Are you a Quiet Leader?

ciel blog - quiet leader

We grow up with various stereotypes and accordingly, we look up to certain kind of leaders as our heroes. Organizations tend to choose and promote people who are boisterous, loud and confident. It is believed that such a person is likely to inspire and lead the flock purposively, keep them together and deliver the results that the organization wants. We would have seen personalities who are on the quieter side and unable to create an impression in the first interaction. Social norms work in the minds of the audience and often they lose out when pitted against a verbal enthusiast. However, I have seen poor results delivered by the team led by the seemingly ideal person. Why is it so?

Context matters… Leader must adapt!

Situations differ and accordingly the challenges before a leader vary. One has to be flexible to be able to adapt to the situation. You may be loud and dominating; leading your team from the front and in the spotlight. Alternately, you may be quiet, analytical and empowering; prefer to be in the background. Neither of the two type is ideal! A leader is a human; the followers are human too. Hence, the group dynamics and the leader’s personal style determine how well one is able to adapt to the situation.

The leader has to invest the time and space to think about the context, recognize the situation, involve the team in arriving at the decision and building ownership of the execution steps. These steps sound very textbook style. Often, the situation could be such that the leader does not have the wherewithal to go through these steps. And in some cases, personal style of the individual comes on the way of following this style.

Results take a beating when the team expects consultation and participation whereas the leader follows his own agenda to arrive at the decision and merely communicates them down the line. Given the composition of today’s workforce, team members often want to understand the rationale of a decision and participate in the process; they do not like to be instructed and watched over their shoulders. Given this context, it is more likely that the leader cannot afford to have a dominating, invincible and instructive style. Similarly, there are situations where the house is on fire and the leader is expected to be on his toes, taking quick calls and leading from the front. So, the style of being participative, passive and consensus-driven will not work.

One-size-fits-all does not work. One has to adapt to the context!

Make choices!

One of the most important characteristics that defines a leader is the choices one makes. While the speed of decision making, the process of arriving at the decision and the way it is communicated are important, the first and most critical factor behind the success of a leader is the decision one takes. Normally, there is a set of alternate paths which lie before a leader and one chooses to traverse one of them.

Isn’t it frustrating to see the leader delaying a decision, procrastinating, unwilling to bite the bullet? We need our leader to be confident and calm in evaluating various alternates; we need him or her to be charismatic and creative in bringing up new possibilities before us. It is a unique combination of self-confidence, charisma and pragmatism that we look for. Again, easier said than done! How often we come across such people?

We find the macho and communicative boss who believes in speed and his instinct in processing the information, takes a call fast and pushes the team to get ahead. It surely raises the confidence of the team, boosts team spirit and fires everyone up. When the going gets tough, the boss needs to stay strong and calm to weather the storm, make course-corrections and sustain optimism. We have seen such macho leaders fail at times.

Quiet leaders are often stereotyped as people who are slow, tentative and selfish. However, from another perspective, the same actions might be sure-footed, determined and cautious. So pragmatically speaking, our boss needs to be balanced in his approach to a problem so that the choice is made quickly; communicated with vigour; and arrived after giving it the right amount of thought and experience. No one type of leader does it better than the other!

If you love solitude…

As we can see, there is no one particular style of leadership that works better than the other. Just in case you love solitude, prefer to write than talk, hate superficiality, embrace deep-diving, stay calm and confident in times of crisis as well as jubilation, you need not worry about your prospects of being successful as a leader. You have great strengths which need to be leveraged!

It is easy for you to listen actively, empathise, give credit to your team, put your team first, stay poised and find solutions. It is important for you to communicate often, show the way forward and exude optimism. Your team trusts you, values your position and looks up to you for inspiration!

Rise of Well-informed candidates

Candidates are consulting an average
of 16 sources before applying…
…and only 36% apply witho...

Over the last decade, internet has become ubiquitous in recruitment across the globe. Employers and potential employees alike use the internet to meet one another directly or through an agency. In either case, the candidate and the company make a choice based on their individual perception and judgement of how well they fit the requirements of the other. Traditionally employers and candidates meet one another and conclude if there is a fitment. However, in today’s time, candidates rely on information available publicly as well as what they gather through their contacts and the social media. Candidates have access to a lot of information other than what they learn during an interview. How does this impact talent acquisition?

The Moments of Truth in a Recruitment Process

We see experts in Communication and Advertising specialise in the domain of employer branding. They advise companies how to stand out in the crowd of HR Leaders seeking talent and communicate their value proposition to the potential employee.

Crafting a communication is a skill of high order. Done well, this helps a company tremendously in building an image that creates curiosity in the minds of potential candidates. We have seen it at play for several IT and Outsourcing companies in the last couple of decades. However, such communication becomes a hyperbole if the attendant parts in the organization cannot deliver the experience that the candidates expect. This is easier said than done. The moment of truth for a candidate starts right from the time he or she comes across a recruitment advertisement. Then starts several action steps such as applying for a job, receiving feedback, various communication through various stages of the selection process, the visits and contacts during the entire process till the person successfully comes on board.

At each of these stages, different stakeholders interact with the candidate. The moot challenge before the HR leaders is to ensure that all stakeholders in the process are aligned to what is being promised in the value proposition and deliver the experience consistently. It is a massive transformation program for the organization!

The Social Media is on an Overdrive

ciel blog - well informed candidate

Ex-employees and current employees of the organization express their views about working in a firm. Candidates who attend interviews with a potential employer talk about their experience. The social media and the search engines have made things easy for broadcasting these moments of truth all over. Companies do invest huge energies to communicate who they are, what kind of talent they are looking for and build an image that describes them as an employer.

One cannot escape from the fact that there are grapevines within an organization, a lone wolf who is an internal adversary, some unintentional cases of negligence that spoil the party and some disgruntled souls who are out there. The team has to be alert and proactive in warding off the evil eye. And at the same time, one needs to be fast enough to attend to the mistakes and failures; recover the lost ground. There should be no let up in one’s efforts to spread the positive news that takes place in different parts of the organization.

Today’s well-informed candidates form their opinions looking at various such intimations, undertones and nuances. So, the employer organization has to be fast enough and hitting the bull’s eye consistently.

Match expectations and stay agile

Life is fast today : decisions are being taken faster than ever before; thinking through is often understood as procrastination and viewed with despise. Organizations have to keep pace with the likes of their target audience. The cycle times are coming down in every aspect of our life. So, it is natural that candidates expect quick answer, the interviewers need more choice and the jobseekers have access to several opportunities at the same time. This trinity makes the task for the HR folks exciting and challenging.

Leaders have to organize a good set of candidates at one go and make a quick decision. They need to decide when to keep looking for the illusive ideal candidate and when to be happy with the best available candidate. Long cycle times aren’t going down well – organizations have to be agile.

Expectations are mutual and dynamic in a relationship between the employer brand and the talent pool. Hence, it is important that a winning organization keeps a tab on the trends in the talent market and makes adjustments in its actions on a regular basis.

The rise of well-informed candidates has made life simple for the Talent acquisition specialists and HR leaders in many ways. They get an enviable advantage if they tune in to the signals in the market with respect to their employer brand and make course-corrections. This calls for agility and rigorous execution!

How do you know if the new job offer is better than your current job?

ciel blog - new job offer vs current job

Over 4 million people change their jobs each year in India and many more face job interviews. Most of them are anxious and unsure if the new job offer is better than their current jobs. Is there a tool that can help somebody pick the one that scores higher over the other?

What do we look for in a job?

Compensation, of course, is one of the features that is associated with most jobs. That apart, there are several factors that determine one’s thoughts about the job consciously or subconsciously. Firstly, it is the purpose, the mission and the social norm associated with the job. Be it the job of a driver, a doctor, cook, teacher, cleaning staff, engineer, plumber, accountant, content writer, salesman, software programmer, all of us want to do a job that adds value in the ecosystem that we care about. Most often, the identity of a person is linked to the profession and where one works. Hence, it is important that the job and the industry are held highly in the person’s mind.

Secondly, it is the work environment – the colleagues we work with, the bosses we report to, the empowerment that we receive, the recognition that we receive and the challenges it poses on the way. Each of us wake up to make the day more productive and satisfying. It is our workplace that helps us realize the goals for the day. Hence, we look forward to a workplace that creates energy, optimism and ignites a creative spirit in our mind.

Finally, certain aspects of the role are important for each of us. For example, working on a particular kind of equipment, tools and software is important for the person in a technical job. Similarly for someone who has significant responsibility in the family, commuting time, work hours and holidays are important considerations. Opportunities to grow along a particular career path are important for an ambitious worker. We find the job satisfying when most of these are in place and on an overall level, we feel fulfilled.

Hard and soft aspects of choice-making:

Given the above construct, one should make a list of factors under the 3 broad categories: the job, the workplace and the fine-print. Job change is an important event in one’s life and can have a huge impact on one’s future. Hence, adequate care must be taken to consider all aspects from a rational as well as emotional standpoint.

It is easy to compare two opportunities on aspects such as compensation, title, industry’s attractiveness, the level of technology in use and practice of internal promotions. However, what about the soft aspects of the workplace? As someone once said, “We get to choose neither our parents nor our boss”, it is important that you know about the culture of recognition, the colleagues that you will work with and the boss you’ll report to.

We can network with colleagues in industry, refer to various studies that rank best practices in various organizations, study what people are talking about the employer on social media and industry platforms like Glassdoor, Indeed, LinkedIn etc. We can speak to ex-employees of the company to understand about the workplace. It is not easy to do it and has to be done.

Do we have the check-list of what we look for and value?

After making up our mind about the decision factors pertaining to each of the 3 aspects i.e. job, workplace and role-specific details, one needs to list them down. Each one of these factors has to be assigned a weight on a scale of 1 – 5 where 1 indicates least significant and 5 is the most.

Then the next step is to score both opportunities on each of these decision factors and weighted score has to be arrived at. Based on the sum of the weighted score for each opportunity, one can decide which one is better. Simple, isn’t it?

Let us take an example: a software engineer is ambitious, looking for growth opportunities and a good work-life balance. The decision table could be something like this:

Decision Factors
Decision Weight on scale of 1 – 5
Current Job on a scale of 1 – 5
Weighted Score for Current Job
New Job Opportunity on a scale of 1 – 5
Weighted Score for the New Opportunity
1.       Compensation


4 20 5


2.       Reputation of the firm


4 20 3


3.       Opportunity to work in various industry sectors


2 10 5


4.       Well-qualified Colleagues


2 8 5


5.       Supportive boss


4 20 3


6.       Recognition for the work done


4 12 5


7.       Opportunities to learn


4 16 5


8.       Challenging work


3 12 5


Role-related Specifics          
9.       Commuting from work


5 25 2


10.   Work hours


5 25 3


11.   Leadership opportunities


3 15 5


12.   Impact on the organization


2 10 5






This tool helps one identify all the soft and hard aspects of decision making, consider them holistically and take the ultimate decision. It makes our life simpler and organized. Let’s go for it!

Should you outsource hiring?

ciel blog - outsource or inhouse recruiting

Companies consider talent as their competitive advantage. Leaders believe that machines, technology, capital, knowhow and processes can be acquired easier than talent. Various studies have proven that acquiring talent is one of their major challenges. Should organizations build their internal capability to hire for themselves or rely on external agencies?

Needless to mention that either method has its own pros and cons. The solution lies in the old saying – ‘horses for courses’.

When do you build inhouse capability?

Some think of talent acquisition as a critical success factor and hence, they must deal with this strategic task inhouse. They cannot outsource this to anyone. Some leaders think that the skills that they are hiring are rare to find and assume that nobody other than an inhouse team can invest their energies in finding those needles from the haystack. We find another argument in support of inhouse hiring when the company doesn’t want many people to know that it is hiring for the particular role.

All these are myths! Rather one should use a simple 2×2 matrix to decide the strategy.

Decide if talent acquisition is strategically important for the organization’s results and secondly if it impacts operational metrics of the organization.

For an airline, in-flight catering is an important function but not strategically important; neither it impacts the operational metrics of the airline in a significant way. However, for a restaurant, it is not only a strategic value but also important operationally. Given this example, one knows that a restaurant has to have inhouse capability to prepare the food.

Outsource when Recruitment is Strategically Less Important but makes an Impact on Operational Metrics of the firm

Leaders choose the top few levers (typically 3 to 5) which are strategically important for the organization. Recruitment may not figure there in the list. However, recruiting the right people on time could be important from operational perspective such as servicing customers, running important errands, completing tasks with speed and accuracy. In these situations, one must leave it to experts than invest energies inhouse to focus on something which is not on the strategic agenda item. The external expert knows how to minimize the cycle time, increase process efficiency and optimize the quality.

This is like a company outsourcing its cleaning needs to an agency; hiring people for sales support, sales promotion, administrative tasks, customer service, maintenance and several other non-core activities through an outsourced agency; back-filling vacant roles.

Outsource and Build Strategic Partnership when Recruitment is Strategically Important but does Not make an impact on Operational Metric of the firm

Organizations take up new projects or have ongoing needs to back-fill vacancies or have a few key roles to fill. These are strategically important for the organization because future revenue streams are linked with the success of these. And most of the times, these do not impact the operational metrics of the organization in the short term.

In these situations, leaders make the mistake of building an inhouse team to deliver on these. Such an effort becomes not only a distraction for the senior leaders but also is an expensive proposition. Moreover, these teams turn inefficient over a longer period of time, say 2-3 years.

The solution here is to build a strategic partnership with an outsourced player who provides high mindshare for the engagement, considers it important for them, works as an extension of the organization, stays efficient and competitive, leverages on its knowledge of the market and works under an objective framework of governance.

Plan it yourself if Recruitment is a Strategic Lever and Impacts the Operational Metric

The top leaders of an organization may feel that getting the right talent on-board is one of their critical success factors and moreover, recruitment impacts the operational metrics of the firm. This situation shows hiring is high on strategic importance and at the same time, has a high impact on the operational metrics such as revenues, cycle times, error rates and so on.

This is like an assembly shop for a car company, kitchen for a restaurant, design shop for a consumer product company, engineering team for a manufacturing company. All these have to be done inhouse.

Planning for recruitment is critical and it must not be confused with the implementation of the plan. Once the organization is clear about the kind of people it needs, the timelines, the critical attributes and the value proposition for a prospective employee, execution starts. Many a times, organizations fail to plan this well and hope that the plan will evolve alongside the execution. If this happens well, it is just a sweet coincidence and cannot be repeated.

For an organization providing services to its customers, it needs to have the right people at the right time. The situation here scores high on both the dimensions : strategic importance and operational impact. Hence, the organization must own the critical piece of planning the talent acquisition process and managing it.

Stop Recruiting if it is Not on Strategic agenda and does Not Impact the Operational Metric of the firm

If nobody cares about recruiting, the firm has to eliminate the function and not even think of outsourcing either. This is simple decision because it scores low on both the dimensions: strategic as well as operational importance.

Talent Acquisition as a process is to be outsourced when it appears on the strategic agenda of the firm or when it impacts the operational metric. Keep the planning function inhouse if it is on the strategic agenda as well as impacts the organization operationally. Leaders have to take a clear stance!



Decongest your Talent Channels


Talent Acquisition leaders and Recruiters always are in the business of catching up. They are under the constant pressure to fill requirements as of yesterday. That is a good problem for the recruiters because it keeps them in business and secondly, success in recruiting is hugely dependent on many external factors. However, this is a challenge that the business leader does not like to see on her table. So, the recruiters are often on the line of fire! The smart ones do a few things right. What are they?

Employee Referral – is this working well?

ciel-blog-talent-channels-decongest2Employee referral is certainly a popular channel and it gives anywhere between 2% to 25% of hires in an organization depending upon the industry sector and the maturity level of the company. There are questions around the efficacy of this channel in terms of the quality of talent that organizations on-board, the diversity quotient of talent, organization culture and the impact on employee productivity. These are critical questions.

Organizations need to decongest this channel by thinking through these strategic questions and making the necessary course corrections along the way. Else, the channel can get into a vicious cycle and its impact is seen after 18-24 months on customer satisfaction levels, employee engagement scores and employee productivity. The bigger blow comes to light after 48 months or so in terms of succession planning.

It is important there is an agency or a person who is accountable for the channel and hence, its health and efficacy is monitored continuously.  A human body needs a certain kind of care and discipline in its youth so that it stays healthy in the old age. Pretty much similarly, we have to make sure that the channel remains healthy not only for the short term but also for the long term.

Leverage on business teams!

All of us understand that the most number of employees are in the line function and we should involve them in the best possible way to solve our business challenges. We know, engaged employees turn in better results than the places where they are treated like machines working in silos. Still, the most common way of involving employees in solving the issue is to seek referrals by attractive rewards. Is this the best? Can we not go beyond the employee referral route and involve our people in the Line functions?

On numerous occasions, I have noticed that the job to fill is not very clear to the recruiter, yet she is trying all methods – the job portals, social networks, partners and so on to source candidates. The conversations with candidates remain pretty swallow; the most suitable candidate is not attracted to the job often; those who agree to interview get rejected causing loss of time and an intangible opportunity for the company; at times, the company makes a choice but may not the best, thus causing an opportunity lost. This is a huge opportunity for the Talent Acquisition Leader or the Recruiter to leverage the business team. The Line manager can be asked to interact with the recruiter in person about the job and each candidate interviewed.

When there is a will, there is a way – traditional channels of recruiting can get more effective if the clogs on the way are removed. Bring in the business team into the channel and make them play a part!

There is always a room to improve one’s understanding about the business, the challenges faced and the opportunities available. Based on the understanding of the organization’s context, recruiters can target the right areas to source candidates and communicate impactfully with potential candidates. These help building the employer brand appropriately, thus making it a long-term investment.

Think strategy!


Talent acquisition is often a catch-up game and hence, many organizations do not have the time to strategize; some do, but most of them have no time to follow through the action steps. Though all of us know that the human capital brings the competitive edge to an organization, in practice the business leaders do not commit as much time and energy to think about acquisition of human capital as the attention to the others such as financial capital, technology investments and brand building. This might sound ironic, but it is a fact.

Leaders ought to think if their approach to acquire the best is serving them the best. They need to review the way the roles are defined, the organization is structured, the mix of sources they adopt to on-board talent and their choice of sources. They need to own up the strategic components in the process and outsource running the operational components of the machinery.

Make the talent channels complement one another and deliver a leveraged performance.

Have you started using Gamification in Recruitment?


Ability to attract and retain talent has remained as one of the most important factors behind the success of any enterprise. Year after year, Leaders all over the world have been seeing this as one of their most important challenges. To make matters interesting, recruitment is a science as well as an art. So, the leaders have to make recruitment a success by addressing not only the the science part but also the art. This is a complex task compared to some of the other domains of HR such as onboarding, payrolling, compliance etc. We need to deploy a systematic and rigorous process because recruitment is a science and at the same time, we need to be arty while tailor-making the solution based on the context of the organization and the role.

Business in the last two decades has become much more fast-paced than what it has been traditionally. Moreover, India Inc. is one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Hence, business leaders have been consistently demanding great speed and quality in recruiting.

Unfortunately, amidst the fast pace of growth in Indian economy, our education system has not been able to sync with the changing demands of the industry. As a result, the students holding educational certificates, diplomas and degrees do not necessarily match the industry requirements. So, this mismatch between the supply and demand of talent poses another challenge to recruiting. When the Talent Acquisition specialist calls for applications, her email and phone remain abuzz with enquiries and interested candidates. But, most of these jobseekers are not good enough for the initial stage of screening. Essentially, it is the recruiter who has to find creative ways of preventing the incoming spam, getting rid of the junk and searching for the needle in a stack of hay.

Solve the problem of plenty!

ciel-blog-gamification-in-recruiting-problem-of-plentyGamification helps her achieve these seemingly tedious tasks. Technologists have been able to leverage the competitive spirit that each human being is endowed with. They have been able to shape various steps of a process into a series of small steps and invite the applicants or candidates to go through these steps in an engaging manner. And the automated system keeps rewarding the participants at each stage of the process and thus, fulfilling the need of instant gratification. Secondly, they tap into the competitive spirit of each person to make one compete against the other and thus, bring out the best that a person has. They use scorecards, leader-boards and status scores etc to attract the participants to outdo the others. Several organizations around the world have used these methods and some of the case studies are documented.

You need to orchestrate like a maestro!

Recruiting function is successful when a number of things work in unison:

  • the team has the right intelligence about the talent market,
  • they are clear about the value proposition of the employer organization,
  • have understood the roles well enough to be able to attract the right candidate,
  • screen the most suitable ones,
  • present the candidates appropriately to the interviewers,
  • prepare candidates well for the meetings with the interviewers,
  • keep up the interest levels of the candidates throughout the process,
  • set expectations right for the candidate as well as the interviewers,
  • close the offer quickly with the candidate,
  • engage the candidate till he or she joins the firm,
  • conduct pre-employment checks,
  • help the candidate get mainstreamed with the rest of the organization.

It is a long list of 12 steps in the process and there are multiple stakeholders! With many variables, a process becomes complex to control; hence, it is difficult to assure quality of the output.

It is easy to notice that the recruiter keeps juggling between a bunch of tasks and a large number of candidates. It is difficult to stay focused and engaged on each of the recruiting assignments that she is working on. Most often, the assignments are in various stages of execution. Moreover, India Inc. is yet to have mature IT systems that keep track of the process, help identify bottlenecks and solve them. Hence, some assignments get abandoned mid-way; cycle times are long and process efficiency is low. As a result, the success of recruiting function becomes a hostage of an individual’s ability to multi-task, hold a lot of information together and think creatively to spot talent and engage them.

It is obvious, for India Inc., a recruiter’s individual brilliance and determination to succeed play the most crucial role in the success of the process. Thus, it is one major reason why the process is being gamified to keep the recruiter engaged and bring out the best. Leader-boards, score cards, ranking methods and similar such tools motivate the top recruiters to go higher up the rank. Not only the good performers get better, the poor performers feel the pressure to either shape up or ship out.

Another important part of the strategy is to convert these scores into individual rewards and team recognition. That creates a positive environment within the organization, builds team spirit and channelizes the energies in the right way.

Find the Best Match!


The second stakeholder in recruiting process is the candidate. Given the fact that a recruiter has to find the needle in the hay-stack, it is critical that an automated system helps the recruiter in eliminating the junk from a large pool of applicants. Again, gamification methods are used to attract the applicants to test their suitability for the vacant position. The games are designed in such a way that the required competencies are tested in various stages of the process. Since the process is highly engaging in the form of a game and has multiple stages, it is not easy for a candidate to put up a brave face and produce the most desirable response. So, the advantage here is to provide a realistic preview of the job and hence, set the right expectation. Secondly, this helps the company experience the behaviour of the candidate in his real self. Another benefit of the gamification process is that the candidates get a superior experience compared to the traditional methods of an assessment centre, interviews, psychometric or aptitude tests.

Last but not the least, the employer organization is able to act fast on the incoming applicants, simulate situations which are near-realistic and assess suitability of the applicants based on the most likely response to a real life situation at work.

Gamification is still in the works and deployment is limited to a very small percentage of organizations in India. It is gaining popularity and in the next 2 years, we will see nearly one-third of all firms adopt this practice. There is no doubt, that in the coming years, gamification will be indispensable and a keystone of HR strategy for India Inc.

Recruitment Advertising from the Yester-era of Classifieds


Talent has remained one of the major competitive advantages for any organization. It will remain that way for a very long time in spite of the innovations like automation, artificial intelligence and whatever else that will come in the future. Leaders have always wanted the best and nothing else. One of the practices to attract the best has been advertising in the media and letting the word spread. Until about 25 years ago, when companies in India wanted to recruit, they either went to campuses or put an advertisement in the newspapers or journals. Sometimes, they asked the Employment exchanges and some of them went to a recruiting agency. Think of how companies recruit now! Is there a sea change or subtle change?

Too many choices – Choose yourself or Partner with someone who does it for a living?

Today, media options are no more the classifieds or display advertising on newspapers; rather we have a plenty of avenues : radio, television, social media, hoardings, job portals, online groups, specialised search tools, targeted advertising on the internet and mobile phones. Such opportunities of omni-channel or multi-channel communications have naturally given rise to multiple choices in each category. What does the HR manager end up with?

She has a plethora of choices to make and needs to invest significant amount of time to make the right decision regarding the choice of the platforms to use. More often than not, she does not have adequate time and hence, makes sub-optimal choices. At times, she understands that making the right choice of the platform does not guarantee her the success  of on-boarding the best. Rather it is best dealt by experts who take the responsibility of success.

Build Employer Brand – Need the Right message, Quick and Consistent actions!

We live in an age where decisions are taken fast and the stakeholders expect instant feedback and clear communication. We do not have the habit of standing in queues and waiting for the results any more. Moreover, our attention span and patience have been waning consistently. Hence, job-seekers and potential candidates for an organization need to see clear and crisp communication about the job opportunities; they need to know almost on an instantaneous basis about the progress they make throughout the selection process.

Ironically, many of the core processes in our lives do happen over a long period of time, for example, perception about an employer brand gets built over time, trust with a brand or a person takes time to develop, happiness or the lack of it is a result of experiences over a number of days and weeks rather than that over a few minutes or a day.

This paradox in context, the HR manager is now saddled with the responsibility of delivering a consistent experience about the employer brand throughout the process of recruitment. It is not only the speed of communication and the consistency of the message that helps candidates have the desired experience but also the manner in which the recruiting process is held and the process per se, are important factors that deliver the desired experience.

Thus, the yester-era of publishing an advertisement in the newspaper, receiving applications, screening them, sending out call letters to short-listed applicants and so on are too primitive in today’s time. While these basic steps continue to remain in practice, there are many many fine nuances that have to work well alongside these building blocks to communicate the employer brand appropriately. This is one of the foundational aspects of recruiting to ensure that we get the best on board.

Is your message focused?

25 – 30 years ago, companies advertised to fill their vacancies and candidates read them thoroughly to understand if they met the criteria and did some serious thinking if they should apply for the role. The size of the talent pool then was relatively small. As a result, companies did not end up with a huge junk.

Cut to 2017 : applying in response to an advert is very easy and hence, many job-seekers apply without paying adequate attention to the details. Companies end up with a lot of unsuitable applications. Moreover, some suitable and interested candidates hesitate to apply because they are not sure if their applications will receive the due attention. This problem gets intense when the messaging in the advertisement is too generic and seems to cast the net wide over a large section of the talent market.

So, it is important to keep the message focused and clear. Not only will we build the right employer brand image but also attract the right candidates.