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<i>Dear Workforce</i> How Could Our Recruiting Company Avoid Losing Top-notch Recruiters To Competitors

January 26, 2007
Dear Frustrated:
If you want to know what is not working, you should go to the source. You can do this by conducting interviews with employees who have left your organization voluntarily and with recruits who accepted offers elsewhere. If you use an outside party to conduct these interviews, and guarantee of anonymity, you should be able to obtain valuable information about why they chose to accept positions with your competitors instead of with you.
You should assemble all those involved in each step of the selection and hiring process to identify where the system breaks down, and analyze policies and practices inconsistent with what you learn from those interviewed. Mapping your entire process may help you find the greatest opportunities for improvement, and you may discover that you need to totally re-engineer the process.
To retain talent, you must know what you require in a candidate in several areas, including capabilities, practices, experience and values. Once these are established, develop a method of assessing each of these to ensure they fit with your organization. Assessment centers, work samples, behavioral interviewing, values-based questioning and other techniques will help you determine whether or not your candidates are capable and suitable—in other words, a fit.
If you are losing candidates to larger employers, you may need to redefine your competition to include such employers that compete for talent. You need to understand what the talent needs are and why people are taking jobs with such large employers, instead of opting to join your firm. If you want to gain the upper hand, you must present a business case that convinces recruits you offer something more than your competition.
This doesn't have to be measured in benefits or pay. If you create a workplace culture that makes your business a highly desirable place to work, for example, you may still be able to entice many candidates away from the competition. Likewise, you may be able to attract top talent and retain it for some period early in their careers before they move on to a larger, more prestigious organization. Knowing this, you can brand yourself as a great place to gain critical experience and credentials in preparation for future opportunities at the top companies in the industry.
Of course, regardless of your offer, you have to be able to deliver what you promise or you will compound the problem.
SOURCE: Kevin Herring, Ascent Management Consulting, Oro Valley, Arizona, April 11, 2006.
LEARN MORE: Please read Forget What You've Heard: Come Work for Us for another perspective. Also, tips on avoiding the "perception is reality" syndrome.
The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.

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