Respected management 'gurus' tell us that attracting and retaining talented individuals is one of the most critical tasks for businesses in the 21st Century. Research by McKinsey & Co. predicts that a shortage of talent will continue for at least two decades, and identifies the increasing
competition to recruit high potential individuals as a key corporate challenge. At the same time, increasing cost pressures demand that businesses have fewer, more adaptable employees. So, if recruiting the best people is a strategic imperative, what can you do to win the 'War for Talent'?
Defining Talent - Competency Profiling
Recruitment mistakes are costly in terms of wasted management time, demotivation and, worst of all, lost opportunities. The biggest mistake most organisations make is having only a vague idea of who they want to appoint, e.g. "We need someone with five years' selling experience
and a bit of oomph". Others simply produce a list of qualifications and experience required. This just isn't enough to win the talent war.
For some years now we have been helping businesses specify the exact criteria or 'competencies' they need as they begin any strategically important recruitment exercise. We focus particularly on the personality and motivation of the ideal candidate and use the language of your business rather
than 'psychobabble'. Here are two examples of competencies we have defined for clients.
Structured Interviews and Screening Tools
We work with our clients to design structured, competency-based interviews and screening tools that are more objective and reliable than traditional methods and prevent interviewers making snap judgements based on personal liking or prejudice. Our approach also makes it easy to compare candidates,
short list and select the best.
State-of-the-Art Interview Training
Candidates are increasingly slick and well prepared for interviews,
so interviewers have to be highly skilled in order to gain
an accurate in-depth assessment while, at the same time, portraying
a positive image of their organisation. We train clients in
sophisticated interview techniques, including putting candidates
at ease instantly, 'getting under a candidate's skin' and
selling a role to candidates in a way that makes them likely
to say 'yes'.
'A Day in the Life' - Realistic Work Simulations
What could be more revealing than putting candidates into a real-life situation that they could face in your business and analysing how well they perform? It's only a short step away from throwing them into the role for a day! You could buy off-the-shelf exercises, but often they lack
credibility with candidates or fail to 'hit the spot'. We prefer instead to design simulations of the actual role for which people are applying. There's an art to designing simulations that work - and that reveal what you really want to find out about the candidates - and we'd be happy to show
you some examples.
Assessing Ability, Personality and Motivation
We spend half a day or more with candidates who are at the
final stage of recruitment, carrying out in-depth assessment
using published questionnaires and specialist tools we have
identified or developed. We then report back our findings
to our clients against their 'shopping list' of competencies,
in the context of our knowledge of your business and the team
that the individual will join. Refreshingly, we also answer
any questions clients may have, without 'sitting on the fence'!
Bespoke Assessment and Development Centres
We often combine a selection of the above techniques to create bespoke 'Assessment Centres' (for recruitment) or 'Development Centres' (to identify the development needs/potential of existing employees), providing experienced assessors and role players if required, or training our clients to
run them independently.
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