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The Importance of Speed in Talent Acquisition

The Importance of Speed in Talent Acquisition

Speed is, as they say, everything.

Considering the rate at which digital transformation is changing the enterprise landscape, there’s no denying speed should be a core element in any company’s talent acquisition strategy.

Not only does speed put you at an advantage to win top talent over your competitors, it’s simply what today’s candidate is used to in the age of instant gratification.

However, speedy talent acquisition is something many enterprises still struggle with.

Based on nearly 84,000 interview reviews, Glassdoor found that the average time it took to hire was almost 24 days in 2017.

Here’s what those three weeks of talent acquisition are costing you and what you can do to shorten your time to hire, increase worker productivity, and boost your bottom line.

Slow vs. Fast Hiring and the Impact on Your Bottom Line

HR expert Dr. John Sullivan estimates that on-the-job performance can decrease by an entire percent every single extra day you spend making a hiring decision.

At Amazon, if their hiring department was to take 10 more days than usual to acquire human capital, on-the-job performance could drop by 10 percent. That 10 percent drop in average revenue per employee ($750,000) translates to a loss of $75,000 per new hire.

While your average revenue per employee might not be the same as Amazon’s, the fact is that this number represents a monetary loss that can’t be regained and is almost never accounted for correctly when accounting time rolls around.   

On the flip side, delivering fast and effective talent acquisition can have a major positive impact on revenue.

Boston Consulting Group discovered that companies ranked as top recruiting providers had 3.5X the revenue growth and 2X the profit margin of companies that ranked at the bottom of recruiting delivery.

To apply this in real life, say a midsized firm with average recruiting chops has $500M in revenue and $50M in profit. By becoming a leader in talent acquisition, they can take their growth from 5 to 17.5 percent annually—doubling profit to $100M!


How to Increase the Speed of Your Talent Acquisition

Empower your recruitment team so they’re ready to pull the trigger when a great candidate comes on the market by following Dr. Sullivan’s tips to clean up and speed up your talent acquisition workflow.

Review and Compress Hiring Processes

Part of the reason talent acquisition seems to take so long is that many key processes have multiple steps that require downtime in between.

Take for example conducting interviews. Limit the number of interviews, conduct interviews digitally to eliminate scheduling difficulties and travel-related delays, schedule all interviews on the same day (or days) every single week, and avoid time-consuming consensus-based hiring to simplify the hiring process and acquire talent in a much more respectable time frame.

Work Ahead Where You Can

Why not be proactive and get ahead when you know the next step for a candidate is approaching?

If you know a candidate is being strongly considered for the position, go ahead and order the background check and call their references. This will reduce the downtime that’s caused by waiting for outside parties to inform your hiring decision.

Have a department that hires regularly? Keep your pipeline full of pre-qualified candidates to cut down on the steps you’ll need to take when the inevitable opening pops up.

Clean Up Low-Value Talent Acquisition Steps

Review every individual element of your talent acquisition workflow to identify and eliminate parts that take more time than they’re worth.

To use the interview process as an example again, determine if you’re wasting time on perfunctory questions when you could be determining a candidate’s job acceptance criteria and asking other pass/fail questions during an introductory interview.

Apply More or Better Resources to High-Priority Talent Acquisition Tasks

Once you prioritize the steps in your talent acquisition process based on their impact, it’ll be easy to determine where to allocate your best resources so they get done quicker and better.

For starters, choose “expedited” roles and prioritize your recruiting resources there. Instead of trying to improve speed on every single job, focus on those where hiring will have the most positive impact.

Make it Easy For Candidates to Accept Offers

The top 10 percent of candidates typically become unavailable in the span of just 10 days. Speed, again, is king.

Dramatically reduce time spent making and accepting offers by understanding the candidate’s job acceptance criteria, making an enticing same-day offer, and reducing friction when it comes to the sharing and signing of the offer itself.

A powerful way to reduce friction is to ditch the paperwork altogether and opt for a fully-digital, mobile-friendly workflow that fits seamlessly into your talent acquisition process with little to no coding necessary.  

A survey by the talent acquisition publication ERE.net found that hiring speed is one of the most important recruiting issues for recruiters and hiring managers.

We believe you’ll be able to drastically speed up hiring by using the tips here to compress processes, anticipate and execute next steps, focus on high-priority tasks, and integrate the right tools to automate and reduce friction in the offer stage.

You don’t have to be an expert in speedy hiring to follow these steps to develop the right mindset, skillset, and toolbox to expedite hiring, get to productivity (and profit!) faster, and develop a culture of speed that all starts with new hires.

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