Welcome to the Lean, Just-In-Time Blog and Resources Page

Our published "Best Practice" recruitment tools, tips and thoughts are stored here. Each blog is keyword searchable (use the search function in the top right hand corner of the page). You can utilize these resources to immediately impact and improve recruitment performance! Our clients use these materials to guide continuous improvement learning sessions and to assist with the "behavior modification" process.

What You Can Learn From Ford’s Use Of An ‘Empathy Belly’ To Improve Your Soft Skills

August 17th, 2016

This week, I was intrigued by a LinkedIn article on what Ford Motor Company was doing with pregnancy suits. The article highlighted Ford’s approach to better understand their customers and empathize with them through a unique empathy training program. In this program, new engineers went through a simulated experience of being pregnant by wearing a pregnancy belly suit or a “third age suit” to simulate challenges faced by our elderly population. Wearing the suits, they navigated in and out of vehicles to gain awareness of the challenges and needs of different age groups, populations and users. They cited this as a powerful program that has improved car design features for Ford’s consumers.

I see a lot of parallels and value of this program with understanding and empathizing with our primary customer – the hiring manager.

To perform at an elite level in recruitment requires understanding the needs, challenges and expectations of your hiring managers beyond a quick call to verify the minimum requirements of the job.

If you think about of how Ford teaches empathy to their engineers who design cars, reflect on your own soft skills and how you deliver service and find talent.

  • How well do you know your Hiring Leaders, and do you have empathy for them as your primary customer?
  • How motivated are you to deliver that top candidate?
  • Do you understand their goals and strategic initiatives, and how a vacancy impacts their ability to deliver outcomes they are accountable for?

Many years ago I recruited for surgical technicians. I had a good relationship with the manager and was confident I understood their needs – until I shadowed a surgical tech in the operating room. This was an eye-opening opportunity to watch the technician prep and handle surgical instruments, and collaborate in harmony with the RNs and surgeon in a way that I could not experience from the job description I was initially provided when I began recruiting for surgical techs.

Afterwards, I debriefed with the manager and the technician to learn about their expansion initiatives, new technology, and patient outcomes data, and I shared recruitment strategies and challenges with sourcing in that market. That experience and knowledge gained connected the dots for me, and I was able to empathize with my customer in a way I had not previously. My performance with respect to how quickly I fill positions and the quality of the candidates I was sending to hiring managers improved as a result of that experience.

If you are not doing so today, I encourage you to implement the following strategies for key critical-to-fill positions in your organization:

  • Attend departmental meetings to understand their business.
  • Share performance metrics and market data.
  • Be visible – visit quarterly to conduct rounding meetings.
  • Conduct quality intake meetings asking investigative questions when a new position opens.
  • Ask if you can shadow someone presently the role you are recruiting for.

If we can truly understand and empathize with our hiring leaders, we can perform at an elite level and as a consultative business partner. To learn more techniques behind these strategies and additional best practices, explore the Recruiter Academy training program.

Have a great day!

Carla Kennedy

Video Job Postings: Improve Candidate Engagement And Your SEO – Here’s How

August 10th, 2016

Video on the internet has become a huge, dare I say, expected part of our internet experience. From six second Vine videos to Facebook Live, video will account for 82% of all consumer internet traffic in about three years (according to Cisco).

Not only do we love videos on the internet, Google loves it too! Google’s search algorithm prioritizes quality content on each webpage over just keyword optimization. Videos often have better content and a better user experience so therefore positively affecting your page rankings. In fact, according to a Forrester study, pages with video are 53x more likely to rank on the first page of Google search results.

Job seekers also love video. Job seekers spend more time on video job ads than traditional text based job postings. Interestingly, candidates will spend five times longer viewing a job ad that includes video!

So what are the best practices in making a quality video?

Content is king:

  • Introduce the facts of the job. Job title, contract or permanent placement, location, etc.
  • Create a quick highlight of the job’s key challenges that make it exciting.
  • Move to the company value proposition and provide some basic facts about the company (size, locations). If possible, share something about the hiring manager to whom this position will report.
  • Explain what you are looking for in a candidate.
  • Finally, explain to the job seeker how to apply and what to expect in the process.

Short and Sweet:

  • Insight gained by Videomyjob, a video app for Apple and Android specifically for videotaping job advertising, shows that videos should be no longer than 90 seconds in order to ensure the candidate watches the entire ad.

The Setup:

  • It’s important to consider your surroundings when making the video job postings.
  • Make sure the background is not distracting.
  • Check that your lighting is bright but not streaming directly at you. Natural lighting can be the best.
  • If you are using a smartphone, the mics are typically sufficient but just make sure there is no background noise.

The initial set up of producing video job postings may be daunting but with apps such as Videomyjob, some of the stress can be removed. Thinking outside of the traditional job posting to engage passive candidates is key to filling those critical, difficult, visible jobs!

Have a Perfect Week!

Karen Antrim

Recruiting, It’s All About LEVERAGE!

August 3rd, 2016

Creating a Team Culture That Leverages Winning Practices

Leverage, the ability to influence a system, or an environment, in a way that multiplies the outcome of one’s efforts without a corresponding increase in the consumption of resources. The concept of leverage is applied successfully in finance, manufacturing, construction, business, and certainly is evidenced in recruitment organizations.

Recruitment leaders are constantly being challenged to leverage the resources they have, usually very limited, to generate better and better results. Arguably, the most important resource that recruitment leaders have is their people. Garnering, and leveraging the winning practices of those recruiters whose managers are raving fans of their services, helps create a high performing, standardized delivery of recruitment services. How do successful recruitment leaders do this?

Great recruiting teams and their leaders place a high value on regularly sharing, then standardizing, the winning practices of successful recruiters. They are also very good at building a culture, and creating an environment that encourages team members to innovate, constantly looking for ways to improve their process and services provided to their customers.

Here are a few of the fundamental practices successful recruitment leaders use to build a culture of innovation and leverage those winning practices across the team:

  • Weekly team huddles that include an agenda item to share current challenges and share solutions that have overcome them.
  • Individual coaching sessions scheduled regularly with each recruiter that dive into their strategy and techniques, identifying winning practices and coaching opportunities.
  • An innovation/continuous improvement team of dedicated recruiters and team members whose mission is to focus on identifying challenged process steps and put solutions in place to correct and improve.
  • Standardized practices across the team that ensure consistency in process and service delivery.
  • A survey method of key customers (hiring managers, new hires, and non-hired applicants) that measures recruitment performance in key performance indicators. Lean Human Capital has validated online assessment tools for each of these customers. For more information, please CLICK HERE.
  • Individual recruiter scorecards that measure recruiters quarterly and annual performance in key performance metrics built around Voice of Customer Surveys from above.
  • Reward and Recognition for positive results and a commitment to innovation and continuous improvement.

Creating a culture within your team where they are excited and recognized for innovative thinking and generating new solutions to improve the recruitment process is key! This is what sets elite organizations apart from their competitors.

I hope you have a perfect week!

Deb Vargovick

Candidates – Please Don’t Apply!

July 26th, 2016

Over the last 7 years, we have been benchmarking recruitment performance (link to benchmark program) for leading organizations throughout the country.  Regardless of industry, you could classify positions into two types:

  1. Business as Usual (BAU) – those positions that will likely fill with a candidate that applies.  No outbound sourcing is required to find quality talent.
  2. Critical/Difficult/Visible (CDV) – those positions that will need to aggressively deploy outbound sourcing strategies to find the right candidate. Then get them to apply.

With BAU positions, one of your biggest issues is managing the volume of non-qualified applicant flow.  In 24-48 hours you can literally get 100-300 applicants applying!
While there are various tactics to control this volume (posting policies, knockout questions, etc.), a great best practice is crafting a compelling job posting that encourages individuals to NOT APPLY if they don’t think they would be interested and successful in the role.
There was a great post written about this a few weeks ago: Why Adding ‘Please Don’t Apply’ to your Job Ad could be a good idea.
There truly is an Art & Science to crafting a compelling job posting that encourages quality candidates TO apply and deters unqualified candidate to NOT apply.
Unfortunately, many recruiters (recruitment organizations) don’t invest enough time in this front end process to drive qualify applicant flow thru a lean, customer-centric process. 
If you are interested in learning more about this topic, please join our next Recruiter Academy Sessions starting in September!

I hope you are having a Perfect Week!

David Szary

LinkedIn Surveyed 33,000 Members – What Recruiters Need to Know

July 13th, 2016

At the end of June, LinkedIn released their 2016 Global Talent Trends Report; Data on How Candidates Want to be Recruited. LinkedIn asked 33,000 members, how they look for jobs and what it takes to make the jump from one company to another. Here are the insights worth noting:

  • Passive candidates are becoming active:
    • 90% of professionals are interested in hearing about new opportunities.
    • The number of active candidates has increased from 25% in 2014 to 36% in 2016.

Insight: How effective is your team’s proactive sourcing strategy and execution? Do they have the skills and competencies needed to be an elite sourcer? 90% of people are JOB SEEKERS. Are we connecting with them?

  • Candidates want to know what’s expected of them AND what they can expect early in the recruitment process:
    • Be honest – what’s a ‘day in the life’ like at your organization? Candidates are getting smarter at seeing through the ‘made in heaven’ job description. Candidates also expect honest and upfront expectations of workload.
    • Be real – candidates want feedback from real professionals, not the CEO or the Marketing department.
    • Be forward thinking – how will this impact the candidate’s career and how fast can they grow?

Insight: Integrate employee testimonials to promote the organization and position. Traditional marketing ploys seem to fall on deaf ears in today’s job market. Is your brand positioning supported by every day workers?

  • Current employees are more than just a direct referral source:
    • 21% of candidates knew someone at the company when they first heard about the job.
    • 26% of candidates talk to current employees about the job opportunity INSTEAD of applying first.
    • 89% of candidates network with other professionals while CURRENTLY employed.

Insight: Educate employees, at all levels, why it’s great to work at your company. We often get stuck in formal employee referral programs (ERPs). Everyone is an ambassador of your recruitment efforts. Make sure they know it.

Make it a Perfect Week and Perfect Day,

Brian Brazda

What it Takes To Perform In The Top Quartile Of Elite Recruiters

July 6th, 2016

The Top Three Strategies Elite Recruiters Use

I am currently working with one of our Lean Human Capital community members and conducting in-depth individual recruiter coaching sessions for their team. I have also dissected recruiter skills at this granular level with several community members in the past and have found there are core fundamentals elite recruiters embrace that I would like to address.

To truly perform at an elite level as a recruiter, you must incorporate fundamental best practice methodologies into your daily and weekly routines. These include a rigorous time management system coupled with consistent implementation of key communication tools used with hiring managers that help align both of you on the recruitment process. After all, without our hiring managers performing their steps with a sense of urgency, you will not be successful. It is a shared responsibility to hire the best talent into your organization and we can’t do it without them!

Here are the fundamental practices and tools elite recruiters execute consistently in order to perform at an elite level:

  • Have a solid time management and organizational system in place. Create a dashboard that arranges your week into key buckets of work which include:
    • “Eat that Frog” (for those of you familiar with Brian Tracy’s analogy) items we put off or procrastinate.
    • Each recruitment process step or what we call “move the needle activities”.
    • Calls Interruptions and emails (you have to imbed times into your day to tackle these).
    • Hiring Managers (each hiring manager has their own bucket or section).
    • Use this dashboard to plan your day, every day, every hour, before it begins. This is perhaps the most important golden rule. Recruiters that struggle fail to prioritize and plan their day. The busier you are, the more important it is to plan every hour of your day. The most successful people in the world have every single hour planned with a prioritized action.
  • Establish a weekly communication rhythm with each manager you recruit for:
    • Most managers are very satisfied when they receive or have communication with their recruiter every 7 days.
    • For this communication, incorporate data or use a report that provides a status of where candidates are in each step.
    • Include a call to action in the communication, either yours or what you need them to do next.
  • Conduct quality intake sessions with managers including a service level agreement discussion that identifies time targets for each key step, including what the Hiring Manager is responsible for. Remember, we can’t do it without their partnership and the recruiter and manager need to agree upon what target time frames are for their part as well as the recruiter’s.

I invite you to visit our website to view upcoming webinars that explore this topic as well as others that provide insight into practices of elite recruiters and recruitment teams.

Deb Vargovick

Tactics To Manage High Volume Applicant Flow From The Start

June 29th, 2016

You have a limited amount of resources within your recruitment organization to review the thousands of applicants coming in, respond in a timely and engaging manner, and match those best qualified candidates to the right position. Each applicant and their family/friends are potential future applicants and patients so the candidate experience is critical to manage and measure.

I want to share several tactics that impact applicant flow for high talent availability roles (think food services, housekeeping, clerical, support services) and help you manage the volume, as well as that initial experience the applicant has with your organization.

  • Requisition Management – Manage how long positions are posted. Set the requisition to automatically un-post after 3 or 5 days, and then review the applicant pool for qualified applicants. Only repost later if a sufficient pool doesn’t exist. Not only does leaving the requisition posted for longer periods of time allow more unqualified applicants to apply, when an applicant does apply, they believe they will be given full consideration and that might not be the case. You may not have the opportunity to screen their application given the incoming volume, or the hiring manager may decide to move forward on an applicant you’ve already presented to them. So pull down that posting as soon as possible.
  • Compelling and accurate job postings – This starts with a quality intake with the hiring manager to truly understand the role. Craft a compelling job posting that is also a realistic preview of the role. List all minimum requirements AND preferences in the posting. When you create screening questions on the requisition (next bullet below), the questions shouldn’t be a surprise when the candidate reads them. This can be very frustrating to the applicant. Be sure the ATS screening questions asked of the applicant are clearly outlined in the job posting, and specified as a requirement or preference.
  • Consistent use of effective ATS screening questions – Using screening questions on the posting for minimum and preferred qualifications are a MUST to effectively manage volume applicant pools. Always add minimum qualification questions to the requisition to disqualify those who do not meet the true minimum qualifications, and immediate notification should be sent to the applicant (your ATS should be set to send auto-emails). Review the templated language in the auto-email to ensure the message has a tone of kindness and consideration, inviting them to reconsider your organization in the future.
  • If you have a unique need (night shift, on-call, rotating weekends, bilingual required, etc.), create a screening question to catch applicants who apply hastily without fully reading the posting (e.g “This is a part time, 3rd shift position. Are you able to work this required schedule?”). Just as important, be sure to also add ATS screening questions for preferred qualifications using yes/no and multiple choice questions that can have weighted responses. This should help you to rank your qualified applicant pool and start reviewing those that are best qualified.

Have a great rest of the week!
Carla Kennedy

Your Application Experience: STOP Losing Candidates Because Of It!

June 22nd, 2016

Sourcing candidates is difficult work. You develop and write the job posting, pay to have it posted, or source passive candidates, etc. All that work to lose them because of your application process! Hence, the candidate experience initiative is born!

A popular trend today is improving candidate experience, yet we rarely see specific tactics to fix the problem. Here are a few things you can do to improve the candidate experience of your application process, driving up completed applications and improving the ROI of your job posting spend.

Appcast.io is a job distribution platform that charges cost-per-applicant, not cost-per-click. Appcast.io tracked almost 400,000 job seekers looking at online job advertisements across a variety of job platforms. 30,051 applications were generated from those views … here are the interesting insights from their analysis.

Fix Your Time to Complete the Application:

If the time it takes a job seeker to complete an application process is over 15 minutes, they are 365% less likely to complete the application. If you are on a Pay-Per-Click model your organization is paying for a huge amount of job seekers that click on your job posting but then never complete the application.

Appcast.io found application completion rates across all industries to be:

  • 12.47% for application processes of 1-5 minutes
  • 6.9% for application processes of 6-15 minutes
  • 3.61% for application processes greater than 15 minutes

Evaluate your job application process to:

  • Remove questions that don’t impact your decision to interview the candidate or not
  • Remove questions that are redundant information gathered from the resume
  • Reduce the number of times a candidate must create a login (for the ATS and the Talent Community)

Mobile Application vs. Desktop Application:

Today, over 50% of job seekers search for jobs on a mobile device. The same number attempt to apply from their mobile device. Yet, according to Appcast.io, only 1.5% of mobile applicants complete the job application. If you’re application process is not mobile friendly, make plans to get there. More and more ATS providers are offering mobile friendly application processes. If your ATS provider has not yet implemented mobile friendly application processes, there are third party organizations you can connect into your process.

Evaluating your application process is critical to maximizing your recruitment marketing ROI and improving the candidate quality. Take a minute today to evaluate your application process or reach out to us for assistance.

Make it a Perfect Week!

Karen Antrim

Why Are There No College Degrees In Recruiting?

June 15th, 2016

Good Wednesday!
So I have been asking the question, “Why are there no college degrees in recruiting?” for over 20+ years. It really makes no sense when you consider the impact the recruitment profession and recruitment jobs have on any type organization. 
I recently wrote an article on this topic that was published on June 7 on ERE.
I would love to know your thoughts after you have read it.
I hope you are having a great week.

David Szary

Not Investing In Recruitment Is Costing Organizations Millions!

June 8th, 2016

Understanding Cost Of Vacancy And Turnover Can Help

I recently read a terrific publication by Glassdoor called “The Resourceful Recruiter’s Guide to Recruiting in Healthcare.” Within it they share several insightful statistics regarding the habits of job seekers, as well as many solid tactics on how to build rapport with and close healthcare candidates.

One metric in particular stood out. Bersin and Associates state that the average Cost Per Hire in 2012 was $2127 per hire, across the entire healthcare industry. At Lean Human Capital, we have been tracking average cost per hire within acute hospital settings across the country since 2013. We now have over 700 hospital systems who have joined our Benchmark Study and in our 2016 Annual Benchmark Study, the average cost per hire for acute care systems is $842 per hire.

Why is there such a significant difference in figures? What this variance demonstrates is how underinvested acute care hospital systems are in the recruitment function! When you consider the risks of not investing enough resources in recruitment, the impact both financially and to the organization’s brand can be staggering.

Our study shows that when a recruitment team’s average requisition load falls significantly above 55 openings per recruiter, coupled with staff productivity (annual positions filled per recruitment staff FTE) higher than 200 hires per staff FTE, there is a direct and negative cost impact on these metrics:

  • 90 Day and First Year Cost of Turnover
  • Annual Agency and Overtime spend
  • High Average Candidates Routed to Hiring Managers (wasting hiring managers’ time)
  • Low Offer Acceptance Rate (losing candidates to the competition)

Not to mention the sacrifice in customer service provided to hiring managers and candidates alike! With requisition loads at an all – time high and getting higher, recruiter’s only recourse is to quickly scan candidates for minimum qualifications, then expediting to hiring managers who often times rush the selection process and anxiously fill an empty seat. Neither party has the band width to slow down and source, assess and appropriately interview for long term, best fit.

At Lean Human Capital, we have had great success in building business cases for recruitment organizations across the country to add additional recruitment resources in order to significantly reduce costs associated with turnover, agency and overtime spend.

There are three analyses critical to building an argument for additional recruitment resources:

  1. Cost of Vacancy – please review our Cost of Vacancy White Paper for details
  2. Annual Direct Cost of Turnover
  3. Staffing Optimization Analysis

For additional information on these tools and how we can help your organization obtain additional resources in recruitment, please contact us at info@leanhumancapital.com.

Deb Vargovick