The top five soft skills for the future of work
Soft skills matter a great deal to senior leaders and HR professionals, according to a new survey by LinkedIn. More than half (57 percent) of senior leaders surveyed said they value soft skills more than hard skills. An overwhelming majority (92 percent) of the talent professionals surveyed said soft skills matter as much or more than hard skills, while 80 percent said soft skills are increasingly important to company success. Glenn Leibowitz, in this Inc. blog post, takes a look at the top five soft skills identified in the survey: creativity, persuasion, collaboration, adaptability and time management. “It’s not terribly surprising but nonetheless very encouraging to see creativity at the top of LinkedIn’s list of soft skills,” he writes. “Creativity as it is applied at work is not necessarily about art or design, but is more often about devising fresh solutions to old problems, synthesizing heaps of data into actionable insights, and drawing connections and conclusions between seemingly disparate ideas.” For Leibowitz, persuasion is a soft skill that artificial intelligence cannot replace, while collaboration is a non-negotiable skill. “Adaptability is a far more important skill than we like to acknowledge,” he writes. “Time management can make or break your ability to get your job done and have impact.”
Top talent trends to watch in 2019
How can companies continue to attract and retain top talent in an increasingly tight labor market? Here are the top 10 emerging talent trends to watch in 2019, according to experts in the Asia Pacific region: 1. Don’t mind the resume gaps of candidates. 2. Make artificial intelligence more intelligent by feeding it more objective modifiers. 3. Personalize pay for different generations of workers. 4. Rethink the annual performance review by opting for ongoing feedback. 5. Dig deeper into the diversity and inclusion pipeline. 6. Survey candidates about the recruiting process. 7. Create more interesting titles to reflect the emerging roles. 8. Talent analytics is just as important as business analytics. 9. Approach talent analytics holistically from hire to retire. 10. Balance short-term hiring needs with long-term business goals. “To succeed in attracting, developing and retaining top talent as we head into another year, companies will need to stay ahead of the rising importance of artificial intelligence and talent analytics while being agile and forward thinking in their talent management strategy,” said Pip Eastman, Managing Director, Asia Pacific Regional Solutions for Korn Ferry.
Can AI overcome human bias in hiring?
While artificial intelligence (AI) tools offer the promise of identifying top candidates in a fraction of the time it takes the recruiting staff to do so, the challenge of reducing human bias remains an issue. This ForbesInsights article outlines three strategies to confront the challenges head-on: 1. Check your recruiting process to remove any existing glitches before looking at AI as a blanket solution. 2. To check for bias, measure outcomes and conduct audits of hiring data and the underlying algorithms at least once a year. 3. Let the tools make you better by giving your recruiters a ‘decision equity index’ score to identify patterns in their decision-making and correct unconscious biases. “While AI can—and will—solve some problems in many companies’ pursuit of great talent, it is not a panacea. It should be a strategic complement to the human aspects of the process, including the one element that will likely always rest with people—deciding, or not, to make the hire,” the article concludes.
Three ways to attract more millennial talent
“The job market is increasingly millennial, and job seekers have never had more leverage than they do right now. How’s any company that’s not on Snapchat supposed to compete [for millennial talent]?” asks Jessica Rovello rhetorically. In this Inc. op-ed piece she argues that it’s easy to do, with three simple steps: 1. Create a digital persona for your brand that showcases who your company is and what it stands for. Millennials want to know that their personal values are aligned with their companies’ and feel good about their work. 2. Personalize the onboarding process to give them a sense of familiarity that sets your company apart from others. 3. Give them participation trophies. Employees want direction and regular feedback so they can progress in the right direction. “Appealing to younger employees may seem like a challenge. But follow these guidelines and you can end the job-hopping epidemic once and for all,” Rovello concludes.
How to become a talent magnet
With the U.S. unemployment rate hovering around 4 percent and many positions remaining open for long periods of time, the talent shortage is not getting any better, argues Doug Coull in this TalentCulture blog post. He gives a comprehensive list of things employers need to do in order to win the war on talent. “All people in the workforce want to experience respect, equality, fair pay, a true representation of an organization’s culture, advancement opportunities, job stability, gratification from the work they perform, along with acknowledgment by the employer for a job well-done,” Coull writes. He recommends companies have a social media presence that is available, relatable, likable, interesting, transparent and attractive to jobs seekers. “Social media is the perfect venue to showcase attributes of the company culture, employee sentiment, and employer brand,” Coull writes. Similarly, he suggests using technology to promote the firm’s brand and jobs since most job seekers today are tech savvy and use technology to aid them in their search. “Using video to showcase your employer brand and work environment, when used appropriately, can give people a great idea of your culture,” he writes. Coull’s other tips include using direct recruiting tools, employee referral programs and even gamification. “It takes work to stay competitive in a fast-paced society with more jobs than qualified people to fill them, but by implementing any programs or initiatives that expand your reach, you can maintain a competitive edge and win the war on talent,” he concludes.
Top challenges facing recruiters today
In this episode of the WorkTrends podcast, TalentCulture’s Meghan M. Biro talks with Jack Coapman, chief strategy officer for gr8 People, about the top challenges that recruiters face in the current HR ecosystem. “It’s the first time we have a market in which recruiters are responsible for looking at five different types of generations—and all of them have different expectations,” Coapman says in the interview, citing external market pressures as the top challenge. He also believes the recruiter is one of the fastest-changing roles with ever-expanding expectations. “All of a sudden, we’re getting into this delineation of the different parts of the recruiting process and whether somebody can really be a true, full-cycle recruiter, able to do everything from sourcing to nurturing and hiring and managing pipelines and onboarding and everything out there,” Coapman tells Biro. Last but not the least, Coapman advocates for a better understanding of all the HR tech tools available in the marketplace. “So many times, we find that organizations may make a very quick decision on the nicest-looking platform, and a year later, when the company has grown and changed, that platform is not able to keep up with those complex requirements,” he says.
How to build a data-driven employer brand
In this WilsonHCG blog post, Kat Boogaard highlights the importance that potential recruits place on employer brands and summarizes the four steps to building a data-driven employer brand – one that’s genuine, impactful, and shares authentic insight into your company with the talent you most want to attract. 1. Know your target audience. Gather insights from the targeted talent and reach them with the content they want to see. 2. Analyze top-performing content. Figure out which of your posts get the most feedback and interaction and provide more of it. 3. Lean on your employees. Candidates trust a company’s employees three times more than the corporate messaging, according to LinkedIn research. Amplify employees’ voices in your employer brand. 4. Measure the impact. Studying the metrics is important, but also analyze employee-engagement levels. “Getting the sense that employees are invested in what you’re doing and enthusiastic about sharing that message with other people speaks volumes; more than any chart or fancy dashboard ever could,” Boogaard writes.
Don’t hire based on intuition, try these four steps instead
In this TalentCulture blog post, Mark Mayleben talks about why gut instinct and feelings for assessing talent are “wildly ineffective” and suggests four steps to building structured interviews. 1. Summarize what candidates can expect. Keep small talk to a minimum and inform candidates that the reason for formality is to ensure fairness. 2. Ask the same job-related questions in the same order. To ensure consistency throughout each candidate’s experience, it’s imperative that both the baseline questions and the follow-up questions are preplanned and delivered in the same order. 3. Maintain a consistent team of interviewers (four at most) and clearly defined rating scales. Use a cohesive scale and define ideal behaviors clearly. 4. Rate candidates immediately post-interview. Each interviewer should give final scores to all candidates, and the candidate with the top scores among the four interviewers should be selected. These steps will not only “revolutionize the hiring process, but also will help you improve your brand, ” Mayleben writes.
How to integrate social media into recruiting
“Using social media to recruit – or at least easing your way into it for recruiting – is necessary if you want to simply keep up with tough competition. But to transcend your competition and secure top talent right out from under them, it’s about time you start harnessing the true power of social media. It’s easier than you think,” writes Linda Le Phan in this kununu blog post. Here are her top social media hacks for recruiting: 1. Share “Day in the Life” snapshots. 2. Don’t be afraid of live video. 3. Start a hashtag. 4. Highlight key employees. 5. Create dedicated careers accounts. 6. Challenge your audience. “Social media, specifically, gives recruiters the opportunity to target the audience who best matches the roles at a fraction of the cost of a common past method of print advertising – which by the way, causes a lot of waste by reaching everybody, including those who aren’t qualified for or interested in the role,” Le Phan writes. “With social media, you can even get started with no money investment upfront by just posting on your free accounts, which is available to everyone.”
Careers, not jobs, attract best candidates
This WilsonHCG blog post outlines how organizations can find new ways to engage, attract and ultimately keep talent with a modern mindset. 1. Share purpose, show impact: Today’s professionals want to know how their role matters to the greater business and that the company’s values and purpose align with theirs. 2. Invite talent to learn and develop: Communicate why and how you invest in employees’ development throughout the whole interview process. 3. Harness employee engagement: Inform, inspire and involve employees, so they want to support and advance the company brand. “There is a direct correlation between strategic talent acquisition, employer branding investments and greater revenue,” the article notes. “Industry leaders are offering and adeptly marketing careers that matter; careers that are flexible, full of long-term growth and opportunity, and show talent their business impact.”
Finding diamonds in the rough
Hiring candidates with ‘imperfect resumes’ can be a winning strategy, argues Robert Glazer in this Inc. blog post. “Some of the best employees are talented people who came from bad environments where they couldn’t make the most of their abilities,” he writes. “Past success is not always a predictor of future success.” Glazer claims that for companies with limited budgets it is prohibitively expensive to hire top talent for every position. “There are people out there right now who could do wonders for you and they are languishing in poor companies or wrong roles,” he writes. “An attitude that causes trouble in one environment can often be an asset somewhere else.” He recommends listening closely to candidates that are in bad situations to assess how they handle stress. “A great attitude can trump a great track record and rough gems can be the best hires you ever make,” Glazer notes.
On-site fitness centers are a key recruiting tool
By 2030, a full 18 percent of the U.S. population will reach retirement age according to Pew Research Center projections, putting today’s employers in a competition to recruit top talent. Many organizations are tackling this challenge by offering unique benefits such as tuition reimbursement, parental leave and even insurance for companion animals, writes Ann Wyatt for TalentCulture, and highlights on-site fitness centers as one of the top perks. The obvious reason for the popularity of on-site fitness centers is convenience. “After all, it’s much easier to get a workout in if you only have to travel two floors down on the elevator versus 10 miles in rush-hour traffic. Convenience is everything for today’s over-booked employee,” Wyatt writes. She also points out that employees want a more personal touch from fitness centers, ‘a place where [they] can work with coaches and fitness consultants to develop individualized plans to meet their unique needs.’
Attracting and retaining new bank leaders
According to 2017 Crowe Howarth LLP Institution’s Compensation and Benefits Survey, there are pronounced differences in the way banks of various sizes approach critical leadership issues. “The issue of CEO succession appeared to be a greater concern at the smaller banks participating in the survey. Among banks with $250 million or less in assets, 70.6 percent reported they had documented, board-reviewed plans for CEO or other top-level executive succession,” the Banking Exchange reports. The survey also found that smaller community banks were less likely to have a formalized leadership development process in place. “It would appear that as banks grow larger and begin to gain access to greater resources, they are better able to dedicate a portion of those resources to the ongoing development of their leadership teams,” the article notes. As for outreach efforts, most banks have started looking beyond industry experience in candidates: “The most successful organizations will recruit candidates who can help the bank adapt to the challenges of digital technology, which is playing a progressively larger role in the banking industry.”
Empowering women in recruiting
In this Q&A, Libby Herrmann, WilsonHCG’s client relationship manager, discusses topics such as closing the gender pay gap, how to attract women to more tech jobs and avoiding bias in recruiting. Herrmann believes that the salary history ban legislation (which went into effect on Jan. 1 in California) will help close the gender pay gap, but she says the best practice for recruiters is to “understand what the candidate is seeking from a compensatory standpoint versus asking about current or past compensation.” Another solution is to “pay for performance,” which is often more motivating among top recruitment professionals, she says. As for how recruiters can attract more women to tech roles, Herrmann suggests diversifying and growing the networks recruiters actively take part in. “Ensure you are evangelizing the opportunities and the organization’s desire to diversify the workforce by hiring strong female candidates,” she says. “Organizational culture, including its reputation built by the hiring manager and existing team, is just as much an attractor as any effort a recruiter could put forth in outbound strategy.”