Sourcing in Australia

A growth area for both agency recruiters and internal functions is that of sourcing and over the last few years the availability of tools to source candidates have changed dramatically. A decade ago to undertake the sourcing of a hard to find candidate involved a lots of phone calls and a really good contact list. While in 2011 the same holds true the internet has provided sourcers with a massive database of potential candidates. The rise of search engines and social media may have made us lose our memory but they have also given rise to the role of the internet sourcer.

Usage of boolean search, LinkedIn and other social media sites have made it easier than ever to proactively find candidates. For many of you this will not come as a surprise.

What might be of interest is a small conference I am speaking at in August, Finders Keepers, put on by my friends at ATC. Finders Keepers will have several international speakers in attendance, in fact the speakers list reads like a Who’s Who of sourcers; with internationals such as Glen Cathey (Boolean BlackBelt), Jim Stoud, Kevin Wheeler, Bill Boorman, and locals Ross Clennett, Martin Warren, and Andrea Mitchell. I will be doing a half day workshop with Jim Stoud looking at “How to Find the Hidden Talent Your Competition Overlooked”.

While the act of building a half day workshop with someone from the other side of the world is interesting enough, I suspect trying to keep up with Jim will be the hardest part of the session. If you have no idea who Jim is, watch the video below and you will see what I mean.

If you are interested in sourcing and where it is at in Australia get along and attend.

Workforce Analytics: Following the employees

I ran across an interesting post from the LinkedIn blog, via Steve Barham from LinkedIn, entitled Where did all the people go from the collapsed financial institutions?. The post was looking at the flow of employees between five major financial services companies:

  • Barclays
  • Credit Suisse
  • Citigroup
  • Bank Of America
  • JP Morgan Chase

LinkedIn Data - Financial Fallout Graphic

This image shows the amazing amount of data that is available from LinkedIn both via public searches and as a premium paying member, to quote the post:

To be specific, other than two acquiring companies (Bank of America acquired Merrill Lynch and Nomura acquired Lehman Brothers’ franchise in the Asia Pacific region), Barclays was by far the biggest beneficiary, scooping up 10% of the laid off talent, followed by Credit Suisse at 1.5% and Citigroup at 1.1 %.

While an interesting look at talent movement it got me thinking.

A couple of questions came to mind:

  1. Do you use external talent movement data in your workforce planning/sourcing strategy planning?
  2. Does your workforce analytics program allow you the same sort of analysis?

I would suspect most companies would answer No to both questions. The cynical might also ask why would you want this information. So let’s look at a couple of examples:

Example 1: Your organisation is experiencing rapid growth in one particular area of the business, so you need to recruit more employees. Access this information would allow you to target the “usual suspects” for new talent but you could also look to see if there had been a major exodus to other organisations that may not be on your “usual suspects” list. These organisations may not be prepared for an all out assault on their talent.

Example 2: Can you produce graphs that show where each division of your organisation is getting is best performing employees, covering both internal and external movements? Not a purely LinkedIn example but highlighting similar talent flows.

A final note there is no reason why your HR/Payroll/ERP/People Management/Whatever System should not be launching these sorts of features. For example LinkedIn opened its API up to developers almost 6 months ago.

Social Recruiting what is it?

For several years now I have been watching the development of social media and its eventual impact on both the HR and Recruitment professions. I have attempted to define social recruiting, run presentations on the development of a strategy, and worked with several clients on creating a strategy.

If you attended some of my presentations in the last year you might have seen two basic diagrams that I have used to start getting the message across. The first designed to highlight the social media can be used through the full recruitment process. The second trying to map the process to the four C’s of social media. Neither really got the message across and all the time I have felt I was still missing something.

The haze is clearing.

Following the Altimeter Group’s release of their 18 Use Cases for Social CRM, I got to thinking again. While I am still not 100% happy with the result I thought I would release this revised model to the world.

Social Recruiting Model

A few of things stand out for me now. There are 18 use cases within this model, an accident more than intent, not each one is relevant for agency recruiters, but all are relevant for in-house recruiters. As with the Altimeter Group’s model each starts with a listening and reflection phase, this is intentional as listening is the first part of any social strategy. Each of the 18 use cases can deliver a return on investment to an organisation that implements them.

Next step is build out each of these use cases into more detail, I also suspect a couple will be killed and more will be added as I go along.

(If you read the Altimeter report you will see I have re-used a number of their ideas in the image which is one of the reasons the model is released under Creative Commons.)

Follow up on the sources of talent report

It has been an interesting week or so since Phillip and I released the sources of talent report for Australia. We have had both positive and negative feedback, which is to be expected.

Some of the commentary available online:

I would like to review some of the concerns raised over the accuracy of the data, the process we used and the outcomes.

One concern was how do you define the original source of talent. A very good queston. If an candidate sees an add on job board, then contacts an agency directly is this an agency hire or a job board?

Another concern raised was were we double counting hires? Were agencies providing information on the same candidates that employers were? Our survey did not cover this, but it is a great question, although solving this is not easy either.

Carey Eaton from Seek wold like to see us separating the tools, and resources, from the processes used by organisations.

There were also questions around should all of the organisations who participated been allowed to participate. My understanding is some people would like us to only looking at large employers, like the US report. Unfortunately in the Australian marketplace there are a huge number of employers in the sub 250 employee bracket.

To be honest I agree with most these concerns. However the fact is, we can now have conversations about these issues and work as an industry to resolve them. Generating this conversation was one of the underlying goals of the survey.

Phillip and I will be starting plans for the 2010 report while we are at RecruitTech this week in Canberra so if you have some thoughts leave a comment or drop us an email.

Are careers website critical to success??

I was beaten to the punch by Kelly Magowan with her post yesterday as to why you need to upgrade your corporate careers site to be successful with social media. This was my flow on post from the Corporate Careers Website Report I released on Wednesday night.

However Kelly only scratched the surface of the issue.

Next, it is important to be mindful that the most likely outcome of using social media will be more traffic to your careers site. And herein lies the problem – when they get to your careers site, what happens? Hopefully they don’t take one look at it and bounce!

While right on the money social media will increase the visitors to your site the issue is a lot deeper than this. Deep integration of social media into your external HR and Recruitment practices in a manner that delivers strong ROI requires a hub.

Are your candidates lost?That hub is your careers website.

I have worked with several clients on developing a social recruiting strategy and the key to bringing all of the content together is your web site, in particular an easy to update site. One that allows you to easily add video, Twitter streams, blog content, profile recruiters/clients/candidates etc. Let’s face it, you are unlikely to have your recruitment video on YouTube go viral and by itself deliver ROI.

For employers the same is true you need a compelling careers website. One that respects, engages and informs the candidate about the employment deal you have on offer. For example only 27% of Australia’s BRW Top 200 organisations provide recruitment relevant company background information on their site. Only 32% provide detailed information on the recruitment process.

So before you run off and execute that fancy new social media strategy make sure you have the foundations in place for your hub.

Update: Direct link to the research report

State of Australian Corporate Career Websites

In late 2008 I spent some time reviewing the career websites of the BRW Top 200 organisations within Australia, based on the work by CareerXRoads in the US. The process included a physical review of each of the BRW Top 200 web sites during September to December 2008.

I sat on the report for a long time pondering what to do with the results. About six weeks ago I decided to release the results publically over on Inspecht for the purposes of discussion and review by others within the industry.

Each site was assessed on a series of attributes designed to assess an organisation’s approach to their careers website. The attributes were based on the CareerXRoads Mystery Job Seeker Reports. A comment on the results several attributes covered during the research required a subjective assessment such as; did the site contain detailed information on remuneration and benefits.

If you are interested you can download the report (oh yes it is free).