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4 Steps Toward a Talent Strategy Built for Gold

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Would you consider your organization to be a competitive player when it comes to talent? Research reveals a less than stellar reality for many organizations. In fact, a recent Bersin by Deloitte study indicates that 70 to 80 percent of organizations lack a talent strategy, and if you want to be a champion in the market, you have to have a great strategy.

Visions of gold aren’t unattainable, but until now, many organizations haven’t had the proper tools to really excel when it comes to managing and retaining talent. That’s all about to change as businesses begin to put greater emphasis on building talent by exploring, creating and leveraging a strategy.

The Challenges

Many organizations face two main challenges when it comes to their talent strategy. While most organizations are engaged in some form of talent management, they lack a clear talent strategy. Considering a good talent strategy provides direction and helps organizations align with overall business goals, why aren’t more companies invested?

But development isn’t where organizations struggle the most. In many cases, the significant problem is a lack of sufficient leaders to follow through with the talent strategy. Somewhere along the line, someone drops the ball and, unfortunately, business outcomes are affected.

Overcoming these challenges and taking control of your talent strategy is really quite easy. If you’re doing it right, it’s a simple four-step approach.

Step One: Identify Your Business Strategy

Are all your leaders on the same page when it comes to business strategy? The first step involves unifying leaders across the organization. Leaders are responsible for creating the talent strategy, so they need to know the businesses strategy and goals.

Step Two: Identify Talent Needs

Now that you know what your business strategy and goals are, the next step is conducting a workforce assessment to find out which talent needs are the most crucial. By the end of this discussion, leaders should have a clear understanding how to attract, develop, engage and retain individuals. This information will become the talent plan foundation, outlining how the organization can achieve its strategy.

Step Three: Align the Strategy

With a talent strategy in place, leaders are now responsible for aligning the strategy with expectations and fully supporting the system. In order to be successful, you need complete buy-in from the rest of the workforce. It is up to the leaders of the organization to ensure employees are willing and able to act out the process and then maintain a proactive role in encouraging usage. Consistency only will breed better results.

Step Four: Redesign the System

Finally, a system redesign completes the process. Remember, technology should align with the activity strategies you have set forth in your plan. Choose a talent management system robust enough to support all your business goals. And note that technology should work for your people, not the other way around.

Implement a tool that can build a reward and talent program to drive your business forward. Don’t be a victim of talent shortage; rather, find and foster super talent by linking performance and compensation. With an all-in-one system, you can implement fair and consistent compensation plans where performance directly impacts reward.

Each of these steps involves a great deal of collaboration and thoughtful planning, but together, they provide you a winning strategy capable of producing amazing results. Prepare for success and take the gold when it comes to talent.

What’s your strategy for developing the talent needed to grow your business? Is it gold medal-worthy?



Author Bio: Lauren is an enthusiastic writer who is passionate about numerous topics surrounding the HCM industry including talent management and acquisition, technology, document management and leadership, just to name a few. Lauren has been with Paycom for over a year and has taken on roles as a blogger, social strategist and community relations coordinator. In her spare time she enjoys DIY“ing,” exploring the city and keeping up with her two dogs, Deacon and Cookie.

applicants’ criminal history

California ‘Ban the Box’ Law to Take Effect Jan. 1

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Last month, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 1008 (AB 1008), placing new restrictions on employers’ ability to make hiring decisions based on applicants’ criminal history. Effective Jan. 1, 2018, AB 1008 also limits when employers may ask applicant about that history.

Prior to this legislation, “ban the box” protections only prohibited state and local agencies from asking about conviction information before the applicant was determined qualified for the position. The new law extends the protections to all applicants applying to an employer in California with five or more employees.

Under AB 1008, consideration of an applicant’s criminal history is permissible only after the employer has made a conditional offer of employment. At that point, employers may not rescind the employment offer based on the criminal history until they have performed an individualized assessment.

Individualized assessments of an applicants’ criminal history

An individualized assessment is a process to justify denying an applicant a position by linking their criminal history to specific job duties. For example, if an employer is considering an individual for a cashier position, which would involve handling large sums of cash, the employer may determine a shoplifting conviction to be reason for disqualifying, because the conviction relates to specific job duties.

An individual assessment must consider:

  • the nature and gravity of the offense and conduct
  • the time passed since the offense or conduct and completion of the sentence
  • the nature of the job held or sought

Also, the employer must notify the applicant in writing once a preliminary decision is made. This notice is not required to contain a justification for the preliminary decision, but the employer must:

  • provide written notice of the disqualifying conviction or convictions that are the basis for the preliminary decision to rescind the offer
  • include a copy of the conviction history report, if any
  • let the applicant know they have the right to respond to the notice within at least five business days
  • explain the candidate may submit evidence challenging the accuracy of the conviction record or present mitigating circumstances

During that five-day period, the employer cannot make any final hiring determinations based on conviction records. If the applicant responds, the employer must consider the information in the response before making a final decision.

California employers

AB 1008 contains a detailed process for California employers to follow when making employment decisions based on criminal history. Employers should review these changes and adjust policies and procedures accordingly to ensure compliance by Jan. 1, 2018.

Disclaimer: This blog includes general information about legal issues and developments in the law. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You need to contact a lawyer licensed in your jurisdiction for advice on specific legal problems.

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Posted in Blog, California, Compliance, Featured

Jason Hines

by Jason Hines


Author Bio: Jason Hines is a Paycom compliance attorney. With more than five years’ experience in the legal field, he monitors developments in human resource laws, rules and regulations to ensure any changes are promptly updated in Paycom’s system for our clients. Previously, he was an attorney at the Oklahoma City law firm Elias, Books, Brown & Nelson. Hines earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma and his juris doctor degree from the Oklahoma City University School of Law, where he graduated cum laude. A fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Hines also enjoys exploring the great outdoors with his wife and daughter.

How The Fred Factor Can Transform Your Customer Service

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In 1982, leadership expert and motivational speaker Mark Sanborn moved into a neighborhood where his view of customer service was transformed. In his first internationally best-selling book, The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary into the Extraordinary, he tells the story of a postman who revolutionized the way he looked at customer service and the idea of “going above and beyond.”

Sanborn had just moved into a new home in the Washington Park area of Denver when Fred, a seemingly ordinary United States Postal Service carrier with a small, thin mustache, introduced himself one day during his route. However, Fred was no ordinary mailman.

As Sanborn came to discover, Fred was the kind of worker who exemplified everything “right” with customer service. He was “a gold-plated example of what personalized service looks like and a role model for anyone who wants to make a difference in his or her work.”

Join us as Mark Sanborn, provides the answer through four powerful tools that business leaders and HR professionals can use to help others pursue their potential, which in turn, helps improve engagement and a company’s bottom line during our free Nov. 16 webinar.

In The Fred Factor, Sanborn describes how each of us can become a “Fred.”

What makes someone a ’Fred’?

A “Fred” is someone who goes above and beyond the normal call of duty, regardless of recognition or reward. And that’s the key part: regardless of recognition or reward. These employees demonstrate a spirit of service, innovation and commitment. This “Fred Factor” will help you at work and in your personal life.

Here are four principles from the book that can help you become a Fred.

  1. Everyone makes a difference

No matter your position, ultimately it’s up to you to do your job in an extraordinary way. There are no unimportant jobs, just people who feel unimportant doing them. More satisfaction exists in being a first-rate truck driver than a tenth-rate executive.

Martin Luther King Jr. said, “If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep the streets even as a Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep the streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, ‘Here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.’”

Think about the ways this applies to you and your job, and remember: What you do every day matters and has an effect on others.

  1. Success is built on relationships

Indifferent people provide indifferent service. Building strong relationships with your colleagues will help you work better together and provide an even higher level of customer service.

You can improve the service you provide by getting to know your customers better, too. Service becomes personalized when a relationship exists between the provider and the customer. For example, think about your hairdresser or barber: Would the hair-care experience be a good one if the two of you weren’t on friendly terms? Would you be willing to spend hours with this person every other month or so if he or she wasn’t personable? Probably not.

What can you do to build relationships with the people you work with, including the customers you frequently serve?

  1. Continually create value

Creating value doesn’t have to cost a thing. Ever feel like you don’t have enough money, training or other resources to perform at a high level? Fred had only a uniform and a bag of mail, and still he managed to provide exceptional customer service. His own creativity and drive helped him succeed, and it didn’t cost him or the company a single penny.

Your imagination and creativity can help you go above and beyond too! If all Fred needed was a bag of mail and a uniform, think of everything you can accomplish with the resources you have at your fingertips.

You can be an employee who gives your company a competitive advantage by creating value for your clients and colleagues. Want to bet that will help you in your professional life?

  1. Reinvent yourself regularly

Most of us fall short of what we are capable of accomplishing. If you want to reach your full potential, mediocrity is your silent opponent. Doing just enough to get by means you’ll never know how much you could accomplish.

Think of the effort and originality Fred brought to delivering the mail. If he could bring such value to putting letters in a box, how much more can you bring to your position? Just getting by won’t help you reach your goals; pursuing innovation and creativity can help you gain real value and meaning from your work.

No matter your position or circumstances, you get to start with a clean slate every day. You can orient your professional (and personal) life any direction you choose!

The way to move through life joyfully is by focusing on what you give rather than what you get. You do the right thing not because you have to, but because it’s right. All work is honorable; always do your best, because someone is watching. This is the “Fred Factor”!

After putting these ideas to practice, you may wonder, “What’s next?” If you want to make sure you’re reaching your full potential (even after achieving your goals), join us for our live webinar Nov. 16, when Sanborn provides the answer through four powerful tools that business leaders and HR professionals can use. Register for free here.

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Posted in Blog, Employee Experience, Featured, Leadership

Chelsea Justice

by Chelsea Justice


Author Bio: Chelsea is co-host Paycom’s HR Break Room podcast, editor-in-chief of its corporate culture magazine, Paycom Pulse and is Paycom’s communications supervisor. During her more than eight years in marketing, corporate training and communications, she has created hundreds of magazines, training guides, videos and webinars for multiple industries. In her free time, Chelsea is planning her next travel adventure, perfecting her most recent baking recipe, devouring a good book and, above all, spending time with family.

How Automating Recruitment Boosts Your Candidate Experience

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You treat your employees like people, not just numbers, right? You respect their time, communicate with them regularly and get to know them personally. If you want to improve your candidate experience, you need to treat candidates the same way.

The quality of hires can be improved by as much as 70% when a company invests in a positive candidate experience, according to Glassdoor. Candidates want a simple experience that reflects the environment in which they may work. Negative experiences frustrate candidates, which could lead them to posting bad reviews of your company on career sites like Glassdoor and Indeed. Poor reviews will make it more difficult for you to find great talent. Automation and an applicant tracking system (ATS) can help you make sure every candidate leaves with a positive impression of your company, even if they are not hired.

Learn how automating the recruitment process makes it possible to provide a consistent candidate experience while reducing paperwork and time spent searching for the right people.

No more ‘black hole’ of communication

After candidates apply for a position at your company, they should quickly hear from you. Although many candidates may infer they haven’t been selected if they don’t get acknowledgement of receipt, receiving nothing can make them wonder if their application even made it through the system.

An automated process helps to remove the “black hole” of communication by ensuring every candidate – qualified or not – hears something back from your company. In 2016, 47% of candidates were still waiting to hear back from an employer more than two months after submitting an application, according to the nonprofit organization Talent Board. While an automated response may not be personal, it at least lets candidates know you received their application and how long they should expect to wait to be contacted if they are being considered.

When you create an automated process, you’re forced to establish a clear hiring pipeline for all hiring managers to follow. Setting up a process allows you to test candidates’ experiences and find gaps in communication. This process then can be provided to candidates even before they’ve applied.

Once a hiring process is established, add a section on your careers page that clearly lays out the steps in an interview process. Concrete steps – for example, if a phone interview will occur, in addition to in-person interviews and a homework assignment – help candidates understand where they are in the process.

A personal connection with recruiters

High-touch aspects of recruiting, like interview preparation, can be improved when routine tasks are removed from the recruiter’s/hiring manager’s plate. A good ATS allows your recruiters to spend most of their time with talented candidates, instead of spending hours weeding through those who don’t meet your minimum requirements.

Recruiters have time to call candidates and prepare them for their in-person interviews, including answering any questions they may have and providing a detailed agenda. This personal touch helps to reduce or remove the nerves candidates feel going in to interviews – which will make those interviews a more accurate representation of the candidates.

Clear guidelines and decreased repetition

With an automated recruiting and established processes in place, your hiring managers will know better how long each aspect of the interview process will take. An established and consistent process will make it easier to identify the gaps that may lead to long waits between interviews or unnecessary steps and wasted time.

Candidates who gave their experiences a one-star rating indicated their time at appointments and interviews was disrespected, and some said they withdrew from consideration because the process took too long, according to Talent Board. Candidates won’t fall out of a long process if they know ahead of time to expect it.

How an ATS can help you

Organization is the key to success when it comes to providing a consistent candidate experience. Whether your business uses external recruiters, staffing firms or its own recruiters and HR department to gather candidates’ information, an ATS makes it easy to stay organized.

No matter what kind of business you have, automated recruiting can help you treat every candidate consistently and fairly. The result is an applicant left with a positive impression of your company, and an improved talent pool for you.

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Posted in Blog, Featured, Pre-Employment, Talent Acquisition

Callie Johnson

by Callie Johnson


Author Bio: As a writer for Paycom, Callie Johnson creates content for the company’s various marketing and communications initiatives. Having earned her bachelor’s degrees in journalism from the University of Oklahoma and web design/development from Full Sail University, she has written for companies of all sizes. Outside of the office, she enjoys hand-lettering, going to the movies and spending time with her family and dogs.

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