Essentials to Building and Maintaining a High Performance Workforce

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1 3 Essentials to Building and Maintaining a High Performance Workforce

2 A company can have the right technology, the right infrastructure, the right products and services yet still fall short of expectations without the right people. - Ultimate Software People are the heart and soul of businesses and organizations; they fuel every facet of success. Attracting, hiring, and engaging the right people is vital for the growth and success of your company. We re in the midst of an ongoing economic recovery, and Millennials the largest generation in history (95 million compared with 78 million Baby Boomers) are currently filling one out of every three job openings in the United States. 2

3 By 2025, Millennials are projected to make up 75 percent of employees in the global marketplace. Add this to the incredibly competitive, fast-paced, technologicallyadvanced and increasingly inter-connected world that we live in, and hiring the right person becomes both more difficult and more important than ever. By 2025, Millennials are projected to make up 75 percent of employees in the global marketplace. These opportunities, combined with the challenges of the 21st century put talent acquisition managers in a tough spot. We recognize this and have done some research to identify what we believe are three essentials to building and maintaining a high performance workforce. Table of Contents Ask Better Interview Questions...4 Beef Up Your Recruiting Strategy...8 Don t Do These 10 Things...10 Bonus Section

4 Ask Better Interview Questions Ask Job Candidates to Solve Problems If you re not getting exceptional hires, it may be because your traditional interview process is simply not designed to excite them. Instead of dwelling on the past, a superior alternative is to ask them to solve real problems and to demonstrate that they are forward-looking and that they have solutions for the future. Top candidates routinely dislike standard interviews because they find them tedious and predictable. Most interviews are simply not designed to allow a top candidate to show off their capabilities, ideas, and innovation. As a result, if you are recruiting for a mission-critical job that requires an exceptional hire, you simply cannot afford to bore top candidates with standard interview questions. Below are four categories of sample questions that put a unique twist on the interview process and will reveal a good candidate. 4

5 1. Questions to Identify Real Problem-Solving Skills How will you identify problems and opportunities on the job? The best new hires rapidly seek to identify problems that must be addressed in their new job. So, please walk us through the steps of the process that you will actually use during your first weeks to identify the most important current issues and problems, as well as any possible positive opportunities in your new job. Can you identify the likely problems in this process? Our employees should be able to quickly identify problems in our existing processes, systems or products. So please look over this outline of one of our processes and identify the top three areas or points where you predict that serious problems are likely to occur. (Hand them a single page showing an existing process or system related to this job that you already know to have flaws). Solve a real problem that you will face. Because we need to know your capability for solving the actual problems you will face in this job, we would like to see how you will go about solving a real problem. Please walk us through the broad steps that you would take in order to solve this problem that will be on your desk on your first day. (Then hand them a half sheet with bullet points outlining the existing problem). 5

6 2. Questions That Show They Are Forward-Looking Forecast the evolution of this job. Because our jobs constantly change and evolve, forward-looking is critical if you are to be successful. So please project or forecast at least five different ways that the job you are applying for will likely change and evolve over the next three years as a result of business changes, technology changes, and a faster, more innovative environment. Forecast the evolution of this industry. Because we operate in a fast-changing industry, our employees should be forwardlooking, and anticipate and plan ahead for those industry changes. So, please tell us how often you sit down and focus on the future of our industry? Next, please forecast and project five trends in our industry and how the top firms will likely have to change over the next three to five years as a result of these business changes, new technology, and the need for increased speed and innovation. 6

7 3. Questions to Help You Better Understand Your Job Candidate List and rank your job acceptance factors. We know that you have choices, so if we make you an offer, we obviously want it to meet your needs. And that requires knowing what factors you will use (e.g. pay, job duties, fit with your manager, levels of responsibility, etc.) to determine whether our job is the right job for you. So if you had a choice between two offers for your next job, please list the top five factors that you would use to evaluate and accept the superior job opportunity. List and rank the capabilities that you bring to this job. It s important to fully understand the strengths of each new hire and how they match the requirements for the job. So, given the four important categories of knowledge, experience, education and skills, can you please list in descending order what you have found to be your strongest five capabilities that will make you a top performer in the job? See what else Dr. John Sullivan has to say about interview questions by viewing his article on TLNT. 7

8 Beef Up Your Recruiting Strategy Recruit a Global Workforce Successful organizations have embraced the advantages of creating a more global workforce by leveraging technology like video interviewing and telecommuting to find the right candidate for the job no matter where in the world they might be. Ultimate Software cites data from a recent KPMG survey, which reports that, 71 percent of HR executives feel that collaborating across international borders is more prevalent today than just five years ago, and more than 50 percent are considering or have added new international offices. Recruit Millennials Successful talent acquisition programs have been specifically addressing Millennial candidates applying for positions a smart move when we consider that they re projected to make up 75% of the workforce by 2025! 8

9 This attention on Millennials does not necessarily comprise a total remaking of the talent acquisition process, but a purposeful implementation of changes to the recruiting process (like keeping in mind that 83 percent of Millennials own a smart phone, or that Millennials place a high value on an organization s mission, purpose and culture). Read more of Ultimate Software s prospective other ideas and trends in Recruiting. 9

10 Don t Do These 10 Things Sometimes the best way to make progress is identifying what you re not going to do. Here s a list of 10 things to cross off your HR ideas list. 10 Treat Everyone Equally This may not sound good, but your employees are not equal. Some are worth more because they produce more results. The key is not to treat them equally; it is to treat them all fairly. 9 Tolerate Mediocrity Remember group projects back in middle school? If you got the smart kid on your team, you probably got an A without doing much work. Or maybe you were the smart kid and ended up doing most of the work. This may have worked in middle school, but it won t go well on the job. A -players shouldn t have to, nor do they want to play with a bunch of C -players. 10

11 8 Have Dumb Rules You need to have rules, but don t have dumb rules. Great employees want to have guidelines and direction, but they don t want to have rules that get in the way of doing their jobs or that conflict with the values the company says are important. 7 Don t Recognize Outstanding Performance Remember Psychology 101: behavior you want repeated needs to be rewarded immediately. 6 Don t Have Any Fun at Work Where s the written rule that says work has to be serious? If you find it, rip it to shreds and stomp on it because the notion that work cannot be fun is actually counterproductive. The workplace should be fun. Find ways to make work or the work environment more relaxed and fun, and you will have happy employees who look forward to coming to work each day. 5 Don t Keep Your People Informed You ve got to communicate not only the good, but also the bad and the ugly. If you don t tell your employees, the rumor mill will. 11

12 4 Micromanage Tell them what you want done and how you want it done. Don t tell them why it needs to be done and why their job is important. Don t ask for their input on how it could be done better. 3 Don t Develop an Employee Retention Strategy Employee retention deserves your attention every day. Make a list of the people you don t want to lose and, next to each name, write down what you are doing or will do to ensure that person stays engaged and on board. 2 Don t Do Employee Retention Interviews Instead of waiting until a great employee walks out the door, conduct retention interviews. These interviews will help you see what you could be doing differently and how you can keep your best employees. 1 Make Your Onboarding Program an Exercise in Tedium Employees are most impressionable during the first 60 days on the job. Every bit of information gathered during this time will either reinforce your new hire s buying decision (to take the job) or lead to hire s remorse. 12

13 What the Experts Are Doing to Get and Retain Talent Below is a list of some of our favorite companies in the Fortune 500 club and what makes them so awesome. Check out the entire list. Offers grants for employees who are first-time homebuyers below a certain income level. They also participate in financial counseling. Uses social media to recruit job candidates. They also have over 100 YouTube videos featuring employees and describing what they do. Has a time-away policy for associates that permits them to take off as much time as they need to without a quota. 13

14 Designed their headquarters to look like a college campus and includes a child care center. Similar to Chesapeake Energy, Cisco has two large child care centers. Matches charitable donations to the dollar, up to $75,000. Staff won for the fastest corporate team in the annual race up the Empire State Building steps. Donates $50 for every five hours an employee volunteers. Employees get five paid days off per year to volunteer in their community. Makes medical devices physicians use in surgeries. The company provides opportunities for employees to see the products in action by watching surgeries. 14

15 Learn More at Our Upcoming Conference You re invited to our High Performance Workforce Summit in Atlanta on May 6 and 7. We have a speaking roster filled with expert CHROs and executives that will provide you with best practices in the world of talent. Exclusive Whitepaper Discount Code By reading this whitepaper you ve earned yourself an extra 10% off for the conference. Just use the code: NILWNLINBQ when you check out to receive your discount. ALSO, if you register for the conference before January 30th, you ll save $

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