The Struggle In Recruiting Is Getting the Right Kind of Information

Many professionals don’t have a good handle on what their skills are really worth in the marketplace nor who would likely hire them. As a result, when they are next looking for a job, they tend to take the first warm offer that comes along.

Lax Chandra, the founder of Step.com, would like to fix that.

Still in beta, Step sends anonymized resumes of tech professionals to recruiters and hiring managers who then give feedback on whether the company would likely hire the person, what they’d pay, and if they wouldn’t hire them, why not. It’s like reverse candidate relationship management with professionals building a pool of companies likely to hire them. And of course it’s a mutual thing, from the company’s point of view Step is providing a pool of candidates.

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Do we need this service? There is already a lot of information about which companies are hiring, just go to Indeed.com. There’s also a lot of information about salaries at PayScale, Glassdoor and SalaryFairy. What Chandra observes is that while the quantity of information is not in doubt, the quality is an issue. A much finer-grained, more personalized take, on what you are worth and where you can work is what’s wanted.

And this gets us to the general problem afflicting recruiting. Pre-internet we had too little information. Now we have loads of information, but recruiting is still painful for both sides. What’s missing is high quality information. What’s the best way to get this high quality information? That’s hard to say, but we can be clear about what it would feel like. As a job seeker we’d feel confident about quickly finding a good job with good pay. As a company we’d feel confident about quickly finding a candidate with the skills we need. That’s what Step is shooting for; let’s hope they get there.

What is interesting?

  • Entrepreneurs are continually attracted to the recruiting technology space because their experience as a job seeker or as a hiring manager has been so bad.
  • Passive candidates want transparency around salaries and would feel great having a pool of companies interested in them. It sounds like heaven for that group.

What is really important?

  • The job market has a vast quantity of information; however the quality of information is often insufficient for us to be comfortable that we are getting a good match.
  • It’s not clear precisely what that high quality information would be; skills and jobs are quite fuzzy so they’re hard to quantify.
  • Step.com is starting out with a highly personalized approach to gathering that high quality information. This gets the result we want, but is hard to scale and so figuring that out is their next challenge.

David Creelman, CEO of Creelman Research, is a globally recognized thinker on people analytics and talent management. Some of his more interesting projects included:

  • Conducted workshops around the world on the practical aspects of people analytics
  • Took business leaders from Japan’s Recruit Co. on a tour of US tech companies (Recruit eventually bought Indeed.com for $1 billion)
  • Studied the relationship between Boards and HR (won Walker Award)
  • Spoke at the World Bank in Paris on HR reporting
  • Co-authored Lead the Work: Navigating a world beyond employment with John Boudreau and Ravin Jesuthasan. The book was endorsed by the CHROs of IBM, LinkedIn and Starbucks.
  • Worked with Dr. Wanda Wallace on “Leading when you are not the expert” which topped the “Most Popular List” on the Harvard Business Review’s blog.
  • Worked with Dr. Henry Mintzberg on peer coaching, David’s learning modules are among the most popular topics.

Currently David is helping organizations to get on-track with people analytics.

This work led to him being made a Fellow for the Centre of Evidence-based Management (Netherlands) for his contributions to the field.

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