Your internal recruitment function is a driving force of your organization’s success. It’s how you acquire quality talent that contributes to the growth and innovation that keep you ahead of the game.

But consider this: Workers are leaving their jobs at the highest rate since 2001. This statistic needs to be at the top of every talent acquisition leader’s mind. If you have not assessed your internal recruitment function in some time, now is your chance to change that.

The Reality Is the Talent Acquisition Model Needs to Evolve

Talent acquisition is so much more than pitching resumes to a hiring manager. Depending on the type and level of position you’re looking to fill, agencies can do the exact same thing— and they can do it better and faster than an internal function.

To deliver real value to the organization, your talent acquisition function needs:

1. Technology

Technology is advancing all around, changing the shape of recruiting as we know it. We’re starting to see readily accessible repositories of job seekers that reduce the need for a middleman to evaluate candidates’ skills. Artificial intelligence (AI) products that can conduct interviews and evaluate a candidate’s performance are already on the market today; other AIs can even conduct a candidate search for the company. The need for administrators of this process will eclipse the need for full life cycle recruiters for certain roles. If your vice president of talent acquisition is not exploring these options with HR and the business, then they are still operating according to an old-school model of talent acquisition.

2. Business Acumen

A deep and thorough understanding of the business is imperative for talent acquisition leaders today. How well do you know the landscape, competition, results, and drivers of the functions you serve? A one-size-fits-all process and workflow simply won’t get the right talent in the door.

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Engagement is the foundation for trust, and trust leads to innovation. Trust is earned. It does not come through a name or a title. If talent acquisition is not trusted, then innovation and momentum are stymied. Building a recruitment function for sales is quite different from building one for operations. It will look and feel different, and the competencies required of your internal recruitment team will also differ.

We always hear about leadership competencies that are universal to an organization, but you have to consider how do those competencies translate to the specific contexts of marketing, tech support, operations, etc. Again, in practice, those competencies will look and feel different. It is important to ascertain what works for each area in order to attract and hire the right talent for that area. If the recruitment process is siloed to business lines and not functional areas, you are operating with an old-school model.

3. Training

Recruiters also need training — not only on how to use tools, but also on how to practice the craft. Recruiting is one of the most complex areas within the greater HR organization. Recruiting is an art and a science; it needs to be developed and tested. You need stamina to review thousands of resumes; you need the ability to discern the right talent on paper and the right cultural and functional fits during interviews.

Of course, while recruiting all starts with talent acquisition, the responsibility for making a hire branches out to all the players who serve as part of the recruiting team for a given role. Therefore, even hiring managers and team members who hop on an interview panel every once in a while need to be trained.

Whatever training you offer, it needs to be consistent and compliant. It needs to be engaging and fun. It needs to provide value. You need a talent acquisition team that is well versed in the delivery. Rushing through this process doesn’t help. When done right, however, training creates intense momentum that will carry your team through the sourcing, interviewing, and hiring of quality talent.

4. Assessment

Finally, ask yourself: How are you assessing the productivity of the talent acquisition function? In today’s day and age, you should be using data to drive the human experience and guide the implementation of workflows and processes that get the results the company is looking for.

Many current human capital management systems come with dashboards and data analysis capacities built right in, so there is little excuse for not leveraging data. Talent acquisition departments have to bring data analysts into the fold who can understand the technology and derive analytics that provide value. The data should drive decisions in a meaningful way and become the science behind the recruitment method and delivery.

In the fourth quarter of 2019, it’s time to review your talent acquisition function. That’s the only way you’ll be prepared to address the talent challenges of 2020 and beyond. Build a forward-thinking talent acquisition function that is proactive and become a trusted advisor to the company.

Laureen Kautt is a global talent acquisition executive and the founder and principal coach of Volitionary Movement, LLC. “Confessions of a Corporate Talent Acquisition Leader” is her recurring column on Recruiter Today.

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