Customer Stories

OpenText’s Hiring Manager Experience

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With 120,000 applicants and 800 unique hiring managers, you could say the TA team at OpenText has their hands full. Facing exponential growth as a result of over 10 acquisitions in the past 5 years, and with the need for more transparency in their growing TA function, OpenText approached Avature 3 years ago for a solution to transform the hiring manager experience. By transforming their stakeholder collaboration from an admin-heavy process to a strategic TA partnership, OpenText has been able to reduce their time to fill by 7 days.

About OpenText

OpenText is a Canadian software company that traditionally has focused on Enterprise Information Management, but also provides global customers with innovative solutions relating to Customer Experience and Business Process Management, Business Networks, Enterprise Content Management, Discovery and Analytics. OpenText employs over 12,000 people in 140 countries and has grown rapidly in the past five years which poses unique challenges for talent acquisition. Receiving 120,000 applications each year, the Talent Acquisition (TA) team of 45 people has a big job on their hands:

"We are a unique company in our growth strategy, and although we do see organic growth, a lot of our growth is through acquisition. Since I started with OpenText 5 years ago, I have seen the company double in size and haven been through 10 acquisitions."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition

Challenges before Avature

5 years ago, OpenText’s recruiting model was very different predominantly outsourcing their TA activities to an RPO. However, through several acquisitions OpenText faced growing demands on their TA function, and decided to bring the TA function fully in-house in 2013. Focused on becoming a strategic business partner, the newly formed in-house TA team soon realized their legacy ATS from their outsourcing days was impeding their transformation, and they were facing some key challenges:

Disconnected relationships and expectations between Hiring Managers and TA
Previously, Hiring Managers worked directly with the RPO, giving orders rather than partnering with a TA team to find and engage top talent. Furthermore, they were unable to access the old legacy ATS, making their relationship with recruiters frustrating as they were having to rely on email to share excels, resumes and candidate feedback.

Admin heavy operations, with no clear visibility on the recruiting process
Stuck within a post and pray model, the legacy ATS was burdensome, linear in its processes and provide no visibility on where candidates were or were not in the recruiting cycle.

Tracking candidates between newly acquired companies, and ensuring a great candidate experience
The lack of visibility and ability to collaborate led to long lead times for candidates, and with so many candidates across the different acquired companies, it was hard to track their process.

"Our overall candidate experience suffered, with long turnaround times and an outdated career site. It was tedious to communicate and it was difficult to get feedback on candidates, and it was hard to keep track of the candidates we were sharing."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition


Rebrand the TA team as a strategic business partner
In order to rebrand and reposition their team in the C-suite, and ultimately transform the hiring manager and internal stakeholder experience, technology became a central focus point and a good first step:

"We knew we needed to reinvent our model and rebrand the TA team and the best place to start was to implement a new ATS that supported innovative processes. In order for us to work successfully with HMs, we knew education and relationships needed to be formed at the top."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition

Foster collaboration between internal stakeholders
Knowing that Hiring Managers are an essential component to recruiting success, OpenText were determined to provide an agile solution that enabled and fostered collaboration between every stakeholder within the recruiting process – candidates, recruiters, hiring managers & HR managers.

In combination with Avature ATS, OpenText opted to implement a Hiring Manager specific portal that provided access to and visibility of candidates, where they are in the process, feedback through each step, metrics and more. This holistic recruiting platform is now the go-to-place for hiring managers. The intuitive UI that requires no training, and the mobile first approach ensures OpenText Hiring Managers are easily able stay connected and handle their recruiting responsibilities on-the-go from their smartphones.

"It is a tool that we developed with Avature, and focuses on what hiring managers need from the process."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition

The Hiring Manager Portal is highly configurable tool that allows OpenText Hiring Managers to:

  • Have a full overview of their candidates pending review
  •  Submit and approve job requisitions with job templates that pre-populate.
  • Request and schedule interviews, as well as add comments and availability using an easy calendar integration
  • Schedule automatic email reminders for the candidate and manager e.g. day before interview
  • Assign delegates for when they are unavailable to interview
  • Provide feedback about candidates directly to recruiters within the portal
  • Move candidates through the process — from review to offer and onboarding

The Strategy

Making hiring managers a strategic recruiting partner
OpenText knew they needed a strategy to ensure their hiring managers were engaged, and one main focus was ongoing education.

"An area we focused on was education, holding sessions for HM’s, continuously doing “Lunch and Learns” so they could learn about TA. We also developed training modules that could be accessed during onboarding, letting them know how we could support them in hiring. We also made sure that acquired HM’s were trained on our processes to create a smooth transition."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition

In addition, recruiters have begun to join hiring manager team meetings to get a real idea of the roles, ideal candidates and potential future requisitions. To further enhance their working relationship, they frequently invite hiring managers to participate in recruiting events to meet candidates. This collaborative approach has laid strong foundations to ensure that there is real clarity around what hiring managers need, the urgency, the profile they are looking for. And hiring managers understand how they fit into the process and the important role they play in the candidate experience.

"We partner with hiring managers at each stage of the process, not just at interview. To do this we ask them to attend recruitment events, and we send them analytics to let them know how we are doing. We also ask them to push out content on their profiles to help pipeline candidates faster."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition


To date, OpenText has experienced significant improvement in many areas of talent acquisition administration and operations.

"We implemented the hiring manager portal about 3 years ago and have seen great results. We were able to reduce admin tasks and overall time-to-fill globally by 7 days by removing the bottleneck of administration and improving communications with HM’s. Since it’s so easy for HMs to give us feedback through any device, we see them doing it much faster. We also implemented a survey and continued to see great results on questions relating to speed and efficiencies since introducing the HM portal."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition

As a consequence of shifting from a coordinator model to become a center of excellence that now focuses on strategic TA initiatives, OpenText are better able to support and strategically partner with the business.”On average, we have 400-600 requisitions open at any time, closing about 2000 requisitions annually, and we serve over 800 unique hiring managers. We pride ourselves as being true advisors of the business and the subject matter experts on all parts of the hiring process.”

The Future

Next steps on the strategic TA journey with Avature is to really invest the time in developing customized reports for different individuals and areas of the business. With the philosophy of “true transparency,” the Avature Custom Report Builder will give OpenText the real opportunity to give all their stakeholders the data they have been asking for.

"We have been able to up our game, and use data to understand which roles we recruit for most often, and we have been able to work out a talent brand strategy based on the number of requisitions coming in. It’s one example of how we are using data to push the envelope and get our pipelines and fill requisitions faster."

Andrea Morrison, Manager of Talent Acquisition

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