4 Hiring Priorities Your Organization Should Focus On

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4 Hiring Priorities Your Organization Should Focus On

It may be difficult to figure out which positions you need to fill and when your organization should be hiring. It is also challenging to identify what recruiting initiatives you should focus on in the next months and years. However, getting your hiring priorities right is key to successfully growing your business.

What should your hiring priorities be in 2022? Let’s find out.

Identifying the critical roles
Building and maintaining a strong candidate pipeline
Supporting internal mobility
Prioritizing your DEIB efforts

1. Identifying the critical roles

An unfilled critical role will significantly impact a company’s ability to deliver essential services. Or achieve milestones. Hence, it’s vital to have the right people in the right positions.

We often use hierarchy, relationships, or intuition when it comes to deciding hiring priorities and understanding which roles should be filled first.

But that shouldn’t be the case.

In a study by McKinsey, matching talent to value is key to identifying critical roles within an organization. Let’s have a look at how to do it.

First, determining your organization’s goals must be your top priority. What does your company want to achieve in the following months and years?

These goals relate to specific product areas, business units, or territories. Managers in these unit areas should try to ask questions like: Where does the value for this unit come from? Which roles have been most critical? What situations or business conditions might change job responsibilities? 

Then analyze how each role is tied to the organizational goals. You need to understand where the most significant potential value is and what skills and competencies are required to get that value.

According to McKinsey, these critical roles fall into two groups:  

  1. Value creators have a direct impact on revenue, operating costs, and capital efficiency.
  2. Value enablers are managers of support functions that perform vital work that enables the creators, like cybersecurity or risk management.

After categorizing critical roles, go deeper. Assign a financial value to each part, using the projected 5-year operating margin metric. 

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Value creators represent the total economic value of the company’s operating margin. 

Value enablers represent a percentage of value based on human judgment of their relative contribution to the relevant operating margin. Include an analytical perspective on which value levers those job functions influenced. 

Another way of identifying your hiring priorities is determining the business need. Consider the following factors: 

  • Is this a core job or a key leadership position?
  • Does the position have a high impact on vital products or projects?
  • How much pressure does the open role put on the remaining staff or department?
  • Does the vacancy directly affect company revenues?
  • Is it a position that you always recruit for? 

For example, you launched a new product line. You need to hire business development managers to strengthen your positioning in the market. Or recruit more after-sales support to maintain good relationships with existing customers.

Talent acquisition shouldn’t only be limited to current open roles. It should also cover future vacancies. You can work on this by identifying departments with the highest potential for future growth or at risk of turnover.

Determining the critical roles is a part of succession planning, a process in which organizations identify and develop the best talent for critical roles. That way, they can ensure continuity of these positions.

Hiring Priorities to Focus on

2. Building and maintaining a strong candidate pipeline

Building a talent pipeline should be among the top hiring priorities in the labor market with more open roles than candidates.

There are several reasons for this: saving company time and resources, improving the quality and time to hire, ensuring critical business units face minimal disruption, to name a few.

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Beamery’s research states that 83% of organizations proactively source candidates regardless of their current vacancies. Having a searchable database of pre-screened candidates makes your recruitment process more manageable when you actually need to find someone.

So here are a few tips to help recruiting teams streamline the talent pipelining process:

Social media sourcing

LinkedIn is the go-to social network for talent sourcing and expanding your candidate pool. In 2021, it reported having a whopping 740 million members. You can also try Facebook, Instagram, or other social sites where you’ll most likely find your future employees.

Use specific keywords related to the roles you want to hire. Using Boolean Search will help you narrow down your searches. Construct your Boolean search queries by combining keywords with AND, NOT, and OR operators. 

Employee referrals

Create a program where employees can endorse qualified individuals to work for your company. Then you reward them with a referral bonus.

Highlight high-priority vacancies at company-wide meetings or via internal emails and memos. Discuss what the ideal candidate would be able to deliver in each role. Share hiring success stories or acknowledge your top referrers.

Networking events

Join job fairs and connect with a large pool of applicants. You can also interview and shortlist candidates for a few hours by participating in these HR events.

Virtual career events have proven to be a great networking alternative, which also enables your organization to access a wider talent pool.

Candidate nurturing

After reaching out to the candidates, you should continue engaging them by sending personalized communications. For example, you can send them job reports relevant to the applicant’s occupation or recruiter videos giving career tips.

Send communications triggered by candidate behaviors like:
a. Those who didn’t pass the application stage
b. Those who rejected the job offer but are suitable for future roles
c. Those who could enroll in your talent community
d. Currently inactive qualified candidates with the potential to become a hire

Track past conversations to reference them in future interactions. Monitoring conversations can help you learn more about the candidate and reach out to them at a time when they’re ready to work with you.

3. Supporting internal mobility

Internal mobility is the movement of staff to new jobs or opportunities within the same organization. It also encourages existing employees to enhance their current skills or develop new ones. Hence, they remain engaged with their work and your company.

When filling open positions, your current employees are way ahead of the external candidates because they already know your organization’s mission and culture. You could also save on expenses spent on job ads, background checks, assessments, and onboarding, among others.

What’s more, employees demand more opportunities to learn and develop. Employers are prioritizing employee development to improve engagement and retention.

Looking inwards at the talent you already have should be at the top of your hiring priorities list.

Internal mobility does not only involve promotions. It also includes working on cross-team or extra projects and job shadowing. Assigning employees to join cross-team projects empowers them to broaden their abilities. They work on tasks outside their present job scope. 

For instance, a customer service staff member in a telco showed an inclination to work in the marketing department. They joined the marketing communications team to launch the telco’s latest postpaid product. Using their after-sales experience, the employee was able to work on the messaging of SIM packets and brochures. 

Job shadowing allows an employee to spend time with another person who’s currently in their desired position. It’s getting to know the nitty-gritty of the job itself: what to do and how to do it. The employee then receives a realistic view of the role and decides whether it matches their interest or skills. 

Employee turnover costs businesses time and money. So engaging and retaining top talent through internal mobility is more important than it’s ever been.

4. Prioritizing your DEIB efforts

Glassdoor’s 2020 Diversity Hiring Survey revealed that 76% of employees said a diverse workforce is essential when evaluating companies and job offers. Moreover, 32% of employees and candidates wouldn’t apply for a job at an organization that lacks a diversified workforce.  

Workforce diversity has become an essential component in business. Research shows that more diverse staff has been linked to rising company productivity and innovation. These correlate to the growth in profitability and customer satisfaction.

A workplace that focuses on diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) will help you attract and keep top talent. That’s why DEIB efforts should be a central part of your hiring priorities. Check out these inclusive hiring practices:

  • Start by building a DEIB team. The DEIB team should come from the different departments within your organization. These people should represent diverse identities and perspectives. The DEIB team must define what DEIB means for your company when working with recruiters, and help set out hiring goals and criteria for success. Then, set aside time and budget for inclusive hiring initiatives. 
  • Your website’s career page is a great place to show your commitment to diversity.
    • Put statements about why your organization values diversity and what you are doing to encourage it.
    • Post employee testimonials from workers from a variety of backgrounds and roles.
    • Tell stories of your inclusive hiring practices, why your staff chose to work for your organization, and how you maintain an inclusive culture.
    • Share these staff stories on your social media channels to help build your talent brand. 
  • While your talent brand makes a promise to attract diverse job seekers, your job description communicates how you’ll fulfill that promise.
    • When crafting job descriptions, choose standard job titles that many understand. Job titles including terms like ‘guru’ and ‘ninja’ might deter people from applying.
    • Focus on the responsibilities rather than requirements in your job postings. Did you know women are less likely to apply for a job if they don’t match all the requirements?
    • Use platforms like Gender Decoder or Textio to check if you’re using neutral language in your job descriptions. 
  • Use recruitment software specific to diversity hiring, like blind resume screeners. They hide candidate details that may influence unconscious bias like the applicant’s name, gender, age, race, and educational background. 
  • Combine software with other diversity recruitment tactics like blind interviews and work assessments to ensure a fair, bias-free hiring process. 

Over to you

Now and in the near future, your hiring priorities should revolve around identifying who you need to hire and when, building a solid talent pipeline internally and externally, as well as bringing your DEIB efforts to life in your hiring process. With these key ingredients, you can succeed in your recruiting game.

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