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Trusting talent and the selection process – whilst keeping your competitive edge!

by Daniella Klein

Talent is the name of the game in many sectors, from recruitment to rugby! Building a professional team of recruitment consultants is just like building a rugby team, you need to be constantly on the lookout for burgeoning talent, wild cards and left-field skills you didn’t even know you needed on your team.

In a recent interview with the Bristol Bears, I discussed why having Heat Recruitment sponsor them has provoked more than just overuse of sports metaphors around the office! Sponsoring the Bears and being affiliated with their success and shortcomings has united our professional team and taught me a lot about the innate importance of having diverse yet strong skills on your team.

‘Diverse yet strong’

It’s a deceptively simple phrase when you take into consideration the myriad soft and technical skills there are out there to choose from when it comes to building a team. Building that kind of team means extensive candidate profiling, out-of-the-box thinking, investing in your recruitment marketing channels, and trusting in the talent pool and your selection process.

I started Heat Recruitment in a shed in the garden with an initial five employees all working in there together. We used a pool table for business meetings! But to go from that to having an office in central Bristol with over 70 staff, and to have navigated the Covid lockdown and the transition to remote working, supporting and managing, has all been possible through a strong talent selection process.

A dangerous play for organisations that lack the internal hiring resources to dedicate their time and efforts to creating in-depth recruitment plans, candidate profiles and readily assess their candidate pool and make ongoing adjustments. As recruitment consultants, we have years of market insight and understanding to draw on to be able to avoid the scrum.

3 reasons why using a recruiter is a good idea for building your starting line-up:

That’s where the value in recruiters lies, market knowledge and insight to be able to see where there may be skill gaps and put together a bespoke talent acquisition process that suits your team’s current and future needs. Engaging a recruiter to help you do this will ensure you get:

1)Talent and skills that you may not have realised you need

Recruiters have a wide market knowledge and when working closely with you, are able to understand the requirements of your company and suggest updated skills that may be useful to improve productivity and encourage future growth. This can range anywhere from suggesting the use of new software, technology or tools to improve business, to then finding the talent that you will be able to facilitate their use.

2)Identification of where your ideal talent is and how to attract them

Different types of people will be drawn to using different types of tools in their job search. Recruiters have a wealth of recruitment channels to draw on to be able to access the right talent pool to bolster your team with the right skills, attitude and experience. Recruitment consultants can leverage these channels, usually at no extra cost, to shape job adverts to suit the recruitment channel and demographic, monitor applications, sift relevant candidates and perform preliminary screening to save a client time and money and acquire the correct person to join the team.

3)Advice on interview strategy to draw out relevant skills and talent

Recruitment often comes with some very interesting ideas about what interviewers should do or ask during an interview. Whilst some of these serve a purpose beyond face value, like the classic “Where do you see yourself in five years?”, some tactics are downright weird, like trying to discern behavioural implications from the coffee cup test.

However, the interview process is incredibly important for not only making an accurate analysis of a candidate’s personality and technical skills, but for also drawing out those soft skills which might prove invaluable assets to your team. Soft skills are skills that can’t be quantified necessarily, they are skills that support the way a person works and include good collaborative skills, communication, time management, empathy and more.

Recruiters can help you shape your interview strategy to have a range of questions designed to confirm technical skills listed on a CV, and also draw out soft skills that may be useful to your team.

Along with my colleagues at Heat Recruitment, I have been working on a White Paper that looks at the value add of recruiters in the current employment market. By exploring some of the ways in which recruiters can craft and enhance a recruitment strategy for an organisation from the ground up, we discern the true value of recruiters in a time where every expenditure counts!

I hope you enjoy reading it, download it here:

The recruitment imperative: Redefining and re-establishing value in the ‘next normal’

The talent selection process isn’t only an outward journey

 However, building your ideal team isn’t just about what you do externally, you also need to work internally to make sure your organisation is a place where exceptional talent want to work! This can be done in many ways and, again, recruiters can help. One of the most impactful ways to turn your company into a top-talent-attracting workplace includes:

Employer branding

Employer branding is an important factor when creating an attractive place to work to capture the attention of top talent and encourage them to apply to your roles. Employer branding incorporates any online representation of your company from your website to your social media channels. They should all be coordinated to present an accurate portrayal of what it is like to work for you.

These should include insights, interviews, videos and/or blogs that demonstrate your position as a leader in your market, and also show the fun side of working with you on specially curated blogs on your internal recruitment pages.

The importance of your online presence can’t be downplayed when:

This is where getting involved with Bristol Sport was such a good idea for Heat Recruitment. It gave us the opportunity to really hone our employer brand into one that appreciated and fostered hard work, teamwork and fun. In fact, our five core values are fun, passion, integrity, partnership, excellence – it’s incredibly important that fun be our first value!

It is such a morale boost for our team to have our logo on the chests of a winning local team too, creating a direct correlation between their hard work and success, and our own. When we interview for our own internal positions, nine times out of 10 they’ve seen our logos at the rugby games or have looked through our Bristol Bears content online and are excited to be a part of the team! It was a great way to get our name out there to potential future employees and customers alike!

So it’s vital to think about the way you present your employer brand online, including all the things that make it fun or worthwhile to work for you, from fun zero-waste incentives to mental health support. They all make a difference to make you stand out as a conscientious and empathic employer that top talent will want to work for.

Building your team in the ‘next normal’

Although for many the prospect of expanding your team might seem daunting when balanced against the need to keep costs and overheads low to make sure 2020 ends in financial security. But investing in a recruitment plan now will mean you have the pieces in place for the ‘next normal’ and you can look to expand and scale up your team when it suits you. This is the time to look at what skills you might be lacking, examine your use of technologies and see if there’s something that’s cheaper or more cutting edge. This will help you supercharge the talent you have and line up a clear idea of what you’ll need in the future.

Engaging a recruiter at this stage, before you’re ready to invest in more permanent employees can also help facilitate getting in interim support, contracted professionals who have a high level of experience you can leverage in a cost effective way.

In my experience, preparation is key when building your ideal team that will lead you to a win. Getting in touch with a recruiter will help you lay the foundations of your talent acquisition plan and help you identify those dynamic, out-of-the-box skills that are going to lead your team to victory in the future.

If you’d like to discuss your hiring needs or how your business can manage employee acquisition and retention in the ‘new normal’, please

get in touch.