Ideal Staffing Software Interface for Maximum Productivity

We recently released an updated interface for Adapt in the US staffing markets. Not only was the interface designed for a more modern feel, but it also improves user experiences by increasing streamlined workflows and making it easier for users to be productive. Recruiters and sales team members are able find talent and manage sales opportunities faster than ever. To make enhancements to ATS systems for maximizing productivity and update the interface, recruitment technology providers have a lot to consider. Learn how our product team researched, developed and delivered updated staffing technology systems to make recruiting organizations more profitable—

Research usability

It was important to have a modern, sleek look and feel to the recruitment software systems, but the priority was to ensure users could maximize efficiency and focus on revenue generating activities. Numerous users and stakeholders provided feedback and a team of third-party usability experts were consulted. The outside team that specialized in software usability were trained on our older recruitment software system so they could understand how recruiters were using the system in addition to shadowing users and getting direct feedback from clients.

A large part of our research outcome was around streamlining the system and laying out the screens in the right ways. Those principles were applied throughout the design of our flagship products. Everything from calendar, journal and record displays to system navigation and notifications; all of those areas have been re-designed to reduce the number of clicks and present the information in the most intuitive ways. Careful consideration was given around the screen layouts and navigating through the system, especially as the eye scans around the screen to easily absorb the data.

Keep users organized and efficient

The Adapt tasks and calendar management system is fully integrated with the workflow system and visible to users through integrated calendar and task views. Everything is updated in real-time for better organization to maximize productivity and provide visibility into personal workloads. The notification icons in the Adapt header bar allows users to instantly see how many appointments are scheduled for the day and how many outstanding tasks need attention, all updated in real time. A single click, wherever you are in the system, displays any new appointments or any new tasks that have been allocated to you in addition to pop-up notification messages which fade in over the Adapt user interface, giving users a helpful visual cue.

Incorporate an intuitive navigation

The main goal in the updated product design was increasing speed and making the system more intuitive. Not just faster from a technical perspective, but for the recruiter’s whole experience. When looking at a candidate record the first screen contains all needed information at a glance. The user does not have to navigate away and look at other screens, making it faster and easier for recruiters to work with candidates. The same is true of company, job and contact records, the first screens present all the information users need with embedded documents viewable through scrollable windows. Those kinds of changes reduce the amount of traffic sent online and make the application itself more responsive. Keeping revenue-generating tasks quick help team members increase productivity and profitability.

Another navigation enhancement to reduce clicks are fly out menus. For example, if you hover over a LinkedIn URL a fly-out to the main LinkedIn page pops-up, so you can actually see the profile right there without further clicks or manual steps. The same is true for other aspects of the system, if you hover over someone’s name or a company name a fly-out will appear so you can quickly see the information, move away and the fly-out disappears. No need to click through multiple windows, this navigation design keeps processes fast and easy.

Enhanced technical speed

Speed is important because most of the activity performed by recruiters and sales team members is very time-bound. Streamlining the whole process to increase sales volume and enable recruiters to identify the right candidates and put them forward as quickly as possible is key. From a system perspective we’ve done a number of things. We operate a number of tools throughout the life cycle of our solutions, including our historic solutions, to enable us to fully understand which elements of the software are working efficiently and which are working less efficiently than they should. We use these tools to see if any inefficiency we may find is due to our infrastructure. It might be as simple as adding more memory is needed, or the actual code might need to be factored. With Adapt, we’ve refactored some areas of code which means, under the hood, the system is faster and more efficient.

To find out more information on Adapt, contact us today for a demo.

7 Tips for Improving Staffing Client Retention

When speaking to our customers, conversations around driving operational excellence all come from the same motivational reason – better servicing the clients of a staffing and recruiting agency. The staffing industry is a competitive field for finding and placing qualified talent and for obtaining and keeping new clients. Businesses are always looking for the best option among staffing vendors, which creates a lot of pressure to constantly work toward customer satisfaction. There is an overwhelming amount of information on the subject of client retention, but generally speaking most sources conclude that retention is more profitable than constantly finding new business.

Some staffing managers make the wrong assumption that competitors are at a disadvantage stealing away customers without in-depth knowledge of the client’s unique business needs. However, some clients still choose to try other agencies hoping for better services despite having long-standing relationships with their staffing vendors. To avoid these scenarios, it’s important to incorporate the following seven client retention tips for better profitability and remaining the best option for a staffing agency among competitors—

1. Connect

Salespeople often have plans and strategies in place to connect with prospects, but what about after a sale has been made? Reaching out on a regular basis through birthday and holiday cards, invitations for lunch, or sending an email to simply stay in touch indicates to clients that they are considered more than just dollar signs to a recruiting agency. By constantly focusing on relationship management with clients in addition to delivering quality candidates, your staffing agency will be set up to be the top choice vendor for providing talent. Because businesses select staffing and recruiting firms who respect and remember them, ensure your entire organization knows how to show how much they appreciate the business of clients.

2. Walk the Walk

Success is often measured by delivery of promises made. Staffing sales professionals should avoid setting unrealistic expectations when speaking to prospects, but in doing so must work closely with recruiters to determine reasonable recruiting strategies to pitch to potential clients. Ensuring that sales people are aware of talent pipelines and that recruiters are aware of promised being made to prospects avoids unpleasant conversations to clients about not being able to deliver what they were expecting. A broken promise can easily overshadow excellent service.

3. Listen

It is imperative recruiters have a thorough understanding of the job they are recruiting for that isn’t listed on a job description. By learning the client’s culture and the soft skills needed for job orders, clients will appreciate the effort and commitment made to provide not just needed skills for the job, but also personality traits that fit in well within the organization.

4. Specialize

Know your organization’s recruiting and staffing strengths and help your team further their expertise to become unstoppable in their specialized market sectors. A thorough training program for your recruiting team that guides them to becoming experts in their niche will strengthen your agency’s reputation as the best staffing vendor for your specialized recruitment efforts. Avoid diving head first into markets your team lacks experience in. Without the needed strategy and right resources, it may cause operational hiccups that your current clients ultimately suffer the most from. Calculate your risks when looking to grow and diversify your staffing business. If the risk that you could alienate existing clients is high then consider alternative strategies.

5. Ensure Clients are Given What They Ask For

Sending a stream of weak candidate submittals for a difficult job order can be tempting for some recruiters who hope that something is better than nothing. However, submitting weak or unqualified candidates will cause more harm than good for client relationships. Touch base with your recruiters and ask them which job order is going to be their toughest to fill to see how you can assist. Unless you ask where recruitment challenges are, you may not know that a recruiter’s misinterpretation of the opportunity could potentially damage the reputation of your staffing firm.  

6. Extensive Training

Training new sales reps can be time consuming and expensive, but avoid letting them learn by their mistakes at the clients’ expense. Providing extensive training, mentoring and backup support prevents internal staff turnover and helps inspire enthusiasm as they grow into their position confidently to help improve and maintain client relationships.

7. Automate

Powerful recruiting software like Adapt help staffing sales team close deals efficiently and allows for recruiters to fill jobs faster and more effectively. Your clients won’t really know that automation is the difference between your team and your competitors, but they’ll feel the difference.

While it’s important to be growing your company through onboarding new clients, remember how easy and cost effective it is to retain existing clients. Invest in retention. Make sure your clients know they are important, appreciated, and are utilizing a staffing agency with the best operational practices.

15 Ways to Improve Staffing & Recruiting Data Quality

The more confidence we have in the data that we use to guide our business decisions, the faster we can make good, well-informed decisions. Managers may have a deep appreciation for performance data, but few are in a position where they have complete confidence in the numbers. For those plagued with data quality issues, the desire for data-driven management can sound like an unobtainable state of nirvana. Read more

Graduate Recruitment – Ways to Minimise Reneged Offers

Graduate RecruitmentMore than half of employers seeking graduates in the UK couldn’t fill their vacancies last year, according to a recent survey. This underlines how recruiters are facing an uphill task in finding graduates with the skills and potential to achieve a good fit. Making full use of web based recruitment software is key, not only to attracting graduate candidates of the right calibre, but also to keeping reneged offers to a minimum.

There is now a worrying trend among graduates which sees many initially accept offers, but then renege on them, in some cases at the last minute. Recent figures from the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) found that 7.1% of graduate offers were reneged in 2016, with especially high rates of reneges in the competitive fields of banking and accountancy.

Large numbers of graduates are entering the jobs marketplace each year, many of whom have skills which are in demand in the current climate. However, the question is not only how to compete for the best of this talent, but also how to nurture it after offers are accepted; and throughout the onboarding process.

Scale of the Problem

The trend for reneged offers has developed over recent years and is related to the level of unfilled graduate vacancies. This talent gap often means that graduates with the right qualities and high grades can find themselves in demand even in a generally competitive marketplace. This increases the risk that, even after accepting a post, they may change their mind if what they perceive as a better offer comes along.

When a new recruit backs-out at this stage, it can cause a number of problems for employers. They are left with a gap on their books, causing difficulties with workload and with the arrangements for the new employee’s initial training. Because reneges often happen at short notice, there is increased pressure to find a replacement quickly, but the company might well have lost their second choice to a competitor in the meantime. This means they have to spend more time and money recruiting again, and there is a risk they may not find someone of the same calibre as the candidate they have lost.

As well as being bad news for in-house recruiters, reneged offers can also cause difficulties for recruitment agencies. If your agency sourced the graduate candidate who has let a client down, then, however unfairly, the behaviour could potentially be seen as a reflection of your service and reliability.

Ways to Combat Reneges

The longer and more complex the journey from application to employment, the greater the danger is that a candidate will drop out.  Streamlining the candidate experience is therefore essential. Web based recruitment software has a key role to play here, by enabling candidates to quickly apply online, or via mobile channels, and get all the information they need.  

An efficient application process will help to create a positive impression of the job and employer, making candidates feel more enthusiastic from the outset. Choosing the right candidate in the first place, by using sophisticated cloud recruitment software which flags up the different attributes you are looking for, also helps to ensure a good fit; which again can lessen the risk of a renege.

We have looked in detail at how to understand Generation Z. This is very relevant to today’s young graduates, who have grown up in a digital world and expect to be able to communicate via a number of devices, mobile phones and email, as a matter of course.

Recruiters need to use the whole range of available channels to communicate effectively with this generation. This involves using multiple job boards and social media recruitment, but it is equally important to provide information and reply to queries quickly, without unnecessary delays. 

Communication and Onboarding

As a recruiter, you need to stay in touch with candidates after the offer and before they start, since there can be a risk of dropout at any time during this period. Easy lines of communication are essential. It can help to assign a mentor who will keep in touch with the individual and provide a point of contact if they have queries in the run-up to starting work.

It is also often helpful to invite graduates to events at the company and arrange events where they can meet-up with other new graduates and existing employees. This will make them feel like part of the team before they start, which is likely to increase their commitment.

Once the new recruit starts work, the onboarding process is also vital, ensuring they are smoothly integrated into the existing workforce.  Monitoring candidate experience and getting feedback can help to pinpoint if there are any areas you could improve, both during initial recruitment and onboarding, which will again help to improve candidate retention going forward.

Using Adapt candidate management software can help to identify graduates with the right potential and streamline the selection and onboarding process, which will help to minimise reneged offers. To arrange a demo of Adapt, please get in touch.

The Challenges in Recruiting Staff to Work for Small Businesses

A high proportion of job openings in the US every year are with small and medium enterprises (SMEs), but it can be hard for them to find new staff. Many small businesses turn to recruitment agencies to source staff who are the right fit and have the right skills.

But how can recruitment agencies best put forward the advantages of working for a small, lesser-known company? Also, how can the right recruitment agency software make it simpler to find quality candidates for a smaller business?

Small and medium businesses in the US

According to the US government, 30 million SMEs make up two-thirds of private sector jobs. However, SMEs are being hit by the skills shortage, in the technology field in particular, and there is fierce competition to recruit candidates with the knowledge and experience needed.

If you are competing with recruiters working on behalf of larger companies, the problem can be that, because these organizations are better-known, candidates are more likely to choose them first. Perceived advantages include prestige, greater brand awareness and opportunities for career progression.

In fact, there are also major advantages to working for smaller companies, but many SMEs find it hard to get across the message of all they have to offer. This is one reason why they often turn to recruitment agencies to find a new employee. But then recruiters in turn have the job of finding people with the right skills and selling the company to the right candidate. Here are our key pointers for agencies recruiting for SMEs.

Get to Know the Business

Every small business has its own culture and it’s important to find candidates who will fit in and be part of the team. A way to do this is to really get a feel of the business you are recruiting for, as then you are more likely to find candidates who are right for them.

Often small businesses are looking for staff members who are not only highly skilled in their own field, but are also all-rounders and willing to turn their hand to other tasks when necessary. A big advantage for SMEs is that as an agency you can save them time and avoid them having to weed-out candidates who aren’t suitable for them.

Spread the Word Widely

Technology helps small companies to be on more of a level playing field with the larger ones, by making it easier for candidates to get a feel of what a company is like and apply for jobs.  In addition to job boards, it can help to reach a wider range of candidates if you advertise on social media, using recruitment agency software which makes it as easy to apply via these channels as possible.

Looking at the whole age range can also help you to avoid missing out on potential candidates. This includes Generation Z, people born in the late 1990s and early 2000’s, who are now playing an increasingly important role in the workplace, as well as the slightly older Generation Y/Millennials and all the other age groups in the workforce. People in their 40s, 50s and 60s can sometimes be overlooked by recruiters, but they have much to offer, including experience and loyalty. You need to find the sites which these varied age groups regularly visit.  

Present SME’s Opportunities Clearly

The advantages of working for larger companies are well-known, but as a recruiter you also need to be able to get across to candidates what the advantages of working for a small company are. Candidates may not be clear about what a smaller company has to offer, so this needs to be put across both in the initial marketing and placing of job ads and at the interview stage. 

Attractions of working for a small business include greater flexibility, the opportunity to take on more responsibility early on, and the fact that often a role can be more tailored to a staff member’s individual strengths. They are also likely to have more access to senior management and a chance to put forward ideas, without going through the layers of admin which tend to be present in larger organizations.   

Think Flexibly

If, despite all your efforts, you cannot source an ideal candidate with the full skill set required for the job, it can be helpful to think flexibly and to look again at the strongest applicants who have come forward. The company may be prepared either to recast the job’s requirements, possibly by shifting someone internally, or to change the hours and look at flexible working. Finding two part-timers can often work just as well for a small company as one full-timer.

Our software is ideal for recruitment agencies working with SMEs. It enables applications via a wide range of routes, including job boards and social media as well as a mobile phone app. Adapt quickly captures all the information supplied by candidates and saves it in an easily searchable form. To find out more about how Adapt can work for you, contact us today to schedule a demo.