If you’re reading this, chances are you’re already well versed on the complexities of executive search. So it’s understandable that you might feel reticent towards digitizing your white-glove strategy. Nevertheless, there are plenty of reasons why going digital with your methods can be beneficial when hunting down an executive profile.
Traditionally, executive positions take longer to fill and such recruitment processes demand more frequent communication than hiring for entry or professional positions. Regular back and forth with hiring managers is essential as managerial roles are business critical and, as such, highly sensitive in nature. But communication with candidates is just as vital as opportunities like these usually signify high-impact career moves for them. With the added high cost of headhunting as a service, it’s clear why communication in executive search can either make or break a deal amid the high stakes in play.
By taking advantage of the benefits of TA technology you are freed to offer an even better personalized experience to potential candidates during an executive job search. In other words, the right digital solutions grant recruiters the chance to further focus on the human side of their job and the knock-on effect is positive for all stakeholders.
How a Digital Approach to Executive Search Impacts Each Stakeholder
- Recruiters: If you’re responsible for hiring executive candidates you’ll be familiar with the time-consuming process of putting together glossy presentation packs showcasing the calibre of the individuals you’d like the hiring manager to consider. This is an important part of the executive search process and provides the hiring team with valuable information, enabling them to assess if the candidate should be considered for an interview. But what if it could be automated to some extent?
Automation is a concept that tends to repel the executive search world as it conjures connotations typically associated with high-volume hiring and can be deemed impersonal. However, what if you could leverage a platform that stores all your candidate information and relevant documentation in a single place and could automatically pull the data into a formatted report of your design with just the click of a button? Chances are you might consider it.
- Executive Hiring Managers: When it comes to executive search, hiring managers have traditionally been keen on phone calls to discuss shortlisted candidates. And considering the importance of building personal relationships in this kind of recruiting, it’s no surprise why. Nevertheless, a digital approach can help complement this practice and free up their time, offering a flexible alternative that can fit around their day.
Imagine a portal and mobile app that provide hiring managers with access to all the pipeline information they might need from a single place, rather than candidate files being dispersed across emails. Information is updated in real time, meaning you’re always sure everyone is looking at the latest data. When it comes to evaluating candidates, hiring managers can do so in a secure, confidential and compliant way, even when offline.
Rather than being restrained to the office, they could carry out this task at their convenience, taking advantage of their commute, or while playing with the kids. By centralizing key recruitment data and processes in a customizable and intuitive portal, hiring managers gain greater visibility over the process and can take actions and interact with executive recruiters on the go.
The goal is to replicate the digital ways of their everyday lives and incorporate them into their approach to executive recruiting. This doesn’t have to mean that phone calls and other traditional forms of communication can’t be preserved, but digital enhancements can prove beneficial to speed and quality of the overall hiring process.
Take the example of one of the biggest retail corporations in the US that created a highly engaging and modern hiring manager portal for their executives. The aim was to provide a great service to the business while improving collaboration and efficiency between recruiters and hiring managers. Taking inspiration from e-commerce experiences that we have all become familiar with, they leveraged Avature to offer executives a fully branded, one-stop-shop hiring manager portal to evaluate possible candidates. As well as being able to rate and compare candidates using a visual five-star rating scale, hiring managers could move favorites along in the process by placing them in their shopping cart or adding them to their wish list.
With everything occurring within Avature, they were also able to effectively measure the impact of their consumer approach to executive search. Improved time to hire and candidate conversion metrics resulted in the executive recruiting team saving up to 40 hours per week. The new process has delivered higher stakeholder satisfaction across the board.
- Executive candidates: The ultimate goal in all of this is to give them a great experience that reassures them that the organization and opportunity they’re considering is right for them. To mention just one way in which a more digital approach to executive recruiting can significantly impact their experience, let’s take a look at scheduling.
Executive candidates are extremely busy and are, more often than not, already employed elsewhere. So getting a hold of them and scheduling an interview with hiring managers (who are also pretty busy people) is not always an easy task. By instead providing candidates access to a scheduling portal, which displays only times in which the hiring manager is available, they can self service by picking an interview time that suits them. This way they avoid back and forth when it comes to combining agendas. Though it might seem less personal than the recruiter or headhunter handling this process by phone, it’s a much more seamless and discrete option – an important consideration due to the confidentiality of many of these roles.
The assessment of skill sets, cultural fit and that elusive but critical “feeling” must still be achieved using intuition and asking the right questions, characteristics that are inherently human, and determined primarily through a relationship-based model. But rather than replacing the human touch with a technological alternative, a digital approach enhances it even further. The digitization of certain processes can help reduce the burden of administrative tasks and provide a better experience for all stakeholders. By replicating seamless and convenient “one-click” processes we expect as consumers, you can offer a modern yet familiar alternative to high-touch executive recruiting.