Archives For Conor Roach

Some of the NewHire team took the opportunity last week to join in watching the solar eclipse. Chicago didn’t have a total eclipse, we had about 87%. It was a little cloudy, but that didn’t stop us from having a great time in Millennium Park.

NewHire Eclipse

NewHire Eclipse

NewHire Eclipse

NewHire Eclipse NewHire Eclipse

 

 

 

 

A new “salary estimator” feature Indeed is currently testing and rolling-out for mobile jobseekers may have significant impact on the effectiveness of your Indeed advertising campaigns. For some time, Indeed has listed applications that include compensation information with a brief blurb on how they are displayed. Recently, Indeed expanded that feature to include an estimated compensation for mobile users. This salary estimate is displayed both for positions that list the compensation in the ad and for postings that do not explicitly list a compensation range.

Salary estimator

This is an example of the new feature in action. Notice the grey text indicating “$30,000 – $33,000 a year estimated by Indeed”.

How does it affect applications with no compensation figures listed?

If Indeed’s salary estimation is exactly accurate, the worst that can happen is that candidates find out your role’s compensation earlier in the process than you wanted. More likely, the estimated range will be higher or lower than your actual ideal range. This will be particularly true as they continue to refine their estimates (it’s only in beta and will presumably get more accurate over time) and if your position has a broad title. Each of these bring clear negative ramifications for your recruiting process. If their estimate is lower than your actual range, it’s possible that highly qualified candidates that would seek a higher compensation will be deterred. If Indeed’s estimate is higher than your range you will receive more candidates than you would otherwise, but when it comes to negotiation, candidates may have unrealistic expectations of what your offer will be. It is worth reiterating that this is currently in beta and is only being tested; it will not effect every job or every market.

Why is Indeed doing this?

Based on data Indeed collects, candidates are more likely to engage with job postings when salary figures are available. Ultimately, Indeed’s goal is to increase the likelihood that candidates click postings and to improve the candidate experience when job searching by giving them additional information.

What can you do?

Our best practice continues to be to list compensation figures in your application when you can. This change to Indeed is just one more reason why it is better to list a competitive compensation and to remain in control of how candidates perceive your jobs.

In recent months, NewHire has emphasized various reasons why we believe employers need to reconsider how the resume fits into their recruiting process. As the primary tool of assessing candidates, the resume is an antiquated, time consuming, and overall inaccurate way of identifying which candidates will be a fit for a position. However, beyond resumes being ineffective as a screening tool, there are more nefarious results of employers hiring on resumes alone: racial discrimination.

The Research

In 2002, University of Chicago Booth School of Business researchers Marianne Bertrand and Sendhil Mullainatghan published an article titled “Are Emily and Brendan More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination”. As that title implies, the research’s purpose was to investigate the impact of candidate names and implied race influenced the likelihood of receiving a callback from employers after submitting a resume. Focusing on the Chicago and Boston markets, resumes were randomly assigned a name that implied the candidate’s race as either white (i.e. Emily, Brendan) or black (i.e. Lakisha, Jamal). They also measured the impact of improvements to resume credentials increased the response rate. All combined, they sent out over 5000 resumes to a variety of industries and positions.

The results were staggering. Resumes with names typically associated with white candidates elicited approximately 50% more callbacks than those with perceived black candidate names. Furthermore, adding additional, higher credentials to resumes (more experience, more education) resulted in a 30% jump in calls to “white” resumes. Those same improvements to “black” resumes resulted in little to no improvement in the rate of being contacted by employers.

There is little reason to think things have changed since the year the study took place. In 2014, a man named José Zamora received national news attention when, in an effort to improve his job search results, he started to drop the “s” in his name to “Joe Zamora”. With that one letter change, results improved. Watch the video below to hear José’s story:

Organizations like Career Pathways recognize the problem and have worked to improve career opportunities for disadvantaged candidates. A PSA launched in 2014 titled “Grads of Life”, while not explicitly focused on assisting candidates of color, strongly urges employers to consider candidates from diverse backgrounds. The campaign remains active and, I can say from personal experience, has had subway and bus ads spring up around Chicago. I took the photo below waiting for the train earlier this year:

Resumes and racial bias

What can employers do to prevent discrimination?

Intentional or not, hiring managers are susceptible to displaying racial discrimination in the hiring process. One sure fire way of preventing such discrimination is to utilize a screening process and tool that allows hiring managers to get candidates to answer the questions that matter most to doing the job and then having the ability to search on those answers to identify top talent. Lucky for you, that’s what NewHire does! Not only will our Applicant Tracking System (ATS) cut down on the amount of time you spend reading resumes, it will also ensure that candidates are being judged on their competencies and experiences and not their age, sex, or race.

Our Quest Food Management Blog Series:

Part 1: Overview

Part 2: Analytic Results Infographic

Part 3: A Professional Case Study

Part 4: NewHire Advantage- Conclusion

 

Want to learn more about how NewHire can help your company hire better? Request a demo here, or give us a call at 877-923-0054.

A phone interview (or phone screen) is a useful first step in getting to know a candidate.  It’s a convenient way to determine which applicants that passed an initial eye test are worth bringing in for in-person interviews and which should be avoided. However, the way that you prepare and conduct a phone screen is a major factor in how useful it will ultimately end up being.

Where better to look for those best practices than from folk icons Simon & Garfunkel?  Okay, that’s a bad transition. But there is a connection between four of the duo’s biggest hits and how to conduct the perfect phone interview. Here are four key tips from the singer-songwriter team to improve your phone interviews:

Phone Interviewing Tips from Simon and Garfunkel“Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M.” – Pick a Scheduled Time (Tip: Not 3 A.M)

The first step of conducting a phone interview is scheduling. Occasionally, when I’m scheduling a time by phone, a candidate I call will ask if we can complete the phone interview right then and there. After all, you have them on the phone and it may be convenient for both of you to just get it out of the way.  I almost always turn these offers down though, because I find scheduling a time later to talk is better for a few reasons.

First, by giving candidates time to prepare and look over the position they applied for again, phone screens tend to be more organized, professional, and productive. Second, by actually having an appointment and setting a time to speak, you’re making sure that the candidate has the ability to follow-up on their commitments.

“Mrs. Robinson” – Plan Your Phone Interview Questions and Have Them Ready

We’d like to know
A little bit about you
For our files

Yes, I’m cherry-picking this lyric a bit, but it fits! Defining what you want to know from a candidate before the interview is important.  By either writing down or typing some questions you want to ask during the interview, the phone screen will go much more smoothly.  And while it’s OK and even a good idea to break script and ask follow-up questions, having questions in front of you will help make sure you get to everything you wanted to. It’s also a great way to make sure you take notes on a candidate’s answers.

Interviewing Tips

“The Sound of Silence” – Don’t be Afraid of Silence

In conversation, extended periods of silence can be awkward and uncomfortable.  During phone interviews, however, silence can be a valuable tool in prompting the candidate to reveal aspects of themselves.  It’s sometimes difficult for phone interviewers to let a question sit and breathe. That’s particularly true if it is a difficult question. It’s natural to want to give someone an easy out by asking another question or skipping over the question. However, I would recommend letting the silence linger for a moment, partially because it allows the candidate to formulate an answer and partially because candidates are afraid of silence, and by not letting them off the hook, you can gain some interesting insight when the candidate is forced to answer. That insight is what we’re looking for when we decide to do phone interviews in the first place. We want to get to know them.

“Bridge over Troubled Water” – Ask Revealing Behavior Questions in a Phone Interview

Candidates can’t get a job because of a phone screen, but they certainly can lose out on one. By asking questions that get after candidates’ work behaviors and employment history, you can gain a better understanding of the type of employee they are potentially going to be.  To use an analogy, some people tend to be a like a calm, tranquil lake – easy to get along with and relaxed. Other candidate personalities are closer to choppy rapids – they can be abrasive and can draw conflict and arguments. A question such as “tell me about a conflict you’ve had in the past and how you worked to resolve it” will allow you to start to assess what type of candidate you’re speaking with.

Additionally, asking questions about a candidate’s work history and why they left certain positions can also be enlightening. Badmouthing previous employers can be a bad sign, particularly if it is a trend. If a candidate had a poor employer, it’s unfortunate. If they’ve had 3 or 4 bad employers, there’s a common denominator there: the candidate.

 

By integrating these four tips into how you perform phone interviews, you’ll see an improvement in the helpfulness of the call and the information received.

If you read our blog, you already know that we recommend listing a salary when putting together a job advertisement. It will help you attract a larger number of candidates, and if the salary range is competitive, better qualified candidates. But how do you determine a competitive salary range for a position? What will attract the candidates you want?

There are many factors that help determine a competitive salary for job seekers, but two of the main ones are location and job title. Just like the cost of living fluctuates across the country, so does the average compensation for identical job titles. For instance, in Bozeman, Montana, the average Accountant job listing includes a salary of $47,000. Compare that with New York City, where those same types of listings average $76,000. Translation: If you’re recruiting in a large city but are expecting to pay a small town salary, you’re going to have challenges attracting top talent.

Similarly, the job title you choose to use should also align with the salary range you list. A job title is typically how job seekers will find your post. However, if the types of candidates that are finding your position are overqualified for what your position actually entails, they won’t apply. For instance, if you have a position that you want to call a Social Media Specialist but in reality is closer to an Administrative Assistant both in duties and salary, the differences in compensation for those titles can be dramatic.

To avoid these challenges, there are many resources available online that can help you determine a competitive salary:

NewHire 5 Ways to Determine a Competitive Salary for Your Open Position

 1. Indeed

Not content with simply being one of the biggest job boards in the world, Indeed also wants to be involved with everything related to recruiting—that includes providing useful salary information to jobseekers and recruiters. You can search based both on job title and location, which as explained above, can be very useful. One especially useful tool is to compare positions, either by job or location. You can search for jobs based on job title, keywords, or even company. The numbers they provide are pulled from the various jobs that are posted to their site.

Note: If you’re looking based on your job title, make sure to select the “Search Job Titles Only” after you search to help narrow in on your specific position.

2. Glassdoor

In addition to functioning as a job board and employer review site, Glassdoor also can be a resource for information on typical salaries. Either employees or jobseekers provide all of the information posted on Glassdoor. Just like Indeed, Glassdoor allows you to search based on salary and location to find typical averages in your area.

3. Bureau of Labor Statistics

The Bureau of Labor Statistics, an agency within the U.S. Department of Labor, is responsible for tracking labor market activity for the federal government. They freely share their economic findings with the public as well. As it relates to determining salaries, their Occupational Employment Statistics can be a useful tool in seeing what averages are nationwide.

Occupations are separated into categories, and most of the job titles are fairly broad in nature, meaning you might not find the exact specific title you’re seeking. When you select a position, some information you are given will include the mean hourly and annual salary, percentile wages, and a breakdown by industry.

Note: These numbers are national averages and are not location specific, so the job market in your area will likely be higher or lower than the national average.

4. Searching on other job boards directly: LinkedIn, CareerBuilder, Craigslist

One way to determine a competitive salary to offer candidates is to research directly what businesses competing for candidates in your location are offering by looking for the job title on job boards. Beyond Indeed, job boards like LinkedIn, Craigslist or CareerBuilder often have salary information listed with their advertisements. Viewing other companies’ job advertising will give you an idea of what various positions are valued at in various locations.

5. Other sites, including: Payscale.com, Salary.com, Wanted Analytics

There is a plethora of sites catering to both employers and employees that specifically provide salary information. Some sites are paid, others are free of cost, but they all function essentially the same way. Using multiple sites to determine a competitive salary may be ideal.

A final note on salary: You can be broad

Don’t forget that when listing a salary, you can list a range instead of an exact number. For instance, if you have a position that the ideal salary is $70,000 but you want to get a range of candidates, you could list $60,000-$80,000 in the ad. $60,000 could be for candidates that could be considered stretch candidates—those who are slightly underqualified but can grow into the position. $80,000 may be for someone that is an “ideal” candidate—someone possibly overqualified but who can hit the ground running. By listing $60,000-$80,000 and “commensurate with experience,” you not only broaden the number of candidates for the position, but you also give yourself a window to negotiate when it comes to giving a candidate a job offer.

In part 1 of this blog, I wrote about the increasing impact that employer review sites are having on the recruiting process. People have always wanted to work for good companies, and now they have the ability to easily research prospective employers. But say you’ve looked up your company’s ratings and the consensus from reviewers is that you’re a bad employer, this may led you to the question…

What Can I Do About Poor Employer Reviews?

Claim Company Review Pages

The first step to take if you haven’t is to claim your company page. This will give you the ability to add a company logo and brief paragraph about what you do.

To put it in Indeed’s words, claiming your company page allows you to “raise the profile of your employment brand by sharing information on your mission, values and workplace”. By modifying your company page, you are given the opportunity to change what the first thing candidates see when they investigate your business.Indeed Claim Your Company

For both Indeed and Glassdoor, the process of claiming a company page is free of cost and fairly straight-forward. On Indeed, you need to search for your company page here and on Glassdoor they ask for this short form to be filled out to claim a page.

Know Where Most Reviews Come From and Ask Current Employees

The nature of online reviews tends to gravitate more towards the extremes of the spectrum- very negative one star or very positive five star reviews. While not universally true, the reality is that a large portion of the people who are motivated enough to get online and review an employer are going be negative and venting some anger.

People who are happy in their position and with the company for the most part don’t feel the need to get online and rave about their job (for the most part).

As an employer, one thing you can do to combat this is to encourage current employees to write honest reviews about their experience working for your company. Make sure to emphasize to employees that reviews are anonymous and explain why you’re asking. Be explicitly clear that there will be no repercussions if someone writes a review that suggests you’re a bad employer. You want these reviews to be as honest and authentic as possible.

One thing I don’t suggest is writing a fake review; fake reviews often are easy to recognize and don’t have the same power that honest, authenticate employee reviews have.

Should I Respond to Poor Reviews?

Both Indeed and Glassdoor offer the opportunity for employers to respond to negative or one-star reviews on their company page. The positive is clear; you get to express your point of view and defend against allegations that you do not see as fair. But in reality, you should think twice about engaging with poor reviews. It can seem defensive and like most arguments on the Internet, devolve into something ugly.

bad employer review

It’s better to leave negative reviews alone and not air out dirty laundry. Just like the movie WarGames taught us with nuclear war, when it comes to fighting on the Internet, sometimes the only winning move is not to play.

If you do feel that a review contains false information or breaks either Indeed or Glassdoor’s policies, the best course of action would be to contact the sites directly. For more advice about how to manage your company’s online reviews, Glassdoor has some useful information here.

Be a Better Employer

The best but maybe hardest way to deal with negative reviews is to understand: take criticism to heart and think of ways that your business could be a better employer.

While a few reviews painting you as a bad employer may be unavoidable, an overwhelming majority of one star reviews is a sign that things may need to change. It is sometimes not easy to make large alterations to poor management or fix a toxic workplace environment, but doing so will not only boost your recruiting efforts, but also go a long way to retaining current employees.

Consider some ways that you can redefine your company culture to make it more welcoming to employees.

Employer reviews is a small detail that can make a big difference in your recruiting efforts. If you ever have questions or need assistance in managing reviews or your company page, please do reach out to NewHire and we’d be happy to discuss with you.

Mad computer

In the digital age, consumers have more information available than ever before. One increasingly popular source for such information is opinion and review platforms with non-professional/user-generated content. Whether it’s ranking a restaurant (Yelp), movie (IMDb), book (Goodreads), or even college professor (RateMyProfessor), it has become more and more frequent for everything and everyone to fall under anonymous Internet raters’ scrutiny.

And while much has been written about employers’ ability to use social media to check candidates’ backgrounds, the web has also enabled job seekers to research prospective employers based on past and current employees’ reviews. These employer reviews can play a major impact on the recruiting process, whether positive or negative, and are becoming increasingly important to track when looking to a make a hire.

Where are jobseekers going for Employer Reviews?

The two largest employer review websites currently are Glassdoor and Indeed. While smaller employers could have zero to a few dozen reviews, large employers, such as Coca-Cola, have over a thousand. On both sites, current and former employees rate companies on a 1 to 5 star scale.

Glassdoor allows reviewers to get a little more specific and asks reviewers to rate companies’ Culture & Values, Work/Life Balance, Senior Management, Compensation & Benefits, and Career Opportunities. Both sites allow reviewers to leave comments to accompany their rating, which is frequently where the most insightful information resides.

When a possible applicant uses these sites to research an employer and sees an overwhelming number of negative comments, their desire to spend time applying for that position shrinks. No one wants to work for a bad employer.

Do these reviews really have an effect on recruiting?

How frequently have you seen a restaurant proudly displaying their high Yelp or TripAdvisor rank? Some service sites put enough credence in user reviews that they use them for quality assurance.

For example, Uber, an increasingly popular transportation start-up does not allow drivers who fall below 4.7 stars to continue to drive under the company name. While goods and services providers have known for a while that online review sites affect business, when it comes to recruiting, many small- to mid-sized companies may overlook online reviews’ influence on attracting applicants and hiring people to fill positions.

When consumers turn into candidates, they don’t stop utilizing the web for information gathering. Time Magazine reported that nearly half of employees polled in 2013 said that a company’s online reputation matters as much as the job offer.  For personal evidence- all three of the most recent employees at NewHire (myself included) looked at online employer reviews during our job hunt. Finally, one possible extra perk keeping high reviews: saving money. Most candidates are willing to accept a lower salary if company reviews are favorable.

In their 2013 Candidate Behavior Study, CareerBuilder discovered that 67% of the over 5,500 job seekers polled said they would take a lower salary at an exceptionally reviewed employer online. That’s a lot of people.

Employer reviews are key to making good hires at the rate you want. So now that you know how important they are, what can you do about poor reviews? Stay tuned for part 2 and I’ll let you know.

combinationSocial media can be a valuable tool in any small to mid-size company’s recruiting process. Not only are most sites free to set up, but they can also be a key source of finding candidates. In fact, 78% of recruiters reported to Jobvite that they used social media to make a hire in 2013 .

Here at NewHire, we are encouraging clients who utilize social media platforms to share their application on their own accounts. This can include both your company’s accounts and even your own personal ones. By sharing your open positions with those in your social media circle, it will help target individuals already connected to your industry and help draw new candidates to the opening. In the case of personal accounts, it will alert those in your life of the opportunity and involves one of the most important parts of getting a job: networking.

To share the application, follow these five steps:

1. Open your application

This can be done in NewHire by clicking “Dashboard” in the upper center of the page, choosing “View All Jobs” from the dropdown menu. Then select “View” under the “View Your Application” column for the job you’re interested in sharing. Alternatively, if the position has been posted on any job boards, you can click the “Apply Now” button to open your active application.

2. Find “Share/Save”

Once your application is open, you will see a grey box towards the upper right side of the page that says “Share/Save”. Move your cursor over the box to open the list of available social media sites.

3. Select the sites that you would like to use

The sites that people are most likely to select — LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook — are shown by default at the top. However, there are over 90 sites to chose from, ranging from well-known to obscure. You can view the full list of options by clicking the small black arrow on the bottom of the box and scrolling down.

4. Craft your post or tweet

Once you click on any of the social media sites, you will be automatically forwarded to that site in a new tab where you will be asked to login if you are not already. From there, you will be able to edit the text that will accompany the post or tweet and add hastags.
LinkedIn Note: For sharing a position on LinkedIn, you must make sure that you are already logged in to your account in your browser prior to trying to click to share the position.
Twitter Note: Adding hashtags helps categorize your tweet and draw outside users to reading it. Popular recruiting hashtags include #jobs and #hiring. Other things you can include are the location (i.e. #Chicago) or the industry (i.e. #insurance)

5. Submit the post and wait for candidates

There you have it! If you have any questions or problems with this process, you can always feel free to call NewHire at 877-923-0054 for further assistance.