Post by By Rick Dacri, Dacri & Associates, LLC; initially published in the July 2016 MTCMA newsletter
Finding the perfect candidate to fill the critical position in your municipality is never easy. Search, interviewing, and reference checking can be draining to you and your staff or board. And once you find the “right” one, you’d like to believe your job is over, but it is not. Getting the candidate to say “yes” is the most important part of the entire recruitment process. Without a “yes” everything else you have done is simply practice.
When a candidate cannot say “yes” to your job offer, you have a problem. Be clear to candidates that they have no more than one week, 10 days at most, to render you an answer. Baring extenuating circumstances, without an affirmative, withdraw the offer and move on. Otherwise, you’ll be left dangling and the candidate will likely reject your offer. In my 30 years of executive recruitment, never have I seen a candidates take an extended time to contemplate an offer and eventually accept it—even during periods of tough negotiations. If they can’t (or won’t) make a decision about a job offer, how can you expect them to make a decision about other aspects of the job? Remember, they either never wanted the job or can’t make up their minds—not very good traits for a new employee.
The Board of a large public organization extended a generous job offer to a highly qualified CEO candidate. The candidate was both surprised and hesitant by the offer (red flags). After one week of negotiations, the candidate asked for additional time to think about it (another red flag). Over the next five weeks, the candidate sought multiple clarifications to the terms of the offer and a delayed starting date before the board ultimately pulled the plug. Even though the board’s executive recruiter recommended withdrawing the offer after 10 days, the board continued the process and was shocked that it came to his point.
What went wrong? Here are 12 tell tale signs that your job offer will likely be rejected:
(Post written by Rick Dacri, March 28, 2016)
There are times when paying competitive wages is not enough. The General Manager of a public power utility called me recently. He was having difficulty in both recruiting and retaining electrical engineers and experienced line workers. The feedback he was receiving was that his pay program was out of line with other electrical utilities. I was ultimately engaged to conduct a market analysis of their wages. The results were startling to him and his board—their wages were competitive with other public utilities within their market. How could this be? They found this incredulous.
A new reality has entered the marketplace. In some situations, paying the market rate is insufficient. The unemployment rate is plummeting. It is Continue reading
(Post by Rick Dacri, November 5, 2015)
I recently spoke at a conference on the topic of Recruitment Strategies. I spent considerable time on showing the participants how to develop a recruitment brand for their company. After the session, one of the executives in the session asked how do you measure the effectiveness of your brand. He noted, correctly, that all good management practices must be measurable.
As I had explained to the group, the purpose of a recruitment brand was to attract quality candidates to your company from a target group –those individuals who share the values of your company and who come from your industry segment. For example, LL Bean is likely to attract applicants who enjoy all things outdoors (skiing, fishing, hiking, hunting—you get the picture).
To attract the right candidates to your company, there must be three things in place: 1) awareness, 2) differentiation and 3) recognition that you are a good place to work. Without awareness, you’ll be a well-kept secret, so measuring applicant flow is critical. Potential candidates will compare you to other companies. There must be something positive about you that distinguish you from others. Part of the differentiation is demonstrating that you’re among the best places to work—and here is where your employees can be the best recruitment ambassadors.
So how do you measure this? Here are 7 ways:
- Applicant flow: look at the quality, quantity and diversity of your labor pool, applicants and hires.
- Conversion rate: measure the number of applicants that accept your job offer.
- Cost and time to hire: are your cost per hire and time to hire increasing or decreasing?
- Existing employees: are your employee engagement surveys tracking positive or negative? Is retention up or down?
- Performance: which way are existing employee performance and productivity tracking?
- Referrals: are your current employees and even your customers referring applicants to you?
- (add your method to measure branding below).
These are just some of the ways to measure effectiveness of your brand. There are more that I could have listed.
Measuring the effectiveness of your recruitment brand is an important component of the process. Obviously the most difficult part is understanding and developing your brand. If you are unable to effectively attract, hire and retain quality candidates, then your brand is not working. If you need assistance understanding and developing a recruitment strategy and brand, give me a call. I can help.
Other posts you may like:
(Post by Rick Dacri, April 1, 2015)
Employers are hiring again and the competition for talent is getting fierce. As I view the marketplace, I am seeing 7 recruitment trends emerging:
1. Differentiation is critical: employers are developing and promoting their recruitment brands as a means of attracting candidates. Without one and you’ll remain a best kept secret.
2. Pay is king: the competition for the top talent is intense and the biggest obstacle to landing the best is pay. Employers are evaluating their pay systems and upping their wages in critical positions.
3. Traditional advertising is out: Employers are attracting candidates through rich referral programs, company career sites, and social media. You need to know where your candidates hang out and focus your efforts there. Target recruiting is the best.
4. Passive candidates are coveted: Employers want candidates who are working and who are likely not even aware you have openings. Recruiters must be able to find them. This is the key to my recruitment success finding executives.
5. Older workers offer experience and stability: Baby boomers are not leaving the workplace as quickly as expected and employers are beginning to recognize their value. More employers are developing programs and benefits to attract and retain these generational workers.
6. Gig workers fill voids: Independent contractors, project workers and part time workers are filling in where needed. I discussed this just-in-time workplace in my book Uncomplicating Management in 2009. Many thought I was wrong. I wasn’t.
7. Retention is your best recruitment tool: if they don’t leave, you don’t have to replace them. Sometimes all you need is a strong retention program to solve your recruitment problem. Focus on creating a great place to work and people will stay…and if you need more workers, the word will get out and people will be attracted to you (that’s a big part of brand differentiation).
Employers who have a comprehensive recruitment program and a positive work environment, will be at a competitive advantage.
Others posts you might like:
This post was written by a Dacri & Associates client and posted on March 13, 2014
I received this email below from one of my clients. She was obviously frustrated. I thought her message was valuable and asked if I could post it. She reluctantly agreed, but only if I did not reveal her name or company (a family of restaurants). What do you think about what she has to say? Let us know in the comment section.
“You need to write something…blog it….shout it from the roof tops! PARENTS….I know you love your children and want to help them…BUT PLEEEEEZ!!!!!!! Teach them how to apply for a job….ALONE. DO NOT CALL FOR THEM. DO NOT ACCOMPANY THEM IN TO THE BUSINESS and ask for the application for them….while they stand timidly behind you. Role play with them at home. Practice filling out applications…you can find templates on the internet! If you need to drive them to apply…WAIT IN THE CAR.
Please parents, do your children this favor and teach them to be independent!! I personally would rather see someone applying for their first job be a bit nervous but independently trying, than to have a parent come in and do all the talking. I definitely would not hire anyone who applies in this manner either!”
This article, written by Rick Dacri, was originally published in the York County Coast Star)
There is nothing more energizing to a company than growth. Increased sales, positive cash flow, an expanding customer base, outpacing your completion. It is very exhilarating for executives and employees.
But with this excitement comes challenges. Growing from a small company to a large one requires outstanding talent. Talent that can adapt, change, thrive and deliver. Growth brings newness, unpredictability, ambiguity, and often stress. Having equipment, capacity, sales and cash will only prove helpful if a strong team is ready and able to step up. In sports it is called bench strength.
Red Sox manager John Farrell enjoyed the upper hand over the St. Louis Cardinals in last year’s World Series. Farrell had one of baseball’s most productive benches. Being able to look down the bench, seeing the right player to send out on the field at a critical time in the game proved to be a significant advantage, propelling the Sox to the championship.
I recently spoke to a business owner who was looking at doubling his business in the next two to three years, expanding his facility, and opening his business to some new, promising markets. Yet, his excitement was tempered by the sober reality that his bench strength was weak—strong enough for today, but lacking in capability for what loomed ahead.
So what steps should an organization take to build bench strength?
- Know What You’ve Got: Evaluate your current staff. Their ability and willingness to change, adapt, and learn are essential traits. Ongoing assessment of your employees will allow you to know your current capacity and determine what your future needs will be. At the same time, through training and coaching, you can begin to raise skill and performance levels. All high performers should have a development plan in place to ensure future readiness. While growing your staff is a critical first step, sometimes individuals who performed in the past will be unable to help you in the future. Bench strength means having high potentials that are ready to step into new roles. Difficult decisions must be made. Continue reading
This webinar, titled Succession Planning: Refilling the Pipeline was designed by Rick Dacri and delivered on December 10, 2013. Click Succession Planning to hear the webinar recording.
This webinar provided the business case for having a succession plan and outlined the critical elements of such a plan. Our workforce is graying. Organizations must be prepared if and when key employees suddenly exit the workforce due to retirement, death or resignation. Business owners/CEOs must lead their organization in designing, implementing and managing an organization wide succession and knowledge retention plan. This should be an essential piece in the organization’s business plan and is fundamental to the long-term viability of all successful organizations. Good succession plans focus on developing their employees and ensuring that the organization always has the people in place to operate the business. This webinar was designed for CEOs, Executives, Business Owners, and HR Professionals.
Some of the topics covered:
- Understanding why all companies, regardless of size, should have a plan in place
- Knowing how to develop a successful succession plan & emergency preparedness plan
- Ensuring that qualified employees are ready when key vacancies occur in their organization
- Preventing the loss of valuable knowledge from walking out the door
- Developing key staff so that they have the skills to do the job today and tomorrow
- Recruiting staff that can contribute today and who also have future potential
To hear the webinar, click Succession Planning.
To learn more, contact Rick Dacri at Dacri & Associates, LLC