The discipline of talent analytics has become a mandate for HR and business leaders around the world. Today we have information about our job candidates, employees, and leaders like never before. Decisions like who to hire, who to promote, how much to pay people, and what jobs people should take next can all be informed by data, teaching us things about our organizations we never understood before.
From a personal standpoint, HR and line leaders must understand that business executives expect data behind every major decision. When you recommend a reorganization, a change to the compensation plan, or a certain person for a new role, your business leaders are likely to ask, “Why?” If you don’t have data, history, and models to support your recommendations, your personal credibility will suffer.
From an employee standpoint, people today find work to be an overwhelming environment of projects, emails, phone calls, and assignments. Our ability to simplify and improve the employee experience, drive employee engagement, understand the drivers of retention and performance, and make people’s work lives better are all dependent on data.
From an organizational standpoint, analytics has become the key to driving business growth and employee satisfaction. Do you know why some of your salespeople outperform others? Do you know what causes product or customer service issues or why customers may not like your service? Do you understand what parts of your HR function are driving strong employee satisfaction and what parts get in the way? Through data, surveys, net promoter scores, and analytics, all these problems can be solved — giving you the tools to make your company more profitable and grow at a faster rate.
I know, from my experience studying this marketplace for years, that analytics can be confusing and intimidating. Let me assure you that with a little education, and sometimes looking at the examples and fundamentals in this book, you will find it easy, useful, and powerful in your job.
We live in an online world where data is captured everywhere. Soon we will go far beyond the data in our HR and business systems and have personal data about our health, physical condition, and even moods at work to help us make working conditions better. The “quantified self” movement, which has resulted in billions of dollars spent on wearable devices, will soon come to work — enabling us to understand even more about what drives performance, engagement, and satisfaction on the job.
Welcome to the expanding and important role of talent analytics. I applaud you on acquiring this book and hope you enjoy your journey into this ever‐growing discipline in the world of HR.
Industry Analyst and Researcher Principal and Founder, Bersin by Deloitte
The average U.S. employer spends about $4,000 and 52 days to hire a new worker, according to analyst firm Bersin by Deloitte in its Talent Acquisition Factbook 2015. Do you know your own cost‐per‐hire and time‐to‐hire?
More than ever, studying the numbers — a process called talent analytics — is an essential part of success for any hiring manager, recruiter, or talent acquisition professional who hopes to compete for the right talent at the right cost.
Whether your organization is large or small, it can benefit from talent analytics. Having all the data you need makes your recruiting strategy more effective.
About This Book
This book is packed with resources, best practices, and case studies designed to help you use talent analytics to find and hire the best candidates, expand your recruiting programs, and pick the right recruiting channels to stay ahead of your competition.
Although I hope this book will be helpful to a wide variety of readers, I assume your job function falls into one of the following categories: human resources, talent acquisition, public relations, marketing, or upper management.
Chapter 1 – What Is Talent Analytics?
In This Chapter
- Kicking off your talent analytics effort
- Keeping ahead of the competition
- Getting your company’s message across
- Refreshing your recruiting strategy
Talent analytics helps companies and talent acquisition professionals such as recruiters and hiring managers to use data wisely to improve their recruiting strategies. Talent analytics intelligence and insight can lead to more accurate hiring projections, investment in more profitable recruitment channels, and putting the right employees in the right jobs. Taking the time to analyze recruitment data takes much of the guesswork out of finding and, by extension, retaining top talent. After all, focusing on the candidates most likely to do well in your company means they’re less likely to leave because of a bad fit, whether that’s related to the role, organizational culture, company reputation, or all of the above. The most difficult part of the talent analytics journey is deciding where to start. This chapter points you in the right direction.
Getting Started with Talent Analytics
Talent analytics is a way to hold talent acquisition and recruiting professionals accountable for their hiring and annual planning goals. Without analytics, a company must guess where to find talent, which channels work best for recruiting, and how its message comes across to different audiences.
Deciding what to measure
Following are various metrics to analyze as you embark on your own talent analytics journey:
✓ Employee satisfaction: Besides finding out how contented your employees are at work, note their willingness to recommend your company to others. It’s also important to know how they rate various areas of the business because those ratings influence others in deciding whether to work for your company.
✓ Employer brand awareness: Monitor and review the inbound traffic coming to research your company and interact with your brand via social media, job boards, and web searches.
✓ Recruitment: Determine how long it takes and how much it costs to hire positions by job title, and apply conversion rates to your job listings. (For more on conversion rates, see “Ensuring That Your Message Is Received” later in this chapter.)
✓ Interview satisfaction: Monitor your interview process to find out how long interviews typically take and whether candidates rate them positively or negatively. Also, note which candidates are declining your job offers — and why.
When you’re creating talent analytics benchmarks, start with a goal in mind. Ask and answer these questions:
✓ What areas are most important to the organization today?
✓ Where can the organization make the most improvements?
✓ What will move the needle when it comes to recruiting and retaining top talent?
With so much data available, it’s important to prioritize benchmarks that enable your team to tackle strategic initiatives. If the team works without an end in mind, this process can become daunting. I discuss benchmarks in detail in Chapter 5.
Spot and use trends in recruitment data based on company size and segment, as well as time-to-hire by the level of employee.
Doing market research
By researching other companies and sourcing key benchmarks, you can see where you place and what areas need the most improvement.
Here are helpful places to do research:
✓ Bersin by Deloitte: A great resource for recruiting analytics on time‐to‐hire and cost-per-hire by job title and industry segments.
✓ SHRM: A wealth of information on recruitment trends and human resources management.
✓ Glassdoor: Numerous benchmarks for employee and interview satisfaction ratings, as well as salary information.
Be sure to use sources that you trust for quality research, and vet the information before reporting it to senior management.
Staying Ahead of the Competition
Understanding talent flows and the competition keeps you ahead of the pack in the race for top talent. This section provides some pointers.
Analyzing supply and demand
Here are some tips for using supply‐and‐demand data to help your business:
✓ Research open job titles in areas where you hope to launch new businesses.
✓ See how many other organizations are trying to hire for the same roles and whether they compete directly with you for talent.
✓ If your hiring focuses on one particular job position, ensure that you know what matters most in recruiting candidates for this position.
Measuring brand awareness
Understanding your brand’s performance in the marketplace helps you attract diverse candidates at varying levels of experience. Whether you’re a leader in your industry or a less‐ known company, analyze key messages about your brand.
One helpful approach is using visual word clouds, available on sites like Glassdoor, to analyze the key pros and cons from employee reviews, at a glance. This insight allows employers to easily adjust their message to play to their strengths and make changes to improve weaknesses.
Cisco does its homework
Cisco Systems, Inc., headquartered in San Jose, California, designs, manufactures and sells networking equipment. When researching where to open new businesses around the globe, Cisco researches talent supply and demand in various areas, analyzing the competition and determining how difficult it will be to recruit and attract its target audience.
By researching the competition and taking advantage of the wealth of information on sites such as Glassdoor, Cisco has been able to make high‐level hires for considerably less than its target cost-per-hire and increase awareness among candidates. For example, by promoting and engaging its employer profile on Glassdoor, Cisco saw its traffic there surpass 1 million visits in less than 12 months for the first time.
Ensuring That Your Message Is Received
Partner with websites and platforms that allow you to see who is researching your brand. Know the DNA of the talent that’s researching you online.
Talent demographics allow an employer to see the education level, age, gender, and years of experience of the people coming to its website or profile on sites like Glassdoor. They also show where candidates are searching for opportunities (your competition), as well as which jobs are being clicked on most.
Here are things to consider when analyzing your company’s message:
✓ Bounce rate: Reflects whether visitors are staying on your site to find out more about you or bouncing away (maybe to a competitor’s site) after visiting a single page.
✓ Click‐through rate (CTR): Measured by dividing the number of people who saw your job listing by how many clicks it received.
✓ Conversion rate: Clicks of your job listings divided by follow‐throughs and applications. This data helps you determine how well your job descriptions are performing.
✓ Cost-per-application: Data that helps you establish a baseline metric in your application process.
✓ Engagement: Data that helps you determine whether visitors and job seekers are interacting with your site.
✓ Page views per visit: How many pages visitors see in a single session, as well as the paths they follow on your site. The higher (and deeper), the better.
✓ Return visits: How often visitors come back for more content, which signifies their engagement with your message.
For more on the website and social media metrics, see Chapter 6.
Listening to your audience
While gathering information and doing your homework, it’s important to listen to what your audience is telling you and then adapt messaging appropriately.
Here are some changes that may come out of analyzing the company message:
✓ A/B testing of job descriptions: A classic marketing approach, A/B testing offers users at least two randomized variations of the same offer, changing one or more component (for example, emphasizing one facet of a job over another). This is a great way to see if you can improve CTR’s, conversions, and applications.
✓ Advertising your company in places where talent is researching similar companies.
✓ Engaging in social media and responding to employee reviews to improve engagement with employees and potential candidates.
✓ Ensuring that you have rich messaging on all platforms where talent may be researching you.
If your employees are posting messages on social sites that conflict with your established employer brand, your credibility as an employer can suffer. To avoid this, it’s best to have employees “buy in” to your company’s culture, mission, and values before promoting its message on key recruitment channels. That may mean reinforcing the company message to new hires during their onboarding, repeating it during all‐hands meetings, or modifying it by regularly surveying employees on what the company stands for.
Monitoring changes over time
Messaging and branding aren’t set‐it‐and‐forget‐it exercises. In the ever‐changing talent market, you need to have new strategies and innovative messaging as conditions change. Gathering analytics and monitoring changes in candidate reactions to your message allow you to stay ahead of the curve in trying to reach your ideal talent.
Keeping Your Strategy Current
It’s easy to start scheduling changes in your company’s message and recruiting strategy based on talent analytics, which can hold you accountable for what’s working and what isn’t.
After doing internal and external research, decide which key performance indicators to focus on and improve first. Some companies may find they need to improve awareness; others may need to refine their cost‐per‐hire and time‐to‐hire metrics.
Whatever issues you uncover in your journey, continually track key metrics and improve performance to ensure your organization’s success and your own growth within the company.
Chapter 2 – Driving Recruitment with Data
In this chapter
- Setting benchmarks
- Tracking talent trends
- Keeping track of candidate data
- Setting recruitment and hiring goals
A grasp of talent analytics can help you gain more influence over recruiting at your organization, even earning you a “seat at the discussion table” where stakeholders make key decisions regarding budgeting and strategy (for example, attracting more qualified candidates at a lower cost). Talent analytics can help answer central concerns such as where the best candidates originate and how you can recruit them more efficiently. This intelligence can help your company create a successful recruitment strategy, as you see in this chapter.
Establishing the Right Benchmarks
Many variables influence your company’s ability to attract and retain talent, from its market segment and industry to its physical location.
Consider starting your talent analytics program by setting these key benchmarks:
✓ Company vertical or market segment: Factoring in your company’s market segment can affect not only time-to-hire and cost‐per‐hire metrics, but also average employee satisfaction ratings. Use data and sources that leverage your company’s unique space to create benchmarks that reflect your marketplace.
✓ Past results: Reviewing past results and analytics can help you determine what works well and what needs improvement. Don’t simply repeat last year’s efforts. Dedicate resources to improving metrics in the coming year by implementing or testing new tactics.
✓ Job title and department: Recruiting metrics can vary dramatically based on the difficulty of hiring for individual roles or teams.
✓ Time‐period comparisons: Rapid economic changes and many other factors can affect your benchmarks. As you develop your strategy, try to sync your research to your business and relevant time period.
✓ Location: Some markets are more competitive than others, based on the state of local economies. Review unemployment rates and current job openings in the areas where you’re trying to recruit.
Researching Talent Trends
Diving deeper into analytics can give you the ammunition and justification you need to fight for more resources and budget. As you embark on your talent analytics journey, good research can help you make informed recruiting decisions.
How you actually name your open positions can affect your recruitment metrics and strategy. A good place to start is by using Google or another search engine to see how popular your suggested job title (or a variant) is in a certain region, state, or city. You may find “software engineer” and “coding superstar” aren’t as popular (or as focused) as “healthcare software engineer.”
Determining where candidates like to research the companies promoting those job titles (for example, career sites, networking sites, or company profiles on Glassdoor) is also a good idea, because it can help you find and target more engaged candidates for your open positions.
During your search, you may also learn where and how competitors are promoting their open jobs. This can help inspire or optimize your own efforts.
Finally, also analyze supply and demand for each job title and role (see Chapter 1).
Some industries are greatly affected by broader economic trends and demographics. For example, an aging Baby Boomer generation is creating a dramatic need for more healthcare workers. Meanwhile, as manufacturing declines in the United States, new grads are increasingly looking to service industries or information services fields to start their careers.
According to the Bersin by Deloitte Talent Acquisition Factbook 2015, the average U.S. cost‐per‐hire in 2014 was about $4,000. Actual cost‐per‐hire varied by industry and was highest in manufacturing, due to stiff competition for specific qualified talent.
The amount of time needed to hire for various roles depends on job level and experience needed. The more advanced the role is, the longer it may take to fill that position within your company. Bersin found that in 2014 companies took 52 days to fill positions (up from 48 days in 2011) and that higher positions took more time to fill.
Tracking Candidate Data
Without tracking, you won’t be able to accurately measure the effectiveness of your job advertising, which means that you can’t allocate your recruitment budget effectively in the future. Even if you only divide what the recruiting team spent last year by the number of hires it made, you’re making a good start on tracking — and immediately establishing a cost‐per‐hire metric that you can monitor over time.
An applicant tracking system (ATS) may provide varying levels of accuracy in applicant source data tracking but can be helpful for refining your recruiting strategy. Push for URL tracking wherever possible; self‐reported data can be unreliable, as most candidates typically search multiple sources before applying for positions. (For more on working with an ATS, see Chapter 4.)
Setting Your Recruiting Goals
When you’ve done your research on all variables, you’re ready to start using analytics to develop recruiting goals, as follows:
- Map out your job openings, noting your own benchmarks and market data in terms of time‐to‐hire and cost‐to‐hire for those positions.
- To get more granular, break down your goals by job title and department to allocate resources where they’re needed most.
- Partner with the right recruiting platforms to attract your ideal talent.
- Compare sources of hires over time by job title and department.
Chapter 3 – Reporting on Talent Analytics
In this chapter
- Choosing metrics to report
- Including the right people
- Organizing the data
- Knowing which questions talent analytics can answer
For a recruiter, talent analytics is a valuable ally. It arms you with the tools to gain influence in your organization and fight for a bigger recruiting budget. The keys are knowing the best analytics to report on and presenting this information in an effective, organized way. This chapter shows you how.
Deciding What to Report to Management
As noted in Chapters 1 and 2, you have a large volume of talent analytics to examine (and a lot of research to do) before making educated assumptions and reporting on the data. You may find yourself pondering questions like
✓ Did the company pay for a recruiting solution that produced only one hire?
✓ If another solution delivered most of the candidates, should the company double down on using it?
✓ Are candidates responding favorably to the company’s message via social media or email?
Finding the answers to these and other questions helps you hone in on what you should report, to produce the best results for your recruiting team.
Focusing on critical metrics
Here are some crucial areas to cover:
✓ Plan versus results: Success (or failure) in meeting overall team goals, such as results higher or lower than expected
✓ Brand recognition: Whether your employer brand hurts or helps in attracting and retaining the best talent
✓ Diversity of recruitment: Success (or failure) in attracting a range of talent or specific talent
✓ New tools and ideas: Any new approaches that could address problem areas or fill gaps in your recruiting plan
To spot holes in your application or recruitment process, study your operation. If you’re missing targets, determine whether your time‐to‐hire is holding you back. Find out whether your candidates have a positive interview experience. Analyze why candidates are declining job offers. Pick the facts that are going to help you build the best case for a more refined strategy going forward.
Creating time frames
When the reporting process begins, use analytics to guide and frame your recruiting strategy. Thereafter, set realistic time frames for reporting, allowing you to stay on track to hit various targets throughout the year.
In a large company, an annual review of results may be sufficient for implementing changes in the recruiting process. Smaller companies may want to report on a quarterly basis to avoid falling behind on targets.
However often you report, be sure to set expectations and make it clear how frequently you’ll report on the data.
Including the right people
Start at the top, with your chief executive officer. Arming executive leadership with data that shows how you can save the organization money through recruiting can help you earn more influence over your company’s recruitment budget and overall strategy. Also, it’s impossible to establish a culture or employer brand without CEO buy‐in and endorsement.
Here are the people and departments that care most about talent analytics in your organization (and why):
✓ CEO: Recruiting affects every area of the business, helping ensure growth and prosperity.
✓ Human resources: Besides working closely with internal and external recruiters to optimize hiring plans, HR also needs to uncover key themes and metrics (for example, concerns about company culture or compensation) that may arise during employee exit interviews. Addressing these issues can influence and improve future recruitment efforts.
✓ Public relations: A poor employer brand or company reputation may not only affect your ability to hire talent for your organization, but also hinder PR’s ability to garner favorable media coverage. “Better press” can lead to more candidates applying for your open positions.
✓ Marketing: As internal marketing teams work to increase and improve a company’s employer brand recognition in the marketplace, this can, in turn, result in greater awareness for your open positions.
✓ Recruiting: Every recruiter should be armed with analytics that shows where to allocate time, resources, and budget to find and hire the right talent.
✓ Hiring managers: Knowing which job titles or roles take more or less time to fill can help set realistic expectations when new positions open up.
As various teams go through hiring periods, add relevant stakeholders in the organization to your analytics distribution list.
Organizing and Tracking Talent Data
Arming yourself with the right tools, analytics, and intelligence helps you better understand the candidates you’re going after and breathes life into your hiring initiatives.
Relying on analytics rather than guesswork also brings depth to your conversations with stakeholders in the company, elevating your reputation as a strategic team member who saves the company time and money.
Tracking specific metrics
Depending on your company’s size, tracking can be done manually, synced with an applicant tracking system (see Chapter 4), or monitored by a third‐party agency.
Regardless of the method you use, tracking the following aspects of your recruitment effort is important:
✓ The number of hires: Keep track of hires per month and department.
✓ Sources of hire: Monitor the candidate sources for all hires, and know the number of candidates hired from each source.
✓ Recruiting team: Monitor growth (or cutbacks) in the number of contract recruiters during the year — a metric that can affect your cost‐per‐hire.
✓ Program budget: Track the number and cost of your current recruitment programs, such as job advertising, employee referral bonus, recruiting agencies, employer branding, and events.
✓ Staff budget: Know the overall recruiting‐team budget for both full‐time and contract recruiters.
✓ Time‐to‐hire: Measure time‐to‐hire for each role by vertical market or industry.
✓ Recruiting systems: Google Analytics or an applicant tracking system (ATS) can help you eliminate guesswork in recruiting. Note changes in spending to determine the value of each system.
Track specific sources
In a detailed analysis of a single client’s job applications and hiring results, a leading third‐party recruitment advertising agency found that candidates who interacted with a Glassdoor Company Profile were 30 percent more likely to be hired compared to those who didn’t interact with one. The study covered approximately 560,000 completed job applications.
Creating reusable templates
After you develop a formal process at your company, you can create reusable templates such as the following:
✓ Budget: Put one team member in charge of tracking all recruitment spending.
✓ Hiring models: Set realistic expectations by using templates that show not only how many hires are needed, but also how much the recruiting team needs to grow to support that growth. Also factor in time-to-hire by role to manage company expectations.
✓ End‐of‐year planning: Present end‐of‐year plans that walk stakeholders through what’s been done to date, and offer new strategies and initiatives for the following year.
✓ Quarterly business reviews: This template should be a scaled‐down version of your end‐of‐year planning template (see the preceding item) to keep teams updated on hiring progress and success.
Glassdoor has a budget template that you can download to track and measure key recruiting categories.
Identifying Questions That Talent Analytics Can Help Answer
Instead of trying to build an elaborate, predictive recruiting model, start by reporting on basic metrics that will provide the most value to your business.
For example, use talent analytics to answer big‐picture questions like the following:
✓ What regions did the company have the most success recruiting in? ✓ How are candidates responding to job listings and our employer brand?
✓ Which recruiting programs were most successful?
✓ How are employees talking about the company’s brand and job openings to potential candidates?
✓ What sources of hire have had the longest duration and greatest success?
✓ How do candidates feel about our interview process?
Chapter 4 – Calculating Your Cost-Per-Hire
In this chapter
- Understanding cost-per-hire
- Setting internal and external costs
- Working with applicant tracking systems
- Identifying cost-per-hire limitations
Knowing your cost‐per‐hire can help you make smarter recruitment investment decisions, save your company money, and even optimize a specific program (such as a referral bonus plan). Without this metric, you can’t accurately measure and report on your efforts in pursuit of talent.
This chapter gives you a foundation in cost‐per‐hire analytics.
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) defines cost‐per‐hire as a measure of the effort exerted, defined in financial terms, to staff an open position in an organization. The metric has been in use for decades, providing data that helps talent acquisition professionals in HR and recruiting set budgets and benchmarks.
The following formula shows you how to determine your cost‐per‐hire.
Calculating cost‐per‐hire is straightforward: Divide how much you spent on recruiting by the number of hires you made over a year, fiscal period, or given time frame. This will give you an important benchmark on your path to optimizing your recruiting, including the best channels to advertise your jobs.
To start, you need to know the following:
✓ Budget: How much did you spend on recruitment last year? This includes all paid sources, systems (for example, an ATS), recruiters, and recruiting events. (For full lists, see the sections on external and internal costs later in this chapter.)
✓ Hires: How many did you make last year?
External costs include expenses incurred while employing outside vendors or contractors during the course of recruiting. Tracking all external fees is important for determining overall cost‐per‐hire.
The Bersin by Deloitte Talent Acquisition Factbook 2015 defines spending allocation as follows:
✓ Job sourcing: Expenses related to actions taken to identify candidates for employment.
✓ Prehire assessments: Expenses related to use of testing services, validated assessments, and other standardized measures to prescreen talent.
✓ Background checks, work eligibility, and drug testing: Expenses related to criminal, education, credit, and reference checks on prospective hires. This category also includes work eligibility and immigration expenses.
✓ Recruitment‐process outsourcing: Fees incurred for the use of any of these services.
✓ Recruiting systems and technology: Cost of operating any supporting technology during the recruiting process.
✓ Contractors: Fees paid to contingency or contract recruiters.
✓ Marketing: Expenses related to advertising or marketing a specific job or many jobs. Examples include expenses related to job boards, social networks, search engine marketing, production of marketing materials, and newspaper advertising.
Internal costs include major expenses associated with in‐house staff, systems, capital, and other key areas related to recruitment and staffing. Full‐time internal recruiters fall into this category.
For planning purposes, estimate the number of full‐time internal recruiters your company needs to fill the estimated number of open roles throughout the year.
A good rule of thumb is that an internal recruiter should be able to fill five to seven positions per month.
Other internal costs are referral awards and bonuses paid to employees who refer candidates who are subsequently hired. Depending on how granular your company decides to get, you might include general office expenses incurred to support recruiting at your company.
Expect the unexpected! Set aside a portion of your recruitment budget for one‐off contingencies, such as hiring managers booking last‐minute travel to attend important recruiting events.
Using Applicant Tracking Systems
An applicant tracking system (ATS) — an automated tool that helps companies promote their open positions and then collect and monitor applications and interviews — can be helpful in determining your cost‐per‐hire, especially by recruiting channel. That said, not every ATS offers analytics on a standard basis. Also, your company may have its own unique definition of what goes into cost‐per‐hire.
Avoid relying solely on “candidate self‐selection” to track the sources of hire via your ATS. When applying for jobs, candidates may use a variety of resources and, when asked or surveyed, may not correctly recall the one they actually used to apply for a job. Better to ask your technical team to implement URL or pixel tracking on job links to more accurately track candidate source.
Tracking attrition and candidate quality
To determine how many people your organization needs to hire, you must estimate attrition. If your attrition rate is 15 percent to 20 percent, for example, multiply that rate by the total number of employees. The result is the number of employees the organization needs to maintain its current size.
Another critical metric is candidate quality. You might enjoy a low cost‐per‐hire from one recruiting channel but find that candidates sourced there perform poorly or leave your organization prematurely — results that make your cost‐per‐hire less meaningful.
Using predictive analytics
By analyzing the skills and attributes of current high performers, your organization can build a template for future hires. Predictive analytics is valuable because it asks questions to influence an outcome, not reflect on it. For example: What will this year’s attrition rate be like? Who is likely to leave the company? What can be done to reduce turnover?
By matching the right people to the right roles, you mitigate your risk of having to refill roles. Predictive modeling allows you to replicate your success in placing people in specific roles across the company, which decreases hiring costs and improves retention.
Genesys ups its own candidate experience
Based in Daly City, California, Genesys is a global omnichannel customer experience and contact center solution provider, helping companies engage with their customers, across all touchpoints, channels, and interactions to deliver differentiated customer journeys while maximizing revenue and loyalty. Genesys relies on the analytics, reviews, and ratings found on its Glassdoor profile to spotlight trends, themes, and highlights related to its own candidate experience, especially concerning the interview process. “I want to make sure the candidate experience with us is top notch,” its head of global talent acquisition recently noted. “How can we make it better, what are people praising us for, and where are we seeing challenges.”
Dealing with Cost‐Per‐Hire Limitations
As important as it is, cost‐per‐hire is only one talent analytics metric to consider when measuring your return on investment and deciding where to spend your recruitment budget. Other factors affect recruiting efforts, such as position type, market demand, and geographic region.
In addition, consider the quality of applicants by source and where candidates research your company. You need to know the following:
✓ How many applications you receive for each job before hiring
✓ How long new hires stay at your company
✓ How to measure the effect of your employer brand on potential candidates
Chapter 5 – Employer Brand Analytics 101
In this chapter
- Finding answers to brand questions
- Setting brand benchmarks
- Monitoring your company’s reputation
- Keeping an eye on the competition
Developing an effective employer brand is the foundation of any recruiting strategy. If you don’t sit down and define your employer brand as a company, someone will do it for you. But where do you start? This chapter walks you through the steps involved in creating and analyzing an effective employer brand.
Answering Questions with Employer Brand Analytics
Reporting and analytics can help you measure and monitor your company message, see how candidates respond to that message, show how you stack up against the competition, and ultimately help you reach your target audience.
Here are some questions you’ll want to answer as you analyze your employer brand message:
✓ What is the company’s employer brand awareness with job seekers?
✓ Is employer brand awareness growing over time?
✓ What is the company’s employer brand reputation?
✓ How do the company’s employer brand reputation and awareness compare with those of competitors?
✓ Who is the company attracting with its employer brand message, and is that the right audience?
Thousands of employers each month sign up for a Free Employer Account on Glassdoor, which offers a basic employer‐ brand tools and analytics to measure awareness, company reputation, and talent competitors.
Creating Employer Brand Benchmarks
To measure and track how your employer brand resonates with job seekers and compares with competitors over time, it’s essential to establish benchmarks.
Here are some key metrics to consider in developing employer‐brand benchmarks:
✓ Awareness and influence: Tracking online traffic or page views of your company’s page, including all social platforms, followers of your brand, and likes of company pages, on a monthly basis is a great baseline measurement.
✓ Feedback from candidates: You can get this information by checking interview reviews on Glassdoor or asking for feedback every time a candidate comes in for an interview.
✓ Company reviews and ratings: Employee reviews are great ways to find out what the people inside the company think of your employer brand.
✓ Audience demographics: Analyzing job seeker data by gender, age, skill level, and years of experience provide valuable insights into understanding how and where your message is resonating.
Sites that encourage users to provide profiles of work experience and skill level are great resources for finding more about your candidate demographics. Applicant tracking systems (see Chapter 4) can also help you source this data during the application process.
Evaluating Company Reputation
To prioritize focus on your employer brand and show progress over time, it’s important to monitor several key areas (month over month or year over year):
✓ Quality‐of‐hire: Determine how many job applications it takes to source a candidate worthy of being interviewed.
✓ Cost‐per‐hire: Divide how much you spend on recruiting by the number of hires you make. Also note cost‐per‐hire by recruitment channel (for example, job boards) to analyze which recruiting strategies are working best (see Chapter 4).
✓ Time‐to‐hire: Log how long it takes to fill roles across the company to see whether changes in the company’s reputation lead to better or worse time‐to‐hire efficiency.
Analyzing candidate interaction with your brand
Knowing your company’s key strengths and weaknesses help you build your employer brand and improve your company reputation.
A good way to start is by putting yourself in candidates’ shoes to see how they view your organization, which can be quite enlightening.
Go through your job application process to see how easy it is to submit a résumé for an open job via a desktop computer or smartphone.
Do simple online searches (for example, “reviews about company name”) to see which websites job candidates use to learn about your organization. Note positive and negative themes in reviews posted about your company. Then join the conversation by replying to users who leave comments. Adding the employer perspective is a great way to build trust with candidates who may be considering working for your organization.
Remember to note reviews related to your interview process. They often reveal job candidates’ first impressions of your employer brand. Whether candidates note positive, neutral, or negative experiences, that information can help recruiters analyze what’s working and improve what isn’t so that the company doesn’t miss out on key hires.
Glassdoor Chief Economist Andrew Chamberlain recently published a report titled “Do Difficult Job Interviews Lead to More Satisfied Workers?” He found that in six countries, the more difficult the job interview, the higher the eventual employee satisfaction. On a five‐point scale, the level of interview difficulty that leads to highest employee satisfaction is four.
Checking employee reviews and ratings
Employee reviews and ratings help you see how your workers view your organization.
On Glassdoor, overall company ratings are drawn from employees in these five areas:
✓ Culture and values
✓ Work/life balance
✓ Senior management
✓ Compensation and benefits
✓ Career growth opportunities
Reputation keywords (also known as word clouds), found under the Reviews Breakdown tab in a Glassdoor Employer Profile, help identify recurring themes in employer reviews at a glance, allowing employers to address important issues and note what works well.
For further insight into what is resonating with job candidates, segment reviews by job title. This will help fine‐tune your message to the specific talent you hope to attract for specific roles.
Including stakeholders within your organization
Everyone in your organization, from the CEO on down, has a stake in your employer brand to some degree. In fact, your employees are your brand. They are also a top source for trust in your brand, according to the Edelman Trust Barometer, which notes “employees hold the key to business performance and reputation building.”
To encourage brand success, meet regularly with managers and other top stakeholders in your company, reminding them of their importance as brand advocates for the organization. To ensure success, schedule metrics checks weekly, monthly, or annually.
Set alerts so you know when new comments about your brand are posted. For example, on Glassdoor, you can be alerted when new reviews appear on your employer profile. Hint: For alerts on company activity, click the RSS feed link at the bottom of each reviews page. You can also go to the Employer Center to adjust settings and email preferences.
Comparing Your Brand with the Competition
Analyzing how your traffic compares with competitors’ traffic can help you identify areas for improvement and tactics that you may want to adopt. Seeing which candidates come to your website versus your competitors’ websites can help you refine your recruiting strategy to reach your target audience.
Monitoring your competitors’ reputations also allows you to play to your company’s strengths as you compete for talent. Important metrics to track include
✓ CEO approval ratings: Whether employees approve of the job your CEO is doing
✓ Business outlook: Whether most employees have a positive business outlook about your organization
✓ Recommend to a friend: How many employees would recommend your company to a friend
During your research, it’s also a good idea to note where your competition is promoting its employer brand and investing its recruiting budget. You may be able to take advantage of this intelligence to promote your own recruitment message where your target audience is making career decisions.
Chapter 6 – Marketing with Talent Analytics
In this chapter
- Assessing recruiting events
- Making the most of email
- Focusing on content
- Tracking website data
Launching marketing programs that produce quality hires makes good sense for any company. Monitoring and reviewing the results to decide the best programs and budget makes even more sense.
This chapter explores using talent analytics to determine how well your marketing programs are working so that you get the best return on investment and effort.
Analyzing Event Success
Recruiting events can be expensive, so you must be able to show how they contribute to making quality hires.
Before planning an event, meet with your team to determine your hiring goals and the types of events that work best for recruiting your ideal candidates. A career fair, for example, allows you to simply show up with recruiting materials and a small staff. Hosting a formal event or sponsoring a conference, however, may mean negotiating space and catering, ordering giveaway swag and signage, and launching advertising and promotion. Your hiring goals help guide your strategy and event budget.
To ensure a successful event, tap your candidate database; let candidates know where and when they can meet your company’s representatives face to face. Encourage employees and event attendees to share hashtags on social platforms such as Twitter to amplify your event message, which can help drive registrations and participation.
After the event, divide the total event cost by the number of applicants (or hires) to determine the return on investment. Dive deeper by looking at candidate quality and time‐to‐hire analytics. The results show whether you should repeat the event or try a different approach.
Improving Email Response Rates
A tried‐and‐true marketing vehicle to reach job seekers, email marketing has its own set of metrics you need to understand and monitor to improve your recruitment efforts. Ideally, you’ll be able to send the right email message to users who will be most receptive to it, based on what you know about them through talent analytics.
Consider the following when you review the performance of email in reaching and influencing your target audience:
✓ Open rate: Number of opens divided by emails sent, which shows whether your subject line enticed recipients to open your email.
✓ Click‐to‐open rate: Clicks of links in the email divided by the number of opens, which tells you how well the email performed.
✓ Conversion rate: Clicks divided by the number of completed applications (one of your goals). To go further, review how many applicants turned into quality hires.
Classic A/B testing, which lets you try out two or more variations during a promotion or campaign, is a great way to see which specific subject lines, body content, graphics, and calls to action work best with a specific audience. Even a slight tweak of language (such as using Hi instead of Dear in the salutation) can yield surprising results and help you optimize future efforts.
Content marketing is about reaching the right person at the right time with a message that resonates well enough for him or her to take action, such as applying for a job at your company. For example, on Glassdoor, 89 percent of job seekers are actively looking for jobs or are open to better opportunities, according to U.S. Site Survey data from January 2016. Unfortunately, 74 percent of candidates who start an application process never finish, according to SmashFly Platform Data from 2015.
In a crowded, candidate‐driven market with heavy competition for talent, you need to make sure that your message stands out — and also impresses candidates enough that they take the time to apply for jobs at your company.
Tracking social media
Social media is a powerful tool for recruiting top talent and branding your organization. Because job seekers are bombarded daily with messages on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other channels, your message needs to stand out from the pack.
Measuring social media engagement can be tricky, but the right resources can make your job easier. Helpful tools include Hootsuite, Sprout Social, and Buffer. Many social networks have free analytics dashboards that show information such as top posts that month, impressions, profile visits, mentions, and followers, as well as metrics on each post you publish. Other social metrics worth noting include
✓ Click on links
✓ User demographics
✓ Impressions by location
Specific to job postings, it’s important to note what job seekers are clicking. Test different types of content, hashtags, and visuals to find out what resonates best with your audience.
Presenting consistent content
Your company’s mission, values, and story embody the offer you present to candidates. Just as you would map out a company message for a new customer or business partner, you should do the same for prospective employees.
Ensure that your message is consistent across all channels where your company has a presence, from your careers page to job boards. Instill the essence of your message in company news, press releases, and articles that support your recruiting strategy.
Understanding Website Analytics
Website analytics can be some of the most difficult metrics to make sense of, but they can help you answer questions about how candidates view your strategy and message.
Google Analytics, for example, can show incredibly detailed data such as how long people stay on your site, what they click, how many pages they view, and even what operating system or browser they use to access your site.
Candidates for your company’s jobs, especially millennials, rely heavily on smartphones and other mobile devices. Include mobile in your recruitment strategy, which may mean simplifying your careers page and job descriptions to be easy to read on small screens. To guide your efforts, analyze how much mobile and desktop traffic comes to your company’s career page.
Chapter 7 – Budgeting with Talent Analytics
In this chapter
- Setting hiring goals
- Overcoming hiring challenges
- Drawing up a budget
- Setting expectations
Companies often take a backward‐looking approach to recruiting, determining headcount for the coming year without consulting the people who can help them achieve that goal: recruiters! As a result, many recruitment budgets simply mimic those of the previous year.
By allowing recruiters to drive the hiring strategy based on talent analytics rather than guesswork or simply repeating last year’s efforts, companies adopt a more strategic (and realistic) way to allocate hard earned recruitment budget.
This chapter shows you how to leverage talent analytics to fight for the budget you need to achieve hiring goals.
Setting Overall Hiring Goals
Now it’s time to take a look at the big picture and how your hiring goals will influence your recruitment budget. Keep in mind that your budget will need to be flexible enough to handle changing hiring priorities during the year yet stay on track to address important goals such as increasing employee referrals or lowering your cost‐per‐hire.
Start your hiring planning and goal setting early rather than later. Typically, hiring budgets may be set three to six months in advance, making strategic planning difficult. Getting the jump on hiring goals will give you more time to influence next year’s budget.
Analyzing hiring goals
Here are a few things to consider in analyzing hiring goals:
✓ How your budget correlates to the goals you’re trying to achieve
✓ How you allocate spending among people, systems, and programs
✓ How you plan to organize and track the budget and hiring goals throughout the year
✓ How you plan to identify and budget for new tools to help you reach your goals
Shaking things up can prompt you to see your planning in a new light. Challenge yourself to blow up last year’s budget and then put it back together. Protect a portion of the budget (20 percent to 40 percent) for recruiting and marketing programs to give you maximum flexibility throughout the year.
Overcoming hiring challenges
Recruiters can be strategic partners in an organization by advising management how new strategies can overcome hiring challenges. Following are a few examples:
✓ Reduce new hire attrition by hiring for cultural fit. Promote your brand by providing a transparent, realistic inside view of working at your company. Being honest with candidates about the company’s culture (and challenges) during the interview process will help reduce bad hires down the road.
✓ Decrease time‐to‐hire. Build rapport with passive job seekers by letting them opt-in to your talent network, which gives you a talent pool to access quickly when the right position opens.
✓ Increase employee referrals. When companies encourage workers to drive their own career paths through internal mobility programs, the resulting employee satisfaction can benefit recruiters in the form of greater job referrals and hiring rates. After all, satisfied and engaged employees are more likely to recommend their organizations to prospective candidates.
Creating Next Year’s Budget
Recruiters can earn influence with key stakeholders (who may control or influence the company’s recruitment budget) by using talent analytics to create a new budget for the next year rather than simply repurposing the preceding year’s efforts. This approach helps make recruiters valued strategic partners of the organization.
A good way to start is to review which channels yielded the greatest sources of hires the previous year.
Setting new goals
Areas that may require more attention next year include
✓ Employee referrals: Determine whether you have an effective referral or bonus program that motivates employees to help with recruiting.
✓ Mobile recruiting: Candidates are increasingly searching for jobs on mobile devices. Give your recruiting and employer brand an edge by optimizing your careers page and job descriptions for job seekers who are looking for positions on the go.
✓ Employer branding: Investing in your employer brand is one of the smartest ways to attract and present your message to top talent.
✓ Cost‐per‐hire: Analyzing this key metric (see Chapter 4) helps you make realistic budget projections for the coming year. ✓ Employee engagement: Employees are the most credible sources of information about what it’s like to work at your company. Ensure that you have programs in place to include employees in your hiring messaging and recruiting programs.
✓ Diversity: Diversity initiatives can widen your talent pool, making hiring and recruiting easier and more efficient.
✓ Social media: Ensure that your company has a presence wherever top-talent is going to research your employer brand. Teaming up with marketing can be invaluable to your recruiting and social strategy.
According to the Glassdoor economic research study “Why Interview Sources Matter for Hiring”, job interviews from employee referrals are much more likely to lead to an accepted job offer. Referral candidates typically are more qualified and efficient to hire. Engaged employees are more likely to refer great candidates, so consider spending resources and effort to improve your own employee referral programs.
Talent analytics can help you set expectations for each area in which you plan to invest to meet your goals. If you decide to invest more in your employer brand, for example (see Chapter 5), lists measurable outputs that you expect to improve. In other words, always include related metrics that can validate your efforts (for example, lowering your cost‐per‐hire or time‐to‐hire).
Partner with recruiting channels and platforms that help you promote your employer brand, showcase your workplace culture and give job seekers a transparent, “inside view” of your organization. Define what makes your company a good place to work. Then drive your target audience to those channels through marketing campaigns and your recruiting message.
Chapter 8 – Ten Ways to Win with Talent Analytics
In this chapter
- Creating a great hiring strategy
- Tracking critical metrics
- Optimizing recruiting programs
- Reporting on results
Talent analytics allows talent acquisition professionals at both large and small companies to leverage real‐world data and intelligence to improve their recruiting and retention strategies. This chapter presents ten ways to succeed with talent analytics.
Set Hiring Goals
Because hiring goals need to be able to adapt to changing requirements, you may not be able to set a recruiting budget several months in advance. Talent analytics can help you forecast the budget you need to meet your hiring goals, as well as allocate appropriate spending on people, systems, and programs.
Support the Recruiting Budget
By taking a strategic, analytical approach to recruiting, recruiters can earn the respect of stakeholders in their organizations. Start by outlining key hiring goals for the company; then apply metrics such as cost‐per‐hire (see Chapter 4) to build the case for next year’s budget.
Set Recruiting Benchmarks
Collect, understand, and leverage essential metrics like your time‐to‐hire or more subjective intelligence like quality‐of‐hire. Acquiring these basic yardsticks will help you measure your progress as you begin to optimize your recruiting strategy. You can also see how you stack up against your competitors or similar companies in your industry.
Know Your Cost‐Per‐Hire
Cost‐per‐hire (see Chapter 4) is one of the most important benchmarks you can establish. Be sure to factor in all internal and external costs. An applicant tracking system (ATS) can be a valuable resource in determining cost‐per‐hire. See Chapter 4 for details.
Optimize Recruiting Programs
Is one job board or recruiting channel delivering higher‐ quality candidates or at a lower hiring cost? Take the guesswork out of what’s working by analyzing your return on investment (ROI), cost‐per‐hire, and other key metrics to make smarter decisions about where to invest your budget and focus, including people (such as recruiters), systems (such as an ATS), and programs (such as employer branding).
Select the Best Recruiting Channels
Explore the makeup and background of the talent you hope to recruit, including the resources they visit to research companies and their open jobs. Putting yourself in candidates’ shoes and then using analytics to justify investing (or reinvesting) in relevant channels will pay dividends in your talent search.
Refine Your Employer Message
Analyze candidate interaction with your brand, and leverage internal employees to develop your company’s story. Then monitor the effectiveness of your message with your target audience by looking at variables such as traffic to your careers page, job applications, and quality‐of‐hire.
Monitor Employer Brand
Employer brand and company reputation can have a serious effect on recruiting. If you don’t define your company’s message, someone is likely to do so for you. Home in on key areas that may need attention, such as what candidates think of your interview process.
Be sure to report your progress to management over time (see Chapter 3).
Develop a Reporting Timeline
Set realistic expectations and schedule regular updates to share key metrics with company stakeholders. They’ll appreciate strategic initiatives that can save the company time and money while bringing great talent onboard. After all, data is the fuel that powers your recruiting strategy. Chapter 3 provides tips on reporting.
Further Your Recruiting Career
To earn more control over your company’s recruitment budget and overall strategy, arm executive leadership with real‐world metrics, insight, and intelligence that will show how you can save the organization money while hiring better candidates. In turn, this will make you a strategic partner and resource in building a recruiting strategy at your organization.
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Copyright © 2016 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey