How to Make the Hiring Process Easier
A business needs to find candidates who have the right culture and the right fit for the position they are hiring for.
Hosted by Kevin Dieny
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[00:00:00] Kevin Dieny: Hello, welcome to the Close The Loop podcast. Today, we’re going to be talking about how to make the whole hiring process easier, quicker, faster, stronger, for all businesses that are hiring. This is a very interesting topic for businesses that are growing. Everyone’s going to hire at some point, hopefully, your business grows to that point.
[00:00:19] Kevin Dieny: So, today I’m also joined by Matt Widmyer.
[00:00:23] Matt Widmyer: Hey guys. Thanks for having me back.
[00:00:26] Kevin Dieny: And a very special guest is here with us. His name is Jeremy Tolan. He is the partnerships manager at Spark Hire. He’s responsible for cultivating and maintaining relationships among Spark Hire strategic partners. He has helped hundreds of leading organizations successfully implement video interviewing for hiring purposes.
[00:00:45] Kevin Dieny: Jeremy loves practicing Kung Fu and seeing his 20 month old nephew who’s growing up so fast. So welcome, Jeremy!
[00:00:52] Jeremy Tolan: Thanks for including me.
[00:00:54] Matt Widmyer: Good to have you, Jeremy,
[00:00:55] Jeremy Tolan: Thanks.
[00:00:56] Kevin Dieny: We are really excited to jump into this topic because this impacts a lot of businesses. Every business that’s like, oh man, I have to go through hiring again or recruitment again. A business is trying to fill a role that’s really important for that business to fill that role.
[00:01:11] Kevin Dieny: They’ve decided, okay, we need help with this. We need someone dedicated to this. We need help doing X, Y, Z, because that’s going to help our company. The longer that goes on unfilled for a business, the more painful it is, the more they’re not getting their projects completed. The longer it goes, the more people aren’t getting the extra support and they’re having to carry that role on their shoulders.
[00:01:33] Kevin Dieny: Usually the manager of whatever that role is, is having to do that role while that role is unfulfilled. So it’s really important to find the candidates, but really what we’re going to get into a bit is finding the right candidates because if we make the hiring process faster, but you find worse candidates, that’s not helping anybody.
[00:01:51] Kevin Dieny: So we’re really going to be talking about all of that. So kick this off, Jeremy, a question for you. So why is hiring such a painful process for business leaders today?
[00:02:04] Jeremy Tolan: Sure. And I think you did a really good job explaining how painful it can be just having that open position, that vacant role, where people are taking on more responsibility or just maybe no one’s taking on that responsibility and tasks and important priorities are falling by the wayside.
[00:02:19] Jeremy Tolan: But as far as the hiring process being so painful for business leaders, I think it, it requires obviously a lot of work and time to source, interview, and onboard new employees. And in a lot of cases, business leaders have so many other important priorities outside of just hiring. Even though hiring is incredibly important.
[00:02:38] Jeremy Tolan: It can also just be taking away time from these other high priority activities from a business leader. And one of the biggest challenges with having a poor interview process is how much a final run interview can cost. Because when you think about it, most businesses will have HR, a recruiter or some type of manager that needs to collaborate with other leaders at the company to make hiring decisions.
[00:03:00] Jeremy Tolan: So that final round interview might have various hiring stakeholders, all meeting for at least an hour to connect with that candidate. They needed a brief with each other following the interview and ultimately make a decision to communicate that decision to the candidate. So all of that really begins to add up, even as I’m saying it out loud, I can kind of just like, feel it adding up.
[00:03:19] Jeremy Tolan: These final round interviews that don’t end up resulting in a hire it could be a huge time, money and resource drain for a company.
[00:03:27] Kevin Dieny: Yeah. I figured that this is a really good transition to asking Matt, you’re going through the hiring process right now. I feel like you’re constantly going through the hiring process. You’ve had the hiring process work out really well for you. You’ve had the hiring process not work out for you very well.
[00:03:41] Kevin Dieny: Can you talk about the painful parts of the hiring process that you’ve experienced before and why maybe other business leaders might be like, yeah, hiring is such a pain.
[00:03:51] Matt Widmyer: Yeah, I think the pain that I’ve suffered is a little bit different now than it was initially when I was first trying to grow a team. And I think that, obviously now we have the challenge of COVID and trying to get people to apply.
[00:04:05] Matt Widmyer: It seems like there’s a talent shortage that’s going on right now. When resumes are coming in, more than you can actually sift through and look through. It’s a little bit challenging because you have to select the best resumes.
[00:04:18] Matt Widmyer: It is a huge time suck. And then when you do schedule a phone call with them to talk to them, sometimes, you can tell whether you want to go further with the person or not within the first couple of minutes of the phone call. That’s why I love. Jeremy is probably kinda smiling right now because, this one way video interviewing has made it, significantly easier on me, at least that piece of it.
[00:04:40] Kevin Dieny: The pain is always around, the time it takes. So Matt described how you alluded to it Jeremy, the process takes you away from what you’re normally doing. And sometimes there’s a committee involved.
[00:04:49] Kevin Dieny: Sometimes there’s other people who have to be involved. There are sign-offs from HR or making sure we can afford this role and what the parameters of it are going to be and how this is going to fit. But the time itself is also pretty significant. Do you have any ideas around how long hiring can take or usually takes and then that toll Jeremy?
[00:05:08] Jeremy Tolan: Yeah. When, when I’ve been looking into this, as recently as a few months ago, I saw that the, I think it was 23.8 days on average, is the length of the interview process in the United States.
[00:05:20] Jeremy Tolan: So about 24 days. Obviously that can vary from company to company or even just from role to role that a company’s hiring for. So pretty much like a full month, as the average right now.
[00:05:31] Kevin Dieny: Gosh. So, it makes sense, you want to hire the right person. And so there’s an element of culture involved. We want them to fit for the role itself, but we want also them to fit with the team that we’re bringing them into.
[00:05:44] Kevin Dieny: Matt, do you have any stories or things involved around what can go right and what can go wrong in the hiring process that you’d want to share?
[00:05:52] Matt Widmyer: I think bringing in the wrong people is, always something that can go wrong. It’s a time commitment, not only going through the whole hiring process but having to spend our resources, company, resources, time, money, energy, trying to get someone up to speed when, they’re not the right person for the job.
[00:06:12] Matt Widmyer: Conversely, somebody who’s going to come in here and kick butt from day one, hit the ground running, those really look good on paper, right? Self-starters are great. As long as you give them the tools and training and everything, involved with that. We’ve had rockstars. One of my best people that we hired, started two days of training and he was just out running, broke records, everything.
[00:06:31] Matt Widmyer: And then you have people who are so awesome in the whole interview process. They come in, you’re thinking to yourself, wow, this person’s just like a professional interviewer or something like that. It’s a mixed bag. I’m hiring for the SDR role. So, it is a mixed bag.
[00:06:46] Matt Widmyer: It’s more of an entry-level role. So we get a pretty wide spectrum, but I have learned to not judge a book by its cover, give everybody a chance I am sure they’re safer bets than others. But you never really know until they get here.
[00:07:00] Kevin Dieny: Yeah, that’s some good stories and experiences to go off on there. I think something that you brought up that takes me back to the beginning here is, when to know that you need to hire someone?
[00:07:12] Kevin Dieny: You’re constantly trying to fill roles, for a specific position right now for the sales development representatives. And that role is constantly not vacant, but it’s a place where people come in and then they can go on or the team can come in there and people can get really good experience and they can figure out a good fit for themselves.
[00:07:33] Kevin Dieny: But how does a business know when they should hire for a new role? I think that’s a question that a business leader might be thinking about. When is it going to be time that I need to take this off my plate, put a role there, or get someone to do that for me?
[00:07:48] Kevin Dieny: Questions a manager should be thinking about if they should be hiring for a new role?
[00:07:54] Jeremy Tolan: There’s a number of situations that they might find themselves in or questions that they should be assessing. And to Matt’s point when you’re hiring someone like a SDR or any type of entry level position, I think there’s an increased level of challenge with that because it is entry level in nature.
[00:08:09] Jeremy Tolan: So the candidates that you’re interviewing considering they probably don’t have much experience sometimes not any at all right. It can be harder to make a decision. You really want to structure your process to make sure that candidates have these skills that you’re looking for. Through an interviewing process and not as much from just like reviewing someone’s resume, that has a lot of limited information.
[00:08:27] Jeremy Tolan: But, how would, you know, if you need to start hiring for a new role? I think if you’re noticing that team members aren’t really finishing their day or their week, and they have too many unfinished tasks at the end of the day or a week that are high priority tasks. You definitely should be looking for more employees.
[00:08:43] Jeremy Tolan: I think if you’re finding that your employees aren’t able to spend time on their highest priority activities, or in some cases, revenue generating activities definitely need to start searching to make some hires. And if you’re noticing that someone’s quality of work is suffering, you know, they’re capable of doing better work, but they’re just so busy that they can’t…
[00:09:04] Jeremy Tolan: They can’t really put their best work forward. I think that’s a good indicator that you should be looking in and start hiring to fill more positions. And I think what’s super important is that you’re consistently having transparent conversations with your employees to really understand their workloads and make sure that there’s a culture of them feeling comfortable, opening up to you and letting you know, and making sure you’re aware if they feel like they are taking on too much responsibility so that you can adjust for these types of events.
[00:09:32] Kevin Dieny: Yeah, that’s some really good advice. And those are pretty much the bullet for bullet things I was thinking of. When would it be a good time to hire for this? A lot of times it can go a little past just because of the way financials are. But in that case, what suffers? Whatever the priorities are, whatever main things need to get done that are not getting done.
[00:09:51] Kevin Dieny: Now can I put a price on the things that are being lost? Like you mentioned, and does that sort of sum up to a part-time person, a full-time person, temporary, what does that mean? Is this like a seasonal thing for me? I think there’s a lot of different ways that employers are trying to figure out how can I solve this need without getting fully into the full-time employee kind of a situation.
[00:10:13] Kevin Dieny: Which then some of the things you said, I think lead perfectly into the next question. So I’ll throw it right back to you Jeremy, how can you determine if a candidate is an ideal fit for a role?
[00:10:23] Jeremy Tolan: It’s definitely not easy. And I think the ideal fit is definitely gonna vary from company to company. And even within that company, it might vary a little bit from role the role that you’re recruiting for.
[00:10:34] Jeremy Tolan: So I think that’s why it’s super important to really talk about with the other leaders and really map out the skills that you’re seeking for that role so that you can figure out what are the best interview questions that are going to help you identify if a candidate actually has those skills.
[00:10:48] Jeremy Tolan: A few things that I find really important when I’m hiring are someone’s overall problem solving skills. So I’d like to learn more about how they approach problems and try to solve them. I like to learn more about a candidate’s self-awareness and what type of commitment do they have to actually improving and bettering themselves consistently?
[00:11:06] Jeremy Tolan: A few questions that help with identifying these things, when I’m trying to learn more about a candidate’s problem solving skills. I’d like to ask about one of the toughest problems that they were able to solve and how did they go about solving it?
[00:11:17] Jeremy Tolan: So I’d love to hear about their problem solving process that way. Or I might flip that question where I might outline a certain scenario or a challenge that I would expect them to have to overcome in the role that they’re applying for and just hear about how would they try to overcome that? And hear about their problem solving process.
[00:11:34] Jeremy Tolan: So I think that’s a great way to learn more about their problem solving skills, which I find super important. When I’m thinking about a candidate self-awareness, I’d like to learn more about what are the three things that are most important to them about a job or about a company that they want to work at. And why are those things important to them?
[00:11:50] Jeremy Tolan: And to take it a step further? To, to learn more about their self-awareness and their overall commitment to improving. I like to ask about what’s a skill that they want to improve upon, and if they don’t address this, then I’ll probe a little further and ask about like, what steps have they already taken to try to improve on that?
[00:12:06] Jeremy Tolan: What steps are they open to taking that they’ve thought about, but haven’t taken yet and just really see how willing they are to, to just to consistently better themselves.
[00:12:15] Kevin Dieny: Wow. That’s some really good ideas. I love the idea about asking the questions and probing and figuring out what questions are important that are going to create answers that are going to help me really narrow this down. I’m going to put it on the, it’s almost impossible for a hiring person to know perfectly well if someone’s an ideal fit?
[00:12:34] Kevin Dieny: I think you get close enough, getting to that territory, where it’s not just a total guess and a total flip of a coin. But I think it’s really hard. Cause like Matt had mentioned maybe someone is a perfect interviewer but it’s so hard to get that right.
[00:12:48] Kevin Dieny: So Matt, do you have any questions or things that you’ve done to make finding a better fit in a candidate?
[00:12:55] Matt Widmyer: The main things I look at is, I look for a positive attitude. I look for a strong work ethic and I look for a student mentality, someone who’s coachable. Most of the questions that I’m asking during the video, we do one way video interviewing, through Spark Hire, but most of the questions that are asked through that, are gauging those things.
[00:13:15] Matt Widmyer: You’re basically reverse engineering to find out where they fall along those spectrums. Another thing I think about when I’m interviewing somebody is, what do they bring to the table when it comes to the culture and the morale of the team?
[00:13:27] Matt Widmyer: They seem like they would be a kinda like a negative Nancy or they seem like someone who’s a cheerleader type person for the team. Those are some of the things that I think about, there again, mixed bag.
[00:13:37] Matt Widmyer: You never know what you’re going to get because, like you said, the interview process a little bit different than when they actually get here. But, those are the things that have made it a little bit easier for me. And then, when we do get the interviews back in video format, I do share, all of those with my team.
[00:13:53] Matt Widmyer: The recordings, cause I want everybody’s buy-in I feel like the last couple of times have been unanimous, Hey, let’s do let’s get this person or let’s not bring this person in for an in-person interview. I also like giving my team a voice and because they’re going to be ultimately sitting beside them and helping with the coaching and the training and everything.
[00:14:11] Matt Widmyer: This is a democracy over here, right? I have the final say, but I do like, other people weighing in. Because they might notice something that I don’t or they might miss something that I noticed. At some point they’re going to be doing the hiring, maybe even without me.
[00:14:24] Matt Widmyer: So I want everyone to be on the same page. We’re still figuring out the magic formula though. If I had it down, I would probably be a recruiter myself, but we’re still figuring it out. It’s a never ending thing.
[00:14:36] Jeremy Tolan: I think that’s an awesome point. When you’re thinking about how to identify a good fit, get multiple opinions from different members of your team to help you identify if they’re going to be a good fit, because yeah.
[00:14:46] Jeremy Tolan: They might notice things that you don’t, and everyone’s going to be able to collaborate with each other to really understand if someone’s a good fit from just evaluating from all these different angles.
[00:14:55] Matt Widmyer: Right. And what I don’t want is I don’t want, you know, if I’m asking somebody to tell me a little bit about themselves, I don’t want to hear everything I just read on their resume. Right. I’m kind of looking for beyond the resume things. But. Yeah, it’s pretty, it’s a strange world out there.
[00:15:13] Kevin Dieny: Okay. So let’s pivot a little bit.
[00:15:15] Kevin Dieny: We’ve been talking a little bit about man, hiring could be painful, some tips around making that a lot more manageable, easier to getting to the right fit of a candidate. So let’s flip it on its head a little.
[00:15:27] Kevin Dieny: So as the candidate, as someone who’s looking for a job, hiring is tedious. It’s brutal being told no, all the time is demoralizing. It is, it feels terrible. Chasing after a job, after job, after job can wear you down. It’s not a fun process, job hunting, and it is, a big influence on the rest of your life. So finding the right job as a candidate, it’s also important finding the right fit and finding a right manager, finding the right company with the right role that you’re looking for.
[00:15:56] Kevin Dieny: Maybe that will give you a leg to your career. It’s super important. And as the candidates out there who are just getting their feet wet in this. It’s confusing. It’s all over the place. There’s tons of sites. There’s what do I do? Do I throw cover letters? Do I, this one’s asking me to solve these questions, this puzzle, this one wants me to come in, this one’s remote.
[00:16:15] Kevin Dieny: There’s so much there to tackle. This will be a question for you, Jeremy, in terms of how to improve the hiring process so that it improves it both for the business and for the candidate who are going through this. Do you have any ideas for how to improve the hiring process?
[00:16:30] Kevin Dieny: For both teams, for both people who are both trying to find the right fit?
[00:16:34] Jeremy Tolan: Yeah, no, I’m glad you asked this because we talked about the pain points for business leaders, but it can be just as painful for candidates if you don’t have a well put together hiring process too.
[00:16:45] Jeremy Tolan: I think it definitely goes both ways. It goes both ways. These pain points go both ways, too. When you’re thinking about both perspectives, as a business leader, make sure you’re putting together a highly structured hiring process. So think about mapping out the different stages of your process and within each stage, what are the tasks that actually need to be executed?
[00:17:03] Jeremy Tolan: Set realistic deadlines for these tasks so that you can hold yourself and your team accountable to these and make sure you’re clearly defining who’s going to be responsible for each task too. So just maybe as a quick example, when a candidate applies, the first task might be to review the resume and application and then communicate back to them whether or not they’re going to be advanced to the next step of the process.
[00:17:25] Jeremy Tolan: So that might be the task that’s being done. And in maybe you want to say, 24 business hours to follow up with the candidate on their application like that. And then which member of your team is going to be responsible for that task for whichever position. So really identify those things and add structure to your process because that’s going to keep your process running efficiently and help you avoid some of the pain points we talked about for business leaders earlier.
[00:17:51] Jeremy Tolan: But it’s also going to make your process better for candidates where you’re going to be following up with them in a very quick time period. They’re going to feel encouraged to continue to move forward with your hiring process.
[00:18:01] Jeremy Tolan: You’re not going to miss out on them because they’re probably interviewing for other companies and you don’t want someone to get an offer out in front of them before you do. And then they just accept that offer instead of continuing to pursue your role so make sure you have a highly structured process.
[00:18:13] Jeremy Tolan: And when you are going about structuring your process, make sure that you’re keeping your candidates top of mind, too. Things to think about is, keep them as informed as possible. Make sure they know exactly what to expect throughout your process. Maybe outline the steps of your hiring process from the outset when they first apply, make sure they understand the general timelines for when you’re going to get back to them at different stages of your process, how long this should all take.
[00:18:38] Jeremy Tolan: And a good exercise to do is try going through your own hiring process as if you’re a candidate. So you can really understand what they’re going through. Truly put yourself in their shoes and identify, maybe there’s areas for improvement or things that you’re doing really well, that you can double down on. But try going through that process yourself as if you’re a candidate and really see what it’s like.
[00:18:58] Kevin Dieny: Wow. I’d like to just reiterate some of those incredibly important things you just said. So number one, responding to people in a quickly timely manner is huge. I would say that as someone who has applied to places and fought for trying to get jobs and stuff, a company that got back quicker, you feel really good about.
[00:19:18] Kevin Dieny: A company that takes six months and they’re like, Hey, you still looking? It’s like, man, that was, I don’t even remember you anymore. It’s a big deal to get back to people, as well. I can’t tell you how many times you apply to a place you get along the process, not just off the first resume, but you get along the process and you don’t hear anything. They’ve just ghosted you.
[00:19:35] Kevin Dieny: And that can feel kinda rough. For the manager, it’s like, look, I’m just trying to get the right person. But if you create a good process, you may actually create a pipeline. Let’s call it a pipeline of potential hires that even if you are only gonna hire one or two people, there might be other suitable candidates that could be in there that really liked the process.
[00:19:56] Kevin Dieny: And then later on, if they want to apply again, they have the trust that, okay, here’s a process, a company that knows what they’re doing, that has its head on its shoulders and they know what they’re doing. And their not just stumbling around and then whatever paper lands on the desk is the one that gets hired.
[00:20:11] Kevin Dieny: They like knowing that there’s a good process there as a candidate who went through this is like one of the things I thought about. So those are really good things you’ve mentioned, Jeremy.
[00:20:18] Kevin Dieny: The next thing I was going to ask about was referrals. When you do bring in good employees and you have a good process and you know where everybody’s at along the way, you can, don’t have to dedicate as much mind space to it. And then as the candidate who has a good experience, they may think, oh, wow, I’ll put my friend through this, I’ll put my cousin through this.
[00:20:39] Kevin Dieny: I know someone who’s a good fit. And this is a good company. The process is not so crazy that they’re gonna pull their hair out. So Matt, this will be a question for you. How do you create a process where, it also includes the ability to get referrals, employee referrals.
[00:20:53] Kevin Dieny: Meaning someone says, oh, I have a friend who could be really good fit for this job.
[00:20:58] Matt Widmyer: Yeah. I mean, referrals are hands down the best kind of candidates you can get. I think they would probably the lowest risk because you have a current employee vouching for them.
[00:21:08] Matt Widmyer: Internally, we offer we offer a sum of money if they make it for the three month mark and they’re still in good standing. They get a cash bonus paid out on the following paycheck. Seems to have worked out so well, we’re probably two for three, doing it that way. So it’s still, more data needed, but, so far it’s working out pretty well.
[00:21:31] Kevin Dieny: Yeah I like the idea of referrals. It can create a little bit of an interesting relationship involved there, but I think most of the time people come to work and, as long as the process is decent. I think making shortcuts, cutting around things, being like, oh yeah, this person knows this person, so they must be a perfect fit and not following up with any of the hiring process and just jumping straight to go. There might be some issues there.
[00:21:51] Kevin Dieny: But, I think at the end of the day, a referral is a good place to at least get in the door, cause there’s a lot of places to promote a job.
[00:22:00] Kevin Dieny: I guess that’ll bring me right to the next question, Jeremy. So how important is it to be, detailed, specific, accurate with the job that you’re trying to hire for? Should you try to get a whole bunch of candidates in the door and then bait and switch them? How important is it to be very honest, transparent, accurate with the job that you’re trying to get people for?
[00:22:20] Jeremy Tolan: Yeah. I mean, it’s incredibly important for both the candidate to have a good experience, but also for the employer to, to understand that they are going to be hiring a suitable candidate for the role.
[00:22:32] Jeremy Tolan: So it’s so important. It’s crucial. It’s all about setting the right expectations for what you’re seeking from candidates. And that’s going to help you validate that the candidates are actually going to be able to perform well in the role. And, um, just so important that a candidate can understand if they’re actually interested in the role or if they feel like they’re capable of being able to perform well on the role.
[00:22:51] Jeremy Tolan: So setting clear and accurate expectations for, for a role is incredibly important.
[00:22:57] Kevin Dieny: Yeah, I agree. I’ve experienced the this job sounds right. And get in and then realize it’s something totally different and been like, man, this burned my time, my gas coming down here. It’s a big deal.
[00:23:10] Kevin Dieny: So, Matt, what are some places that employees or that managers could put their resumes, they could put their jobs out there, that you’ve had good experiences with in terms of sourcing out and getting the hires.
[00:23:24] Kevin Dieny: Do you have any thoughts on places that businesses should go or can go to get the word out?
[00:23:30] Matt Widmyer: I’ve recently, most of our resumes will come from indeed, you know, just recruiting sites, Indeed, Monster we’ve used, um, ZipRecruiter. Indeed I think is one of the big players right now in terms of like actually getting their resumes.
[00:23:43] Matt Widmyer: As we said, referrals we’ve been doing, I’ve also been recently connecting with some of the college campuses in this area. Just setting up a little network, I’m planting seeds. It’s summertime currently there right now, so no one’s in school and definitely no one’s looking for work.
[00:23:57] Matt Widmyer: But when the school year starts back up, we will be looking for alumni, as this is a pretty good landing spot right out of graduate system. But I think that one’s a little too early to tell, but that’s something we just started recently doing.
[00:24:09] Matt Widmyer: I’m canvassing a radius of probably 15, 20 miles from where we are physically.
[00:24:15] Kevin Dieny: Okay. So that brings up a good question, and so Jeremy, how does a company hire when there’s a very limited supply of candidates? Like how do they stand out? How do they attract the right people for the job when there’s hardly anyone, like right now, there might be a lull in hiring. It’s a candidates market.
[00:24:36] Kevin Dieny: How do businesses succeed in times or in areas like that?
[00:24:41] Jeremy Tolan: Yeah to you, to your point, it’s all about standing out. And I don’t think it’s any secret that if a candidate is applying for one position, they’re probably applying for other positions at other companies, too.
[00:24:50] Jeremy Tolan: They want to stack the deck for themselves and get the best position that makes sense for themselves and evaluate other companies, other positions. So to your point, it’s all about standing out. One of the biggest things I could recommend is to leverage your employer branded content. So when I think about that, I’m thinking about things like team pictures.
[00:25:09] Jeremy Tolan: I think it actually goes a long way. When a candidate could see a picture of the potential team that they would be joining. Maybe you have pictures, like on the careers page of your website, you might be linking to a corporate Instagram account, at some point throughout your hiring process so that candidates can learn more about your company.
[00:25:24] Jeremy Tolan: Get excited about and kind of picture themselves fitting in with the team and working there. Thinking about getting articles out on external websites, one that’s been really effective for us is called built-in. You might also just have leaders at your organization that are putting out thought leadership articles, different pieces that they’ve written, and you can incorporate those at different points in your hiring process.
[00:25:44] Jeremy Tolan: Maybe you’re sharing them with a candidate, in email at some point. And telling them to check it out to learn a little bit more about what it’s like to work at the organization and think about things like reviews from your own employees, a popular place that candidates are going to do research about a company would be Glassdoor is a popular website.
[00:26:03] Jeremy Tolan: So make sure that you’re putting your best foot forward on sites like Glassdoor. Something that I found really effective was sharing customer reviews with candidates too. At some point in your process, when you send an email to a candidate, maybe you’re scheduling an interview with them.
[00:26:15] Jeremy Tolan: At the end of the email, PS, check out a few reviews from some happy customers. I think you’d find these pretty cool. And then when I would meet with them for that interview in person, they would talk about how they got even more interested in working at spark hire. After they read a few really good reviews from customers that got them really excited and thinking about what it would be like to work there.
[00:26:34] Jeremy Tolan: And then. I’m also a huge proponent of using videos and emails too. And I think they’re usually most effective if they’re created by your employees. Like in Matt’s case, if you’re hiring for SDRs, I think it could go a long way if you asked one of your SDRs to record a quick video, talking about why they love working at your company, what do they like about the role?
[00:26:54] Jeremy Tolan: Share that with your candidates at different points in the process. Maybe you’re just including that in email. Maybe you have a video from a team event that you guys had, that kind of shows the relationships that you guys build. How much fun you you guys have together? How this is more than just a place that you guys come through to work.
[00:27:09] Jeremy Tolan: So having this different types of content that you can share with candidates and emails throughout your hiring process, I think really helps you stand out as an employer. And just going back to something that I talked about earlier, when I was talking about improving the candidate experience, just keep your candidates updated consistently on where they stand in your process.
[00:27:26] Jeremy Tolan: And if maybe you told them that you’re going to get back to them about next steps next week, next week comes around and you actually haven’t made a decision. Still keep in touch with them and just let them know, like, Hey, I need a few more days. We’ll be back in touch in a moment here. Just give me a few more days on this, but still give them that update and keeping consistent contact with their candidates too, because, I think that’s going to help you stand out also versus another company who is maybe staying in more frequent contact with the candidate too.
[00:27:54] Kevin Dieny: Wow. Yeah, that’s some really good advice. The suggesting of the emails with the video is a really cool idea. I really liked that. And going off of that, Jeremy, do you have any ideas that you may want to recommend to business leaders of small, medium, even the enterprise, larger companies of third-party services, tools, things that can do to either help get the job description right, the job posting right, things that they can do to get the most resumes back?
[00:28:23] Kevin Dieny: Things that they can do to help the actual interviewing process, which I know you have something to talk about there. Is there any third party or anything that could offset and help leaders make the process easier for them?
[00:28:37] Jeremy Tolan: Yeah. I this probably isn’t a surprise. I’m a huge proponent of using one way video interviews considering I work at Spark Hire and that’s pretty much just what we do. The one way video interviews, Matt alluded to it a couple of times you could set up questions in advance.
[00:28:50] Jeremy Tolan: And then candidates can record video responses to them on their own. So that way you and any other hiring stakeholders can review the responses at your own convenience, work together and decide which candidates you want to advance to the next stage of the process. So it’s ultimately going to save you a ton of time.
[00:29:05] Jeremy Tolan: It’s going to help you avoid scheduling challenges because candidates can just do these interviews on their own before the deadline you set for them. You get to review it when it’s convenient for you. And you’re ultimately going to learn a lot more about the candidates versus just talking to them over the phone or reviewing their resumes.
[00:29:20] Jeremy Tolan: So you’re going to make better decisions about which ones you’re going to actually meet with for a more final round interview. And overall, you’re going to be able to improve how you’re collaborating with different team members throughout the process. Like the story that Matt told earlier about how he gets a lot of his team members involved to weigh in on candidates by reviewing the recordings that way.
[00:29:38] Jeremy Tolan: Another thing that I would definitely recommend too, is using an applicant tracking system. That’s going to help you keep your candidate information organized in one space and also help automate certain tasks in your hiring process too. And then if you’re just thinking about your process and trying to implement process improvements, really map out the different stages of your process, identify the ones.
[00:29:58] Jeremy Tolan: Where you see the greatest areas for improvement and determined like where what are the most important ones? Because those are the ones that you’re going to want to tackle first, maybe your lowest hanging fruit, the things that you see, the greatest areas for improvement, what’s most important.
[00:30:12] Jeremy Tolan: Where are you suffering the most right now in your process and tackle those things first. You’re not going to be able to, to make all these improvements in a day, in a week, in a month in a quarter, maybe not even an entire year, but you want to figure out a way to prioritize the changes that you are able to afford to make.
[00:30:28] Kevin Dieny: Those are some really good ideas. Matt, did you have anything to add to that about, ideas or suggestions or your experience using the one-way video?
[00:30:36] Matt Widmyer: Yeah, I would say I was just going to say I’m a huge fan of the one way video interviewing through Spark Hire specifically, just a very easy platform to use.
[00:30:45] Matt Widmyer: It’s been a game changer, honestly, and at one point a few years back, I threw my hands up and said, okay, how do I build this team up? Right. Because as we’ve talked about, if you’re trying to fill a role. It’s basically a full-time job in itself.
[00:31:01] Matt Widmyer: So I went I went out networking with other SDR managers and, one of the things that fell out of the sky from one of them was one way video interviewing. So I looked into different services, picked Spark Hire, and it was, it’s been a game changer. It’s allowing me to cast a wider net on some people where I would just kind of scoot their resume over the side.
[00:31:20] Matt Widmyer: One of the things that I’m struggling with right now, actually, I was going to ask Jeremy if he maybe had any tips outside of, I guess what was mentioned, obviously it’s a weird time right now. We have the hiring process dialed in. I love your idea about, documenting the fun you’re having. We have a lot of fun over here.
[00:31:38] Matt Widmyer: We don’t document a lot of it. So we’d love to share that with other candidates. But, the resumes, I know a lot of places are hiring right now. Not a lot of people are applying and I don’t know if this is a temporary thing. It’s pandemic related a hundred percent. It’s an across the board thing.
[00:31:54] Matt Widmyer: Particularly it looks like it’s affecting entry-level positions, like the one I’m hiring for. Do you have any suggestions? On how to find the right kind of candidates. And even through Indeed, seeing the hashtag ready to work and it doesn’t seem like anyone’s really that ready to work.
[00:32:14] Jeremy Tolan: Yeah, I think I could have a suggestion. And I think to your point too, it’s like a lot of these companies, they are doing a lot of things that to foster a really good culture. People are having a lot of fun and enjoy the relationships they build with each other, but they don’t think about documenting and taking selfies or videos and stuff like that.
[00:32:31] Jeremy Tolan: It’s no different than our personal lives. We go out with our friends and family have a great time. I forgot to take any pictures or anything like that to remember, everything that we were up to, but yeah. Definitely remember to take a step back and do these things. I think when you are recording videos of your employees, just talking about why they love to work at your company, what they love about the position I encourage you to get those videos recorded and share them on social media, like LinkedIn and ask your network to share it.
[00:33:00] Jeremy Tolan: Or to tag people that they might know that they think would be interested in working there or even working in that position. And I think that’s a good way just to informally get external referrals from people. I think people are very engaged by LinkedIn. They’re very engaged by videos on LinkedIn and if they saw a cool video and they’re like, oh yeah, I know someone I’m just going to type in the comments and tag them in here.
[00:33:21] Jeremy Tolan: Then you could go ahead and send them a message and see if they want to talk to you more about the position. I think that’s an out of the box way, try to source more candidates that way.
[00:33:30] Matt Widmyer: Yeah. It’s either that, or kind of cross my fingers. Right.
[00:33:35] Matt Widmyer: Yeah, it’s good stuff though. I appreciate that.
[00:33:37] Kevin Dieny: So Jeremy, was there anything that we didn’t talk about or anything that you thought of that was worth mentioning that we just didn’t get to?
[00:33:44] Kevin Dieny: Is there anything like that?
[00:33:46] Jeremy Tolan: I’m sure we could go on for a lot longer and chop it up about a lot of other, challenges, process improvements, things like that. I think, some of the most important takeaways from today, might’ve been about really finding ways to stand out to candidates, thinking about generating these referrals.
[00:34:02] Jeremy Tolan: How do you make your process as efficient as possible? So not only is it benefiting you as a business leader, but also your candidates and providing them with an awesome experience too, where they’re just really enthusiastic about working for your organization. But, yeah, I don’t think so. I think we hit on a lot of really awesome points today.
[00:34:20] Kevin Dieny: Yeah. Thanks Jeremy. I think that’s a really good summary there. I was going to add that. Putting yourself in the candidate’s shoes is really important. Especially if you’ve been working in the business, thinking about it, like, man, I need to find a candidate just like me. That’s going to work just as hard as me. And he’s going to put in 200% every day.
[00:34:37] Kevin Dieny: But at the same time, this isn’t their business. It makes hiring tough. It makes it hard. We really spend a good amount of time in the beginning talking about how hard this is for businesses.
[00:34:47] Kevin Dieny: So yeah, it’s so tough. It’s so hard for businesses to get it right. A vacant job. Can just sit there and it’s weighing on the managers, weighing on the company.
[00:34:55] Kevin Dieny: It’s something that everyone’s like, oh, but you can incorporate it into your process. You can have something that you can lean on where you’re like, okay, this is my process. This is how we’re going to do it. I can leave it there. I don’t have to be dreading it or worrying about it. It’s gonna work out.
[00:35:09] Kevin Dieny: It’s gonna get me the right candidates. It’s gonna get me the right people. I may not have control over how many people are looking for the role. I can do things to try to improve that. Having that strong process I think is so important, responding to people quickly, getting back to people is things that improve the candidates experience.
[00:35:26] Kevin Dieny: I think you, man, you’ve touched on all the things that I was thinking about when we were going into this topic. So I really appreciate it, Jeremy, thank you for coming on and speaking to us about this.
[00:35:37] Kevin Dieny: Oh, wait, Jeremy one last little thing. Can you share with everyone how they can connect with you, find out more about your company or anything like that?
[00:35:45] Jeremy Tolan: Yeah, definitely reach out to me. Connect with me on LinkedIn. My name is Jeremy Tolan, J E R E M Y T O L A N. If you’re interested in learning more about spark hire, go to this site here, go.sparkhire.com/callsource. Spark Hire is spelled S P A R K H I R E. And definitely connect with me on LinkedIn.
[00:36:08] Jeremy Tolan: And let me know if you, if you tuned into the cast.
[00:36:11] Kevin Dieny: Great. Yeah. Thank you, Jeremy.
[00:36:13] Matt Widmyer: Yeah, it’s been great. Appreciate all your advice. It’s all definitely gold stuff. I’ve actually been taking notes while, while we’re doing this on a couple of these things so, appreciate it.