the most successful hires? Who internally in your company has the best referrals? How long does it take someone to go from initial point of contact to job offer? Does that vary depending on the role, team, or hiring manager?
The technology you can use here is expansive — yet the skill and knowledge of what data to collect and how it will help you lead your team or hiring managers toward better results is really what needs to be developed.
3. Sales Training
“Talent acquisition is a marketing role,” Carmen Hudson said from the stage and I couldn’t agree more. While recruiting works best when closely partnered with its other friends in human resources like comp and benefits, training and onboarding, and mobility/relocation…a lot can be said for a recruiter’s need to be dialled in with the skills of the sales and marketing team.
Recruiters are storytellers looking to close a deal or, in their case, an open role.
Does your team know how to manage a sales funnel? Or how to listen for language that indicates your prospect is interested in one aspect of the role over another? Or how to tell a branded story that elicits the response “I want to work there!” The role of a recruiter is to sell a prospect on the job, and these skills are essential to close those sales.
So if your recruiting team is looking for new technology — Crystal Knows, Textio, and Comparably are great.
But if you really want to prepare for the future, develop your skill set in graphic design, data analysis, and sales.
Meet Steph. She is a force. She is a firecracker. She is a lover of love.