A Quick Guide to Becoming a Data Driven Recruiting Leader

A Quick Guide to Becoming a Data Driven Recruiting Leader

Mike Roberts

Data is so abundant and accessible in today’s business environment, that it goes completely against all logic to ignore it. No data driven recruiting initiative will start, though, without leadership taking the reins and getting it off the ground.

If you’re a recruiting leader, the cost of not using the data that’s all around you is rising by the minute.

We’ve been advocating for data driven recruiting strategies and cultures for a long time, and we’ll continue the conversation below by inspecting what leaders can do to get started now.

Always Ask: “Where’s the Data?”

Talent acquisition and subjectivity have gone hand in hand for a long time. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, because in the past recruiting data was harder to come by.

Now that data is more accessible, though, it’s less acceptable to make decisions like where to allocate budget or who to hire based on gut feelings and experience alone.

Many of the absolute best business leaders have one thing in common, they always want to see the data.

Likewise, data driven recruiting leaders should always want to know “Where’s the data.”

For instance, one of your team members may say, “LinkedIn is our top social channel for applicants.” Your response should be, “Show me the data.” They may say, “People from Ivy League schools tend to perform better.” Okay, then “Show me the data.”

Over time, the idea is that your team members will come prepared with data, although in the beginning you should be ready to patiently wait for them to go and find it upon request.

Continuing to demand objective information is contagious. Don’t be surprised if you overhear someone else saying “Show me the data.”

Set Up a Recurring Metrics Meeting

It’s a lot easier to be a data driven recruiting leader when your team members are held accountable. A culture of accountability is difficult to institute, but it can be done.

One of the best approaches to initiating and then sustaining accountability for performance is to set up a recurring metrics meeting. This could be done at a high level, where your team sits in and everyone views the aggregate efforts together. Of course, each recruiter is responsible for her or his own performance, but—at least to start—you should roll up performance so it’s consumable for everyone.

Take a look at our leading indicator model for Quality of Hire, where we explain how to reverse engineer your high-level metrics in a way that everyone can work toward a common goal of continuous improvement.

Experiment with New Tools and Strategies

We’re not living in 2002, and yet many recruiting teams are still using the same old spreadsheet-based performance management methods as they did back then.

SaaS-based recruiting analytics solutions, coupled with free resources like Google Analytics, can provide exceptional visibility into recruiting performance. If you haven’t done so yet, it’s time to start exploring offerings in the market.

As is the case with any next-generation technologies, the easiest thing to do is—of course—nothing. And yet the cost of inaction is massive. Recruiting leaders need to break through convention, research solutions, build a business case, gain buy-in from budget holders, and equip their team with tools they need to make actionable, data-driven decisions. If the recruiting leader doesn’t do this, then no one will.

Over time, the right recruiting analytics software solution and deployment strategy will deliver far more benefits than costs.

Symbolize Continuous Improvement

Continuous improvement has to be on the tip of every recruiting leaders’ tongue, and what gets them excited to come into work every morning.

Achieving continuous improvement is a matter of creating an environment in which talent acquisition teams can thrive, and then holding them accountable to do better over time.

The recruiting leader must symbolize continuous improvement. No one will take the initiative seriously if the person in charge isn’t excited about it and participating in it. Here’s some more information on creating and sustaining a continuous improvement environment.

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