When’s your busy hiring season? For many tech roles – especially information security and data-driven ones – the peak season tends to be May, June, and July. That’s right around the corner, so it’s a good time to ask how you can hack the process to speed up your hiring and get the right people in the door to work on your big Q3 and Q4 projects.
Here are a few hiring hacks that may help.
Get Clarity When Hiring
This is mostly about the dynamic between the hiring manager and the recruiter. There must be clarity here:
- Why this role at this time?
- What is absolutely necessary for this role?
- If it involves specific technical skills, who is vetting the candidates that actually have them? How involved will the team be in hiring?
Both the recruiter and the hiring manager should be totally aligned on what is needed, when it’s needed, and most importantly why it’s needed now. If that alignment exists, there will be a lot less delays and kickbacks or discussions around “skills gaps.” That alignment is the most important step. Too many rush into the actual process of sourcing without doing this.
One way to do this: Before kicking off a search, print out a batch of resumes and ask your hiring manager to give you feedback on each. This’ll give you more insights on the exact skills and attributes you should be focusing on.
Invest in Candidate Rediscovery
Let’s say you had a tech role open six months ago, and 100 people applied. There were 10 finalists, and 1 ultimately got the job. In your ATS, you have 9 candidates who could fill a similar role. Lo and behold, you just opened a similar role! Why not reach out to those nine candidates first and see where they’re at now? Many companies don’t do this. Sometimes, an ATS is “dumb,” meaning it can’t go back through previous searches and pull data on those candidates. This is changing as more systems have machine learning capabilities, but it’s not at scale yet. Invest in candidate rediscovery and you might fill an open req in days instead of weeks. You already know they’re qualified!
Rank Resumes & Candidates
71 percent of recruiters use an ATS that doesn’t have a ranking feature. The problem: hiring managers are pretty busy (as are you). If you just present a bunch of candidates to them without some order, clarity, or context, it’s going to delay the process on their end. Have some type of blind ranking (to eliminate potential bias) that gives 1-5 or 1-10 scores to a host of factors (has this skill, has managed, has worked in this language, etc.)
We’ve actually been talking about this at our HRTX events in 2018. A good referral program is a huge way to reduce time-to-fill. All your employees have a network of friends, networking colleagues, past co-workers, etc. They have access to them on multiple platforms, and you can find more info about them on Dice. If the employee is rewarded – $500 to $1,000, usually – that increases the incentive. Plus, if it’s a top employee, you have less work to do selling the culture. Their inclusion in your culture will impress the referred candidate, typically.
To make this easier, pre-build 15-20 social posts and a few quick emails and share the document with employees. Now all they have to do is open the document, copy-paste, and send/post. Work with marketing on this if you’d like.
Also, determine your biggest quarter for hiring (usually 1 or 4, dependent on your business model). Gamify the referral process during that quarter. Have a leaderboard. Send Friday morning updates. Make people get invested in the process of surrounding themselves with the best talent possible.
Deadlines are religion in most businesses. But often, hiring processes don’t have firm deadlines for “X-candidates by this date” or “hiring manager must reduce to three by this date.” Set deadlines. Spray them over the calendars of the involved stakeholders. If there’s a deadline and it’s on someone’s calendar, chances are higher it’s going to get done – those are both sacrosanct to most professionals. Enforce a feedback deadline and incentivize those that send in their feedback the fastest. Being timely is a crucial part of your recruiting success. You’ll update candidates faster and move them through your process more smoothly.
Take Back Your Day
Block time on your calendar for priorities like sourcing, phone screens, candidate feedback, hiring manager meetings, etc. If you don’t block the time, others will. Consider the idea of uninterrupted work time as well.
Use Your Resources
Use Dice. Use tools to find out as much as you can about the candidates. Present that information in an attractive way to the hiring manager. Have it ranked. Ask the hiring manager how they like to receive information. Tweak it to that format. Make the entire process easy and intuitive for everyone to say “okay, these people” with no analysis paralysis. The tools are there: research, the parts to automate (interview scheduling, etc.), documents to build, ATS to rediscover past qualified candidates, etc. Everything is out there. You got this.
Team-Wide Sourcing Sessions
Keeping with “use your resources,” why don’t you use your entire sourcing team? Even if it’s small, it’s mighty to hear how others are approaching sourcing. What “hacks” have they found? How do they manage time? What about hiring manager relationships? Learn from your colleagues. That’s the foundation of The Knowledge Economy, which we’re all living in.
Bring A-Players to Interviews
“Top hiring managers share some DNA. They put the best and the brightest engineers on the interview team, as they know that A-players attract A-players,” says Kim Hoffman, Director, Talent Acquisition for Products and Technology at Intuit. The best people in your company want to be challenged. They want to work with other great people. So let them have a hand in bringing in those people.
Deal With Bias
Last on this list, but the most important. We don’t want to sugarcoat this — unfortunately many tech job postings are very male-slanted. Think about the words you use and how you describe your culture. Is a kegerator appealing to top female talent? Potentially, but the odds are low. And, in fact, this segues well into our upcoming post — which is going to be about the ways to attract the best female tech talent. Stay tuned.
Ryan Leary helps create the processes, ideas and innovation that drives RecruitingDaily. He’s RecruitingDaily’s in-house expert for anything related to sourcing, tools or technology. A lead generation and brand buzz building machine, he has built superior funnel systems for some of the industry’s top HR Tech and Recruitment brands. He is a veteran of the online community and a partner at RecruitingDaily.