Today's guest blog post comes to you from Ron Kasner, iCIMS' Chief Corporate Development Officer. Ron has leadership responsibility for corporate strategy and development, business process improvement, and legal affairs.
A little over one month ago, I attended the 13th Annual HR Technology Conference & Exposition in Chicago, Illinois. As the Chief Corporate Development Officer here at iCIMS, it was an excellent opportunity to hear directly from hundreds of HR professionals (mostly high-level), technology vendors, and analysts.
What I immediately noticed is that it seemed every other booth was somehow involved in one way or another in Talent Management. Either they engaged in talent management directly or were an ancillary product. In fact, many of the companies that were not in the space before, now are – well, at least from a marketing perspective. Unfortunately, that means a very crowded, convoluted market for those truly interested in and in need of a talent management solution. As a result, I personally found the need to truly dig into the “real” capabilities of various talent management vendors.
Luckily, I found many visitors to iCIMS’ booth doing the same. The people visiting our booth generally already knew about the functionality iCIMS and other technology vendors are offering, and subsequently knew what features they need out of a system. What was made clear to me is that ATS functionality alone isn’t enough; these professionals are interested in the total package – not only the complete HR system, but the entire customer experience.
HR professionals, especially those working for small and mid-sized companies, wanted talent management software beyond the traditional ATS. They wanted a solution that would drive their entire HR program from recruitment and onboarding to performance and training management. Finding one system that can support those needs is no longer a bonus, but a requirement.
Many people appeared to truly recognize that the right functionality is pointless without the right people to implement it, support it, maintain it, and enhance it. They asked many probing questions about our company history, growth, and future, as well as, how we service and benefit clients, and what we do to ensure a great transition to and experience with iCIMS. A handful of people shared some poor past experiences with other vendors, including long, costly implementations, confusing product navigation, limited configurability, inadequate training, and slow responsiveness to issues.
Candidly, this put me in a very good position to respond. iCIMS has over a decade of experience in delivering talent management Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). We have over 850 customers, the 2nd largest number of customers in the talent acquisition market, with one of the highest customer retention rates in the industry. Not only have we been recognized by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte for our growth in the industry, but we’re also one of the most profitable vendors in the market. We have the only “pure” SaaS offering, with the most vast configuration capabilities. We also provide free, unlimited storage of candidate, employee, hiring manager, and job profiles. In addition, we offer free, unlimited email and toll-free support, training webinars, and learning materials.
From a customer’s perspective, this means we can provide one of the quickest implementation times, at one of the lowest implementation costs. This not only translates into a lower overall investment, but a faster return on investment as well. This also means superior usability and greater flexibility, driving more user adoption. This translates into a greater return on investment.
While I admit these conferences are good for seeing what competitors are doing or what technology partnerships can be made, I think the most important takeaway is the information and feedback received from the HR professionals, themselves. This may just be my two cents, but in order to be the best in the business, it is essential to provide what your clients need and not just what competitors are doing. These conferences give vendors the opportunity to hear what prospects want and what trends seem to be steering the HR industry. It will be interesting to see which technology vendors were listening…