Value Unused = Waste

I don't know why this guy is in her small closet. Weird.

This morning I was reading an article in Motor Trend about joining the mesh that got me thinking. The title equation was:

Value Unused = Waste

Obviously the author Frank Markus was not talking about human resources but he might as well have been (Fun fact: did you know that many of us only use our cars 8% of the time?)

How often do you hear frustrations from HR Professionals about their sourcing and recruiting needs? Have you ever asked what sort of CRM they’ve built into their database AKA Applicant Tracking System to improve their cost per hire? Usually you get a blank stare or the equivalent phone silence. Here are 5 reasons to shop your ATS or build a community or CRM system to help you do so:

1) You paid for the system. Okay maybe you didn’t. Maybe your predecessor bought the system, maybe you’re stuck with something that’s not the system of your choice. But your company purchased this system, with all its bells and whistles, for you to use. It likely wasn’t cheap (or maybe it was) but even if it was a free system, company resources and man hours went into implementation. Bottom line? A system that COSTS money and isn’t being used for more than a catch all is waste.

2) You paid to get people IN there. Job postings are rarely free, career sites can cost thousands, slick employment brands don’t grow on trees. You get it right? For every person that gets dumped into the black hole of an ATS, there is a cost associated with that. Don’t know what your ads, SEO, PPC and frontline campaigns are costing? You’ve got a metrics problem (go talk to Chris Hoyt or Dwane Lay). There’s rarely a free lunch in life and there’s an even rarer free candidate.

3) Consumer brand ad nauseum. Maybe I can’t convince you that a terrible candidate experience costs your HR department money, but I bet I can convince your CFO that it’s costing $$ when it comes to end-consumers. If you work in a B2C company this is a no-brainer. Give me a bad experience in any capacity and I will think less of your brand overall (unless you make Oreos, they are sacrosanct.) Avoid at all costs, leaving prospective employees and BUYERS (oh yes, if not today, then tomorrow or next year) to languish in a purgatory of uncertainty. Give them a reason to talk about you in a positive light. In an era where CPH is loads higher than cost per prospective buyer (save a few select industries) your marketing department will thank you for not wasting that prospect for them.

4) Rejection doesn’t have to hurt. Okay maybe it will hurt a little bit, like that one time in band camp when Tom said he liked me but he really liked Stephanie and it was pretty awful when I found them holding hands. But candidate rejection doesn’t have to be reminiscent of the tuba player that broke your heart. Because as companies create more effective learning solutions and social networks provide a fresh stream of real-time data, yesterday’s “not right now” candidate can be tomorrow’s star hire. Manage the process properly (i.e. Don’t waste the opportunity to reach out even if she’s not perfect for the role) and they’ll take that call tomorrow.

5) Mo money, mo problems. Sure you want to use your budget so it doesn’t shrink, but I bet you can think of something better to use it on then the same evergreen req or posting software. You how budget divas always tell you to shop in your own closet? Well, I’m telling you to shop in your own ATS, you’d be amazed at what’s in there. Seem too daunting? Find a company (cough) that can help you make the most of it, helping you not only sort and engage but track your best source of hires so that when you get your shiny budget next year, you have a good idea of how to allocate it.

I’ll leave with another quote from the article, this one from Lisa Gansky:

In the future, access trumps ownership.”

We’re already seeing a shift in that direction with tools like OneWire, JobScore, BeKnown and Branchout. But what I suggest to you is that right now? You have both ownership of that data and nearly unlimited access, along with tools that can help you optimize it. So USE it!