Hiring Employees vs Hiring Talent

Hiring Talent VS Hiring Employees

Over the years, recruitment has grown into a function of talent acquisition. But what does talent mean? Is it different from a regular employee? Well, the answer is both yes and no. Since the pandemic, we have seen a tremendous change in the way we hire. With so many companies adopting a remote setting, the geographical blockage is removed. 

Companies are leveraging the best of technology to create a digital experience for their employees. Hence, it has become easier to attract and hire employees in the market. But if we look at Jevon’s paradox – an increase in efficiency in resource usage will generate an increase in resource consumption rather than a decrease. With better efficiency in the hiring process, you’ll see a rise in the inflow of resumes and more work for recruiters, negating the very purpose of using the technology – ease. 

With an increased inflow of resumes, recruiters are tasked with finding the best possible talent in the market. Talent is nothing but potential employees who are high on the agency – this talent comes with a roll-up sleeve attitude. Employees, on the other hand, are the people who will be high on ownership they will set and do their assigned tasks on time. 

From this, it becomes clear that companies want to hire talent and not employees. However, talent will come at a price, so the question is what can companies do to hire that talent? 

Explain the hiring process at the start

Setting the right expectations in terms of the hiring process will ensure a smooth flow through the candidates’ journey. It also sets the right tone with the candidate on the number of rounds he/she has to appear for. 

A good hiring process gives the candidate a flavor of the next step as well. Give detailed feedback on the interview and make the candidate aware of what he/she can expect from the next round. 

  • At Springworks, for some senior roles, we have a task submission stage – the purpose of this stage is to gauge the candidate on technical skills and make the job easier for the interviewer. 
  • We offer an Amazon gift voucher for any candidate who completes the task for their time spent on the task regardless of whether they are making it to the next stage or not. This practice helps us set the proper context from the start. 
  • We receive a higher number of task submissions which makes filtering easier for the recruiter and the entire process is faster thereby giving a better employee experience.

Do a cultural fitment

Imagine hiring a candidate, completing the entire process, and then finding that the visions don’t align. This is frustrating – it is always recommended to do a cultural fitment round. 

At Springworks, we do a cultural round with the candidate in this manner:

  • We follow async communication which means fewer calls, fewer meetings, and more focus on written communication. While gauging the culture fit, we make sure to put this point across to the candidate so he/she comes with that mindset. 
  • We also try to deep dive into how he/she would like to progress within the role and the company, this gives us a clearer picture of how the candidate will fit in the organization. 

Send snippets of the company updates, what did the team do that week? This will ensure that the candidate is well versed with the company and the people in it which can help him to be productive from day one. 

Have a smooth onboarding flow

A strong onboarding plan in place will ensure that the candidate is set up for success from day 1. Creating the best onboarding experience also comes with a feel-good factor that the company is ready for the candidate to join and can ensure the candidate’s best performance. 

From the beginning, it is important to let the candidate know who they will work with, and how their day will look in the organization. Doing a buddy meet before the employee joins will give insights into the type and nature of work which will give the employee more confidence while approaching the same. 

Have regular check-ins with the employee

Having regular check-ins with the employees will help you gauge the onboarding experience better. The check-ins should be placed at an interval on the 30th, 60th, and 90th days of work. 

With each check-in, go into the depth of the questions. 

For example: 

  • For the 30th-day feedback the questions will revolve around the onboarding experience, and how well is the employee getting along with their colleagues. 
  • The 60th day will focus more on the job function itself since the employee is now familiar with the roles and responsibilities – questions in line with the clarity of the responsibilities and expectations can be asked here. 
  • The 90th day is to check what can be done better in terms of his/her day-to-day work – and the overall culture of the organization. 

Have a career progression plan in the place 

Where most startups struggle to retain the right talent, this can be solved by having a career progression model in place. 

“Invest in employee’s success and employees will invest in organizations success” 

Make the employee see how his/her next two years will look in the company. Have regular discussions with employees on  

What does a career progression plan look like? 

Career progression starts with the onboarding process. At Springworks, we schedule the manager meeting before the candidate has joined – this helps the manager to prepare for the joining and some time to figure out how responsibilities for the employees will flow. 

Career progression is a continuous process that involves the manager and the employee working together on shared goals. We also make sure to have regular check-ins with the employee to check how he/she is progressing in terms of personal goals and how we can further align these goals to business requirements. Identifying arrears of improvement and supporting the individual with the necessary training and resources to upskill.

Talent management is still a vast subject assuming every organization follows these basic steps. Something which is directly linked to employee relations (ER). Culture will play a huge role in the retention and development of your talent. 


The question that arises is: can you convert your current employees into talent? 

Yes, with clear communication, focus on goal setting, and working with them towards shared objectives. 

Finding a good company in the market has almost become an easy task now since we have so many new ways to attract talent and we have seen companies offering some surprisingly good perks for candidates to join them. Employer branding is no longer a means to attract talent but something which has to be done by default to survive in the market. 

With good employer branding and benefits, you may attract the right talent. But how do you make them stay – this is where the companies should focus on if they want to hire talent. 

Any good talent will demand certain basic things such as – career progression, market standard salary, and benefits, flexible working, and remote working. But merely offering them is not enough – these offerings have to be translated into mutual benefits for employee and employer and this is where the gap lies. 

Conclusion 

While it is becoming increasingly easy to find employees in the market, it is time to focus and deep dive into the hiring needs – how can we create the best experience for the candidates and motivate them to go above and beyond their job role? The answer is to do the basics right and keep doing it the right way. 

There is no best hiring strategy. It all depends on what you are looking for and what you are ready to offer in return.

Rohan Mankad

I am an HR Executive at Springworks. I will be your one-stop resource for all HR thought-leadership pieces covering different topics.

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