At Montage, we talk a lot about making hiring a two-way experience for candidates. After all, we know there’s a strong link between a candidate’s hiring experience and his decision to work at a company. In fact, 32% of job seekers surveyed who declined a job offer in the last six months said they declined the offer primarily because of the hiring experience itself1.
TA leaders and recruiters can only do so much to create an outstanding candidate experience, though. Hiring managers are part of the equation, and they make a huge positive (or negative) impact on candidate perception too. It takes a partnership with your hiring managers to deliver that great experience. Creating that partnership is the topic of Montage’s January 24th webinar, How to Train Your Hiring Manager.
Here are five of the best practices we’ve seen over the years for creating that strong working relationship with your hiring managers:
- Communicate much more. Invite hiring managers in to understand the process and invite yourself into their world to understand their team. Research indicates that while recruiters feel they have a good understanding of the job order 80% of the time, hiring managers believe recruiters have a poor understanding of the job 61% of the time. Avoid that disconnect with some up-front time spent on building your relationship.
- Build buy-in on candidate engagement. Hiring managers play a huge role in initial engagement of job candidates. At the interview stage, candidates are asking themselves, “What do I get from this role and this employer?” Hiring managers need to know this and be ready to impress. They must act as the sales person and the evaluator, all at the same time. Help your hiring managers understand that “fit” is a two-way street, and see the hiring process from the candidates’ perspective.
- Work to become a trusted advisor, not an order-taker. As your organization’s TA professional, you have expertise to offer that goes well beyond filling requisitions. When you work to build trust with your hiring managers, there will be more room in your relationship to move faster, to test creative solutions, and to meet the larger objectives of your department or business unit.
- Consider SLAs. Some TA professionals find it helpful to set service level agreements (SLAs) so goals and responsibilities are clearly defined and tied clearly to organizational goals. SLAs can be effective when both partners are invested in them. For example, the hiring manager may be asked to provide feedback on candidates within a certain period, which can reduce delays and meet organizational goals for filling open positions. Meeting this goal may require a change in behavior on the part of the hiring manager, but he may be motivated to do it knowing his recruiting partner has also agreed to deliver a slate of more highly qualified candidates. The key is to create SLAs that make sense to both you and your hiring managers.
- Ensure your hiring managers fully understand your resources. If you have video interviewing in your organization, encourage your hiring managers to make full use of it. While your technology partner will provide the training and communication that contributes to a successful implementation, your encouragement may make all the difference in getting a hiring manager to embrace it, especially if he or she only makes a few hires a year. Direct your hiring managers’ attention to Montage’s guide, 5 Things Hiring Managers Should Know About Video Interviewing.
When you work more cohesively with your hiring managers, you gain a partner who shares your drive to make a great hire. Together, you can elevate your company in the eyes of talented job candidates.
Tracy Clementi works to find and share client success stories, increase account engagement and lead Montage's strategy on client advocacy and joint marketing.
1. Independent research commissioned by Montage with 200 active job seekers.