Beware Turning into a Talent Dinosaur

When you have been using the same recruitment formula for a long time and experienced a certain degree of success, it’s easy to be lulled into a false sense of security. However with the industry evolving every day and the growing influence of marketing and automation elements in recruitment, it is important for a Talent leader to keep up with the latest developments.

So before you lose your relevance and turn into an outdated Talent dinosaur, here are some of the things you can do:

 Relooking and understanding your brand

By this I mean a Talent leader should have a look at the organisation’s value proposition and determine if it is still relevant to its target audience. He or she must have a realistic view of where their brand sits in the market compared to both direct and indirect competitors.

This competency can be acquired through the following steps:

  • Understand the patterns of what types of candidates prefer your organisations to others;
  • Review competitors web sites and social media and understand their espoused value propositions;
  • Review information in LinkedIn in terms of where employees from your organisation go when they leave and where they come from will give clues;
  • Survey previous jobs applicants to seek their perception of your brand and recruitment process;
  • Talk to hiring managers to gain their perspective of the market and your direct competitors; and finally
  • Summarise your thoughts and circulate them internally for comment. Mind maps are great for this.
 Get a perspective of the market

In consumer marketing, it is imperative that you are able to identify and describe your business’s target audience. As a Talent leader, this concept is just as important because it enables you to understand who you should be engaging and how exactly you should be doing it.

Some of the key areas to look at are:

  • Core demographic data – candidate age group, gender, location, education and most importantly interests;
  • Do your organisation’s recruitment requirements cover more than one demographic? For example, your technology team may have a different target demographic to your sales team;
  • Could you market content to siblings or friends of your target demographic? An example could be an engineering company who wants to hire overseas Engineers but realises they are not active on LinkedIn or other social media platforms. Therefore, the job marketing content is instead targeted to their partners.
 Sharpen your influencing skills

I believe influencing skills are the mother of all skills. They are defined as the “capacity to persuade, convince, or influence others in order to get them to go along with or support a particular point of view and take action”. These skills will enable a Talent leader to achieve great things and are useful whether you are an internal or external function.

Here are some tips on how you can improve your influencing skills:

  • Understand which stakeholders are the most important and the most influential, there a number of stakeholder matrix tools readily available;
  • Review and determine what has worked with important changes in the past, and then determine your path of least resistance;
  • Prepare a business case for your idea, this may be a formal case that you document, or simply an elevator pitch on the benefits of your plan;
  • Find people who have the ability, capacity and tenacity to mentor you and execute; and
  • Be very practical and keep it simple. David Bell, Talent Acquisition Sourcing Leader at GE, always uses this phrase “your mother should be able to understand”.

Also, check out this article written by Jenni Nelson on how you can apply Robert Cialdini’s weapons of influence successfully in to Talent acquisition and Talent management.

 Know what to prioritise

This means you need to understand your most critical and scarce positions and give these priority in terms of effort, time and resources.

If you are sourcing critical roles and they are known to be challenging to recruit, avoid wasted time going through the motions of traditional sourcing but, instead, spend this time with hiring managers to understand the best ways to access and convert this talent.

 Change your mentality

Most recruiters have been trained to recruit using online job boards. This has led to a mentality whereby we are accustomed to dealing with high volumes of applicants that have to be filtered to find the best applicants.

This has to change if you want to be a successful Talent leader today. Talent leaders should instead start focusing time and effort approaching pre-identified groups of skilled talent directly to build networks and engage these people.

  Familiarise with the latest recruitment technologies

New technologies are entering our industry almost every month, each offering to automate a different part of the recruitment process. Whilst lots of these can be incredibly tempting, knowing which of these are core to successful recruitment is most important.

Talent leaders increasingly need knowledge of these tools in order to be able to reach out to their candidates to provide the best hiring experience. Such tools may include basic graphic design softwares, content scheduling applications, cost per click and impression advertising platforms and even Google Analytics.

Chat bots and artificial intelligence are also becoming more commonplace in the recruitment space and a smart Talent leader would be wise to stay on top of these developments.

Final Thoughts

It’s an evolving world out there and recruitment is no different from the rest. How you adapt to these changes and make the best out of the situation is key to ensuring your continual success as a Talent leader. Can you do it?

Image: Shutterstock

This article is produced in collaboration with Chris South, Director at Prominence.


Learn the latest trends and find out the best practices at the upcoming Australasian Talent Conference, starting 21st June. Get in early to enjoy greater savings – tickets available here.

Leave a Reply