In the past we’ve challenged HR professionals and recruiters alike to define an ideal recruitment process. They can’t. Latest proof of this is ERE’s in-house recruiting survey which, among other things, gives a B grade to recruiting leaders that can only be improved by rethinking the recruitment process. But it will prove very difficult to do this without having universally accepted metrics that define recruitment performance and how this is managed. ERE has highlighted what we’ve known for some time: that there is disconnect between HR leaders and recruiters around what the key measures of success are. It also reveals that criteria of success cannot be accurately defined by either a recruiter or HR leader, with them constantly changing their own minds as to what is more important; quality of hire, candidate, speed of hire or the tools used.

Although the full findings of ERE’s survey are still to be revealed, and might shed more light on how to solve this recruitment conundrum, organisations must interrogate their recruitment process to better utilise lean efficiency and refine it based on data analytics in order to deliver candidates more cost-effectively, in less time, with reduced reliance on agencies. Outsource agencies such as ourselves lead this charge, and we look to develop and implement a strategic recruitment process with partners, something that allows clients to relinquish the need to solely focus on finding solutions at a granular level. Avoiding reactionary recruitment is key in avoiding the dead-end results that inevitably follow a short-term approach. By taking a long-term view, recruitment becomes more effective and efficient, future-proofing talent pools and providing a function that acts as a strategic enabler, supporting key business objectives. What falls out of this methodology, is improved cost to hire, time to hire and ratios of direct hire.

Being strategic entails a specialist team of recruitment experts that are not necessarily ‘typical’. The changing digital and technical landscape, issues around brand guardianship, corporate social responsibility and other external influences have necessitated that a strategic team consists of people with social media and marketing skills and even analysts.

Just take social recruitment and talent analytics, now part of the recruitment lexicon because of the success they deliver. Social recruitment now goes way beyond tweeting a job vacancy or scouring LinkedIn for passive recruitment candidates. Ignoring big data seems irresponsible, considering that predictive analysis can significantly reduce attrition and improve quality of hire, which is still rightly considered a critical recruitment metric.

But these are just two examples within a dynamic industry that demonstrates why a generalist recruitment model no longer works. It also means that moving beyond the debate about how to performance manage recruitment and improve results through better processes is not easy, and neither is building a world-class recruitment function that incorporates greater strategic initiative. To learn about the different levels of a recruitment process, and how to build towards an ideal model, we’ve created a free ebook, which you can download by clicking here.