Workplace for recruiting

by Sameer Chowdhri

The second post in our 'Workplace for HR' series looks at some simple, pragmatic and actionable steps to find and recruit new talent.

We recently developed Workplace for HR – a new framework to help Human Resources professionals drive impact across the employee life cycle. That's because we know HR is on the frontline of cultural change. But it's also because we believe that Workplace can help make employee experiences better.

The average employee wastes up to 40 minutes at work every single day due to slow technology. That's over 170 hours a year. How many of those hours are wasted on things such as searching for candidate CVs? Scheduling interviews? Checking payslips? Filling in surveys?

Better and faster recruitment processes

What if you could make these processes faster, easier, more delightful? Workplace helps deliver that impact with simple, familiar tools. And it starts right where you'd expect it to, at the very beginning of the employee life cycle: recruiting.

Recruiting is everybody's job. At Facebook, every single person is expected to take responsibility for tapping their network and finding new talent. Individual engineers are actually assessed on their contribution to the recruiting pipeline in their bi-annual performance reviews. That's how seriously we take it.

Workplace has helped us move faster, become more transparent, share best practices and cut down the time it takes to move from interview to offer. And when your business is growing fast, speed matters. In this blog, we'll share some simple, pragmatic and actionable steps to help you do the same.

We'll break it down across six areas that cover the entire recruiting process.


Workplace for recruitment

Workforce planning in groups

Sadly, you can't just walk into the nearest job centre and pluck someone out at random. Workforce planning is the cornerstone of a great hiring process. But it isn't easy. It means getting HR and Recruiting in the room with Finance, Legal and maybe Facilities. That's a noisy (not to mention crowded) space.

Workplace makes it easy. Simply create a closed group, give it a catchy name such as 'Strategic Workforce Planning', add the relevant people, and get started. No more stressing over clashing calendars, diary invitations or time zones. Post job descriptions or budget planning docs. Leave feedback in nested comments so that you don't lose the thread. Review and approve headcount. All in one place.

Groups provide context, build transparency, enable sharing, streamline processes and fast-track decision-making. so that you can get to the next step – finding great people.


Recruitment in Workplace groups

Sourcing via live video and events

If you can't source great people, you can't hire them. So it's worth pulling out all the stops to fill your pipeline with the widest array of amazing talent.

But it also helps to divide and conquer. Start by creating specific recruiting groups based on skills (e.g. iOS, SQL, Java) or function (engineering, marketing, sales), so you have the right people contributing to the right area. Create pinned posts that outline best practices for sourcing (such as how to do boolean searches on LinkedIn) or principles of engagement (including any legal issues that employees should be aware of).

With the basics covered you, can start getting creative. At Facebook, we do regular 'sourceathons', where team members get together to mine their contacts (however tenuous) for anybody with potential. That can be much harder for dispersed teams or companies with remote workers. Video is a great way to get people motivated. Whoever is leading the sourceathon can broadcast themselves live while the rest of the team follows along, sharing comments and feedback as they go.

Even more effective are actual live events, which can be coordinated in Workplace using the Events feature to invite recruiters, hiring managers and any other employees who are able to lend their time and expertise.

With groups, live video and events, you can facilitate sharing, make everyone a recruiter and democratise knowledge across your organisation.


More recruitment in Workplace groups

Create a community of hiring managers

Recruiters can take care of the technical details, but you need an organised and highly motivated community of hiring managers to close top talent. After all, they're the ones with the most skin in the game. So make sure that they're fully involved in the process, and that you're learning from their feedback.

Start by creating groups for hiring managers to liaise with recruiters and sourcers. For day-to-day needs, this could be a Workplace Chat group where information and answers can be shared quickly. It can also be useful to create interview groups by skill or function (either matched to the sourcing groups you've created – or possibly even using those same groups), so that hiring managers and interviewers can share feedback and tips on top questions and answers.

However you slice and dice it, make sure that there's an overall "Recruiting feedback" group, where everybody has the opportunity to offer thoughts and advice on all aspects of the recruiting process. The wisdom of the crowd is a powerful but easily overlooked tool.


Recruitment feedback group

Smarter dashboards with integrations

Tracking the progress of your recruiting pipeline is one of the least sexy parts of the job – but also one of the most important. Take the manual out of the labour using an integration to automate some of the hard work.

Tools like Smartsheet and Jira can organise pipeline data such as open headcount by function, positions filled and candidate stages. Set up notifications in Workplace Chat to get the alerts you need (for example when a candidate interview stage changes). Finally, review and approve key process steps directly from Workplace Chat.

Using groups to manage interviews

By this point, you're going to be an expert in Groups. But there's still more to come. We recommend that you create a group for every single role so that recruiter, hiring manager and interviewers all have access to the information they need in a single place.

Think of this as mission control for each individual hiring process. Post candidate CVs, job descriptions and interview questions to help calibrate interviewers. Create transparency and give leaders the opportunity to provide guidance on what to prioritise when hiring.

At Facebook, we actually use a Workplace Chat bot to automatically schedule interviews, welcome candidates and send reminders. It's worth considering a similar custom integration – and we have a lot of Workplace partners who can deliver these solutions for you.


Using bots to manage interviews

Candidate management with multi-company groups

All of the groups you've created so far are for people inside the same company. But with Workplace, you can also invite external people into a shared space. We call these spaces multi-company groups and they're a great way to manage communications with candidates.

All you need to invite someone to a group is their personal email. Once they're in, you can schedule interviews, provide useful resources, share videos and capture all your candidate interactions in one place.


Multi-company groups to manage recruitment

Deliver offers via closed groups

Offer delivery is a critical part of the recruiting process. It should also be one that's kept confidential.

Closed groups are perfect for these conversations. Anybody in your company can be added to a closed group, but only group members can see posts. Used closed groups to get the Compensation and Benefits Team together to share best practices and guidelines in a privacy-safe environment. Add relevant HRBPs to share important C&B-related updates.

Finally, create a 'Secret' inter-department group – call it something like Offer@. Then invite HR, the recruiter, hiring manager, business lead and diversity lead (if you have one). This will give you a secure way of sharing confidential information across a small group to help you make informed decisions and build your competitive edge as you move fast to close on the offer.

To summarise, Workplace helps you:

  • Crowdsource top talent through recruiters and employee referrals
  • Significantly reduce recruiting cycle time by connecting everyone
  • Improve quality of hire by closing the feedback loop with recruiters and hiring managers
  • Measure, monitor and share your recruiting analytics

About the author: Sameer Chowdhri is the global lead for Workplace for HR. With 20 years of HR experience, he advises digital HR experts who use Workplace on cultural transformation and the future of work to help humanise the employee experience.

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