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Why HR is Being Left Behind in Business

HR is Being Left Behind in Business

HR and Resourcing often talk about utilizing data analytics, but are we really using them? Predictive analytics is paramount to the success of other departments such as Supply Chain and Logistics… so why not in HR?

HR and Resourcing is unique because we get to work with and have an in-depth insight into every other department. We see how accurate and efficient they are, the systems they use and their automated processes. These systems and processes allow other departments to make decisions based on facts and data.

Could you imagine asking a supply chain/production function to base their yearly plan on ‘rough’ figures they did last year? They would be laughed out of the boardroom! Most other departments are expected to base their yearly production forecasts on scientific predictive analytics, using granular detail predicated on things such as trends, current stock, material availability, future orders by individual customer and market fluctuations in order to produce an accurate plan.

So they have a plan, they set out in earnest and things work out perfectly? No, situations change throughout the year. The most successful departments (and ultimately companies) recognize that conditions are never perfect before embarking on a journey. They adapt. They fix and move on as and when it is needed.

Now consider asking your HR function to create a resourcing plan for the next year which will impact the business by millions of pounds. It will affect what every business claims are their most prized assets—their people—and be based on instinct rather than scientific data. It seems crazy, right!?

If it is crazy then why do only one in six companies use any form of data/talent analytics?

The proportion of organisations which are immature in terms of data analytics is astounding. I’m sure you’ll agree.

There are easy-to-use tools in the market that gather data and help predict talent needs, but whether its capability, culture, or fear, HR is reticent to use them. Some companies fear that the use of data analytics will replace rather than enhance the human element. Other HR functions are simply resistant to technology.

The talent acquisition function is generally one with a reactionary culture. Historically they haven’t had access to the necessary information to plan their yearly forecast, but with the right tools, HR can transition from reactive to proactive within a short timeframe.

Much like other departments, such as Production, the key to HR’s adaptation of data analytics lies in the front end of the process. While some companies invest a lot of time in the strategic workforce planning, or the three, five and 10-year plan, many overlook the one to two year plan, or tactical workforce planning (TWP). Companies are now recognizing more advantage in the TWP which enables the talent acquisition team to add more value and operate more strategically. This focus leads to faster hire times, lower cost to hire, improved job satisfaction, enhanced quality of hire and better retention rates.

With innovation in the resourcing world focusing on more unique and wonderful ways of finding talent this genuinely means companies are treating the symptoms; they’re not treating the problem. These innovations are important, but they are still used in the middle section of the resourcing lifecycle often after the horse has bolted.

This is creating a major gap and loss in functionality, productivity and profitability. True, HR is a people—not things—driven environment, so operating carefully is paramount. It may make sense to move more slowly, but it doesn’t have to stagnate.

Other functions are racing ahead and optimizing efficiency by using data analytics. However, HR has been rogue for too long. Now, HR has to be careful. If they don’t start showing some commercial awareness and savvy, they’ll be left behind while competitors with more data-driven HR departments give their businesses a competitive advantage.


Sourcing, Analytics, Branding: Three Roads Diverge in a Career

3 Roads to one Career

At your desk in the morning you read Google alerts, at lunch you browse LinkedIn, and by dinner you realize you must call your ZoomInfo rep again to add contacts. At this point in your career, you’ve developed a six-cups-of-coffee-a-day habit that has ruled out your fallback job as a surgeon. Congratulations, you're a Sourcer. What does that mean and what does a career in sourcing look like? Well there are three different roads in this career: all of them less traveled.


The first road is right down the middle. You are part researcher, part sales, and part psychologist, sans the expensive couch. You work tactically on roles that are open today. Your task is to augment the active candidate pipeline with a stream of “passive” candidates where you initiate first contact. You are the proverbial purple squirrel hunter. Armed with LinkedIn and Entello you bravely ask the currently employed to consider a lateral move for less pay.

Sourcing is tactical and similar to the function of a perm placement agency. The Swiss Army knife of recruiting, Sourcers fill transactional positions, acting as screeners when the applicant volume is high, finding prospects with a very specific skill set.

Research and Analytics Sourcer

First we identify the proper talent pools, then research to turn this pool into a talent pipeline. We identify contacts—who, when and how to reach them. Employing research and analytics tools, we compile prospects from multiple sources (employing aggregators to automate the process) creating a single, searchable user interface which gives us an overall view of the labor market supply side. This information provides an idea of the size of the pool, confidence in its accuracy and can give us prospect contact channels. The researcher then locates email addresses, phone numbers, twitter handles and other methods of outreach for these prospects using tools like ZoomInfo and

To single out receptive prospects for this message, the Sourcer enters predictive analytics tools. Originally intended for use in workforce planning, these were designed to give HR departments early warning about who might be exploring or at risk, informing companies about turnover, helping to prevent resignations and retain key employees.

The tool, which lets a company more accurately plan ahead, assists HR with retention and more efficiently targets the Sourcer’s outreach, thus bridging the chasm between workforce planning and talent acquisition.

In large organizations, researchers lay the groundwork for identification, qualification, and engagement of talent pool prospects, giving the Sourcer more targeted and receptive daily outreach. The information has been cross-checked by multiple sources, there are a variety of contact avenues and the predictive analytics tool has indicated receptive prospects.

Employer Branding and Talent Attraction

But why employ predictive analytics when you can attract the best talent before they enter the market? In 2015, talent attraction and employer branding are creating social media campaigns with stories that inspire, inform and entertain prospective candidates. Instead of using commercial branding to influence consumers, employer branding positions companies as the employer of choice.

This first, large scale effort, makes work about more than compensation. Social media messages increase reach and authenticity, developing a community where prospects interact with a company in a meaningful way before formally entering the application process.

I experienced this first-hand working for a grants management software development company—not perceived as the most exciting place to work. A story shared in the halls was the essence of the culture the company sought to create. One of our products was used by law enforcement agencies to apply for grants to acquire bullet proof vests. We received a letter from a law enforcement agent shot in the line of duty, thanking us for helping him get the vest that saved his life. Employer branding demonstrates that your company is more than a paycheck and destination—it is a meaningful place to grow a career. A successful social media campaign communicates a company’s core values to a target market attracting talented people who share those values. Employer branding and talent attraction are valuable new sourcing paths that will continue to grow as dependable fields in their own right.

Three roads diverge in a career. All three are roads less traveled. You have decided to take one…and that will make all the difference.


10 Qualities to Look for in a Hiring Partner

hiring partner
Find a Hiring Partner
Offering Total Talent Solutions

According to the NCMM’s Q4 2014 Indicator Survey, more than half of middle market companies are struggling to fill a skills gap. Plus, when rating their top five business challenges, the “ability to attract, train and retain talent” ranks fifth with 77% of middle market firms reporting this as a top challenge.

Given the competiveness and urgency for high-growth, middle-market firms to find, attract and retain high quality talent, middle-market leaders must understand all options when choosing a hiring partner.

Relying on recruitment agencies is an option, but it can become costly when you have many open positions. In addition, few employment agencies offer talent management and consulting services to aid with training and retention. That’s where a comprehensive recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) solution comes in.

RPO is where an employer transfers all or part of its recruitment activities to an external service provider; however, not all RPO providers are created equal. All RPOs provide transactional recruitment services; however a subset provides comprehensive solutions to solve challenges along each segment of the talent value chain. If your organization grapples with training and retention as well, the more inclusive provider will solve more of these challenges while you gain the economies of scale of using one provider. In addition, an RPO firm providing broader services will be able to evolve from transactional recruitment provider to strategic, total talent solutions consultant as your organizational needs transform over time.

When shopping for an RPO provider that can provide a total talent solution, here are the 10 qualities to look for in a hiring partner: 

  1. Recruitment &Employer Branding Expertise: Experienced recruitment process outsourcing companies offer extensive research skills, are familiar with cutting edge recruitment and sourcing strategies, and can furnish tools and techniques for building a desirable employer brand.  They can also build specialty talent pools and communities. The best among them understand generational differences in communication methods within candidate pools.
  2. Speed: Skilled RPO providers streamline your recruitment process by eliminating unnecessary research and creating a simpler, more efficient solution—all while balancing improvements in time-to-fill and maintaining a high quality of hire.
  3. Flexibility & Scalability: One of the greatest recruitment challenges is effectively responding to rapid fluctuations in hiring demand. An RPO provider should offer several solution options for scalability and flexibility to minimize your cost and risk as your hiring demand levels vary.
  4. Cost Savings: Outsourcing cuts down both measureable and soft costs. The longer a role is left unfilled, the more money it costs a business. Placing the wrong hire in a position creates unnecessary turnover costs. An RPO decreases a company's cost-per-hire and time-to-fill while enabling HR and hiring managers to focus on high priority responsibilities. 
  5. Technology and Data Expertise: A skilled RPO provider will assist in selecting the best tools and technologies according to your business requirement. They can also analyze and interpret industry and market intelligence, leverage big data for better business decisions and implement automated candidate campaigns for enhanced communication.  
  6. Compliance: From an EEOC, OFCCP and process perspective, your RPO provider must build your hiring system around your goals and objectives. This includes pre-defined Service Level Agreements (SLAs) complete with a governance model to safeguard expected program results and requisition activity levels. 
  7. High-Touch, Consultative Approach: A premium RPO partner provides white-glove service to both hiring managers and candidates with an exceptional attention to detail. For hiring managers, this means offering strategic planning and ongoing reporting and measurement against SLAs. For candidates, it translates into an exceptional hiring process experience to signal how the candidate will be treated as an employee. 
  8. Customized Solution: Many large recruitment companies operate on a one-size-fits all model. Once you hire them, they simply plug your company into their RPO model. This solution isn’t always best for high-growth, middle market companies. Be sure your RPO provider can customize the solution to the unique needs of your organization.
  9. Talent Management and Coaching Services: Premium RPO providers offer value-added talent management and coaching services to aid in the recruitment, selection and development of top talent. Value-add services typically include competency profiling and psychometric testing, interview skills training, career and leadership coaching and services to aid with succession planning. 
  10. Ability to Reach Beyond Current Borders: Whether your operate globally today or have future expansion plans, it may be beneficial to seek an RPO provider who can grow with you globally. However, not all providers who claim to be global truly are. Be sure your provider has an on-the-ground, multi-national recruitment presence with local teams that grasp the values, customs and cultures of a particular geographic location. 

Hudson RPO named to HRO Today's Baker's Dozen List for Top RPO Providers for six consecutive years. Contact Hudson RPO to begin exploring how our products and services can help your business meet its recruiting needs, goals and objectives.





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Hudson is a global talent solutions company. We help transform the workplace and unleash the full potential of organizations and individuals. Our expert team and proprietary tools provide you with unique insights and services that help you maximize your success. Across 20 countries, we deliver a range of recruitment, talent management and recruitment process outsourcing solutions to get you and your business where you want to be.