Few companies would consider doing a major project using individual contributors instead of teams.
Hiring is a major project, one that has substantial long-term impact on the group, department, and company.
So, why are teams used in every part of business today—except staffing? Why is it assumed that the various parts of staffing are a function only of managers and HR?
Sadly, some managers are not comfortable involving their people. The reasons range from control issues (involvement in staffing is very empowering) to fear (the manager feels insecure) to disinterest (staffing has a low priority).
But in today’s fast-paced work environment, it’s hard for managers to block out several consecutive minutes, let alone the hours, needed to read resumes, let alone source any candidates, screen, etc.
Speaking as an ex-headhunter, I’m here to say that the mechanics of recruiting aren’t rocket science; they may not be intuitive, but anybody can learn them, especially in these days of LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.
More importantly, when it comes to recruiting, there is no manager, no HR person, certainly no headhunter who is as impressive to an outsider as employees excited about their company.
Candidates really respond positively to being recruited by a peer! A peer who likes her company so much she is willing to put time into the staffing process? A manager to whom hiring is not about control but rather about empowerment? Who sees hiring as a chance to shine, not a necessary evil? Who not only understands the desire to make a difference but actually gives people extra opportunities to do so?
Wow! That’s the kind of manager most good candidates want to work for! Nobody can sell the company or the group or the project or the manager with the same intensity and passion as the company’s own people!
More bodies ease the work load, as well as supplying creative ideas and fresh energy to the staffing effort. Further, teams
- empower and give people a feeling of ownership;
- engage people in the present and future of their group and the company;
- teach critical managerial skills;
- spreads the workload; and
- helps minimize new employee friction.
With the exception of technical interviewing anybody in your company can be on the team, whether they are from that department or not. Sure, it takes a well written job req, but almost everybody in your company knows as much technically as most headhunters—and they certainly know more about the company. Best of all, they really care!
None of what I’ve written hinges on the economy; the time to teach people new skills is not, not when you have multiple openings and are under pressure to fill them.
Think of it as an investment—one with an amazing ROI.
Image credit: ZedBee|Zoë Power on flickr