Many people equate sourcing candidates with simply creating and running Boolean search strings.
In my opinion and experience, Boolean search neither adequately describes nor gives proper credit to what sourcers and recruiters are really doing when they leverage the Internet, resume databases, ATS/CRM applications and social networking sites such as LinkedIn to find candidates, and to what some very talented and highly skilled professionals are able to accomplish with human capital data.
I had the distinct honor of delivering the keynote presentation at SourceCon 2010 which was held at the International Spy Museum in Washington, DC. I spoke about a specialized form of information retrieval and text/data mining which I call talent mining, defined as querying and analyzing human capital data for talent discovery, identification, and ultimately acquisition.
At the strategic level, talent mining is the process of transforming human capital data into an informational and competitive advantage – much more than simply writing Boolean search strings. Continue reading →
Now that we are on our way into exploring the new year, I’ve seen some articles on what’s coming next for the recruiting industry this year, and even as far out as 10 years from now.
When I read one such article written by Kevin Wheeler, I was struck by his comment that although sourcing remains a topic he is interested in, he feels that “the need to conduct in-depth Internet searches and apply Boolean logic to searches is no longer relevant in the majority of cases.”
I was prepared to write an article just in response to that thought, but as I sat down to review his post again on Sunday in preparation for my post, I noticed that Kelly Dingee had commented in defense of electronic talent identification.
In response, Kevin wrote “I think that intensive Internet searching, for most internal recruiters, is a sign of their failure to develop a community of potential candidates. If the position is a unique or one-of-a-kind search, they should probably use a third party recruiter. For volume and routine hiring there should be no need to use anything beyond a network of potential candidates whether proprietary or not. Building that community is what a recruiter’s job is all about – not running searches or becoming a computer nerd.”
“Hal Varian likes to say that the sexy job in the next ten years will be statisticians. After all, who would have guessed that computer engineers would be the cool job of the 90s? When every business has free and ubiquitous data, the ability to understand it and extract value from it becomes the complimentary scarce factor. It leads to intelligence, and the intelligent business is the successful business, regardless of its size. Data is the sword of the 21st century, those who wield it well, the Samurai.”
What am I talking about? That the ability to understand and extract value from data (human capital data in recruiting) is the scarce factor and it leads to intelligence and success in business.
This post was originally published in March 2009 – when pretty much no one read my blog. now that I have a few more readers, I’ve decided to modify and update the original post, which you can read here.
Does your recruiting or staffing organziation have Talent Intelligence?
I believe that all staffing organizations should view and value their internal resume/candidate database/ATS as a proprietary business intelligence tool. Business intelligence refers to applications and technologies that are used to gather, provide access to, and analyze data and information and help companies develop consistent and “data-based” business decisions — producing better results than basing decisions on “guesswork.”
I define “Talent Intelligence” as refering to applications and technologies that are used to gather, provide access to, and analyze Talent-related (Human Capital) data and information and help organizations develop consistent and “data-based” Talent-related decisions.
Business intelligence applications are usually supported by a data warehouse, which is the main repository of an organization’s historical data, also known as corporate memory (the total body of data, information and knowledge required to deliver the strategic aims and objectives of an organization). A company’s “Talent Warehouse” should serve as the main repository of an organization’s Human Capital data, and it would serve as the raw material for a Talent Support System (TSS) – a computerized system for helping to make Talent-related decisions, such as talent identification and acquisition.
Practically every Fortune 1000 company (and many smaller ones too) utilizes and leverages business intelligence solutions to make better decisions and run their companies more effectively and efficiently. However, very few – if ANY – companies actually have a true Talent Intelligence solution. Although many Applicant Tracking Systems ,HRMS/HRIS solutions and Recruiting CRM applications make lofty claims as to their capabilities and functionality, I don’t consider many vendor solutions currently on the market to be a true Talent Intelligence solution. Most are simply systems that track and organize applicants.
I find it ironic that companies in nearly every industry invest millions and millions of dollars on their data warehousing/business intelligence initiatives – just to be able to retrieve and analyze their data to enable them to make better business decisions, yet I’d argue that every company’s Human Capital is actually their most valuable and critical asset. So why is it that HR, recruiting, and staffing technology is so far behind in technologies used for gathering, retrieving, and analyzing financial, manufacturing, etc., data? Continue reading →