FRIDAY TEST: Pick the 3 People In Your Company That Don't Matter If You're Doing A Push To Analytics...

I'm in Atlanta today speaking at the Human Capital Institute's (HCI) Workforce Planning and Analytics Conference.  My topic is bootstrapping an analytics program at your company, and in a move that will surprise some, my slides are more about people/behavior than numbers.

The theory - you can have a great plan for metrics/analytics, but unless you're willing to jump in the middle of some blocking activity in your company, numbers and analytics are DOA.

Most of you aren't in the ATL with me today, but have no fear...You can still play along.

Appearing below are 6 people/groups of people in your company that will have a role in any analytics rollout. Your mission, should you choose to take it, is to pick out the three people/groups of people WHO DON'T MATTER when you do your rollout.

Hit me in the comments with the three people that can be ignored. I'll throw in a reply late on Friday if anyone wants to play my game show...

(Subscribers click through if you can't see the images and click through to the site to participate)

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Which Talent Metric Are You Routinely Hung Out to Dry For?

Ah yes - metrics. HR needs to be more metrics driven, right?

But a funny thing happens on your way to being numbers-driven as an HR pro. You give the people what they want, and the people try to hang you with the numbers you're reporting.

So answer this question:

"Which talent metric are you routinely hung out to dry for?"

If you're like most HR pros, the numbers you report that are most likely to get you jacked up on are as follows:

Time to Fill

Organizational Turnover

We report on those things because they're the standard we know, and because they're the standard we know, they're the numbers automated by most HR Tech systems.

But the mistake we make is allowing people to assume that HR is 99% responsible for the performance of those numbers.

Time to Fill is high?  What is Recruiting/HR doing?  Turnover is up?  What is HR doing about that?  They own the culture, right?

Wrong. The performance of these numbers is always indicative of blended responsibility.  Operations. Line Management. And yes, HR.  But blended.

So I'm here today to give you some thoughts about how to change the perception of ownership related to these numbers.  You can still report Time to Fill and Organizational Turnover, but you need to create some scoreboards that place pressure on your client groups to perform better than they are.

Case in point - organizational turnover.  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.

Time to Fill? Well, all positions aren't created equal, which is why I would encourage you to follow up any Time to Fill reporting with some recruiting funnel data - what I'll call the "Show/Interview/Hire' statement.  This statement simply evaluates how many candidates a department is shown on average (per open position), then how many they interview out of that to get one hire.

Some departments are pickier than others. Some for good reasons, others... not so much so.  Find out more about this type of reporting by clicking here.

You get hung out to dry for some of the widely accepted metrics that are out there.  Stop playing defense, and start playing offense.

VIDEO: What's Wrong with the Assessment Platform You're Using Today?

I had the chance to appear on the HireVue “Weird Science” Series as week, with Fistful's Tim Sackett pinging me on assessments and the data/insight they give you around hiring the right candidate for your company.

Listen to Tim and I talk about the science behind assessments and how to implement them with your team to get the greatest return on your investment (email subscribers click through for video that appears below)..

My takes in the conversation:

--Assessments that take over 25 minutes to complete kill the candidate experience.

--If you give a hiring manager a 10-page report, you'll guarentee they read none of it.

--If you want real ROI with assessments, do something with them once a candidate is onboarded into your company...

Enjoy!  I'm especially proud of the freeze fame picture they gave me below as a placeholder to the video....

We Continue to Miss the Texting Opportunity In HR...

HR’s never been accused of being on the bleeding edge, and any type of social media or communications usually finds HR pros trailing the pack.

Take social media as an example.  Lots of potholes.  Full of traps.  No wonder you didn’t try harder to get in the game and use it for communications, engagement, recruiting and more.  Of course, all the challenges can be overcome by using a smart approach to social media, but I’ll give you a pass.

So what’s your excuse for not looking to incorporate texting into you HR practice?  What’s everyone’s excuse?  After all, you’ve probably sent more texts today than you have emails.

And that’s the thing – more people are immediately accessible using text today than email, and certainly the phone.  In addition, use of texting in new applications not only draws people in, but they’re less likely to leave once you get them using your thing – HR – via text.  More from Flurry via Business Insider:

Facebook dropped $19 billion on WhatsApp, Snapchat is valued at $15 billion, and even the anonymous messaging app Yik Yak, despite being a little over a year old, is already valued between $300 million and $400 million. Messaging apps are big business, and here’s why.

Based on new data from mobile analytics firm Flurry charted for us by BI Intelligence, messaging apps retained nearly six times as many users they attracted in their first months compared to the average user retention across all applications. The average retention rate for all apps was 32% in the first month, and fell to 11% by the 12th month. In contrast, messaging apps held onto 68% of their new users after the first month, and slipped just a little bit, down to 62%, by the 12th month.

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You have to fish where the fish are.  I’m willing to bet you could go into a conference room today and brainstorm 5 unbelievable opportunities for people to engage with the business of HR via text, and you could bootstrap a lot of the solutions as well internally – you don’t have have to wait on the vendors to do something.

Text provides immediacy, and per the Flurry report, people don’t leave apps once they start using them via text.  That’s called adoption – you want people to try and then incorporate the new app into their day to day lives - then never leave.

The new app you’re introducing?  It’s called HR. 

Get with it.

Buyer’s Remorse: The FOT 1st Timer’s Guide to Buying HR Technology...

A few months ago I did an opus grande on buying HR Tech, and I thought it was important because there's never been a better time to buy a solution to help you solve HR pain.

If you liked that, a couple of my friends who know their stuff are riffing on a similar topic over at my Screen Shot 2014-08-15 at 8.23.06 AMother blog, Fistful of Talent. In classic FOT style, Tim Sackett and Steve Boese, the Co-Chair of the HR Technology Conference, will break down the issues surrounding buying HR Tech in our latest webinar...

Join them on August 28 at 12pm ET for “Buyer’s Remorse: The FOT 1st Timer’s Guide to Buying HR Technology,” and they'll hit you with the following:

--The Difference between a Suite or a Best-of-Breed Product: Why you should care? Which one is right for you to buy? They'll break it down based on your unique needs.

--The Decision Tree/Process That Helps You Arrive at the Right Decision Regarding Which Solution to Buy. Yes, they can tell you exactly what to buy! But they won’t, because great HR Pros need to understand how to make these decisions. But don’t worry—they’ll show you how...

--6 Tips and Tricks the HR Vendor Community Uses to Get You To Buy Their Product—which might not be the product you actually need. Learn how to make sure you don’t succumb to these tactics when making your next buying decision.  This section alone will ensure you take control of your next buy like a pro!

--The Secret for Getting Your Organization to Invest in HR tech and How to Build ROI for your Executive Team. Every buying decision comes down to the why and ROI, and your ability to persuasively and concisely get your organization to support your recommendation.  Sometimes the hardest part of an HR Tech buy is your ability to get approval to buy!

Things that are hard:  Riding a bike on a freeway. Getting your kids to eat peas. Buying HR Tech. Join Tim and Steve on August 28 at 12pm ET for “Buyer’s Remorse: The FOT 1st Timer’s Guide to Buying HR Technology.” and they’ll make buying HR Tech easier. You’re on your own with the other two.

HIt the form below or any of the links in this post to sign up for this webinar - see you there, I'll be in the audience.

When Designing HR Programs: The Complex Never Gets Used...

I know - you're a smart cookie.  And when you really put your mind to it, you can design the #### out of some HR programs.  There's just this one little problem...

Most of us over-design the programs we develop and roll out as HR leaders.

What is complex rarely gets used.  You have to think about the lowest common denominator in your audience when you design Talent programs.  And even if the lowest common denominator is pretty smart, you have to think about the time they have to use your solution, and the the time they're willing to spend to get up to speed.

Keep it simple and you've got a chance.  Great video/story below from Marc Effron driving home the point about two CEO's who gave two different HR Leaders the same task.  One went NASA-like and one kept it simple.  Guess which solution actually got implemented?

Keeping it simple doesn't mean you're stupid.  It actually means the opposite.

(email subscribers click through for video)

SLIDESHOW: The 5 Best Data Plays for HR Pros...

If you're tired of your HR reporting decks not having any pop, it's obvious what you need.

You need to stop measuring you (HR) and start measuring them (the business).  What do I mean by that?  No one cares about your time to fill, raw turnover stats, etc.  If you really want to get the attention of your business partners, you need to start measuring the people you serve.  That means not only reporting data, but using it to predict what's going to happen next.  And make it about them.

That's where we get uncomfortable as HR pros.  That's why I'm sharing part of the deck from a Fistful of Talent webinar I did with Steve Boese on HR and Big Data.

Example from the deck - you report on Time to Fill in your HR/Recruiting shop.  Business owners: <yawn>.  Want to get their attention?  Report on Hiring Manager Batting Average, which measures how many hires actually stick for a period of time (you make the call on the time period - one year?  two?).  

That will get their attention.

Check out the slides below (email subscribers click through if you can't see the embedded slides) for my top five ways you need to adjust your HR reporting to get the attention of the business and position your HR shop as a value-added equal.

HR Metrics: Stop Measuring You and Start Measuring Them, HR...

Because I'm a glutton for punishment, I'm doing a webinar on Thursday at 2pm ET with the esteemed Steve Boese entitled, HR Moneyball:  The FOT Bootstrapper Guide To Getting Started With Big Data.  Join us if you can, should be fun.

You know what I realized in prepping for this session?  When it comes to data, we are WAAAAAAAY to Measured concerned about measuring what HR does in the organization.  Time to fill, cost per hire, average merit increases, etc.  I'm not sure anyone on the business side cares until something's broke.  Then, they just want it fixed - they're not even that concerned about seeing the improvement in the metrics that we hold near and dear.

I think the more powerful track when it comes to metrics and data out of the HR function is to measure what's happening in the business, then use what you measure in the business as a reason to partner with the most powerful people in your organization to fix what may be broken.

Need examples?

HR Metrics - everything you measure now to show the efficiency of your HR shop.

Data/Metrics that measure how effective the business is (as well as the managers who run it):

--Hiring Manager Batting Average (how good someone is at selection - as measured by how many people stick)

--Salary Cap Utilization (a better way to talk about budget, and flexibility on budget than FTE counts)

--Revenue Per Employee (which basically sets you up for all the people ways that you can influence revenue above and beyond just firing people...)

--Turnover with a prediction angle (those who have problems with turnover are predicted to have... you guessed it... more turnover in the future)

Vanity is a bitch.  Stop reporting about what you are doing and become the data nerd for the business, with a hat tip to the people side.

Nobody cares about time to fill unless there's a problem.  Everyone is interested in who the best managers are when it comes to hiring.

Start making your data plays more interesting.

HR Moneyball:The Bootstrapper Guide For HR Getting Started With Big Data (WEBINAR)

You’ve heard the hype: Big Data is taking over the business world, and HR’s going to be expected to make decisions—not through feelings, relationships or gut instinct—but via numbers.  The problem is… your HRIS, ATS and Performance Solutions are all different systems and weren’t built with the big-data revolution in mind. In short, you feel less than ready for workforce analytics—you’re just trying to get the basic reports generated.

We feel your pain, people. That’s why our June installment of the HR Capitalist/FOT webinar is entitled, HR Moneyball:  The FOT Bootstrapper Guide To Getting Started With Big Data. Join Steve Boese and I Data nerd for this webinar on Thursday, June 26 at 2pm EST(sponsored by ThoughtSpot, a cool business intelligence startup), and we’ll share the following goodies with you:

A brief review of where HR stands with Business Intelligence (BI)/Big Data. We’ll cover some of the trends, what the bleeding edge is doing, the 3 types of data sources available to HR shops and what the CEOs and business leaders you support are asking for related to data and BI out of the HR Function. We’ll also talk about what your options are when HR is the last priority for an over-burdened IT function.

Why HR pros need to shift/lean forward. It’s not what happened, it’s what going to happen. Getting your head around business intelligence and data means you have to shift your focus from reporting the past and move to predictive analytics. We’ll give you examples of great reporting decks from the HR Hall of Fame and tell you how they have to change to meet the call from predictive analytics out of your HR shop.

- The Five Best HR Plays for Business Intelligence (BI) and Big Data. Since we’re all about helping you win, we wouldn’t do this webinar without giving you some great ideas for where to start with a data play out of your shop. You’re going to stop reporting turnover and start predicting it. You’re going to stop reporting time to fill and start showing which hiring managers are great at—you guessed it—hiring.  We’ll give you five great ideas and show you how to get started piecing the story together.

- A primer on what’s next once you start channeling Nostradamus. Since you specialize in people, you naturally understand the move to using Business Intelligence (BI)/Big Data that helps you predict the future is only half the battle—you have to have a plan once the predictions are made. We’ll help you understand the natural applications for using your business-intelligence data as both a hammer and a hug—to get people who need to change moving, and to embrace those that truly want your help as a partner.

You’re a quality HR pro who knows how to get things done. Join us on Thursday, June 26 at 2pm EST for HR Moneyball: The FOT Bootstrapper Guide To Getting Started With Big Data and we’ll help you understand how to deploy Moneyball principles in HR that allow you to use predictive Big Data to position yourself as the expert you are.  Form to register appears below or just click on the link above.

3 Must Have Features for Any ATS (or recruiting modules of a HR Suite)...

Continuing my Buyers Guide rant from yesterday - if you missed that, go find my thoughts on buying HR software in the comprehensive Suite vs. Best In Breed here...

Let's say you're in the market for a recruiting solution.  The first thing you need to do is what's referred to above - are you a Suite buyer or are you going the Best in Breed route?  Once you get that done, you need to No-i-dont-want-no-scrubsfind a solution - whether Best in Breed or part of a Suite - that has critical features that are going to drive business results and eliminate excuses recruiters have for not getting things done. 

What are those features?  I think there are 3 primary things that drive business results and recruiter efficiency:

1. Ability to view any job, recruiter and the recruting practice as a whole through a "funnel", much like sales managers drive the performance of any sales group.  One of the reasons I'm not positive on the Suite providers out there who had their origin in core HRMS is because they don't understand the sales mentality that any good recruiting practice has to have.  Any funnel-based ATS/recruiting solution has to have a funnel that looks like this - applies/phone screens/interview 1/interview 2/offer/hire.  You can argue about the best components of that funnel, but you can't argue that good recruiting departments don't manage the business like a sales organization.  Recruting is enough of an afterthought with some of the Suite providers that you can't customize the view in the recruiting module via the way YOU define the funnel.  That's weak.

For an example of a Best in Breed that does an incredible job with Funnel-Based requisition management, look at Newton Software.  It's money on the funnel front.

2.  The best recruiting solutions will also understand the importance of being able to quickly/easily create candidate profiles via information available on LinkedIn.  If they really care, you can drag a passive candidate off of LinkedIn into your recruiting system in about 5-10 seconds.  If the recruiting solution you're looking at doesn't have this type of integration or at least something that helps you scrape LinkedIn, you can expect your recruiters to be farmers, not hunters.

Bill Kutik breaks some of this down in his most recent HR Excecutive Column

"Today, recruiters using Taleo, BrassRing, PeopleFluent and Lumesse have special rights to view LinkedIn from within those applications, rather than toggling between the two.

Doesn't sound like a big deal to you and me, but go ask a recruiter who's gone cross-eyed from toggling all day long.

The point is LinkedIn is the single most important resource in salaried recruiting today (with a nod to Gild, Entelo and TalentBin, which do it differently for software engineers). Recruiters would sooner stand at their desks all day than give up the special functionality of their $8,000 seat on LinkedIn (last price I heard; your rate may vary).

Any recruiting app that gets truly favored integration with LinkedIn will have a huge advantage.

Cornerstone has actually done a fair amount with LinkedIn just using the public API's with no friend at the company. For instance, it can fetch full LinkedIn profiles from within its application, instead of the abbreviated version supplied when someone "applies with LinkedIn." 

3.  The best recruiting systems will also make the interviewing scheduling process easier via Outlook, which is still what American email runs on.  If there's not a way for recruiters to work in the solution and schedule interviews via Outlook without a bunch of BS, then you're taking hours out of a good recruiters work-week.

More Kutik:

For its part, Cornerstone Recruiting Cloud has niftily solved the interview scheduling process. Other apps, like Taleo, have to open Outlook for scheduling. Cornerstone can simply pass the confirmed appointment to Outlook. Again, not much of an issue unless you have to do it dozens of times a day.

Looking at recruiting software/ATS or recruiting functionality in a HR software suite?  Look for sales-like Funnel Management, LinkedIn scraping and Outlook integration.  If you don't get at least two of the three (either now or in the very near term roadmap), recruiting is an afterthought to you - and them.