How to Remove Barriers to Compete for Talent

There is often a barrier between recruiting departments and hiring managers when it comes to working together to staff an organization. This problem frequently originates due to miscommunication between the two groups regarding the qualities and skills required for the role they want to fill. It also arises when organizations are understaffed and experience urgency around the need to fill open seats.

Whether it’s due to time or organizational politics, many recruiters find themselves in a position of taking orders from hiring managers to fill open positions. Likewise, hiring managers often feel uninvolved in the process, only receiving a list of candidates who they may or may not feel are qualified. This can also lead to organizations spending time and resources to hire talent that aren’t a team fit. To address these barriers, a more effective model is one in which these two roles work together to partner in sourcing and attracting the best talent.

These barriers become even more debilitating in a tight labor market because the lack of partnership prevents organizations from hiring the best talent quickly. Some organizations may be tempted to brush off threats of a talent shortage because they don’t believe it could impact their industry; however, reports show that across all sectors, competition for workers will only continue to increase.

“By 2030, the global talent shortage could reach 85.2 million people, costing companies trillions of dollars in lost economic opportunity,” according to some to some estimates.

If organizations want to compete for top talent, it’s important to look for ways to create synergies and remove barriers between HR, recruiters and hiring managers. Start by looking for strategies, workflows, and processes that are customizable to your organization’s needs. Where it makes sense, utilize automation to suit the requirements of the organization.

Use access strategically to suit organizational needs

An organization’s recruiting strategy and systems should not rely solely on recruiters. Hiring managers need visibility and access to the open roles for which they are hiring, while recruiters need the tools which will help them address each position individually, while also analyzing and assessing all open positions.

Truthfully, for any rapid-growth start-up, medium-size business or larger organization, it can be difficult for recruiters and hiring managers to track applications without the use of technology.

“More people than ever people are using these systems now … collaborative hiring has become a best practice and more people outside of HR are using the Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS),” research manager Kyle Lagunas told the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). “If recruiting leaders already have made a strong business case for buying a best-in-class system, they’re going to go with the one that’s easiest to use.”

When considering ATS platforms, user access and user experience — for recruiters, hiring managers and job candidates — should remain key drivers in platform selection. The right system will allow for the delegation of tasks and roles so that everyone who needs information has it; and, people involved in the process can provide input as necessary. Rather than bearing the burden of filling all open positions, recruiters should seek ways to share the workload. By making information accessible and available, the right people are prepared to make the best hiring decisions.

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Embrace new methods for transparency and communication

When you’re competing for talent, no one should be storing information in their head. Instead, keep the recruiting process transparent and utilize systems to keep the communication flow open so that everyone is aware of the current status.

A robust recruiting platform will provide options for all users to flag candidates, make notes that other users can review, and efficiently communicate status updates to candidates and recruiting teams alike. Depending on the organization’s size, or plans for growth, the recruiting roles may expand, too.

“When a company is growing really fast, the set of roles on the recruiting team tends to fragment, and you need to start specializing the types of people on your recruiting team: sourcers to find candidates, recruiters to manage the process, candidate researchers to assess potential hires, recruiting marketers to create an inbound pipeline, and university program recruiters to source students,” explains Elad Gil in Medium.

In high-growth organizations, the case for a talent strategy based on transparency and streamlined communication becomes even more paramount. And, if you’re not yet in rapid growth mode, having the systems in place will help you now as well as prepare you for when growth occurs.

Deploy workflows to maximize recruitment efforts

Time is of the essence when competing for talent. Unfortunately, inefficient workflows and processes can work against recruiters and hiring managers both when attempting to fill open positions. Standard methods typically don’t involve the hiring manager early on, which can leave room for miscommunication. When faced with urgent needs, it’s incredibly helpful for recruiting teams to have all applicants — regardless of source — stored in one common location.

The right applicant tracking system can provide recruiters and hiring managers with all the information they need about each candidate, at any stage during the process. Access to candidate information, as well as streamlined workflows, helps remove ambiguity about next steps and has the potential to save valuable time.

The best strategy to compete for talent is to use access strategically to suit organizational needs, embrace new methods for transparency and communication, and deploy workflows to maximize recruitment efforts. When recruiters and hiring managers partner together it’s possible to promptly review applications and submit valuable insights about candidate skills. With this streamlined approach, the likelihood of quality hires increases because the right people are involved, and they are working together. When organizations put systems and processes in place that remove barriers and reduce the natural friction between recruiters and hiring managers, it’s possible to compete for talent and improve the quality of hire.

Simon Oldham

Simon Oldham
Simon Oldham is the president at QJumpers, a recruitment platform.

Simon Oldham

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