That Shiny New Technology & Your GOVT Staffing Firm

New Tech & Recruiting

Be wary of geeks bearing high-tech gifts….

We live in an age when the lure of technology is intoxicating. New recruiting tools arrive daily. Some are from new startups still in “stealth mode” which means so secret they can’t tell you the company name. Others promise to transform your sourcing process while you sleep. And ALL are essential lest you be left behind in the dust like a proverbial Luddite.

The promise of these new recruiting tools is outsized and, in most cases, severely exaggerated.

ZipRecruiter is my favorite. Using their “secret matching technology” you can get qualified candidates for your job within the first day. Just “click and post.” After all, how can a million customers be wrong?

According to HRExaminer, an online newsletter that focuses on HR technology, companies get five to seven pitches every day about new technology, most from vendors using data science to address recruiting issues

Recently I was pitched by an online video interview company promising to delight my clients and candidates and make video interview simple resulting in:

·        60% higher interview completion rates

·        55% faster client response time

·        33% faster placement times

Those of us who jumped on the “first wave” of the video interview concept soon discovered that there is nothing simple about video interviews and most of us do not want to allow our candidates to create their own video interview to be sent directly to the client!

Here are some reasons for embracing the new tools with a bit of caution:

1.      Lack of Science – For all their boasts about using data analytics, most of the tools have not been adequately evaluated with reference to improving recruiting workflow and success as a function of the learning curve and cost.

“They bring a fresh approach to the hiring process—but often with little understanding of how hiring actually works.” (Peter Cappelli, HBR) 

2.      Lack of Integration – The number one challenge for a recruiting professional is a fully integrated workflow. Nearly every new tool is essentially a new ATS or CRM that requires management. In spite of APIs and Zapier, unless you have the acquisition budget of Salesforce or a full-time API integration team to run Lightning Platform, every new tool is another plate to keep spinning.

3.      Lack of Accuracy – Matching technology (algorithms) including semantic search is only as accurate as the skill of the creator. If it is not you, the person trying to fill the requisition, it will be off the mark. Machine learning has a long way to go. Linkedin and Glassdoor have both matched me for aerospace engineering jobs, in spite of my complete lack of experience or education in the field. Indeed.com candidate matches are laughable. Our experience after more than 3,000 hires is that it is only about once in a literal “blue moon” that an actual candidate is discovered by an “algorithm.”

All this to say that the shiny promise of technology has not yet been realized. But, more importantly, discovering a qualified, available candidate is only 10% of what is required to get the job done.

Talent Acquisition is sales and neither an algorithm nor Ai can sell!

I am fond of telling the story of an Anesthesiologist Recruited for Anchorage.

Our client asked:

“So, what are his reasons for wanting to move to Alaska?”

Our response: 

“He wasn’t at all interested in moving to Alaska. In fact, he was happy where he was at in Little Rock, Arkansas. If he were to consider a move, he wanted to move to Arizona! Our team sold him on relocating to Anchorage and your substandard salary.”

Put that in your algorithm! 

Create Your Own Special Sauce

Creating a Competitive Edge in GOVT Staffing

THE ONE THING

Gaining a competitive edge in GOVT Staffing is not about having the right certifications, the perfect RFP response, or even a crack business development team. There is only ONE THING that makes a difference – PAST PERFORMANCE. Or, to put it simply, your ability to deliver.  

“beneath intensely complex things such as loyalty, success, or marriage there is a core concept…The One Thing…a controlling insight that can make the difference between average and excellent. ” – Marcus Buckingham

That is interested because many of the companies we have worked with are intensely focused on RFP production while their recruiting engine is barely running. If your product is results, filled positions, that’s a problem.

I want to propose an alternative strategy – Focus on staffing fills rather than winning awards. Past Performance trumps everything else.

So, let’s dream for a moment….

What would it take to create a competitive staffing edge – your own special sauce?

KEY COMPONENTS OF YOUR SPECIAL SAUCE

1.      Understand that recruiting is marketing, NOT HR. Most of the firms we work with have recruiting embedded in HR, which means it is compliance-oriented, not sales-oriented. This is very much like sending a potential car buyer to the finance department to fill out loan forms before they actually look at a car. Any good auto dealership wants you to smell, touch, and drive the care of your dreams first.

2.      Put your money where your mouth is. If “fills” is the result you are selling then you have to invest in your recruiting engine including hiring the best people and providing them with both the best tools and training. In other words, train the talent acquisition team.

3.      Invest in the best tools, not the legacy products you are currently using. You are not merely competing for talent with other GOVT staffing agencies, but also top-notch commercial companies on the bleeding edge (see below for an overview)

Are you aware that a recent study revealed that the most-successful staffing firms in the U.S. respond to candidate inquiries within 3-5 minutes?

Essential Tools for Developing Your Competitive Edge

·        AI – Artificial Intelligence. AI is transforming the staffing industry by creating never before seen speed and efficiencies. Staffing is all about speed. Are you aware that a recent study revealed that the most-successful staffing firms in the U.S. respond to candidate inquiries within 3-5 minutes?!

·        Advanced CRM – that automates and integrates candidate management by importing and parsing resume, matching candidates with opportunities using semantic search, and allows for email, text, and social media contact through a single platform

·        Social Media Marketing – You have read that “email is dead” and you know resume databases represent a “burned-over” district of recycled candidates that are being contacted by literally everyone. A robust SM marketing platform is essential to a competitive edge.

·        Optimized Mobile Experience – In 2017, mobile job applications outpaced desktop for the first time (63% versus 37% desktop), which means that if you do not have a mobile-optimized job search process you are missing 63 percent of the potential candidates.

if you do not have a mobile-optimized job search process you are missing 63 percent of the potential candidates.

·        An Avalanche of Advanced Tools – Google, Apple, and Facebook acquire their nascent competitors. At a minimum, we have to be aware of advanced apps and software that give us an edge: Flow tools, micro-blogging, chat-bots. On and on it goes….

But how do you “stick to your knitting” and build a kickass recruiting function when you are responding to nineteen LOIA’s per day? How can you become an expert in Talent Acquisition, stay on top of industry trends and innovation and run a GOVT-contracting operation with all that entails?

THE SOLUTION

There are only two answers:

1.      Hire a whole bunch of top-notch experts

2.      Partner with a company whose sole expertise and focus is talent acquisition

That’s where KurzSolutions comes in – Talent Acquisition is our sole specialty. We have the cutting-edge tools, stay on top of industry trends, and provide the special sauce necessary to give you a competitive edge. And, we are a whole lot less expensive than option #1.

Call me directly – Rob Kurz – 505-379-3306

Or schedule time with me here