5 Takeaways from Talent Acquisition Week (July 2021)

August 5, 2021 at 5:00 AM by Laura Davis

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A couple weeks ago, hundreds of TA leaders and experts virtually met up for the July 2021 edition of Talent Acquisition Week. Attendees immersed themselves in five days of networking and sessions discussing the state of talent acquisition, employer branding, DE&I, sourcing, and more in our new state of the market.

Here are a five key takeaways we saw from this season's conference:

1. The notion of hiring as a transaction is gone.

Employment has become more than a contract between a person and an organization. It's now a multi-dimensional relationship where companies must understand how employees feel about their employment experience. In her keynote address, Susan LaMotte (Founder & CEO at exaqueo) breaks down these relationships into four dimensions:

1. My Organization - Do I trust them, and do they trust me?

2. My Leaders - Do I respect them, and do they respect me?

3. My Co-workers - Do I value them, and do they value me?

4. My Work - Do I care about my job, and do the people on the receiving end care?

Employment is no longer a back and forth, work for pay and benefits. It's an all encompassing relationship.

2. Create an emotional connection in your recruitment process with social recruiting.

"People need to feel connected and that you care and that they are valued and that they are wanted as far as joining the organization," Shephali Gaier (Director of TA at Watkins Wellness) said in her presentation. "They can't feel like a number, especially in today's market."

Invest time into a social media strategy to create a space for candidates, job seekers and customers to engage with your company. It's a great way to highlight your employees and give a glimpse into the day to day of your organization, as well.

3. Leverage Employee Resource Groups in the candidate process.

When it comes to DE&I, employee resource groups are a great way for candidates to ask real questions and get receive real answers. As Tara Turk-Haynes (VP of DEI at Leaf Group) said in her DE&I presentation, "Candidates can ask [ERGs] what their experience is within our organization. [ERGs} can tell it better than [others] can."

And if you have an ERG at your company, encourage new hires to attend as part of your onboarding process. Entelo held two great webinars expanding upon this sentiment and more which you can view here:

WEBINAR: How to Build an Effective Diversity and Inclusion Program from Scratch

WEBINAR: Building an Inclusive Workforce in a Remote World

4. Employer brand includes optimizing the candidate experience

In Karl Wierzbicki (Director of Marketing at InFlight)'s presentation on candidate experience, he says "Today we've gotten to the point where the experience of looking for jobs is really blowing candidates away. {...} But there is still quite a bit of road ahead. [...] The job application transaction is still broken from an experience perspective."

Start thinking about how to improve candidate experience in terms of how to boost your conversation rate of applicants to candidates. Gather data, identify problems, and test solutions.

5. Fluidity and innovation is a key factor to succeeding in our "new normal".

One of the most common threads found throughout the entirety of TA Week was how companies and TA leaders are pivoting to succeed in today's new market. "Leaders that are doing really well the last 18 months are the ones that are adaptable and innovative. I think one of the silver linings of the pandemic is you're seeing a lot of folks come out with very creative ways to engage talent and reach them," Andre Boulais (Entelo's own VP of Customer Success) said in the closing panel of the week. One way to see things outside the box is with Entelo's Talent Pool Insights where you just might find your next great software engineer from somewhere you didn't think to look.

The biggest overarching themes we took from all these sessions were creating those emotional connection with candidates and thinking of new and creative ways to engage with them. From branding to the candidate experience, to employer resource groups. It will all set you up for succes.