HR Technology in Layman's Terms—Pillar #3: Acquisition

Peter Alkema

The previous article discussed portals and the knowledge base in layman's terms to convey the role they play in the five-pillar service delivery model. Previously we have summarized this model and the checklist it provides for heads of operations and IT in HR departments who desire to focus their tech assets and resources on better customer service delivery.

  • Pillar #1: Portal
  • Pillar #2: Knowledge Base
  • Pillar #3: Acquisition
  • Pillar #4: Self Service
  • Pillar #5: Case Management

This five-pillar service delivery model helps assess requirements and opportunities for HR Technology to deliver on the value proposition of a shared services model in a way that best meets the needs of its customers. This article looks at the acquisition technology component in layman's terms.

Pillar #3: Acquisition

An employee lifecycle is often considered to begin only when the person signs the offer letter, but in reality their experience of the company starts when the prospect of a job occurs in their minds. This may be through referral, job search, head-hunting or by chance. However the prospective employee appears on your company radar, you have to treat them as if they will one day work for you. While there will be other factors that influence this experience, the ones that you can control must be managed effectively to ensure an optimal experience. Most companies will have some sort of system to log prospective employees and track their progress through the evaluation and talent assessment steps. There will also be screening and background checks and the more you can automate these processes, the more you can focus on building a relationship with the recruit early-on.

Using a full-cycle solution to automate your recruitment process is worth the investment and integrating this with your core HR platform will drive significant efficiencies in your on-boarding of talent into your workforce. Such a recruitment system delivered through the web should offer a personalized experience for each group of users such as site visitors, registered users, managers, recruiters and agencies. Non-registered users or interested job seekers should be able to search for all job openings without having to provide personal information. Suitable jobs can be added to a temporary job basket or referred to other people and the company can even solicit evaluations and feedback during this process.

Registered job seekers who are intent on finding a job and starting a recruitment process with your company should be able to manage the whole process online and track its progress. Resumes can be uploaded into a profile that also contains updated personal information as well as skills, educational background and employment history. The people within your organization that are managing the recruitment process also need to perform certain functions and see relevant information. These are typically managers and recruiters who will need to search for registered job seekers, review resumes, rank candidates and peruse or reject candidates as needed.

Often the best access to external talent comes from within your organization. Managing employee referrals with such a solution offers a compelling way of leveraging technology to improve your recruiting pipeline. Employees should be able to create candidate profiles, refer known candidates to vacancies and follow up on the process as a referral moves through it. Very advanced features would include interview management functionality such as setting up a panel, attaching notes and the result of the interview. Throughout the process, there should be a tracking capability to monitor new applications, pending interviews and recently created or updated offers. If you do have a link with your core payroll, the offer process could be automated to the level of making informed salary allocations for applicants based on role and job family minimums, maximums, averages and benchmarks.

It is great to leverage technology to automate aspects of your recruiting process for the different role players, but always remember that it is a stressful process for a candidate and human interaction should never be reduced at the expense of mass automation. The reduced time spent on administration should go back into additional time spent on phoning and catching up with candidates in a support and advisory role to ensure the relationship with the prospective employee is built long before they sign the offer letter.