I completely get that there are many businesses that continue to feel the pinch financially. With that “pinch” it requires cutbacks in certain areas and in some cases across the board. One of the areas I am seeing some less than reasonable cuts in is: supplies and tools. You may be thinking that this is extremely reasonable to do in a time of strained budgets, but it really isn’t.
Please know when I say “supplies and tools”, I’m not talking about the kind of cutbacks that result in getting rid of the colored post-it notes to go with the budget yellow ones. I’m talking about cuts to supplies to the extent of employees not having enough resources to do their jobs.
Still in the dark? Here’s an example.
A world-renowned law enforcement agency with millions of dollars earmarked annually for its operation has a printing paper deficit. In many of its departments it is a requirement to print various pieces of information to complete several of their processes. The printing paper deficit has gotten so bad that employees hoard reams of paper when they are ever lucky to receive a shipment. The hoarding of paper means that many employees are left without any paper which then causes them to beg and barter among themselves for company resources to get their jobs done.
To make matters worse, there are two said printers in some of the departments with high-volume printing work, which means there are constant interruptions to the flow of work to wait for other printing jobs to finish before retrieving their own work.
One day, there was very little paper, computers were having a moment, and one of the printers was out. Keep in mind that there is also a quota looming over these workers heads for having to have a certain number of queries done on new hires per day. With no letting up on the queries despite the severe deficit in office supplies to get the job done, the employees are left thinking: ” What do you want me to do?”.
Let’s talk systems and tools.
How do you have employees show up and expect them to work without access to the very systems they need to get the work done? In a recent instance, an employee went almost four months without having properly assigned codes and access to the systems they needed to get their job done. Instead, they had to use the usernames and passwords of a co-worker to complete work. During this time of sharing usernames and passwords, the co-worker changed codes frequently without sharing this with the new employee – so you can imagine there were several lockout instances.
Again, I can’t understand how we can talk about employees being unproductive, yet not give them the resources or tools necessary to get the job done.
If your budget is scant or you have fallen into this rut without realizing it – let me be your light and guide to proper onboarding and productivity measures:
1) No one should be transferring or hired into your company without being allocated the pertinent tools, resources and/or access to systems. You want productivity on day one and your employees want to be productive. Create a simple system for onboarding new people so that their access to things doesn’t fall through the cracks. It is not your employees’ responsibility to onboard themselves and properly assimilate. We must do better!
2) Purchasing office supplies is not your employees responsibility. Now, I’m not saying if your employee enjoys a certain expensive pen or supply that they shouldn’t be responsible to purchase it on their own dime. I am saying that if you cannot afford printer paper, you have a bigger cash flow or budget problem on your hand that needs to be addressed. Outside of maybe teachers and healthcare professionals purchasing applicable uniforms, there is no good reason in my head why an employee should have to purchase supplies out of their own money to complete your work.
3) Less is only more when employers are saving dollars. Sometimes you have to invest. If the expectation is for a high-volume of work to be churned out, you need to speak to your staff regularly to keep a pulse on how the technologies, tools, processes and resources available to them are working out. Often times, we see the work getting done and assume all is well on that front. The reality is your employees – in many cases are moving mountains, dealing with your cutbacks and creating workarounds to get your work done. The least you can do is check-in with them and make the investment when it is clear it is time for an upgrade.
When it comes to work, we are only as productive as our environment and resources will allow. Work ethic matters as well, but for the sake of the article we will assume most people come to work with an intention to do their best. Give your employees the support, resources and tools they need and watch them thrive.
Image courtesy of Recruiterbox
Campaign/FTC disclosure: This is a sponsored product review. I will receive compensation for this post. I only work with companies I feel have great products, services and offerings. In accordance with my blog disclosure statement, I will only work with and showcase products, events and/or companies I believe my readers will benefit from. I am not formally employed by Recruiterbox. All thoughts and viewpoints are created and written by me. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
I have long discussed the perils of ill-implemented HR Technology. I have also discussed the necessity for HR Technology that can grow and bend with the whims of the business.
As someone who worked in Talent Acquisition for virtually her entire HR career, I know the pain points when it comes to Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) all too well. I have lived through everything from ridiculous error reports for minor input mistakes to larger-than-life SaaS solutions that consistently overpromised and under-delivered in the way of ease of use.
As both a former HR practitioner and now as a business owner/analyst assisting companies with making technology decisions for their businesses, I have often wondered why technology that has been designed to streamline the hiring process has instead made hiring more difficult for everyone involved.
Let me be fair…we have evolved.
In fairness, it probably wasn’t the intention of the founders of several of the applicant tracking systems we know to deliberately make recruiters’ and hiring managers’ jobs harder with their creation.
If we look at the ATS historically, there was a time when ERP systems were the best, new products on the market for tracking the steps of candidates and hires. ERP systems weren’t necessarily ideal, but they got the job done – albeit in an excruciatingly painful manner.
We evolved with Software-As-A-Service solutions – understanding that the nature of how business and work gets accomplished was changing to a more on-demand and flexible approach. This approach continues to be at the forefront of what is needed from the ATS whether you are an enterprise company or a small business.
The Workforce is changing.
The workforce is a mix of Millennials, Boomers, Gen X, Gen Z and even some Traditionalists. It is a mashup of full-time, part-time, freelancers, temporary, remote workers and per diem employees. With a mix of all of these demographics funneling into companies of all sizes, it is an absolute necessity that companies have an ATS that is dynamic enough to capture all of the information available to us, malleable enough to change workflows, users and processes on the fly, and easy enough to use – that even the least tech savvy employees in your organization will enjoy using it.
I had the pleasure of chatting with the one of the three co-founders of Recruiterbox, Raj Sheth. Recruiterbox is a 5 year-old, self-funded recruiting software company that doesn’t try to be anything more than what it is intended to be and that is a seamless, easy-to-use technology that makes hiring a productive activity.
During my demo with Raj, he summed up the reasoning for why Recruiterbox exists as follows: “Traditional HR software is cumbersome and built for process – not for productivity.” He went on to explain that so much of what we do takes place in email, yet there is no way to draw from this data source.
As a former recruiter, I can attest to how many resumes and discussions took place in my email. In return, I had the task of figuring out how to properly document those conversations in the ATS.
Raj and his team have gone to great lengths to see that productivity, communication, and user experience are the cornerstones to this software.
How do I know?
I put my super user hat on and spent the past week and a half utilizing their free trial to test the capabilities of this software.
Social Footprint Screen
Here are some features that really resonated with me:
- Truly configurable workflows. The first thing you do when creating a new opening in Recruiterbox is to design your workflow. They give you three delivered workflow stages that you can edit to suit your needs. I appreciated this feature, because different openings call for different steps towards the hire at times. With this workflow editing option, Recruiterbox is giving you, the organization the power back to make changes to your hiring process as needed. I did not need to log-in to a different portal to make my changes nor did I need extensive training to learn how to configure the workflow. Everything in Recruiterbox is extremely intuitive.
- No more post- job fair or compliance nightmares. When you sign-up for Recruiterbox you get a company-branded email that allows people to apply to your company with one email. When the candidate sends their resume to this email, it automatically loads their resume in the system. You as the recruiter or coordinator can assign the candidate as you see fit thereafter. If you don’t like this option, you can also batch upload resumes via zip file into the system. This is a nice feature if you like a paperless process like me.
- Capture the candidates you find on the web with one click. Recruiterbox has a Google Plug-in that allows you to pull in candidates into their “Prospecting” dashboard. You know those candidates that you happen upon during a Boolean or LinkedIn search? You can capture their name, email, phone number, referral source, and resume with this plug-in. Minimal parsing makes for 100% successful execution every time.
- Want to know where your candidates hang out on the web? Recruiterbox captures each candidate’s social footprint so you can see how they present themselves across all social platforms.
- Interview scheduling made easy with a dose of video. In Recruiterbox, you can easily schedule everything from a phone screening to a Skype Interview. You have the option of confirming your interviews or you can send prospective schedules to candidates for them to confirm their acceptance of the designated timeslot. Two clicks from within Recruiterbox allow you to launch Skype when you have installed the Skype plugin on your desktop.
Application form configuration screen
The list of positive attributes to this system is endless. As we speak they are working launching an improved and robust reporting and analytics module. As you well know, I have a penchant for companies who are relentless about improving their product through good data.
If you are a company of 1-1000 employees and in the market for a new ATS, Recruiterbox is worth your attention. You will find the pricing to be reasonable and the value immense.
For a free demo, click here to sign-up or watch their video demo.
Need more convincing? Read a case study from one of their clients, Beauty Brands here.
Bonus: Get a free copy of Co-Founder, Raj Sheth’s E-Book prePARE: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Hiring. Click here to download.
FTC Disclosure: I received compensation for writing this product review listed below as one of the services I offer my clients. I only work with companies I feel have great products, services and offerings. In accordance with my blog disclosure statement, I will only work with and showcase products and/or companies I believe my readers will benefit from. iCims is an ATS provider and I have either reviewed or used their product personally. I have not made any absolute statements about its functionality but endorse the capabilities I have personally observed. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
In recruitment, we try any reasonable tactic to gain the attention of the candidates we seek for our positions. We will do whatever is necessary to attract and hire the right candidate all the way up to the offer. You make the offer with a sense of accomplishment; but further engagement or communication dies with the offer, doesn’t it? Fast forward several weeks into the future. Your prized employee starts orientation day- what has transpired? You haven’t been in touch, not even via e-mail. This employee who is bright-eyed and excited is now made to fill out a bunch of dusty HR new hire forms and sit through a long day of company pitches and presentations on what you expect of him or her going forward.
Great first impression?
Not so much, you had the candidate at hello, but you forgot to keep the dialogue and courtship going beyond the offer. This is where the power of onboarding helps. Onboarding is more than a checklist of household items and tasks you and your employee needs to accomplish prior to the commencement of your official partnership. It is about making sure every new hire is consistently and thoroughly made aware of how they will contribute to the organization and what the organization aims to offer them in return. Being proactive and ready to onboard your employees is a key indicator of the employee’s future productivity, morale, and success. In addition, it is a significant gesture that lets the employee know you are dedicated to their success.
Did you know?
Despite the ongoing discussion about the importance of having a formal onboarding process, only 37% of organizations have invested in a strategic onboarding program for more than two years according to a March 2013 Aberdeen Group report. Taking the time to look at your new hire process and finding areas where you can streamline and automate can only further benefit your new employees and the company.
How do you accomplish all of this?
iCIMS Onboard is an intuitive and extremely versatile platform that not only allows you to automate your onboarding process by allowing new hires to fill out and submit everything from your direct deposit form to I-9’s; but offers a personalized and unique introduction to your company culture. No shock that Aberdeen Group reported that 68% best-in-class companies cited “getting new employees productive more quickly” as a key driver for implementing a strategic onboarding process. iCIMS electronic forms will save you time and effort in both explaining and collecting papers on the first day; giving you more time to spend with your new hires acclimating them to the company and their new work environment.
With iCIMS Onboard, you can set up notifications and tasks through the platforms task management capability- allowing hiring managers to properly prepare workspaces and other internal clearances so your new hires can be productive day one. Task management is dynamic enough to be set up by department, region, and new hire type so there is a unique experience delivered for the spectrum of new hires that join your organization.
The iCIMS Onboard platform is configurable and able to be designed to match your company’s branding incorporating welcome videos or even training videos to further engage and accelerate your new hires assimilation into your organization. Think of your organization as a mini-society, each citizen that joins your society should be socialized appropriately understanding things like mission, values, culture, and ways of conducting business. Using iCIMS video capabilities in Onboard allows you to deliver company messages, communicating business objectives from day one so employees connect the dots.
Onboarding is no longer a nice-to-have but a business imperative for all organizations. This is especially true, if your goal is to retain new hires and truly realize the ROI on your recruitment efforts.
Start communicating and socializing your new hires today with iCIMS Onboard.