I just completed my a presentation that I am doing on Talent Networks for the SilkRoad Users Conference in Scottsdale, AZ next month. The first draft was focusing on building Talent Communities and how to engage your candidates. When I was speaking with the Princess of Social Recruiting @theonecrystal, Crystal Miller, she started asking me about how we are going to build Talent Communities (TCs) at our company. As I started explaining, I got the “hold on Michael” as in years past when my mom would call me out on something. Used to the guilt, I waited for it.
Crystal said, “Michael, you are building a talent network and not a talent community.” I asked her how they were different and like my friend Crystal always does…she enlightened me.
I thought I would share those differences with my readership even though superrecruiter has been very busy at work and at home. Here are the facts on Talent Networks:
- Focus on engagement of candidates for immediate or future short term needs. If you know you have a Project Manager leaving June 30th, a strong Talent Network would include a group of qualified project managers who you pulled from your ATS, LinkedIn, Facebook, or an Associational site over the last 3 to 6 months.
- Focus one way communication – recruiter to specific network – where the candidate generally opts-In to the network via one of the ways discussed above. Do not get me wrong, there is two-way communication exchanged between you and the candidate, but you need to feed the candidates information about your company, a position or other events related to the types of positions you are recruiting for.
- Targeted content is broadcasted to certain populations. If you build a talent network made up for creative designers, you want to share information with those networks about the latest 3D Design and Graphic Technologies. You send them information on logistics they will not be interested because that is not their focus.
- Engage your Talent Network. To engage the content will need to be timely, relevant, meaningful, but most importantly, make it actionable.
Actionable content puts the onus in the hands of the reader to “take action” on your post to them. Example: Great Job at XX Company that you may be interested in! Looking yourself? Click Apply! If you are not currently looking, share this link with 10 of your friends and have them share it with others in their network”
You are taking the simple step to send out your latest hot job and asking the recipients to take action on what you have shared. A basic request to your talent network will not only lead to your job being broadcast to your network’s network who have relevant experience thus giving you a nice pipeline of candidates. In some companies there are frequent referral programs where “networkee” lets the Recruiter know they have shared the link with X number of candidates. Once they hit certain number of referrals or information push-outs from you, they get recognized on the whole talent network or receive a gift card as a thank you.
Where do I store the info? Easy – a CRM. There are quite a few out there such as Avature, Talent Circles, and Talemetry to name a few. You can even look at Salesforce.com’s product Chatter. Most ATS’ are not candidate engagement tools, they are a talent attraction tool. What you do with that information in the ATS? Create shared pipeline folders. Now what? ATS were not designed with engagement in mind. Their goal is post, pray and stay compliant with DOL, OFCCP, and the EEOC. CRM tools can sit on top of your ATS System and allows you to set up drip campaigns, track engagement, and report on who is in the pipeline. Just ask the likes of JCPenney, Raytheon, AT&T, Pepsico, and other medium to large sized organizations. The great part about a CRM tool is it takes no more than 6 weeks to implement and the cost is very reasonable depending on the number of users you have.
So that is my take on Talent Networks. They are NOT the same as Talent Communities, but as @theonecrystal says Talent Networks are a great place to start leading up to Communities (i.e. crawl before you walk mentality).
Talent Communities take a lot more work and direct communication with individuals who you may be pipelining for the longer term (succession plans or evergreen positions) but the details of Talent Communities is for another blog post.
If you are looking to get your network started or ready to start Talent Communities, I would strong seek Crystal out to help your organization get you started. There is a lot to do, but the long term impact will make you shine in your customer’s eyes.
Tags: @theonecrystal, #avature, #talentcircles, #talemetry, #chatter, #crm #ats #openhire, #connections, #silkroad, #recruiting, #talentnetworks, #talentcommunities, @superrecruiter, #community, #talent