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My Company Got Acquired: Now What? Tips for Talent Management

forcasting_a_stormIt’s the calm before the storm. One day, smooth sailing. The next, fear and uncertainty rolls in. There’s no way around it. Acquisitions are tough. But, as the saying goes, the show must go on. The question on everyone’s mind is: who stays and who goes.

Here at Yoh, our staffing and workforce experts have partnered with several clients during this delicate time of transition. We’ve even gone through one ourselves. While there are endless details to account for, one area you ought to pay particular attention to is post-acquisition talent management.

It typically goes something like this. A division of or the entire company is acquired. As new leadership is brought in, new processes and initiatives quickly ensue. One of those practices is post-acquisition talent management. 

Post-acquisition Talent Management

Yoh recently worked with a multi-million dollar company who found themselves in the midst of an acquisition. Suddenly, there was an urgent need to fill approximately 150 specialty/niche positions before the acquisition took place. With HR being pulled in several directions, recruiting resources were at an all-time low. In the meantime, the pressure to source and hire highly qualified, diversified people was high. Now what?  

Due to the degree of difficulty in sourcing this unfamiliar workforce, the client decided to outsource the sourcing function to an RPO provider. Known for providing speed, efficiency and quality, Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) companies are often used to fill a high volume of difficult-to-hire and/or time-sensitive positions.

If you aren’t familiar with Recruitment Process Outsourcing, here are some of the typical services an RPO provider offers.

Examples of outsourced recruiting services include:

  • Project-Based RPO
  • On-Site RPO Teams
  • Sourcing Strategies
  • Hiring and/or On-boarding
  • RPO Consulting
  • Reporting, Metrics, and Audits


On-site RPO Model – What is it and how does it work?

The term outsourced recruiting suggests that HR is losing control of the recruiting aspects of the department.  However, this is a common misconception. In many instances, it’s just the contrary. Often times RPO solutions are implemented because hiring needs are not being satisfied from a cost or efficiency standpoint.

During the introductory phase of an RPO program, HR dictates exactly how they want the hiring process to operate. From providing in-depth candidate qualification requirements to assigning project milestones or deadlines, the RPO team is there to act as an extension of the HR department. In some instances, the program can be so customized that the RPO team works on-site at the client location, or has a client email handle to maintain brand consistency. In an ideal engagement, HR and the RPO provider work harmoniously to fill positions with highly vetted and qualified candidates.

RPO Versus In-House

RPO programs are designed to improve recruiting processes and metrics via long-term, strategic factors whereas in-house may focus on quick turnaround to get a position filled.  In a broader sense, the focus of RPO is more geared toward relationships than being classified as an outsourcing service; holding RPO more accountable for its productivity. While every organization varies in the number of and sophistication of its recruiting resources, the RPO team brings an expertise not only in terms of sheer recruiting power, but usually industry-specific as well. 

In the example above, we discussed the sudden need to fill more than 150 specialty or niche positions.  If your internal team has been working on these types of positions, then you might find yourself in a good place post-acquisition. But, if these are relatively foreign roles, the HR and/or recruiting team isn’t set up for success.

Here are other roadblocks that might hinder HR’s ability to source, recruit and hire employees:

  • Workforce
    • A shallow understanding of job requirements/qualifications
    • A project based initiative
    • Using a "headhunter" approach
    • A surge in employee retirements
  • External Forces
    • New location is opened, where the organization does not have a presence
    • New division of the company is acquired
  • Business Strategy
    • Project based initiative
    • greater focus on interdepartmental needs 

Whether it is a calculated or sudden merger, having the proper resources in place is key in managing this delicate transition. There are many options to manage the post-acquisition talent integration portion of the arrangement. While this is only one avenue you can take, at the end of the day bear in mind that it’s the people that keep the lights on. Maintaining a roster of all-star players should always be high on the to-do list during any acquisition.

RPO Definition Cost Models & Goals

Possessing a solid Talent Acquisition background, Tami Staley started her career in a metrics-driven Global Executing Recruiting environment, but yearning to provide greater client satisfaction, she later joined Yoh as an RPO Solution Provider, where she was able to deliver the in-depth HR services she desired to her multi-billion dollar client.

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