4 focus areas to build a future ready recruitment function

Retiring baby boomers, changing talent demographics, and increasing social media influence have disrupted the talent acquisition process. Recruitment functions that win the talent war in this dynamic environment, will have to reincarnate into a more strategic function based on new workforce & talent management strategies, technology, recruiting and staffing models.

As talent acquisition becomes more complex, HR needs to transform the way they find, and attract top talent. Here are 4 focus areas to build a future-ready recruitment function.

Building a framework to hire for attitude

Today's business environment is characteristic of a cohesive setup comprising Gen X, millennials, and baby boomers working towards achieving a common business objective. While baby boomers and to some extent Gen X believe in forging an unspoken loyalty towards the organisation and its culture, millennials are more aggressive and their sense of loyalty is defined by how well their expectations are met at the workplace.

For the next generation, it is all about job satisfaction, the quantum of training and development offered, and how receptive the organisation is towards their ideas and innovations. There is a big challenge for HR from the perspective of recruiting and on-boarding skilled talent that is quick to grasp details, proactive to innovate, and ambitious to drive change.

Recruitment is a complex activity and HR needs to hire for talent, attitude, and process orientation rather than for technical skills or domain expertise. The saying ''hire for attitude; train for skills'' couldn't be truer especially when we are talking about a generation of workers who come with different thought processes and approaches to work. At the same time, HR function as a whole needs to bring about a distinct synergy between the diverse generations that define the 21st-century workplace and this is likely to be a game-changing trend in the years to come.

Embracing technology

HR processes have undergone a radical change to incorporate advanced technology and automation in every aspect of the recruitment and talent management function. Processes such as performance management, employee benefits, and employee legal system have already undergone vast changes thanks to a more structured and automated approach, making it easier for HR to strategise cost reduction and subsequently add more value to the business.

Futuristic HR will go the app way, integrating mobile technology into the core of its operations and defining time-sensitive SLAs to effectively deal with cultural change and create a dynamic business environment. This technology-centric approach extends to all internal and external communication processes, enabling HR to bring in more transparency and clarity in the messages flowing in and out of the organisation.

Building a data-centric approach

Data is all around us - data on the customer, data on the organisation, and data capable of bringing the organisation much closer to the customer.

Data analytics provide a range of insights enabling - a holistic view of the existing employees, clear assessment of current and future business requirements, and identification of sources to connect and engage potential candidates. The insight-based approach puts HR in a better position to design focused and relevant talent acquisition strategies and implement them across several touch points, improving efficiency and quality of recruitment - in sync with business objectives.

Creating insight from hindsight will enable a game changing revolution in the way TA functions as a strategic business unit capable of informed decision making.

Owning the employer brand

In no other era has the concept of employer branding acquired such significance as in today's day and time. Organisations are going all the way to build a strong employer brand to attract the right talent to fill in key business positions. Branding is important as it helps position an organisation as an employer of choice, reinforces the business value proposition, facilitates recruitment and on-boarding of skilled talent in a timely and cost-effective manner, and in turn contributes to business growth and profitability. It is, therefore, critical to putting employer branding at the heart of talent acquisition.

In the face of skills scarcity and intensifying talent war, HR organisations that fail to make the shift from tactical to strategic talent acquisition, will inevitably find themselves at the losing end.

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