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Our clients’ revenues range from $10 million to more than $14 billion. The smaller clients with few people in human resources, and often no in-house recruiting, outsource recruitment to Celectiv. They get gold standard recruitment practices that ensure the integrity of the hiring process and the likelihood that chosen candidates will succeed.

Recruitment speeds up, and mistakes go away. Well, pretty much.

Better Recruitment Practices in Three Steps 

None of these tools are new or revolutionary, though connecting them in a seamless system is.

1. Algorithms that sort candidates

An applicant tracking system, quite simply, ensures that you don’t lose candidates. It makes following candidates simple and straightforward. The problem? It gives you few insights about where to begin. Many of our clients still had stacks of resumes on their desks.

The algorithms we created rank candidates based upon the probability of performing well. The algorithms rest upon the findings of Watson-Glaser and Wonderlic tests, numerous peer-reviewed papers in psychological journals, and data science. There’s lots of data supporting these algorithms. The Watson-Glaser test of problem solving skills, for example, was first used in 1923.

2. Cultural models further define the pool of candidates

The most promising candidates take a quick test to ascertain whether they might be good fits with a company’s corporate culture.

One of the major executive search firms found that 40 percent of its placements either quit or were fired within 18 months, largely because they did not “fit.” Our cultural model reduces the number of hires that ultimately just don’t work out.

The cultural models come from proprietary research that was first published in a Harvard Business Review article, “Cultural Matters Most.” Our nine cultures describe how a company creates value. “Trailblazers,” for example, focus on new products and foster risk taking; “Well-oiled machines” value getting it right again and again and again, and have little tolerance for risk.

A doctoral student in cultural anthropology at The University of Chicago vetted the work, once again, in 2017, and we are now working with a sociologist at Northwestern University to enhance what it can do.

3. Interview Kit

Our interview kit is truly best practice. It has its roots in work done by MI-6 and the OSS in World War II. It’s what Danny Kahneman described in his best-seller Thinking Fast, Thinking Slow.

Many large companies have their own behavioral interview protocols. What makes ours different is the fact that we put it on a digital platform so everyone interviews in exactly the same way all the time, and so that the hiring executive has direct line of sight into the process through a dashboard. It disciplines interviews: no more spending most of the time in an interview talking about Iowa State football.

A law firm, for example, has used the interview kit so that its hires in Hong Kong, London and New York are held to the same standards as hires in Chicago. A hiring executive can manage the process through a dashboard. It works just the same for regional sales offices in Albuquerque and Hartford.

A story to sum it all up

Years ago, I conducted the search for the CEO of Snap-on, and as part of launching that search, I interviewed all of the directors of Snap-on, including Ed Rensi, who had run McDonald’s in North America.

Ed’s predecessor had had great success driving revenues, and as he packed his office, Ed asked questions and listened. He expected to hear about the importance of product development and menu expansion. Instead, he heard, “Keep the bathrooms clean, Ed. Mothers trust that our washrooms will always be clean and that we’re a safe place to bring their children. Keep the bathrooms clean, and you will do fine.”

“So,” Ed told me, “I did.”

Scientists talk about false positives, and human resources executives talk about poor fit. There’s a lot of science and a lot of mumbo-jumbo pseudoscience around hiring. We can get lost in the science. At its simplest, Celectiv’s recruitment practices make certain the “bathrooms are always clean.”

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