A Christmas (Recruiting) Carol

If you feel like the holidays came at warp speed this year, you’re right. You can blame it on a late Thanksgiving, but if you weren’t ready, it’s probably still your fault. I know from experience – it’s my fault too.

First – full confession: I am not ready for the holidays. And, I will be shopping through this evening, finishing up cards and probably setting up lights (so they are up for a whole week before I have take them down). Ridiculous, I know.

I feel like I’m going to be sliding into the holidays and probably right past them. Just like the Dicken’s classic “A Christmas Carol,” (I prefer the George C. Scott version) it’s a cautionary tale and the same can be said for hiring and recruiting. Yes, of course you knew I would get around to talking about recruiting.

For 2014, don’t let the same thing happen with your recruiting and workforce strategies. And rather than having three ghosts visit you (and stealing liberally from Dickens) here are a few quick things to think about as you prepare to go into 2014 to hire the best for your organization.

The Ghost of Experience (Past) – Recruiting has become more complicated than ever. Job boards, social media, networking, industry groups, employment laws – the list goes on. Do you really want to be an expert in recruiting? Even if you are a recruiter for your company, there are certain positions that take a long time to create the right talent community and connect with the right candidates. When everyone’s opening is a priority, this becomes a headache. There are plenty of resources for temporary or permanent recruiting. Take advantage of them and let the experts keep this ghost at bay.

The Ghost of Time Management (Present) – For many of us, this is the appearance of time management, when really, we should be running around like our heads are on fire. For recruiting and hiring, this can’t be the case or you will never get ahead. This about it this way: What are your core duties? We see many hiring managers spending in an inordinate amount of time combing through resumes or talking to multiple staffing vendors (or maybe fighting with HR). They key is to work with HR or procurement to find quality suppliers who will understand your needs and provide good people consistently. Let them chase the ghosts away, and you get back to what really needs to get done.

The Ghost of the What’s Next? (Future) – The world changes on a daily basis. The hot skills today may be cold tomorrow, or you may not be able to find the skills you need tomorrow, if you don’t think about them today. Confused yet? Me too. It’s not about predicting the future, but it is about listening, observing and preparing. This is one area you can’t really outsource. You need to take ownership and advocate for better recruiting resources for your organization. With many skills today, you need to not only be ahead of the curve; you need to be way out in front. This Ghost will always be there – but if you’re prepared, he won’t seem very scary at all.

There you have it. Enjoy the holidays, but think about 2014 and what it has in store for you with recruiting and your workforce strategies. You have the power to change the nightmare into a pleasant dream you’ll want to have over and over again.

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