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Process improvement within recruiting and talent acquisition needs more emphasis. One reason this is critical is that the quality of the hiring process directly impacts the success of it by way of the customer experience (applicants, candidates, hiring managers). Secondly, the success of a hiring process directly ties into the very vitality of an organization through maintaining adequate staffing levels.

Most of the advice on improving hiring processes focus on the day-to-day functions of recruiting and talent acquisition. Many articles can be found on posting jobs and interviewing styles.  A systematic approach focused on operations can bring more significant results than the ever-changing popular opinion of talent identification methods.

To better serve customers and improve quality, one of the best structures for an organization’s hiring process involves a dedicated, centralized hiring team that handles the process from sourcing to onboarding in one department. Until a new hire’s start date only the candidate, hiring manager, and recruiting team should have interacted. The centralization of recruiting goes further than the idea of full-cycle recruiting. It’s more than order fulfillment of getting a requisition request and the subsequent steps to closing an offer. A pure, central team involves one group being involved in developing targeted sourcing strategies, identifying talent, coordinating and tracking the interview process, and bringing onboard new hires from a logistical and orientation standpoint.

How can organizations structure their recruiting departments to improve the hiring process?

There are two ideal ways for a department to be staffed to accomplish this:

Option 1:

  • A team of recruiting professionals to handle hiring from sourcing to orientation and all interactions with candidates from source to start date.
  • A team of behind-the-scenes administrators who process the interactions (event schedule, background, and drug screen submission, entering data into HRIS and payroll systems) and ensure business continuity.
  • The recruiting professional and administrator are partnered together and assigned to either a business unit or geographical area.

Option 2:

  • A team of well-rounded professionals who can handle everything involved from sourcing to onboarding along with the accompanying transactional tasks assigned to either a business unit or geographical area.

Both options can be useful for simplifying and centralizing your hiring process:

  • Option 1 works best for transitioning your current recruiting team into centralized operations. This allows an opportunity for both those with a stronger recruiting passion and a role for those who would rather handle the transactional tasks of the hiring process.
  • Option 2 is where an organization can take the hiring process of an organization to the next level with even simpler operations.

What type of professional is needed for a centralized recruiting team?

There can be much animosity between human resources professionals and their recruiting counterparts. Some professionals can alternate between human resources and recruiting activities effortlessly and desire to do so. Others pursue a more specialized practice of these fields and choose one over the other.

To centralize a hiring process, you need a professional with a blend of human resources and recruiting expertise with an eye for talent management. It is important to find individuals that can write a job description, develop a hiring strategy, interview applicants, hold an orientation, analyze compensation models, and utilize an HRIS, ERP, or payroll system all within the same day and with a smile. With the right individuals on a simplified and centralized recruiting team, a department can go beyond a transactional focus and become part of an organization’s talent management efforts.

What are the benefits of simplifying and centralizing a hiring process?

Better service:

  • The customer (applicants, candidates, and hiring managers) interacts with one person through the process who is empowered since they don’t have to rely much on others.
  • The recruiting professional becomes a subject matter expert who can answer questions ranging from the hiring process, benefits, compensation, payroll and company policy.
  • Candidates establish a relationship at the beginning of the employee-employer relationship. If the hiring process is housed in the Human Resources department, this is an advantage for future employee relations and organizational development initiatives.

Continuous process improvement:

  • Centralized operations provide each team member with the perspective of observing each angle of the hiring process. By observing all components of the hiring process, it is easier to see how variables affect the hiring process from applicant traffic to quality of hire to time-to-fill.
  • It allows flexibility and autonomy to the individual members of the recruiting team empowering them to identify and remove ineffective processes producing lean operations quickly.
  • Centralized operations also provide an environment to test modifications by implementing with isolated parts of the recruiting team and observing the effects then quickly executing with the rest of the team if necessary.

A clear and centralized recruiting team bridges the gap between talent acquisition and talent management. A duly organized and equipped group can expand beyond finding talent and dropping a body off with the company but stick around to train new hires. A centralized team is vested in the success of employees, and this leads to countless benefits for any organization. The members of the hiring team also become cultural ambassadors to all they come in contact with, aware of the effort and resources that go into each new hire. Structural changes to an organization’s recruiting, and talent acquisition team can go a long way towards improving the hiring process for all parties involved.

Author: Charles Newton is a Human Resources and Recruitment strategist for themiddlegroundhr.com who aims to make sure tasks are strategic and strategy can be converted to functions. In this regard, his mission is to motivate, innovate and achieve in Talent Management.

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