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9 Warning Signs Your Company Is Unprepared For Large Project Growth

9 Warning Signs Your Company Is Unprepared For Large Project Growth

Your mid-market company is growing fast. HR has scrambled to put in the proper training and benefits programs. Now you’re expanding into a new market or launching that new product. You’ll need 50+ hires quickly. Is it realistic to assume your HR team can pivot into a lean-and-mean recruitment machine? Here are some hints that they may not be prepared:

(1) HR doesn’t have the bandwidth to set aside their current responsibilities and focus on recruitment

(2) Workforce and demand planning are not specific functions of the firm

(3) Your business line hiring managers have never been trained on proper interviewing skills

(4) No formal employer branding programs or employee value propositions are in place

(5) The attributes of your company’s top performers have never been documented

(6) You lack internal experience with advanced sourcing techniques and talent communities

(7) Other responsibilities preclude HR from keeping current on recruitment tools, trends and salary 
market rates

(8) No formal process exists for comparing competitive data such as salary, compensation and benefits

(9) You lack a defined recruiting process complete with prescribed actions, procedures and participants

Is your organization about to launch a big project? Are you moving into high-growth mode?
Get our complimentary report titled “Fulfilling Talent Objectives In High-Growth Middle Market Companies” (no registration required). Visit


Sourcing Alchemy: How To Transform Your Search Into A Hire

Turn Your Searches
Into Hiring Gold

Alchemy is the study of focused transformation. I have always been fascinated by Alchemy because the aim is to take some low value resource, like lead and turn it into a high value resource like gold. In a way, a production line is an alchemical process. We take raw material through a specific, repeatable process and we transform it into something more valuable.

Boolean Search: The Raw Material

One of the raw materials of sourcing is Boolean search strings. A good search string can return valuable information. But often this raw material is too difficult refine. The information returned, while valuable, requires too much effort to extract.

For example, a search string for attendance list may produce a document with 20 pages of good contact information. There is only one catch. The list is in a PDF file. If you have been a sourcer you know the pain. You have great, detailed information locked in a PDF file. If you have ever tried to extract information from a PDF file and convert it into Excel you will know that the cleanest way to get the information is to manually copy the information into Excel.

We want to take the raw material of a Boolean search and transform it into actionable information that results in our being able to make additional hires. Hires are our gold.

How To Transform Your Search Into A Hire

So how do we transform our searches into hires? First, we create a string that will give us lists of useful contacts. Most sourcers are familiar with how to create a search string that will return lists of information so I won’t go into detail here. However, too often our searches return PDF files. A PDF file and in the past would have most likely been disregarded. However I have created a process to turn the information locked in those PDF files into actionable information. First download the file to your hard drive.

Below is an example of an attendance list in PDF format:

Attendee List

Next you need to find a tool called Tabula. It can be found by clicking here.

Upload your PDF file and select the range you would like to extract data from as in the example below

I then select “repeat this selection.” This will select the same selection on every page for the rest of the document after the appropriate fields have been selected. Next select “Download All Data.” This will download the data into an Excel spreadsheet. The data should look something like this.

From this point is it simply a matter of formatting.

Once the data is in this form it can be used to create a mail merge email campaign, uploaded into an applicant tracking system or matched into LinkedIn Recruiter via their data stacking tool that is called Talent Pipeline. To import the connections into your LinkedIn Recruiter seat simply follow the instructions below.

Lists can have as many as 5,000 contacts. Fill out the required information and select continue.

And Now...

LinkedIn will automatically identify the candidates that already have a LinkedIn profile. You can then tag your list and put the contacts in a project folder. The first name, last name and email should automatically match fields. This will allow you to validate the data you have acquired and it will match the information against a LinkedIn profile. This means that we are not solely dependent on Inmails.

Even if you do not have a LinkedIn Recruiter seat you can manually search for the profiles from your personal account. You can then reach out to them via the information you obtained from your search string. From here we can email and call our prospects. Following this sourcing alchemy process we can turn our led Boolan search strings into prospects we can contact and ultimately convert into golden hires.


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.





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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.