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How Top Tech Companies Find The Best Talent

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If you're struggling to fill open positions with talented employees, you might start asking yourself how other companies do it. How on earth do tech giants like Facebook, Google and IBM manage to attract and keep qualified staff? A quick bit of research will bring up answers like extensive interviews - according to Staff.com, Google and IBM each spend eight hours interviewing employees. Facebook's process is a little more manageable as candidates only spend four hours getting grilled by a hiring manager. 

These companies also use traditional tools like resumes and on-site testing, but these don't really tell us that much. This isn't speculation - it comes from the mouth of Google's former Senior Vice President of People Operations himself. Writing for Wired, Laszlo Bock noted the best of these tools, the work sample test, only predicts 29 percent of an employee's performance. Yet these companies consistently hire amazing staff.

It stands to reason, therefore, that tech leaders use a comprehensive strategy to find and hire employees. They don't rely on one single component. Rather, they see the hiring process as connected parts of one important whole. You probably don't have time to interview employees for four hours, and an on-site test might not apply to the position you're hiring for, but here are three methods from these businesses you can use for your own hiring ends:

hiregreatemployeesYou don't need Google's time or budget to hire great employees.


1. Prioritize the recruitment process

This first tip might seem obvious, but it's amazing how many companies undervalue their recruiting efforts. From low budgets to inefficient tools, businesses everywhere unknowingly sabotage themselves at the very start of the hiring process.

Recruiting isn't an afterthought for the world's biggest employers. They understand that the way candidates look for jobs - and the specifics of what they search for - had changed. People these days want more than just a paycheck. They expect work to be as fulfilling as the rest of their lives. If they get a sense that a job won't give them that satisfaction, they'll be encouraged to take a position elsewhere.

This means that, from a business's perspective, recruitment cannot be passive. It must be active and engaging, and it needs to be a priority. Google, for example, knows it can't afford to lose the interest of talented tech candidates, so it prioritizes recruitment in a powerful way. The company spends twice as much on recruiting as the average organization, according to an excerpt from Bock's book published on The Globe and Mail.

Your business might not have the budget to spend that much, but there are other ways to prioritize recruiting. Invest in tools that make the process more efficient for both internal hiring staff and external candidates.  Outsource to a third party committed to providing a great candidate experience. An knowledgeable service helps even small businesses compete with the major recruiters, reducing stress on internal resources and keeping them compliant with the law.

2. Make candidates fall in love with your business

That's exactly how Bock described it: Google makes candidates fall in love with them.

"Candidates should be excited when they find your job listing."

"You want them to have a great experience, have their concerns addressed, and come away feeling like they just had the best day of their lives," he explained in his Wired article.

Bock was talking about the interview, but this sentiment applies to every point in the hiring process. Candidates should be excited when they find your job listing. They should be eager to fill out the application, check its status, compile documents for a background check and come in for an interview. 

3. Involve people outside of HR

Tech companies don't leave all the hiring to the HR managers. They're hiring people for specific teams, so they get current team members involved in the process. For example, candidates are interviewed by their prospective managers as well as the people who will work with and for them. These are arguably the most important assessments - direct teams work best if the new hire easily falls in with the group, and only they can determine how well a candidate will fit.

If you're hiring for a certain department, have people on that team go over the job listing and glance at the candidates you've selected. They don't have to take on the full load of hiring duties and look at every resume, but their input will be very insightful. For example, these people can make sure the job description is accurate and compelling. If your current employees won't apply for the position based on the description you use, you can bet good candidates won't, either.

Hiring great candidates is any company's goal, but it can only be achieve if a business puts the right focus on recruiting. Take these tips from the best tech companies and bring them to your organization.

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