Lean, Just-in-Time Recruiting!

Archive for May, 2011

Just in Time Hiring – Is It a Dream?

Wednesday, May 18th, 2011

Building candidate pipelines to migrate towards JIT hiring has been talked about for years with little to no progress towards a solution.

From all the benchmark data I have seen (including our recent Healthcare Recruitment Benchmark Study), most organizations have time-to-fill metrics that hover between 25-90 days+ depending on the type of position they are trying to fill.   While most discussions around this topic focus on the challenges of pulling off this feat, I want to discuss some pragmatic solutions that are realistic and achievable to implement.

  • Develop a hiring forecast in advance of need – I think we are missing the boat on this one.  While everyone is working on very complex workforce planning models (I’m not saying stop doing this – - I still think this is a worthwhile activity), most every organization I know of:
    • Has a budget headcount forecast
    • Tracks employee turnover
    • Can predict (to some degree of certainty) headcount needs related to new business growth 90+ days out.
    • Can identify employees that are flight risks, on the fast track to be promoted, or about to retire

This data will allow you to predict hiring needs with a variance of say 10% +/-.  Is it perfect? No. Will it give you a road map of what you need to recruit for 90 days out. . . Heck ya!

  • Identify the resources required to develop candidate pipelines to meet hiring needs.  In manufacturing, this is called Materials Release Planning.  Based on your process (and efficiency flows, time/resources required at each step, etc.) – you can identify the resources required to meet hiring demand throughout the ‘Staffing Supply Chain’.  Richard Newsome provides a glimpse of this in his recent article.  I have been using a more complex model with recruitment organizations for years!
  • Get Leadership to hold hiring managers accountable for time to fill.  Over the last 2 months, I have performed value stream mapping exercises with 7 recruitment organizations.  On average, less than 10% of the total time to fill was ‘processing candidates’.  90% of the time was ‘wait/delay’ time between processes.  Of the wait time, over 50% was directly caused by managers (I know you are shocked with these findings) sitting on resumes, not making decisions, ‘waiting’ for a purple squirrel candidate, etc. 

If managers were/are held accountable, you can expect to reduce TTF by 30-50%.  PS – I know this idea is probably the toughest to get implemented.

  • Have dedicated sourcers for Critical/Difficult/Visible (CDV) positions – I know this is not a new concept but . . . it works :) .  Most everyone underestimates how much time (sourcing) it takes to identify and recruit for these positions (no matter how savvy you are).  I would invest in doing a pure time study to understand how much time it takes to ‘source’ a candidate for each of your critical job categories.  Then you can truly identify how many resources you need to support hiring demand (again – check out Richard’s article ).

For many of you, these are not profound ideas and/or thoughts.  For some of you, you’ve probably implemented a few of these ideas with some level of success. 

So why are most organizations struggling to migrate to a JIT hiring solution?

  • We are not managing customer expectations and/or  educating them on what is required to meet their needs JIT (what they ask for when they say I want a req. filled ‘ASAP’ or ‘Yesterday’).  Basic concepts like Production Planning and Materials Release Planning have been used in manufacturing organizations for years.  We need to adopt them.
  • We are not investing the time to work with customers to understand hiring needs.  We are not investing the time to implement Material Release Planning concepts into our Staffing Supply Chain to identify the resources required to meet hiring demand.

I don’t want to make this sound simple. But let’s not make this harder than it needs to be.  If hiring quality (quality is #1) employees in a timely fashion is very important to your organization, it is time to take control!

I would love to hear success stories from organizations that have implemented these concepts to substantially reduce lead time/TTF  without any decrease in quality or increase in cost.

I hope you are having a perfect day!

Lean Journey at Mission Health System

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

If you missed it last week, Lori Halula, Manager of Recruiting for Mission Health System, and I conducted a webinar in partnership with HealthcareSource discussing how Mission engaged Lean Human Capital to conduct a Lean, Just-In-Time transformation.

During the webinar, Lori recapped the major milestones over the last year including:

  1. How Position Manager data and Lean Human Capital’s Healthcare Recruitment Benchmark Study uncovered areas for improvement – As you may have seen from our press releases and other blog posts, we are now an integrated partner with HealthcareSource. As a part of this partnership, any client of Position Manager will now have a FREE automatic data feed from Position Manager. This feed will allow you to seamlessly participate in our benchmarking study, as well as build deeper analytics to measure your process efficiency.
  2. Creation of a new, benchmarked analytics and performance metrics scorecard – As many of you have heard from me, you can’t improve what you don’t measure. It’s also more difficult to make key decisions and manage customer expectations without objective data to drive behaviors. A metrics scorecard can lead to a continuous improvement approach that drives the desired behaviors from your key stakeholders by using factual data that is very difficult to argue with.
  3. Mission’s transition to an optimized recruiting structure including new roles & responsibilities – Early in the engagement, Mission conducted a 360 degree assessment with their recruiters where they evaluated their competencies and skills compared to other healthcare recruiters, to uncover areas for improvement. Sourcing candidates and building pipelines scored lower than other areas. Based on this data, as well as additional research, we decided to migrate the team from a generalist recruiting structure (where recruiters do everything for everyone) to a model that includes talent and sourcing specialists. In the new model, talent specialists work primarily with the candidates and hiring managers while sourcing specialists work to source candidates and build active and passive pipelines.
  4. How conducting a Lean process audit and time-value mapping of Mission’s recruitment process reduced waste – In this exercise key stakeholders were documented for each step in the process as well as the process and delay times for each step. At the end the team worked on techniques to positively impact time to fill and improve customer service.
  5. How Mission implemented Service Level Agreements to better manage the hiring manager relationship and expectations – Lori shared their experience about how hiring managers can negatively impact time to fill by delaying the movement of candidates through the hiring process. By putting in place service level agreements, Mission has created greater accountability for hiring managers as well as recruiters.

Mission’s ROI since going live has positively impacted time to fill, reducing it from 48 days (2010) to 42 days (2011)! We look forward to seeing more improvements over time.

If you have interest in hearing the entire presentation, here is the link to the recorded webinar: Mission Health System’s Lean Journey Webinar.

We are excited to have Lori participate in our Advanced Metrics pre-conference workshop on Tuesday July 12th at NACHR’s Annual Image conference! If you would like more information about this workshop, please contact us.

I would also encourage you to participate in our Healthcare Recruitment Benchmark Study. For more information, please contact us.

I hope you’re having a great week!