As a recruiter on the front lines of talent acquisition, you intimately understand the challenges that come with recruiting, and you recognize how better technology could not only help eliminate these challenges, but benefit your company. In fact, you may be one of the 84 percent of recruiters who agree that talent acquisition is the key to a company’s overall success and profitability.1
However, it’s unlikely that recruiters decide if and when to purchase new recruitment technology, or what type of technology that should be. Typically, this decision rests with a company’s team of executives, also known as the C-Suite. Yet because the C-Suite is more removed from the ins and outs of recruiting, it’s not as easy for them to recognize when—and why—an upgrade is needed. This may result in time spent using an outdated system that doesn’t meet needs.
The solution? Develop a strategy to “sell” a recruitment technology upgrade to your C-Suite.
What Does the C-Suite Care About?
Your strategy begins with understanding what executives care about most. A C-Suite is typically comprised of a Chief Executive Officer, a Chief Operating Officer, a Chief Financial Officer, a Chief Marketing Officer, and perhaps a Chief Technology Officer. Though each of these executives have different goals and perspectives, most share a common objective: grow the company—within a budget. When project proposals like new technology investments are brought forward, executives likely think about if they would help build the company at a reasonable cost. Specifically, executives will probably consider:
- What’s the return on investment?
- Is it necessary?
Answers to these questions can be the guiding framework for your argument.
Luckily, many of today’s executives are thinking about talent acquisition in a broad sense, and its role in company success. Ninety-three percent of executives surveyed say they recognize the need to change their strategies for talent. However, 61 percent just don’t know where to start.2 As a recruiter, you can be empowered to persuade executives that a recruitment technology upgrade is the place to start.
Getting Started: Find Allies
Before getting in front of your company’s C-Suite, it’s a good idea to form allies within your HR department. Get your manager and other team members on board with the technology upgrade you believe would benefit your recruitment efforts. Doing so provides you with a bench of supporters to reference when explaining to executives how the upgrade would positively impact your organization’s search for talent.
Equally important is reaching out to other departments that would be affected by a recruitment technology upgrade. Explain how the upgrade would be of benefit to you, and learn how it would affect their jobs too. For example, how would it impact hiring managers? Hiring managers are major stakeholders in the recruitment process; it’s important that a technology upgrade meet their needs as well. What about the IT department? Are there concerns about the solution’s security measures? Does the finance department have concerns? When would a purchase make sense for the annual budget? Are there any legal issues that could be pertinent to an upgrade?
By connecting with these various players, you may be able to identify overlooked weaknesses or pitfalls in the provider you had in mind. Or, you’ll acquire strength in numbers and be more prepared to answer questions from your executives.
The next step is identifying how to communicate that a recruitment technology upgrade is 1.) necessary and 2.) can provide important returns on investment. The following points can help you craft a well-backed argument to address both of these issues.
Point #1: Better Quality of Hire
New research finds that quality of hire has become the most important measure of performance.3 When a company improves its quality of hire, it spends less time getting employees up to speed and more time on productive work. Better quality of hire also means fewer bad hires, which could ultimately cost up to five times a bad hire’s annual salary. 4
Talent acquisition software can improve quality of hire in a variety of ways, the first of which is with a broader, more targeted candidate reach. With automation, recruiters can easily set up recruitment marketing endeavors on a variety of social media channels and sourcing sites, and can manage passive and active applicants grouped by various categories. In doing so, they can more effectively target candidates with the right skills. Leading systems also provide recruiters and hiring managers a more detailed, accessible
look at candidates, which results in better assessment. Because candidate profiles are easily searchable within the system, tagged with keywords, and organized in a way that highlights essential information, organizations can ensure that no best-fit candidate is accidentally overlooked, or that the quality of candidate information is compromised. More specifically, recruiters can search talent pools by the exact skills a position requires.
Benefits by the Numbers
With an effective talent acquisition solution, research finds that best-in-class organizations benefitted in the following ways:
Technology that allows recruiters to more effectively evaluate candidates also improves the relationship between recruiters and hiring managers, which is critical to recruitment success. Hiring managers can provide recruiters feedback instantly within a system’s platform, sharing which candidates they feel are qualified, which are not, and most importantly, why. Given that sixty-one percent of hiring managers surveyed said that recruiters have a “low” to “moderate understanding” of the jobs for which they recruit, there’s ample reason to invest in solutions that help improve this understanding.5
Leading technology also makes measuring an organization’s quality of hire more accurate, and this measurement can help identify weaknesses in recruitment strategy. Rather than getting a “general sense” of whether or not hires are up to par, talent acquisition systems can track specific measurements, such as hiring manager satisfaction, submittals to hire ratios, and more. This can benefit the one-third of HR professionals that don’t feel their methodologies for measuring quality of hire are strong.6