Even in our 21st century, data driven world, too many talent management strategies are governed by gut feelings and standard operating procedures that have been around since the middle of last century. Nine of ten respondents to a recent Salesforce Market Report indicated a belief that data will revolutionize industry practices in much the same way the internet did. So, why are we hesitant to embrace it?
In a recent article, I shared my own experience with a back problem that finally landed me at the chiropractor. I needed data. There were problems in my own personal process of diet, exercise and posture that needed adjustment to get my system back to optimum operation. Once I could establish what the likely causes were, with some objective help, I could set goals and measure the results to see what needed to be done. The results speak for themselves, once I had the data and some recruitment metrics to measure my progress, I was able to see real results.
Knowing what to measure
While it’s always best to track everything you can, the most essential elements to track at any point are structure, process and outcome. By knowing what you are doing, how you are doing it and what the results are, you can fine tune any part of your talent management system.
You should be collecting data for your recruitment metrics in at least four phases of your talent management process. First, recruitment, then hiring, employee retention stat during employment and finally, when possible, exit interviews with departing employees.
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How to track your Recruitment Metrics
With today’s digital tools, it is possible to build dashboards that will collect and manage your data for you, or even outsource the coding to build a custom tool. Rather than having to hand update a series of spreadsheets, you can automate the process, so that you have a constant stream of ready data to monitor the success of your processes.
Data like anything else can be a time suck. Be careful of watching it too frequently. If you allow your data stream to micromanage your process instead of allowing it to work, you may never know how effective your process really was. It’s tempting to correct midstream, but it’s best to set a regular time for assessing. Checkups once a month, quarter and year are reasonable and can help you gauge where corrections need to be made.
Be in it for the long haul
Like anything else in business, data will cycle. The longer your view, the more your data will mean to your established Recruitment Metrics. Making important changes based on a monthly, or quarterly view may be short sighted. The key to a truly successful measurement process, is allowing things to play out at least long enough to ride out the statistical anomalies.
Be committed to the end result. Ultimately, it’s not about what happens next week or next month, it’s all about your talent management strategy’s contribution to the bottom line. By being committed to tweaking and steady assessment, you can not only improve your results, but you will have the hard data to prove that your process works. By making the data your centerpiece, you can take the pressure off of your day to day work process and put the focus where it needs to be on real problems and real improvements.