Monday, August 25, 2014

The Recruiting GAP!

I have been active in the Job Market for most of 2014 and having had experience interacting with HR and attending a few interviews I feel its time for me to jot down my experience and analysis of the whole Recruiting Process.

1. I was called on for an onsite interview after having multiple calls and discussions with both the HR and the hiring manager. There was a huge difference in the expectations set regarding the open position and the interview process.  It left a bitter sweet experience in me and much to my own surprise I did not even follow up having realized there was clear mismatch in the expectations set at both ends.

2. I was referred to a job at Start up where my brother is a current employee. I have had previous relations with C level executives in the company and it was a great fit to what I can be at that company. After clearing 4 levels of interview, I received an email from the HR citing "no knowledge on the sector / industry"  as a reason for not moving with the hire decision.

3. I am currently interviewing for a position and have cleared 2 rounds of interview. By the way things transpired in the 2nd round I am leaning more on the results of not getting to the next level. The interesting thing was the 2nd round was supposed to be a technical interview and much to my surprise I was not asked a single question related to technology.

On retrospection and having had this discussion with several people I have come up with the following analysis/ suggestions -

1. It is very clear that the whole job application portal and resume selection is a weak process. We come across a zillion applications and websites used by numerous companies for making  the resume selection. We know the software / algorithm for resume selection is not meeting the objective and yet we see more applications and websites been launched rather than coming up with a solution to fix this issue.

2. I do not know exactly how the software or algorithm works, but my best guess is it works on "Key Word Search." How about actually talking with the HR and understanding what their expectations and requirements are for the job portal. What part of the resume selection process should be automated and what should be a workflow requiring human attention at some point to make the selection process more efficient. Eventually build a software that meets the end users expectations. Going one step further how about building software for specific sectors, jobs or business process rather that have one size fit all which is clearly failing time and again.

Having achieved step 1 & 2 helps us tremendously, but there are other aspects in the hiring process.

3. The HR who calls and has the initial discussion in most instances do not know , understand or is trained to evaluate candidates who are appropriate for the companies culture and business in a broad way. HR conversations are more aligned to the specific job opening you had applied. I haven't come across an instance when an HR evaluates you as a great candidate, concludes you might not be a good fit for the current position and then suggests you or directs you to another HR or job opening that suits you well. There might be so many lost opportunities at both ends which can be greatly addressed by just making this one simple tweak in the HR interaction.

4. The Job description , the hiring manager, the HR all need to be on the same page on what they expect out of a candidate. There are many instances where I clearly see  the job description is a "Cut Copy Paste - with minor edits" and which are too specific to exactly what one person is doing at the company. The job hiring process should be an integral part of restoring and growing the company culture and business. Having said that, the Hiring Manager and HR having discussions with the management and understand how roles and responsibilities that they hire lead to the company growth and sustainability. An insight into this will greatly help in bringing the right candidates.

There are many more such process improvement options that can lead to bridging the GAP in the recruitment process, True a lot can also be improved by the job applicant. However in my opinion if companies can streamline their recruitment process the job applicant streamlining will happen inherently.

A very inspiring entrepreneur  quoted "the most challenging factor in technology industry is human capital" and I personally believe it is also a high risk factor and addressing this will lead to a virtuous success cycle.