7 Ways to Change Your Attitude About Recruitment – If You Want to Win the War for Talent

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Last week, we talked about the coming labor shortage that will affect companies across industries and around the world. This week, we offer some advice on how to win the war for talent spurred by the shortage, and it all starts with changing attitudes about recruitment in your team, in your organization, and in yourself.

Here are seven ways to do just that:

1. Change the Roles

It’s important to realize up front that the responsibility for talent acquisition is shifting from HR departments to managers. Job descriptions, measurement systems, and performance goals must be revised so managers and employees own recruiting. Everyone must develop the mindset of a headhunter.

2. Change HR’s Expectations

Because great recruiting needs to be done close to the actual work, it’s essential that managers increase the amount of time and money that they spend on recruiting. Simultaneously, it’s important for senior managers to work with HR to ensure that they understand that HR’s role must change. The HR department’s role must shift from that of a “doer” to that of an expert consultant on effective recruiting tools, strategies, and metrics.

3. Make It 24/7

Rather than being a periodic event, recruiting must become a continuous process. The expectation must be that it is on the mind and the agenda of every manager (and every employee) every day. View recruiting as a constant process, even when there are no open positions at the present time.

4. Calculate the Performance Differential

Work with cost-accounting in order to calculate the value of a top performer in your own organization. Compare the difference in performance between a top performer and an average performer where it is easy to measure output and quality (example: sales or customer service).

According to McKinsey & Company, an organization’s top performers are 50-100 percent more productive than average performers and underperformers. To quote the company’s findings, “Even if you pay an ‘A’ player 40 percent more to retain him/her, your investment yields a 300 percent one-year return on investment.”

Meeting5. Make the CEO Your Chief Recruiter

Top CEOs understand the value of star performers, and they personally make recruiting top talent a priority. CEOs must act as role models and send the message to everyone that they are the chief recruiter for the organization. Senior officers must attend recruiting events and activities and periodically add candidate calls and prospect lunches to their calendars. Have your CEO call superstar candidates. Provide the CEO with information on the candidate, the job, and your firm’s best selling points.

6. Become a Retention Expert

Managers must realize that if they don’t control retention, they will be required to continuously recruit to fill constantly arising vacancies. In order to minimize that burden, it’s essential that managers become experts in retention. They must identify what motivates, excites, and frustrates each performer on their team and act accordingly.

7. Set Aside Time for Recruiting

Spend time wooing top talent, or your competition will. Workers have been liberated from your competitors, and the good ones know they are in demand.

Visit industry sites and read about recruiting every day. Don’t limit your learning to the U.S. It’s essential that you also learn how to hire around the world because global hiring can increase the productivity of your recruiting efforts, as well as the quality of your new employees.

Greg Ford, is the CEO and cofounder of TalentClickDr. John Sullivan is an author and HR strategist.

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Greg Ford is a workplace expert with 15+ years of experience and the CEO and cofounder of TalentClick. With a bachelor's degree in psychology and a master's degree in adult education and workplace learning, Greg has built the foundation of his business on empowering people with "safety self-awareness" so they modify their own behaviors in the workplace. His mission is to impact positive workplace decisions for all job types in all industries and regions around the world.

Dr. John Sullivan is an internationally known HR thought leader from Silicon Valley who specializes in providing bold and high-impact strategic solutions for business. He is a prolific author with more than 900 articles and 10 books to his name. He is an engaging corporate speaker who has excited audiences at more than 250 organizations in 30 countries and on every continent. His ideas have appeared in every major business source, including the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, BusinessWeek, Fast Company, CFO, Inc., NY Times, USA Today, Harvard Business Review, and the Financial Times. He has been interviewed on CNN and the CBS and ABC Nightly News. Fast Company magazine called him the "Michael Jordan of Hiring.” Sullivan formerly served as chief talent officer for Agilent Technologies, a spinoff of Hewlett Packard. He is currently a professor of management at San Francisco State and CEO of DJS consulting.