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Why the Big Game Reminds Us to Think Big in Talent Acquisition

Football_and_helmut_yoh_blog.jpgAs you might be aware, the Super Bowl® is coming up soon and while the commercials and the snacks may be what you’re looking forward to, this is one of those opportunities for a good, old-fashioned sports analogy.

Before you go rolling your eyes, stick with me for a minute. Think of your company. Unfortunately, there is no Super Bowl® for business. But maybe there are big events, big clients, big product launches and milestones in a company’s journey that feel like “The Big Game.”

My analogy starts with the obvious – it takes a team. You have to have all the right pieces in place to be ready for the big game, whatever that may be in your business. And you have to keep them throughout the long season. This is hiring and retention which is pretty straight-forward.

But wait. If you are in talent acquisition, you can’t only be looking for the superstar quarterbacks or highly-paid receivers. You have to be looking for many different parts of the team, large and small. And this is where the analogy gets interesting.


The Secret to Drafting an All-Star Team

A football organization has many parts and no one part hires for all positions on or off the field. The scouts look for talent and the general manager typically hires the players, along with the head coach, with input from other coaches or others. But who hires all the other people? Statisticians, equipment managers, IT people (yes, they have IT people) and all those people that work in the stadium? Probably human resources.

So, there’s a difference in how they are hiring for different parts of the organization. And what it says is that you can’t have the same people evaluate and hire all the people you need. Why? Because someone in HR might be a fan, but they probably don’t know all the positions on the field and who can play them (although I do know a few HR people who are really big fans). Also, scouts and coaches are not spending time looking for IT guys or ball boys. They focus on what they know best and unfortunately for HR, they are paid much more for doing so.



The analogy can be extended to the types of hires. You don’t hire a quarterback every week, month or even every year, but you may hire an IT every couple of weeks. So those processes have to be very different. Some need speed; some need quality; and some need volume, or a combination of those.

The point is, to maximize talent acquisition in any organization, you have to understand all the different types of talent you need, and then organize your recruiting resources appropriately. This means you might use internal HR staff for general positions that you always need, and you may outsource critical, highly technical staff to an outside expert. Or vice versa.

The key is, if you try to do all, you will always have parts of your organization with holes. This might mean that while you have a strong offense, your defense is weak and you lose the big game. It can also mean that you never catch up and you continually run in a talent deficit, and never have a winning season.

So are you ready for the big game? Not the Super Bowl®, the next big game in your company. Do you have the talent you need to win?

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This blog was written by Matt Rivera. Matt serves as Vice President, Marketing and Communications and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of Yoh’s marketing and brand communications. Matt holds a degree in Journalism/Public Relations and has been working in the staffing industry for more than 25 years. Prior to this role, Matt held many different roles from branch recruiting and proposal writing to technology management and online marketing.

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