Join Me at Recruiter Nation Live (June 5-7) and We'll Dig Into Hiring Manager Batting Average!

If you're like me, you'd love to have more control over your relationships with hiring managers.  That's why I spoke last week at SHRM Talent on 7 Ways Recruiters Can Win With Difficult Hiring Managers

One of those ways to win was to get data driven - but not through time to fill, cost per hire or turnover. 

Turnover positions you (HR or TA) as the owner of turnover, which you and I know is false.

The next time you report turnover, create a supplemental slide that shows what I call Hiring Manager Batting Average (HMBA).  HMBA simply shows the percentage of people hired by a manager who are still around after one year.  You can roll this up to the departmental level to make it less personal, but its impact is simple - some departments are better at hiring than others.  The ones who are bad have the biggest negative impact to your turnover issues.  Find out more about this by viewing these slides.

I love this metric so much I'm creating a new presentation around it for Jobvite's Recruiter Nation Live (click this link for details and an early bird special).  If you're in the Bay area or looking for a reason to get there in in next 6 weeks, register and join me.  

Additionally, here's an interview I did with the folks at SHRM on Hiring Manager Batting Average to wet your appetite (email subscribers click through for the video):

Hope to see you at Jobvite's Recruiter Nation Live June 5-7 in San Francisco!


CLONES: When Employee Referrals Make Your Average IQ Go Down...

You and I love employee referrals.  We wish we could get more of them.  But, for the rare company that can generate 25% or more of it's annual hire goal from this source, employee referrals can actually weaken the company DNA.

Here's why.  High volume employee referrals mean: Clones

1.  Your company is whiter (or whatever color is your majority.  Full disclosure - I'm white.  I'm Irish.  That means I'm really white.  Don't hate.)

2.  Your company has a declining average IQ.  People don't refer people smarter than they are - that's a threat.

3.  You company is more Blue as a result (or Red).  We don't refer people who think different than we do for the most part.

4.  Your company can hold the alumni meeting onsite without anyone getting in their car.  We love to refer people who went to college where we did.  Roll Tide/War Eagle.

5.  Your company is getting less attractive with each new hire class (which wouldn't be a bad thing if the candidates didn't know someone in the company)

Referrals are great.  Too much of a good thing ends up being a negative.  Cap off referrals at 10-15% of hires.  The change you get as a result will do you good.


CAPITALIST WEBINAR: How to Become the Best at Hourly Hiring in Your Industry...

Let's face it, I like to talk about a lot of upper end talent topics here.  I'm a little bit of a snob, right?

Wait, I've done the tough stuff too! Smashfly fot

For example, take hourly hiring. The majority of hiring done on a daily basis by most companies around the world is in hiring hourly workers, yet almost no one spends time on how to make this easier or do it better. That's why with the latest webinar at FOT (my other team blog), we're going to help our brothers and sisters in the trenches who are out there every single day, doing all the dirty work in their organizations. Those recruiters and talent leaders who are responsible for hiring the masses!  

In that spirit, we're back with the following webinar, The Forgotten Majority: 7 Techniques to Trump Up Your Hourly Hiring (sponsored by the good folks at SmashFly.) Join my good friend Tim Sackett on April 27th at 1pm EDT, and he’ll hit you with the following goodies:

7 things you can start doing to increase and simplify hourly hiring in your organization

3 ways top organizations are leveraging technology to do massive (over 1,000 hires per year) hourly hiring

Pitfalls most organizations fall into when hiring hourly workers, and what you can do to make sure you don’t go down this path

You don’t want to treat your hourly hiring needs like a last minute thought, and we at FOT want to give you the tools and insight you need to build that strategy!

So join us on Thursday, April 27th at 1pm EDT (12pm Central, 10am Pacific) for The Forgotten Majority: 7 Techniques to Trump Up Your Hourly Hiring and we’ll give you the benefits of utilizing CRM technology in mass hiring, along with so many other tips, tricks, and techniques.

REGISTER FOR THIS WEBINAR BY CLICKING THIS LINK!


The Battle-Tested Psychology of the 6/3/1 Recruiting Funnel....

So you want more data and analytics in your recruiting function, but you're not sure where to start...

Allow me to assist.  One of the metrics that is time-tested and true once you really start measuring every open job in your company is the recruiting funnel.  The portion of the recruiting funnel that really matters is what your hiring managers see.  With that in mind, the funnel looks like this:

Submittals (the candidates you formally present to hiring managers for consideration)
Interviews (who the hiring manager interviews)
Hires (if you need me to define this one for, please stop reading)

I was all about the hiring funnel long before I became more focused on recruiting at Kinetix.  As a part of the Kinetix team, I have access to tons of data across a bunch of different companies, thousands and thousands of hires per year.

Want to know what the hiring manager portion of the recruiting funnel says across all that data?  Great!  Here you go:

In a company that does more than 50 hires per year, the aggregate recruiting funnel looks like this:  We submit 6 candidates, you interview 3 of those candidates and hire 1.

Boom. <Drops Mic>. Walks off.

Do individual reqs look different that that?  Sure.  But once you get to 50 positions filled, the averages always come back to 6/3/1 across all hires/all departments.

That probably says something about the psychology of the hiring manager.  She needs to see some candidates, do some interviews and if you're doing your job as a recruiter, she'll find someone she likes.  6/3/1.

You probably know if a hiring manager is a complete ass and unrealistic once you've worked with them across 5 openings or more. 6/3/1.

Sending more than 6 candidates may actually confuse managers and train them that they need to see every candidate in the search, because they subsequently treat you like a coordinator and trust you less. 

6.
3.
1.

If you're wondering whether your service level in recruiting is up to par, start with this metric and compare what you're providing.  I've got 7 years worth of data that says it all comes back to 6/3/1.

Can you measure things like the total number of applicants it take to feed the funnel to get to those downstream numbers?  Of course you can (it's 45, btw.), but don't forget to remember that what the hiring manager sees and the service level they feel/get is the most important thing.

6 freaking 3 freaking 1.

Learn it. Know it. Live It.


Use This Quote When Convincing Someone to Decline An Offer From a Big Company...

"It's better to be a pirate than join the Navy."

-Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs was brutal in many ways, but with his brutality came moments of pure clarity.  This quote is one of those moments. Johnny-depp

The stale way to make the same point is obvious - "Why do you want to go work for that big company?  They're going to bury your talent. You know all those ideas you have?  You won't get to chase any of them at IBM.  They'll just pod you up in the matrix and suck your energy over the next decade, leaving you a husked-out former version of yourself."

Wait - that's actual pretty good.  A more standard version is "You're going to there and be bored immediately."

Still, I like the clarity of the Jobs quote.  If you're working for a smaller firm, you need every competitive advantage you can get as you fight for the hires you need.  This quote, while not perfect, is a good tool to have.

It just so happens that the only people that it works on are the people who are actually inclined to believe that they're more than cogs in the corporate wheel.  Use this quote on a person who's happy being a cog, and they might dance with you a bit - but ultimately they're going to grab for the security that only thousands (often tens of thousands) of employees can provide.  Doesn't make them bad people or not talented - it's a preference for security and risk management.

But they're looking to enlist with a big entity like the Navy - not roam the seven seas on that cool, but rickety boat you call a company and wonder if you'll be around in a year.

If you're at a smaller firm, the best hires you will make are the people that don't look like pirates - but have it buried in their DNA.  If you think you have one of those people, I'd talk in broad terms about the pirate-like things you're going to do at your company.

Pirates like Johnny Depp, BTW - not Somali pirates.

Go buy some eye patches for your next round of interviews. Dare a candidate to ask you why you're wearing one.


Degrees Measure Resilience In Employment...And That's Why We Require Them...

Do you have to have a degree to get hired at your company? 

Maybe.

Do you need a degree to be one of the best in any company?

Hell no.  That's probably why Ernst and Young decided to drop the degree requirement.

Then why do we require degrees?

I think for the most part we've progressed past the point where we think a degree means anything related to job performance. For the most part, degrees are used as a requirement by Neighborsmost companies because it's a test.

A test of what you ask? Of polish. Of the ability to put up with a process that has good days and bad days, but if you keep plugging away, eventually something good happens. You know, kind of like your career.

You don't have to have a degree - but people should never be able to pick you out as someone who doesn't have a degree. And that's the rub, right?

Google and Facebook can hire people without degrees who are exceptional and have been exceptional in their field since they were teens - or pre teens. It's clear to everyone they're brilliant. 

The rest of us? We tend to still want a degree - unless the candidate has plugged away for a decade with work experience that's directly related to the position we're considering them for.  Then and only then, we'll think about forgoing the need for a degree.

Does a 25 year old have the polish necessary to be a marketing coordinator (name the relevant position) at your company? We're really bad at evaluating that. Even when the interview goes great, we still have doubts.

A college degree is the ante, the chip that gets you to the table.

I'm willing to hire someone without a degree in positions that traditionally require a degree, but they need one of two things:

1. 5-10 years of relevant experience, directly related to the job in question.

2. Proof that they're exceptional in the field in question, which is usually confirmed by unusual accomplishments for their age that show passion and drive.

Don't have one of those two things? Then I'm going to rely on the degree to tell me something. Anything.

You made it through college - I know you have some ability to stick with the plan. To persevere. To accumulate debt.

Want to get hired without the degree at a young age? Have some passion and chase expertise that's directly related to the job. 

Unless you have that, you're just another sharp 25-year old. We're not smart enough to tell who's a baller and who's not. The college degree is the default.


McKinsey Report: Managing Others and Influence Safe From Next Wave of AI/Automation...

McKinsey has a pretty good report out about where machines/AI can replace humans, and where they can't. I'd encourage all in the talent space to take a look - here's the link.

What you learn from the report is that AI and other forms of automation aren't new related to their ability to destroy jobs and cause dramatic restructuring of workforces as we know them.  A recent HBR article shows that between 1900 and 1990, the population of farmers in the United States went from 30 million to 3 million all while the country’s population more than tripled. In other words, 97% of the farmers disappeared, 3% of the jobs were kept but changed dramatically, the cause: automation.  

Smaller examples - the large-scale deployment of bar-code scanners and associated point-of-sale systems in the United States in the 1980s reduced labor costs per store by an estimated 4.5 percent and the cost of the groceries consumers bought by 1.4 percent.  Huh...  Check out kiosks don't work now because humans are generally helpless to learn new things on the fly - once we can scan you walking out the door without you finding a bar code, we won't have check out counters. 

So automation is a fact of life.  The decision you have to help your kids (as well as grown relatives and friends) make is what careers will be viable in the next wave of automation.

If you look at the McKinsey report, you have to be careful when it comes to Skilled Trades.  We'll have those for the foreseeable future, but there will be pressure on these areas for sure. Look at the chart below from the report and we'll talk about it after the jump (email subscribers, click through if you can't see the picture):

McKinsey Work Automation Chart

What the chart says is this - the more predictable the physical work, the more jobs stand to be eliminated by automation.

Self-driving car technology is going to replace truckers.  Low-end recruiters are gong to be replaced by AI technology.

What's safe for right now?  Any position that manages others or requires influence (stakeholder interactions and applying expertise).

Managing others and influence have a lot of overlap.  They're also among the hardest things to get good at in Corporate America.  Unpredictable physical work is much less likely to be automated that predictable physical work.  It stands to reason that predictable work using your brain is much more likely to be automated than unpredictable work using your brain.

You know what's unpredictable work using your brain?  Dealing with those pesky people. 

Which tells me the HR generalist (jack of all trades, master of some - across all career levels) is going to be around for awhile.


Illinois AG Sends Age Discrimination Letters to Job Boards, Protects Rights of 81 Year Olds To Apply For Jobs They Don't Want...

In case you missed it, the State of Illinois Attorney General is in the news for some premium PR/saber-rattling, centered around the fact that job boards like CareerBuilder and Indeed are trying to exclude older workers from applying for jobs they don't want.

Yes, the world has problems. This didn't make the list of 99 referenced by Shawn Carter.  Still, there's the Illinois AG, doing her thing.  More from the rundown on SHRM.org, notes that follow each section are my color commentary:

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office alleged in letters sent March 1 that older job seekers are deterred from using resume tools and creating profiles on the nation's Madiganlargest job search sites—CareerBuilder, Indeed and Monster—because of their age, potentially violating the Illinois Human Rights Act and the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA).

Three other job sites, Beyond.com, Ladders Inc. and Vault, were also sent letters requesting information about the companies' practices.

Ok.  I'm interested.  I'm at the older age range of GenX, so this is me some day in the future.

In one example provided by the attorney general, 1980 was the earliest possible choice for users' education or previous employment start dates, effectively barring anyone older than 50 from using the tool. Other sites used dates ranging from 1950 to 1970 as cutoffs.

How dare they.  Tell me more.

Madigan's office asked in its letter to CareerBuilder why users cannot choose a high school graduation date prior to 1955, saying that the cutoff excludes those who are 81 or older from full use of the site's services.

"CareerBuilder is committed to helping workers of all ages find job opportunities and has fixed this unfortunate oversight," said Michael Erwin, director of global corporate communications and social media for the Chicago-based job search site.

Uh, OK.  CareerBuilder's not automatically configured to let those 81 years or older apply for a job in the buzzsaw of corporate America?  I get that the tools need to be configured in an agnostic way from an age perspective, but 81?  Kind of feels like CareerBuilder had it mostly right.  Now thinking this is some grandstanding the AG is doing so she can stump to the older crowd at Piccadilly when she makes the run for Governor.

"Remember when those evildoers at CB were trying to take away your right to apply for a job you had no interest in doing?  I was there for you.  How's the red jello today?  Is the early bird special still on?  I might grab a plate after I get done telling you how the Internet is evil."

Austin, Texas-based Indeed's resume builder drop-down menu went back to 1956. "This did not prevent anyone from manually noting an earlier date on a resume, but we did extend that menu to 1900 after hearing of the concern in the letter," said senior public relations manager Alex Ortolani.

"Indeed's mission is to help people get jobs, and we strongly believe that age should not be a factor in evaluation of employment," he said.

No shit. This could have been a phone call to the job boards to tell them to have the stoner developer in charge of drop down menus to dial up 1900, just in case that nimble great/great/great/great/great grandma wanted that call center job.  But no, we get a PR release to take a shot at Job Boards, because, you know - the AG really gets the intersection of job boards and age discrimination.

No mention in the SHRM article about which job board only allows those creating candidate profiles to go back to 1970.  Maybe that's someone that needs a AG whack across the knees.

But 81 years old?  How about you just call CareerBuilder to ask that they expand the drop down menu and be a partner to business?

Of course, if the AG really understood discrimination, she'd be asking job boards to eliminate options that needlessly force people to show just how freaking old they are - like drop down graduation date menus.  

Instead?  We want the option to show if your parents voted for Teddy Roosevelt on 1900.  

Rock on, Lisa Madigan.  Your understanding of age discrimination is stellar.   


This Year's Final Four Proves The Value of "Well Placed" over "Top" Talent...

If you're watching/following the NCAA Men's Basketball Tourney this year, your bracket is shot, your team is likely gone and there's only one thing left to do. 

What's that thing you ask?  

Look at the rosters of the teams that made the Final Four and make a Talent observation. Gonzaga  Naturally. 

This year, that observation is pretty simple.  If it's long term performance you're looking for, you're likely better off not chasing the top 1% of available talent, you're better off in the 75th to 95th percentile due to performance and retention considerations.  More for the setup from the Newton Daily News:

If you take a peak at nbadraft.net to see who the top prospects for the upcoming NBA draft are, you’ll find a bunch of freshmen.  We live in a one-and-done world of college basketball. The rules force future NBA players to spend at least one season playing college basketball.

In the day of the one-and-dones, the four teams left in the NCAA Tournament are doing it with grown men.

Oregon has three freshmen on its entire roster, which is probably normal considering coaches bring in players every year to balance out rosters. Five Ducks are averaging in double-figures and four of them are juniors or seniors.

Gonzaga is probably one of the more successful programs in the country that does it with older players every year. The Bulldogs have freshman Zach Collins, who is projected to be a lottery pick. But he isn’t even one of the four Gonzaga players averaging in double figures.

North Carolina is a program one would think would be able to roll with the one-and-done model, but head coach Roy Williams has built this current roster differently. The Tar Heels lost in the championship game last year and are back in the Final Four with a team full of juniors and seniors.

South Carolina has the youngest team of any Final Four teams. The Gamecocks have freshman standout Rakym Felder and sophomores PJ Dozier and Chris Silva. But two of their top three scorers are senior guards who weigh an average of 218 pounds. Grown men.

The lesson for most of us is pretty simple.  Even if you can afford to chase top talent, it's probably not in your best interest.  Extrapolate the NCCA Final Four to your business, and the parallels are there.  You can chase top/top talent, but you'll likely pay more and have almost immediate retention concerns.  But lurking just underneath that talent pool is a group of candidates for any position that can deliver 80% of the performance for 60% of the cost/risk.  In addition, since the retention issues are diminished in this group, They'll deliver increasing performance over time because they'll stick around.

It's sexy to chase the rock star.  The Final Four is reminding us that the 85th percentile of available candidates is a place with pretty good ROI.

I'd rather my company be Gonzaga than Kentucky from a talent perspective.


Comparing Job Offers: Always Pick The Best Boss...

From our Kinetix Tips series (email subscribers click through for photo):

Screen Shot 2015-09-28 at 6.54.10 PM

Of course, I was operating with limited characters in that space, so one elaboration. A potential boss's comfort with that question really doesn't include him automatically saying "yes".  The comfortable potential boss reflects on that question and compares the good and bad he/she brings to the table.

A quick "yes" to the question, "are you a good/best boss?", probably means they're not great at managing talent. Because it's way to hard to be that cocky about being good.