It’s no secret to human resource professionals, managers and supervisors that one of the most critical decisions facing the workplace is talent acquisition, better known as recruiting. Recently I’ve read a few articles that proclaim recruiting is the MOST important function of human resources; trumping compensation and benefits, training and development, and process improvement. After wrestling this for awhile I realized that I could not argue against it. The results of recruiting are in all facets of the company. Recruiting really is the most important function of human resources.
At The Ohio State University I recall something my professor Robert Heneman taught, “All of your emplloyee relations issues and all your human resource initiatives depend upon your people. If you hire the right people you can be successful; poor hiring decisions will cause you to fail.”
Speaking to the professor’s point, if you have lazy management, it goes back to who you’ve hired to lead. If you have poor performing employees, you have to examine how you hire.
Jim Collins wrote a groundbreaking human resource management book titled “Good to Great.” Some people mock it now-a-days however if you read the book it makes several excellent business claims; one being if you get the right people on the bus you will increase your chances of organizational success. There’s a ton of competition for skilled and talented employees, and competition comes from other countries as well. Good news is there is a ton of talent, skilled, educated and smart people available; you just have to find them.
It’s election time in the United States. The Democrats are trying to recruit you; the Republicans are tying to recruit you; and job creation is the hot button issue. This focus on recruitment is old news for big companies, who are constantly in the war for talent.
If you’ve been paying attention to mergers and acquisitions you’ll notice that the hardware and software giant Oracle purchased Taleo, a talent management and recruiting software company (aka ATS), for about $1.9 billion. But that’s not all, Oracle also bought SelectMinds, a cloud based social talent sourcing company. Hmm, seems like they are getting for the future of talent acquisition. Another giant, SAP acquired SuccessFactors for $3.4 billion. Coupled with Recruit’s billion dollar acquisition of Indeed, it all means that serious investment is being made to provide efficient and innovative methods to source for talent.
“Yes! As I reflect on the other competencies of human resources you cannot do any of them without people,” said Tiffany Kuehl, Talent Acquisition and Staffing Leader of a Fortune 100 company and President of TCHRA an affiliate chapter of SHRM.
Tiffany went on to discuss what makes a successful talent selection. “You have to talk to the managers and the interviewers to ensure that they have a realistic idea of what they want and need from a candidate. Sometimes you have to re-sculpt the shape, scope and expectations in order to fit the business needs. It’s not only about finding external candidates but also moving the internal talent around. Everything goes back to the right people, the right jobs, and at the right time.”
Chris Fields is an HR professional and leadership guy who blogs and dispenses great (not just good) advice at Cost of Work. Connect with Chris on Twitter.