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We live in an age of big data and analytics. It’s a time when you can collect and analyze data and use it to optimize virtually any business process. Recruiting is no exception. Doing so will not only give you fresh insights into how effective your current recruiting efforts are, but also what you can do to make them more efficient so that you get better results.

Wondering where to get started? Let’s take a closer look.

Which Metrics Matter?

There are lots of ways to capture data about your recruiting process. One of the easiest is to use an applicant tracking system that will automatically collect that data for you and display it back to you in an easy-to-understand dashboard. But, no matter how you collect your recruiting data, make sure that you focus in on a few key metrics:

  1. Time to hire, which is the amount of time to it takes from when a job is posted until an applicant accepts the offer. While time to hire can vary dramatically based on the industry you’re in and the role you’re recruiting for, the longer the process takes the more expensive it becomes.
  2. Cost per hire, which is how much it costs to fill a role when you factor in things like advertising the position on paid job boards, paying for various other tools, and spending time recruiting, vetting, and onboarding candidates. Obviously you want to manage your expenses carefully.
  3. Source quality, which refers to the cost-effectiveness of the different sources you’re using to attract candidates. To calculate it, divide the annual cost of each source (job boards, ads, etc.) by the number of successful hires they have led to over the past 12 months.

Collectively, these metrics will give you a good initial understanding of how efficient and cost-effective your recruiting is. Once you’ve established some benchmarks for yourself (i.e., how long it typically takes you to fill a role, how much doing so typically costs on average, and how cost-effective your different sources are), you can then get to work on trying to optimize your recruiting efforts to get better results.

From Analytics to Action

Anytime that you have data-driven metrics and analytics, you can use them to gain insights into what you’re doing. If your time to hire is really long and your cost per hire is really low, for example, then perhaps you want to make some tweaks to your process, such as spending a bit more on advertising. Even a small investment my more than pay for itself if it means that you’re getting to better candidates faster.

If you can see that you’re spending hundreds or even thousands of sources that aren’t actually leading you to the candidates who you wind up hiring, it’s probably time to re-evaluate your sourcing strategy. It could be that you need to allocate your budget dollars differently or that you simply are focusing on the wrong sources altogether. Take a close and honest look. The  numbers will speak for themselves.

Effectively what you want to do is use whatever data you have to understand what’s working and what isn’t. Then, you can look to ramp up the things that are and to make whatever adjustments are necessary to those that aren’t. It may require a bit of trial and error, but so long as you can attribute the changes you make to the results you’re getting, you’ll know exactly what’s helping and what’s not. Try pulling different levers over time until you’ve optimized your recruiting process and it’s running like a well-oiled machine.

It may not be easy, but using analytics is a great way to figure out how to make your recruiting efforts as effective as possible. For that reason alone, it’s worth taking a closer look at them.





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