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Think of all the reasons you love where your company is located. There’s your local cafe, where the barista has memorized your order. You have a picturesque park to take your kids to play. Every Friday, you and your co-workers gather at your favorite happy hour hangout. Your company’s town might not be perfect, but it’s home.

So it stings when, as a talent acquisition professional, candidates are less-than-impressed with your location. It’s even worse when they don’t apply because the company isn’t in a bustling city. The reality is, location matters to job seekers.

According to a March report from CareerBuilder, location is more important than salary for 56 percent of job seekers. Short of moving the organization to a more desirable city or town, what can you do to ensure open roles appeal to job seekers?

As with most aspects of hiring, it’s about giving talent the information they need to make an educated decision. You have to overcome their preconceived notions of what your town is like so they begin to see themselves working and living there.

Here are five ways you can sell job seekers on your company’s location:

Use one-way video interviews

Whenever you’re trying to attract out-of-town talent, one-way video interviews are a great tool to get the hiring process started. But this is especially true when you need to buy some time to get job seekers on board with your location. Since there’s no travel and the interview takes little time, candidates complete one-way video interviews with companies they’re interested in, without worrying that their investment won’t pay off.

When reaching out about a one-way video interview, work to build a strong connection with candidates. Send them information about the company culture. This will show them just how at home at your organization they will feel regardless of the location.

One-way video interviews introduce talent to your company without a huge investment on their part. #talentacquisition
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Highlight what only you can offer

Every company has an ace in the hole when it comes to talent acquisition. Maybe you have a killer benefits package or unparalleled career development opportunities. It’s your job to pinpoint what only your company can offer and position it front and center for candidates.

One of the best approaches is to compare what you have to offer to your competitors. Candidates are educated on salary ranges for their positions, but they don’t always fully understand what’s above average for other benefits and perks.

For instance, many candidates are concerned about the cost of health insurance. In the previously mentioned CareerBuilder report, it was the second most important factor to respondents (55 percent). If your employee health coverage plans are amazing, post the average yearly costs compared to most other companies on your career sites.

The same goes for the cost of living and similar expenses in the area. If the salary your company offers goes a great deal further based on your location, be sure candidates see the big picture.

Give them a tour of locals hotspots

Sometimes you have to see a community to realize its charm. Think of the places in your town or city locals love most. These are places that won’t come up in a Google search but truly make your location special.

Record a virtual tour of these places and explain their appeal. Seeing where they’d go out to eat or attend community events will help candidates imagine themselves there. They’ll begin to see how they’d fit in and be happy.

If candidates are unsure of your company location, give them a virtual tour of where the locals go. #candidateexperience
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Cater to their interests

Especially if your company is located in a smaller town, candidates might worry they won’t be able to keep up with all their hobbies and interests. What people do outside of work keeps them balanced, so candidates want to know there are outlets available to unwind or channel their creativity.

As you get to know candidates, take note of their interests. Research where they can carry on with their hobbies in or near your community. Then, in one of your communications, add a P.S. explaining you recalled their interest and include a few local business links so the candidate can dig into their options.

Have a transplant reach out

Employee testimonials hold tremendous weight with candidates. They want to know employees are happy with your organization before deciding to take a job. Similarly, hearing from someone who moved to work for your company shows candidates how people ‘just like them’ grow to love the community.

Keep a running list of which team members relocated to work at the company and ask if they’d be willing to act as a ‘town’ brand ambassador during the talent acquisition process. Then, match each out-of-town candidate with one of these employees.

Try to pair employees and candidates who are from similar geographical areas and demographics so the employee can speak to similarities between the locations. Encourage your town ambassadors to share what they love on social media. Showcase everything your location has to offer through brief videos and town highlights.

Your employees can do a lot to show candidates how great the company location is. #EmployerBranding
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As a talent acquisition professional, you are probably a bit of a hiring trends nerd. When you hear about a new tool or trick, you immediately want to know more in hopes it helps your company find talent more efficiently. You research, and if it’s a good fit, approach your company leaders with a new hiring action plan.

And, if you’re like most hiring professionals, you get shot down.

It’s unfortunate, but leaders often stand in the way of hiring progress. In fact, our recent report, How to Make the Most of Your Hiring Budget, revealed for 27 percent of hiring professionals, a lack of leadership buy-in is one of the biggest obstacles keeping companies from using the best trends and tools.

Your leaders absolutely do not want your team to fail. But given the demands of their responsibilities, they don’t always have time to understand the intricacies of the recruiting and hiring process and, therefore, don’t know what you need to be more successful. It’s up to you to change their minds.

Here are four ways to get your company executives to believe in the latest hiring trends and tools:

Track the data to back your case

Hiring data helps you make better decisions about your talent acquisition processes. Knowing the ROI of your tools and your cost-per-hire shows how your company would benefit from new resources.

Yet, many talent acquisition pros don’t track this data or have access to this information if their company does track hiring budget metrics. Remarkably, in our previously mentioned report, 14 percent of respondents said they didn’t know the ROI of their hiring tools and 24 percent said they didn’t track cost-per-hire. Without that data, it’s difficult to make a case for new hiring trends and tools.

If you’re already tracking hiring metrics, make sure you break the data down to see hidden trends. Overall, your cost-per-hire might be good, but that may be because one department’s hiring managers are spending drastically less than another department. With this information, you can find what those hiring managers are doing differently and then propose a company-wide change.

Break down your hiring metrics in the following ways:

  • By departments
  • Monthly
  • Top hires and bad hires
  • By the position’s hierarchy in the organization

Tracking different hiring metrics enables you to prove whether making the change was the right decision as well as see when it’s time to move on to bigger and better tools. With data to back your hiring team’s progress, over time, your leaders will see definite improvements across the organization and trust your suggestions in the future.

24% of hiring professionals don’t track cost-per-hire. Without those metrics, you can’t expect leaders to agree to better tools.
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Show the inefficiencies

Often, the biggest problem is company leaders don’t see where there are inefficiencies with the current process. Stephen Hart, CEO of Cardswitcher, admits when his HR manager first suggested they start using inbound recruiting, he was skeptical.

“I think I was hesitant, initially, because I wasn’t completely convinced of the benefits of the process change,” he says. But after sitting down with his HR manager, he realized the current methods weren’t as effective as he thought.

“The HR manager had identified a lot of areas where there were significant inefficiencies,” Hart explains. “They also showed me several academic journal articles and studies comparing the two approaches and their respective benefits and drawbacks. After thinking carefully about the evidence my employees provided, I decided to go for the change.”

When you approach company executives, show them the cracks in the system so they understand why you are missing out on great talent. Then, explain how the new hiring trend or tool would address those specific issues without compromising other parts of the hiring process.

Explain the effects on morale

When you talk to leaders about hiring trends and tools, their focus is on potential employees. They don’t always think about how not having the right resources is negatively impacting the team they already have. But many hiring teams are struggling and it’s hurting overall morale.

In our previously mentioned report, 21 percent of talent acquisition professionals said if they received an increase to their hiring budget, they’d use it to hire someone else to help with hiring and recruiting responsibilities. Furthermore, 28 percent of respondents said their satisfaction with their hiring budget was tied to their stress levels and 25 percent said it was linked to how overwhelmed the rest of the team felt.

Your leaders care about the emotional state of their employees. But it’s not always clear how hiring trends and tools impact morale. Be sure to explain the ways in which the new resource or process will create positive change for current employees.

Company #leaders care about employees. Ask for new hiring tools that would help your #HR team.
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Tie the trend to company goals

Most leaders are goal-oriented. Before making any decisions, they need to know how a change will contribute to forward growth. For example, when Nate Masterson, the HR Manager for Maple Holistics, and his team of employees were looking to hire brand ambassadors, he didn’t understand why they wanted to advertise the positions in Facebook groups for distant cities.

“I was hesitant about recruiting from these locations because I felt if people had to travel so far, they might not be as reliable or accessible,” he says. ”The team explained that the best way to get a diverse pool of applicants was to expand our search.”

Once the decision was tied to their diversity and inclusion goals he understood the value it had. Make sure your leaders also see how a new strategy or tool will help accomplish a specific goal. This will open their minds and earn their support.

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Whether your organization is seeking to attract new employees or motivate your current staff, it’s worthwhile to attempt – to the best of your abilities – an examination of your company or organization’s culture through the eyes of your employees. Make a habit of regularly evaluating your company culture to identify what you’re doing right and what you can improve.

You begin conveying your corporate culture to your employees from the moment you interview them through their career at your organization. Your ultimate goal should be to create a company culture that puts your mission at the center. It should demonstrate to your employees that they each have a valuable role in helping you achieve those goals.

To get started evaluating your company culture, examine the ways in which your employees and their work connect to your organization’s short and long-term goals. You’ll want to ask yourself questions such as:

  • Does your employees’ compensation reflect their work toward achieving your mission?
  • Are your employees aware of your goals and motivated to reach them?
  • Do your employees know what they are doing well and what they can improve upon?
  • Are you giving your employees opportunities to grow?
  • Are you responsive to your employees’ feedback?

When employees are knowledgeable about the goals they are working towards and fairly compensated for this work, they’ll be motivated to stay with your company and help you achieve your mission. One of the first places you’ll want to look when evaluating your company culture is your employees’ compensation.

1. Does your employees’ compensation reflect their work toward achieving your mission?

To attract and retain the best employees for your organization, it’s essential that you compensate them in a way that reflects their importance to achieving your goals. For newer companies or those that are adjusting their goals, determining employee compensation can be difficult.

Because fair compensation is essential to a positive company culture, ensure that you spend time considering this question and making any necessary changes to your compensation strategy.

If your organization is planning to make any adjustments to your employees’ compensation in an effort to improve your company culture, you may benefit from the professional experience of a consultant. Whether you’re just starting out or working to make beneficial changes, a top compensation consulting firm can help your organization to:

  • Develop a base compensation strategy. Your organization may be new or in the midst of change, but your compensation consultant brings years of experience to the process of creating your company’s base compensation strategy. They’ll take your organization’s goals and resources into account to help you develop the right strategy.
  • Incorporate incentives into your employee compensation. Together with your compensation consultant, your organization will define goals toward which your employees are working and modify your base compensation strategy to include custom-developed incentive plans that motivate employees to work toward company-wide goals.
  • Train your human resources department and line management to implement and carry out your new strategy. Your HR department and managers need to understand every aspect of your new compensation strategy, from the basics to components specific to executives and salespeople. With the help of your compensation consultant, you’ll be able to train them so that they have all the information they need to ensure the success of your new policies.

Successful updates to your human resources policies, including your compensation strategies, tend to be data-driven and are stronger when you gather as much information and input as possible from everyone involved. This information includes your employees’ feedback as well as the input of your compensation consultant.

Your new or refreshed compensation strategy is intended in large part to motivate your employees to work toward your organization’s most pressing goals. They can only do so, however, if they have a good understanding of what those goals are.

2. Are your employees aware of your goals and motivated to reach them?

Both you and your employees will find it much easier and more rewarding to work toward company goals when you have actionable plans in place to reach them. When you’re able to communicate your goals to your employees and provide them direction, they’ll feel more involved in the process and be motivated to do good work as a result.

Especially for nonprofits, your annual report presents a great opportunity to restate your organization’s most pressing goals and evaluate your team’s progress toward reaching them. Your team members will see where you made great strides in the past year and where you could improve, motivating everyone to work together to develop a strategy for the coming year.

Beyond incorporating incentives into your compensation system, you can also share your organization’s goals with your team and motivate them through:

  • Conversations – Each of your team members is important to the success of your organization. Let them know what role they play in helping your company achieve your goals.
  • Meetings – Meetings are a great place to introduce your most recent goals to your whole team or larger groups of employees. You can also introduce plans that break down these goals step by step.
  • Team building activities – Your team will be more motivated to reach your organization’s goals when they enjoy working together. Team building activities don’t have to be silly or unexciting for your employees. Look for fresh and creative ideas that provide you with opportunities to share your goals.

When all of your employees are clear on what your goals are and understand the roles they play in reaching those goals, they’ll be more motivated. As your employees work toward your goals, ensure that your organization has an effective system in place to let employees know when they’re doing well and when they can improve.

3. Do your employees know what they are doing well and what they can improve upon?

Your employees want to contribute to your organization’s success by playing their parts in achieving your goals. The first steps in ensuring your employees are working to their fullest potential is compensating them fairly and communicating your goals.

Once your organization has completed these steps, the next part of the process is letting your employees know how they are doing.

If your organization needs to refresh your performance review system, you can develop an improved version with the help of a human resources consultant. As you work together to design the right system for your organization, ensure that you:

  • Make your employees’ performance on various objectives clear to them. An effective performance management system is one that reviews your employees’ performances as they relate to your goals. When the objectives under consideration clearly relate to the goals you have set, employees will better understand exactly what it is that they’re doing well and where they can improve.
  • Reward and recognize employees for their achievements. Although separate from the performance review system itself, it’s important that your organization has a system in place to recognize employees for outstanding contributions or progress toward your goals.
  • Communicate your objectives to your employees regularly. Your organization’s goals and the most effective means of reaching them are constantly changing, so don’t leave your employees out of the loop! They’ll perform better when they’re made aware of important changes and updates as soon as possible.
  • View “performance management” as an ongoing process. To be effective in reinforcing your organization’s goals to your employees it is important to understand that performance management is more than an annual event. It is an ongoing process.

You’ll develop the most effective performance management system when you combine the experience a human resources consultant brings to your company with your knowledge of your organization’s goals and overall culture. If you’re thinking about hiring an HR consultant, you can visit Astron Solutions to learn more about what you should be looking for.

Just as you need to develop a performance management system that acknowledges and communicates your company’s changing goals and objectives for your employees, you also need a system in place to help your employees grow to meet new challenges.

4. Are you giving your employees opportunities to grow?

Your employees want to grow during their time at your company, and they’ll respond more positively to a company culture that promotes learning and values their development.

Your employees want to grow during their time at your company, and they’ll respond more positively to a company culture that promotes learning and values their development. Ensure that your employees have the opportunities they need to develop their careers at your organization.

When you work to build a corporate learning culture, employees understand that they don’t have to stop learning when their onboarding ends. New employees have a good understanding of where they should go to seek additional training opportunities. Make sure that your employees know:

When you work to build a corporate learning culture, employees understand that they don’t have to stop learning when their onboarding ends. New employees have a good understanding of where they should go to seek additional training opportunities. Make sure that your employees know:

  • What they’re working toward. Just as employees should have a good understanding of how the work they do in their current positions contributes toward your organization’s larger goals, they should also understand how their current position can open doors for them elsewhere in your organization. Ensure that employees know which positions they may qualify for in the future should they undertake the requisite training.
  • Where they can turn for professional development opportunities. Do your employees know what steps they can take to obtain the skills necessary to further their careers within your organization? Do they know who in your company to reach out to when they take an interest in doing so? Employees should understand the ways in which they as individuals can progress within the career paths your company offers them.
  • What training resources are available to them. Whether your company offers in-person training sessions, online courses, or both, your employees should know how they can access training resources most relevant to their goals.

If your company or organization is currently working to map out the potential career paths available to your employees, you may benefit from the expertise of a human resources consultant. You can learn more about the knowledge and strategies a consultant can bring to your plans for professional development opportunities here.

Whether they’re looking for professional development opportunities, offering suggestions as to how your company may better work to reach its goals, or raising concerns that you need to address, your employees likely offer you feedback already. It’s important for you to ask yourself how much of that feedback you respond to and take into account.

5. Are you responsive to your employees’ feedback?

Your employees will view your company culture more positively when you provide timely and helpful responses to the feedback they may have. Ensure that your employees know how they can provide feedback, and take their responses into account wherever appropriate.

Gathering and incorporating employees’ feedback is important in developing a positive company culture and increasing employee retention rates. To encourage employees to provide their feedback, make sure that your company:

  • Makes it easy for them to do so. Provide your employees with surveys, opportunities to speak with other people in the company, and additional modes of gathering feedback. These methods shouldn’t take long to complete.
  • Meets with employees regularly. Ensure that you’re meeting with employees regularly, not just close to onboarding and when they decide to leave your company! This way, you’ll be better equipped to help solve any problems they may encounter and demonstrate that you’re more than willing to take their feedback into account.
  • Incorporates employee feedback into your plans. Employees will have a more positive opinion of your company culture and be more motivated to work toward your company’s goals when they know that their concerns, interests, and opinions are factored into your decision making. When you incorporate employee feedback into your plans and projects, make sure that you acknowledge their input.

As you evaluate your company culture, ensure that your employees have reasons to be connected to your goals and that they understand the essential roles they have in helping you reach them. Equally important is that you listen to your employees and provide them with the resources they need to succeed at your company.

When your company culture is viewed positively, you’ll have motivated employees who want to help you work to achieve your goals. Listening to them and providing them with opportunities for growth are essential components in developing the culture of a company or organization where people will be eager to work.

About the Author

Jennifer C. Loftus is a Founding Partner and National Director for Astron Solutions, a compensation consulting firm. Jennifer has 23 years of experience garnered at organizations including the Hay Group, Parsons Brinckerhoff, Eagle Electric Manufacturing Company, and Harcourt General.

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Think about everything your hiring team has to juggle when growing your team. Hiring managers continue to lead their teams — which are short-staffed — while reviewing numerous resumes and conducting interviews. HR professionals keep all working parts of the hiring and onboarding processes moving along, while internal recruiters are looking anywhere and everywhere to find top talent.

It’s no surprise the whole process becomes stressful. As a company leader, you do everything you can to make things easier for your hiring team. However, in order to alleviate the hiring burden, you must understand how hiring creates stress for your team.

Now, it probably also doesn’t come as a surprise that money is a major contributing source of hiring stress. Of course, having more available funds to relieve pressure from your team makes the hiring process easier, but not every company can increase their hiring budget.

To help you and your team get to the bottom of hiring stress and determine ways to snuff it out, we’ve looked at the relationship between that stress and hiring budgets. In the infographic below, you’ll learn about what’s impacting your hiring team most and how you can make improvements without breaking the bank. Some highlights include:

  • 28% of hiring professionals say their satisfaction with the hiring budget is related to the amount of stress they feel at work.
  • 29% of hiring professionals say the amount of time it takes them to fill open positions negatively impacts their cost-per-hire.
  • 27% of hiring professionals say the biggest obstacle they face when trying to get new tools and resources is a lack of leadership support, not finances.
  • 18% of hiring managers don’t know the ROI of the tools they use.
  • 48% of hiring professionals say high turnover is the biggest factor hurting their cost-per-hire.

Check out the full infographic to get tips on how to work around the sources of stress that are hurting your hiring team.

Dig into our full report to gain more great insight on ways to take on your hiring budget strategy stress-free.

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With the rise in popularity of LinkedIn, recruiters are spending more of their time looking for potential candidates on the professional social media site. And it’s for good reason, with 3.4 million accounts using the site’s Open Candidate feature, lets recruiters know they might be open to a new opportunity.

But many recruiters still miss the mark when they make first contact with a potential candidate via InMail. Here are some of the mistakes that are being made, both on LinkedIn and in other forms of cold approach, for you to avoid.

1. Getting Their Name Wrong

Web manager Paul Kim vented about some approaches he’d had from recruiters who were hoping he’d be right for their clients. Not only had he been addressed as ‘Kim,’ which showed a lack of attention, but he’d also received emails address to, ‘Dear <First Name> <Last Name>’.

While these mistakes are understandable, they’re just oversights, they do leave the candidate with the impression that you’re not really paying attention to your outreach. How likely are you to reply to someone like that?

2. Not Reading Their Profile

Imagine getting an email or InMail from a recruiter, saying they have a role they think you’re perfect for…but when you look, it’s not remotely in your field. Just because a candidate appears in a keyword search doesn’t mean you should make contact; take a few minutes to check their career history and see if they really are a match.

It will avoid you contacting administrators who have worked in FinTech for a trader’s role, or for trying to recruit someone to the company they already work for. Yes, that has actually happened.

3. Not Understanding the Vacancy

This should be recruitment 101, but if you’re trying to fill a role make sure that you really understand it. Take some time to look through the job description and talk with the hiring manager to see which skills are necessary and which are just ‘nice to have’.

4. Calling During Work Hours

It’s pretty awkward to take a call from a recruiter when a candidate is sitting at their desk, being paid by their current employer. If you call without warning, you might catch your candidate with their manager at their desk, or send the office gossip talking. In these days of smartphones, you don’t even need to get through to cause a problem; if your candidate has stored your number in their phone and you’re known in the industry even a missed call can be an issue.

Instead, try sending an email or text message and ask the person to call you when it’s convenient. That gives them the time to make an excuse and pop out to where they can speak freely. Even if you do get through in the office, they’re unlikely to be able to talk freely so this approach will help communication immensely.

5. Talking About Yourself

The polite thing to do in conversation is to introduce yourself, and while the same holds true for an InMail, remember that you are taking up a candidate’s time with an approach they might not be interested in. They know your name from the message and can read about your work experience if they’re interested. Get right into what you have to offer them, and you’ll stand a better chance of engagement.

6. Not Showing Them the Money

Or rather, show them the benefits of the role. What does it offer that makes it an outstanding opportunity? Career advancement, training, bonuses – these are the things that will engage a candidate’s interest.

That includes talking about salary. Don’t waste anyone’s time on an opportunity that might be well below what they’re looking for. It’s OK to give a range but make it a reasonable one. Telling someone they could get between 20 and 40 thousand a year is really no help at all.

In extreme situations, this can cost everyone involved. Take the case of Grace Morgan who was headhunted into a new role, only to find the offer was 10k below her current salary! The employer thought she’d upped her ask, Grace thought they were trying to lower theirs and everyone ended up furious with the recruiter. Don’t be that person!

7. Don’t Tout Before You Have the Candidate

An opportunity comes in, and you know just the person to fill it. You settled them into a senior role a while back, and you figure they’re probably looking for another challenge just now. So, what’s the harm in sending out their CV?

Hopefully, the answer to that question is obvious – if your Rockstar applicant isn’t interested and you’ve dangled them in front of the client, you could disappoint and look unprofessional. And if you’re sending out the CV of someone already in a role, you could risk getting them into hot water at work. If they let their HR department know that you’re trying to poach from staff you placed with them, you could lose a valuable contract.

It’s All About Connection

According to LinkedIn’s own statistics, candidates are 95% more likely to accept an InMail message from you if they follow your company already. The only way you can cultivate a following of engaged candidates is to create valuable content including posting your job openings.

There’s no doubt that approaching candidates via LinkedIn is a great way to reach new people. While it might make head hunting a lot easier, don’t let it make you lazy. If you put in the required effort you should see your response rates booming!

About the Author

Sarah Dixon is a freelance writer and author who lives in York. She dreamed of being a writer as a child, but managed to do almost everything else before settling on it as a career. She particularly enjoys writing about how human beings interact with technology, both in fact and fiction. She writes for graduate recruitment agency, Inspiring Interns & Graduates.

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The decision to use a new hiring tool creates significant changes for your team. It takes time to adjust, and many HR and hiring professionals are often reluctant to fully commit to new tools due to how often trends shift.

Our latest research with HR.com revealed 52 percent of companies now use video interviews and they see numerous advantages to the hiring tool. Yet, most users haven’t wholly committed to the platform.

While the majority of users say talent acquisition staff and candidates are happy with video interviews — likely because they’ve shortened their time-to-hire (62 percent) and reduced hiring costs (60 percent) — they still aren’t using all the features to screen every type of candidate.

With video interview platforms, there’s no reason to just dip in your toes. Jump in! The water’s fine.

Here are three ways to use video interviews in more aspects of your hiring process:

1. Take full advantage of employer branding features

Companies should take every opportunity to improve their employer branding. It helps attract top talent and gives candidates a better idea of what your company is like. Yet our research found only 14 percent of video interview users view the platform as a chance to further their employer branding efforts.

It’s really a very simple and effective way to make the most of the platform’s features. The first step is changing the settings of your account to include your company logo and colors. The customized appearance of your video interviews catches candidates’ attention immediately.

Also, the platform allows you to send candidates recorded video messages answering common questions about your organization. It’s easy to create and distribute videos that cover topics such as:

    • Company culture
    • Employee benefits
    • Company values and mission
    • Leadership
    • Career advancement opportunities

As you communicate with candidates throughout the hiring process, attach or embed a video with each email. It will create a fuller image of your organization and employer brand while proactively giving candidates the information they want and need.

#Video isn’t just for interviewing candidates. It’s also important for #employerbranding.
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2. Replace traditional screening tools with one-way video interviews

Great video interview platforms offer more than live video conferencing. Features like one-way video interviews provide different insights about candidates, like signs of cultural fit. Still, our research shows 51 percent of video interview users do not use one-way video interviews.

Fit one-way video interviews into your hiring process by using them as an early candidate screening tool. Compared to phone interviews, one-way video interviews are quicker and easier to fit into yours and candidates’ schedules while providing more information about candidates.

Once your candidates have recorded their one-way videos, share their responses with the entire team. Give everyone a few days to view the candidates’ interview whenever is most convenient.

Within the platform, hiring managers, HR professionals, and other important members of the hiring team are able to leave feedback about candidates on each video. Then, you can discuss together which candidates are best to move on to the next stage of the hiring process.

3. Create a consistent candidate experience

Our research revealed 75 percent of companies use video interview platforms to interview for full-time positions. Surprisingly, only 24 percent of companies use video interviews when screening for part-time jobs, and just 9 percent use them for contracted or freelance employees.

Even though these employees aren’t full-time members of the team, treating them differently during the hiring process creates inherent inequality. These candidates will have different experiences during the hiring process giving way to very different opinions about your company. This makes it difficult to track and compare hiring data. Without an accurate picture of the effectiveness of your hiring process due to inconsistencies, it’s difficult to spot and fix problems.

Make sure all candidates go through the same screens. It might seem unnecessary, especially with freelance employees. But as companies continue to use more contracted employees, it’s important to create a consistent candidate experience.

Only 9% of companies use video interviews when hiring freelance employees. @HRdotcom
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Using a video interview platform is an excellent experience for hiring professionals when used to its fullest capacity. By committing to exploring and incorporating all of the features your dedicated video interview platform has to offer, you’ll create a more effective hiring process that you and your candidates love.

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How do you hire the right people for your technical support team? What are the key skills and qualities you should be looking for? You will find detailed answers to these and many other important questions in this guide.

Hiring technical support agents is not an easy task. For this reason, we’ve written this guide to provide you with the top six tips for building your technical support team successfully. In it, you will learn what key qualities and skills to look for, and how to do it correctly.

Technical support is a vital component of any technology-related product or service. It’s not just enough to sell something. You must also provide continuous and effective assistance to your customers.

If a company fails to do it, it may ruin the entire customer experience and satisfaction. It does not matter how great a product is if one can’t receive excellent technical support. For this reason, building a great technical support team is a crucial task for HR managers.

Many companies struggle with building great customer service precisely because they hire the wrong people. In many cases, HR managers do not know how to screen and test technical support agents. They assume that it’s similar to hiring general customer support agents. This is a big mistake. Technical support and customer service are slightly different things.

The former requires sufficient technical knowledge and skills in addition to the long list of qualities which customer support agents must possess. And even if HR managers do know this, they sometimes fail to effectively test candidates.

Below we’ll provide the key six tips for screening and hiring the best talent for your technical support team:

  • Examine technical knowledge and skills
  • Check their ability to provide multichannel support
  • Understanding of your business
  • Make sure they have the right experience
  • Must be a kind, polite, and naturally-positive person
  • Must be a team player

Of course, each of these tips requires a detailed explanation.

Examine Technical Knowledge and Skills

The key thing you should be looking for is sufficient technical knowledge. This requires conducting a series of tests for estimating it. You should also ask relevant questions during the interview. Additionally, you can ask for official certificates or documents which confirm a candidate’s level of technical proficiency.

Unless you are knowledgeable in the required technologies, it’s not a good idea to set up the tests yourself. Instead, have someone who is proficient in those technologies create the tests and ask questions during the interview. He or she can estimate a candidate’s technical level better than anyone else.

Check Their Ability to Provide Multichannel Support

These days providing great support is not enough. Your customers must be able to get your assistance through multiple channels. Not the channels which you like but the ones which they prefer. In most cases, these are email, phone, live chat, and social media.

Consequently, your support agents must be comfortable with all those channels. You don’t want to hire someone who doesn’t know how to use Facebook Messenger if that’s one of your support channels. Therefore, a part of the testing process is ensuring that candidates are comfortable working with all the support channels you use.

Understanding of Your Business

How can agents provide effective assistance without a good understanding of how your business works and the industry, in general?

Exactly, they can’t.

Therefore, during interviews, you must also check how well they understand your industry and business. If their expertise is not sufficient, it’s not the end of the world. You can teach them, provided they are fast learners.

Make Sure They Have the Right Experience

Experience is the second magic pillar of excellent technical support. Nothing can substitute it. Vast experience is definitely something you want to see in an ideal candidate’s resume.

However, just because a candidate does not have it this does not mean he or she is a bad hire. If you see big potential, the right personal qualities and ability to learn, you can hire that person in spite of lack of experience.

Must Be a Polite, Kind, and Naturally Positive Person

These three qualities are mandatory for any customer support agent. Technical assistance is no exception. Conversations with customers require all agents to be polite and supportive. It’s important to remain calm and positive even when conversations become unpleasant. Some people are just naturally more optimistic and positive than others. These are the people you want on your team.

Must Be a Team Player

Technical support requires tight cooperation between team members. For this reason, every one of them must be good at working in a team and interacting with other colleagues. It often happens that a great support specialist may not have good social skills and is an introvert.

In such a case, ensure that it doesn’t negatively affect the teamwork and overall performance of your technical support team.

Conclusion

Building a great technical support team is impossible without a diligent and careful hiring process. This process should include serious technical tests and interviews. You must ensure that candidates are capable of providing effective multichannel support.

They must have a good understanding of your business and industry. Vast experience is also a big plus. Finally, the ideal candidate must be kind, polite, optimistic and a team player. All of these tips will help you to build a real rockstar team.

About the Author

Dan Goldman is a full-time writer and content marketing manager at CyberCraft Inc. He is passionate about HR management, software development and how these two overlap.

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Myths can be dangerous. They spread like wildfire, without a shred of evidence behind them, and they incorrectly influence our beliefs. In fact, myths sometimes make you act irrationally. Unfortunately, myths exist even in the hiring process.

Take video interviews, for example. Our latest research with HR.com revealed 52 percent of organizations now use video interviews to better assess talent. But misconceptions about the tool continue, preventing hiring professionals from getting the most out of video interviews.

By learning the truth about video interviews, you make better decisions about how to structure your hiring process. This enables you to spot the best talent and quickly offer them a job. Here are six myths about video interviews it’s time to dispel:

Myth #1: Video interviews are always live.

It’s true, live video interviews are the most common form used in talent screening processes (making up 94 percent of video interview users according to our research), but there are other valuable video interview options. Each plays a unique part in the overall hiring process.

For example, during one-way video interviews, candidates are presented a list of questions to privately record their answers before submitting to you. They work best as an early candidate screen in place of a phone interview so you can quickly and efficiently narrow your focus to the best candidates.

Myth #2: Traditional video chat platforms work the same way.

Skype, FaceTime, Google Hangouts, and other video chat services were created to enable you to see your friends and family members’ faces when you call to catch up. They weren’t designed with hiring in mind. Yet 36 percent of video interview users in our survey said they don’t have a dedicated platform because Skype is ‘enough.’ In reality, trying to use services like Skype to conduct job interviews is like trying to use a Phillips-head screwdriver when you need a flat head.

Platforms that are dedicated to interviewing make evaluating whether candidates meet all your hiring needs easier and ensure more effective results. Furthermore, dedicated platforms allow you to customize the look of your video interviews so they align with your company’s brand, enhancing the candidate experience.

If you’re going to use #videointerviews, use a platform dedicated to hiring.
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Myth #3: Video interviews pose a higher risk of connectivity issues.

Many video chat platforms are notorious for dropping calls, but that doesn’t mean the same issues arise when you use a dedicated platform. Even still, there is an excellent defining feature that sets a dedicated platform apart in regards to tech glitches: video interview platforms offer 24/7 customer support that helps negate and resolve technical issues.

With Spark Hire, both you and your candidate can check your connections before the interview with the assistance of a concierge service. This ensures when it’s time for the actual interview, everything goes off without a hitch.

This sense of security and support improves dedicated video interview users’ satisfaction. In fact, our research found 31 percent of dedicated platform users describe their experience as excellent. Comparatively, only 5 percent of Skype user give such high praise.

Myth #4: Video interviews are only beneficial for candidates who live out of town.

Live video interviews spare you hiring costs when considering candidates who live far away. But video interviews are useful when evaluating all candidates. One-way video interviews, for instance, let you review more candidates in less time.

Our research revealed 62 percent of video interview users said video interviews helped them improve time-to-hire. Consider how one-way video interviews save time. There’s no time wasted scheduling phone calls or initial in-person meetings. You can review a candidate in roughly 15 minutes and then quickly decide whether or not to move them to the next step.

62% of video interview users say they’ve lowered their time-to-hire thanks to the tool. #talentacquisition
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Myth #5: Candidates won’t like video interviews because they’re impersonal.

You can’t definitively say your candidates won’t like video interviews unless you try the process and gather data from their experience. And, in reality, data proves most candidates love video interviews. In fact, 62 percent of respondents in our survey said candidates were happy with the technology.

Video interviews are actually more personal than other traditional screens. Resumes, applications, and phone interviews don’t put a face to the name. Video interviews show candidates you’re seeing them as a person, not as a list of skills and experiences.

Myth #6: Video interviews are only useful for evaluating candidates.

It’s hard to rationalize buying a hiring tool if it only does one thing. But video interview platforms have additional features that assist with other aspects of the hiring process.

Dedicated platforms come equipped with interview scheduling tools, employer branding features, the ability to track hiring metrics, and collaboration tools, meaning you can do more with fewer tools. This makes the hiring process run more smoothly and with much less stress.

Great video interview platforms do more than just help you evaluate candidates. #hiringtips
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Video interview technology is still relatively new. Our recent research with HR.com revealed 52 percent of the 526 companies we surveyed are using video interviews. And just over half of those organizations started using the tool within the past two years.

As a result, there aren’t (yet) many video interview experts. A lot of hiring teams are still trying to determine what works best for their company. This means understanding what differentiates high-performing video interview users from those who are still figuring things out gives you a significant advantage in talent acquisition.

For this reason, we dug into the data and found what sets high performers (those who report feeling comfortable with video interviews and rated the technology as “Good” or “Excellent”) apart from other users. Here are three ways high performers set themselves apart and how you can apply their strategies to improve your video interview experience:

They use a dedicated video interview platform.

There is a big difference between using a dedicated video interview platform and interviewing via Skype or Google Hangouts. Dedicated platforms were created specifically for hiring and high performers understand this nuance. In fact, 45 percent of high performers use a dedicated platform compared to just 17 percent of low performers.

Their success and satisfaction come from using technology that provides more options and takes hiring tasks off their plate. For example, dedicated platforms foster collaboration, assist with scheduling, and maximize employer branding. These benefits let HR and hiring professionals focus on other pressing responsibilities.

How to be a video interview high performer

One of the hardest parts of talent acquisition is balancing personalization and automation. Everyone wants to save time but not at the cost of the candidate experience. With a dedicated video interview platform, you can embed videos about your company into automated communications so you’re getting the best of both worlds.

Instead of sending a templated email that’s just text, include video messages from leaders. Record a short welcome video from the CEO to show candidates company leaders are personable and available. This creates a candidate experience that resonates with job seekers but doesn’t require separate technology or consuming a great deal of anyone’s time.

In their own words, have leaders briefly talk about topics such as:

  • Leadership styles in the organization
  • The company mission
  • Team dynamics
  • Why they’re proud of the company
  • The company’s future direction
  • What they value in employees

Use videos of company #leadership to balance automation and personalization in the hiring process.
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They use one-way video interviews.

Many video interview users don’t take advantage of one-way video interviews. They only use live interviews to evaluate candidates who live out of town.

While video interviews provide more information than phone interviews and are more convenient for everyone involved, one-way video interviews allow you to more quickly and efficiently assess candidates.

One-way video interviews enable candidates to record their responses on their own time and your team is then able to review and collaborate later. Twenty-three percent of high performers use one-way interviews, compared to 12 percent of low performers.

How to be a video interview high performer

When using one-way video interviews as an early screen, look to discover information you can’t get from a resume or application, such as indication of cultural fit. Identify aspects of your company that unite your employees. Then form questions that reveal if these traits or values resonate with candidates.

These qualities or interests don’t have to relate to what your company does directly. You’re looking for clues a candidate will fit in with the rest of the team. Consider how various factors play into your company culture, for example:

  • If your office is full of Harry Potter fans, ask candidates what Hogwarts house they would be in to gain insights about their personality.
  • If your company values community service, ask what organizations candidates are involved with to see what social issues matter most to them.
  • Ask candidates about the accomplishment they’re most proud of. Watching how and when they light up recounting their story reveals what motivates them.
They create a video interview library.

Sourcing candidates is time-consuming and frustrating. Video interviews allow you to build a qualified talent pool that only your organization can draw from. In fact, when asked what the advantages of video interviews are, at least one in four high performers said having video logs for future reference.

When you receive a video interview from a skilled candidate who isn’t right for your current opening, file it away for later. If the perfect role opens up in the future, you can reach out to that candidate and get them started with the hiring process.

How to be a video interview high performer

Give your hiring managers access to all your saved video interviews. Even if the candidate applied for a position with the customer service team, they could be a great fit for the sales team. Make sure you have clear notes on each candidate so your hiring manager can easily see if the individual shows high potential for their open role.

Include the following information in your notes about candidates:

  • All high-value experience and skills, not just the ones relating to the original position
  • How far the candidate got in the hiring process
  • Any feedback you gave the candidate to see how much they’ve developed
  • What was most impressive about the candidate as an individual

Old video interviews help you find the candidate you need for a current vacancy. #hiringtip
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