It seems nearly everyday we’re hearing about the latest National – “fill in the blank” Day. For example, for those that were not aware, just the other day it was National Cheese Lovers Day. There are practically national days of recognition every day of the year. (For the historians in the crowd – In the USA, we can track the tradition of creating national days of recognition all the way back to July 4, 1777 – to the first organized celebration of Independence Day.) While not all days of recognition have equal significance or are tied to such an historic event, the fact remains that these days of recognition give us a chance to pause and reflect. And – in many cases, these days create the opportunity for us to both elevate the purpose for the day as well as to make further commitments to support the ideals and objectives that the day represents.
Back in 2020, The Talent Board initiated the first Candidate Experience Day. It was a brilliant idea to tie the kick-off of the 2020 CandE Benchmark Research program to this special day. Each year since, The Talent Board has been “hosting” the Candidate Experience Day as a cornerstone event that both announces the findings from the previous year’s research as well as serving as the opening of the present year’s research program. While the exact day for this has slightly varied over the years, the intent of the day has remained consistent – i.e. for Recruiting Teams to come together to honor the candidates that take the time to opt-in to participate in their recruitment cycles and to recommit to doing everything they can to create a positive experience for those candidates.
More often than not, discussions about the “Candidate Experience” center around the negative – i.e. all the reasons for rising Candidate Resentment. Candidate Experience Day 2023, however, is an opportunity to celebrate – Celebrate the candidates, and celebrate all the techniques being deployed that are having a positive impact,
3 Reasons Why You Should Plan to Celebrate Candidate Experience Day
While there are a myriad number of reasons why celebrating Candidate Experience Day should be high priority, those reasons really all boil down to 3 core topics.
1 – Mindset Matters!
Would anyone argue that we should NOT think about the candidate experience? Do you know that purposely plans and designs a poor candidate experience into their process? Of course, the answer to these questions is, “No.” And yet, despite all the long standing evidence and the clear convergence that an improved candidate experience is important, creating a meaningful, consistent, and lasting candidate experience continues to be aspirational.
As with anything worth achieving, the journey always begins with deciding that the pursuit is worth dedicating yourself to. Mindset is critical. There will definitely be times during the journey when you will question whether the commitment is worth the continuous effort. Candidate Experience Day 2023 is an opportunity to surround yourself with others who are traveling a similar trail as you. It will be a day of positive storytelling from others who have found success. What better way is there to stay motivated and committed that to surround yourself with others who have a similar mindset. Their stories and specific suggestions will serve as great inspiration to stay motivated to keep to the plan.
2 – Recruiting Outcomes Matter!
Improving Candidate Experience is not a fluffy, nice to think about business issue. Not being able to achieve hiring goals and overspend on recruitment marketing are just two examples of what happens when your employer brand has a poor candidate experience reputation.
As noted above, though, no one means to purposely create a poor candidate experience. The primary root cause of this is that too often recruiting teams are overwhelmed and overburdened. They are expected to be experts on a large number of skills – i.e. Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing, Copywriting, Sourcing, Labor Market Intelligence, Sales and Negotiation just to name a few. They are expected to navigate and use a large number of systems and tools – many of which are not integrated. And, of course, the biggest challenge of all – is that recruiters are expected to carry an inordinate number of requisitions. As Josh Bersin famously said, “Recruiting is much harder than it looks” – which is why the vast majority of recruiting teams under-perform.
I’m not saying that participating in the Candidate Experience events will cure all your issues. What I am saying though, is that collaborating with other employers who have the same mindset as you and learning from them as to what has been successful should be a strong element to your strategy. This is a great way to learn the skill sets and toolsets that others are leveraging to get to the ROI from investing in improving the Candidate Experience
3 – Your Job Satisfaction Matters!
In all my years of working in the talent acquisition industry, I’ve never met a single recruiter who stayed in the business who wasn’t passionate about the work they were doing. The satisfaction that a person can get from being knowing they are the engine that enabled individuals to get jobs that fulfill their career aspirations is indescribable. Couple that with knowing that your efforts play a role in the productivity and profitability of the business, and you have a killer combination of reasons to want to improve the Candidate Experience.
As noted above – no one purposely works to design a poor candidate experience into the process. At a minimum, it is frustrating to every day feel like it is all you can do to keep up with the candidates that are moving forward. At worst, it is demoralizing and contributes to job burnout. The largest population in any recruiting cycle are the candidates that do not get hired. All too often, this is the group of candidates that do not hear back – which is one of the key reasons for the growing levels of candidate resentment.
Participating in Candidate Experience Day – and for that matter, Candidate Experience improvement activities and events throughout the year, is truly a way that you can take control of your own work experience. Not only will your efforts make life better for the candidates and improve the business results of your organization, but you will also be improving your job satisfaction. Job satisfaction is the feeling of fulfillment you receive from the work that you perform. Zeroing in on the meaningful aspects of your work is critical to job satisfaction. Identifying areas of the process that you can improve upon to produce better and more valuable outcomes for your candidates and hiring managers will not only add to your job satisfaction – but will also ultimately improve your work-life balance and reduce your work-related stress levels.
Wednesday, January 25th, 2023 is Candidate Experience Day. While it is a specific day being set aside to share stories, posts, quotes, pictures, memes, videos, etc. It is important to remember though that, Every Day Should Be Candidate Experience Day! And, while the title of the day only refers to the Candidate, the reality is that making improvements in the experience will actually create amazing outcomes for both the business your recruit for and for yourself. Improving the Candidate Experience is a journey – not a destination. Embarking on this journey means that you are adopting this as a mindset and that you are continually striving to learn new skills and tools to further this pursuit. Surround yourself with others who have also adopted this mindset plays an important role in that continuous learning. Just remember – your candidates will appreciate it, your business will gain value from it, and your job satisfaction will increase.
Wishing you a productive Candidate Experience Day and a full year of related activities to come!
It’s time for a PEO Revolution. Today I’m joined by Dawn Lively and Daniel Fuller of FullStack PEO. We use FullStack at PivotCX for HR benefits, payroll, and everything we do managing our people. If you look at a PEO, they allow a smaller company like us to compete with more prominent companies for talent. It’s an option that can be transformative if it fits your organization.
What is a PEO
PEOs (Professional Employer Organization) are outsourcing firms that provide services to smaller businesses. They enter a co-employment agreement with their clients and become the employer of record (EoR) for tax purposes. Typically, PEOs offerings may include human resource consulting, payroll processing, employer payroll tax filing, benefits administration, recruiting and hiring, regulatory compliance assistance, training, and development.
Reasons to use a PEO for HR needs:
Although people think of outsourcing accounting as a business function, many don’t connect the dots about outsourcing HR. Using PEOs enables small companies to focus on building their product and growing their company without allocating additional resources to HR tasks. It becomes pretty simple and can save a lot of time. Many entrepreneurs don’t think that they only have so many hours in a week to put into work. How many of the things that a PEO does are going to give you, if you do them yourself and you do them very well, will provide a business any advantage over what a PEO can do? I’m not sure there are many.
Entrepreneurs’ Resistance to the PEO Revolution
There’s a profile of people who think they have to know the ins and outs of their business. The hardest thing to get some business owners, especially some new entrepreneurs, to realize is that they should use PEOs to free up their time and energy instead of holding onto HR tasks until they’ve mastered every aspect before giving any away.
A mentality that has to be learned
“A quick story, we worked with another HR tech going in scale-up mode. Their team comprised HR professionals, and they knew how to do the job themselves because they had done it before but realized from the beginning ‘if we’re gonna grow and scale and positively answer to our investors, we need to give this up.’ The team started with us when they were just three cofounders; they hadn’t hired anyone yet but wanted to have the benefits piece in place for when they recruited and onboarded that first person.
When you have that personality where you want to know and control everything, you have to be challenged to let it go to be successful.”
What are the biggest challenges business owners face when it comes to HR and people?
The first challenge is finding people. Once they find them, the second challenge is differentiating themselves from competitors.
“What will stop that person you brought on six months ago, especially in today’s market, from getting an offer from a competitor for $15000 more. What will stop someone on your team from taking $15000 a year more? If someone hasn’t proactively thought about what besides compensation is gonna keep that person here, and they haven’t done anything about it. I think it’s going to be a big challenge for them.”
Solving this issue has a lot to do with culture fit and being part of the future strategy. Dealing people in on stock options when possible and appropriate. Having buy-in regarding the company’s values, mission, and vision and including them in the decision-making process. Listening to people and getting their feedback (some of the best ideas come from feedback)
It’s also vital to consider ideas and act on them; otherwise, it negatively impacts the culture.
How many companies are having trouble finding people?
That person was hard to find before the pandemic, and it’s even harder to find now. We hear about that struggle with most of our clients.
It’s very different when you are a small business vs. a big company. What are companies doing to attract talent?
In essence, there are two parts to this. The first is finding talent and being able to attract it. Secondly, companies have to work hard to retain talent. Companies that usually offer 2-5% raises to their employees in this tight labor market have to do 4-7 or 4-8% increases to be competitive. “But you have to do what you can afford as a small company. So half is trying to keep the talent you already have in addition to recruiting and growing.”
Dawn has over a decade of experience in the PEO industry, providing administrative, operational, and strategic human resource guidance to small- and mid-sized companies. She has served in a Senior Director capacity, overseeing human resource, client service, benefits administration, and payroll administration functions within a PEO. She was also instrumental in both strategic planning and tactical execution to achieve the strategic goals.
Transformational Book: Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) and related books
Favorite Movie: first “Point Blank”
Dawn’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dawn-lively-she-her-hers-9558b08/
Prior to working at FullStack as VP Business Development, Daniel’s background includes coaching entrepreneurial leaders and mission-driven organizations. While completing his MA in Global Leadership, Daniel founded Sycamore Way, a startup focused on developing tangible skills for leaders and organizations to be talent development cultures. He hosts the “Savage to Sage”, a podcast exploring the evolution of entrepreneurs through the crucible of starting and growing companies.
Transformational Book: “At your best” by Carey Nieuwhof
Favorite Movie: “Dead Poets Society”
Daniel’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/danielfullerindy/
Podcast: “Savage to Sage” explores the evolutionary journey of entrepreneurs and founders. https://www.savagetosage.com/
Mike and PivotCX:
Mike’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/indymike/
Pivot2First Podcast: https://pivot2first.com/