Exit Interviews: Are They Worth the Time, Money, and Resources? (Part III)

speed interviewing

Over the past few days, we’ve been discussing the practice of exit interviews.

As we mentioned, the world of HR is pretty divided when it comes to implementing exit interviews, which is why we’ve decided to outline the pros and cons in order to give you a better idea of what you should look for when deciding if exit interviews are right for you.

Now that we’ve gone through the pros and cons, it only makes sense for us to go a little more in depth with a few tips on how to run a successful exit interview, as well as several alternatives should you decide to go a different route. Take a look below:

Exit interview tips 

  • Mandatory but not pushy. If you want to conduct exit interviews, then it is best to not make them optional. More often than not, your employees probably won’t want to go through the trouble of an exit interview.

    That being said, don’t be pushy when it comes to administering the exit interview. Not only will it leave a bad impression on some employees, but it’s most likely not worth it if they come into the interview with a bitter mindset (especially those who already quit on the spot).

  • Who’s conducting? It’s best to leave the exit interview to HR or a third party. While it might sound like a great idea to have their supervisor conduct the interview, if the supervisor had something to do with a person leaving, a third party will help lead to a more productive and honest exit interview.
  • A “no repercussions” policy. Make it clear from the beginning that there will be no repercussions for what they say in the exit interview. This will give them the peace of mind that they won’t miss out on their next job due to a bad recommendation, as well as hopefully give you the honest feedback you want.

Alternatives to the exit interview 

  • The exit “conversation”. If you like the idea of exit interviews but find the formalities a little too much or disingenuous, then you might want to consider the exit conversation. This casual approach helps to ease the tension because of its informality, allowing you to gain valuable, honest insights, and prevent your employee from thinking they’re just part of the “big data” now. 
  • The follow-up. This one comes from Humetrics CEO and TLNT contributor, Mel Kleiman. Mel suggests waiting until your employee is settled into their new job before you contact them. If they find that their new job is less than satisfactory, simply checking in and letting them know they’re missed may persuade them to come back.
  • Re-recruiting. If you don’t like the idea of dealing with employees after they’ve left, you should try convincing them to stay while they’re still an employee. Re-recruiting is a great way to prevent turnover because it tells your employees that you are looking out for their best interest even before they consider leaving.

Are exit interviews worth it or would you rather choose one of the alternatives above? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: Samuel Mann via photopin cc

Exit Interviews: Are They Worth the Time, Money, and Resources? (Part II)

entrance to old employer

Yesterday, we started our series on exit interviews.

As we mentioned, take a survey among the HR world, and you’ll find that opinions over the merits and disadvantages of exit interviews run all over the board. As such, it can be hard for those outside of the debate to really make an educated decision on whether or not exit interviews are right for them.

That’s why we thought we’d give you a brief guide on the matter. We already talked a little bit about the pros, so to balance things out, we thought it would only make sense to give you the cons as well. Take a look below:

The Cons of Exit Interviews 

  • Misleading feedback. In a perfect world, all the feedback we would get during an exit interview would actually be useful. Unfortunately, though, that isn’t always the case. 

    Even though your employee is leaving, it doesn’t mean that they’ll be honest and straightforward with you on the time they spent working in the company. In some instances, this can be because they’re afraid of how it will affect your future recommendation, or perhaps because they’re just too jaded/burnt out and don’t feel the need to go through the exit interview process. 

    As a result, you’ll most likely get answers along the lines of “everything was great, it just didn’t work out” to “I hate this place and would never consider working here again,” both of which provide little to no concrete feedback that you can actually use to improve your company.

  • Shows lack of foresight. Another issue that is raised when it comes to exit interviews is that it shows a lack of foresight on the part of the company. It’s obviously much too late to actually do anything to keep your employee from leaving, and taking the time to prevent future hires from going down the same road seems like a disingenuous effort to tie up loose ends on the part of the former employee. 

    As a result, you end up actually putting your employer brand at risk in some cases. Those who are strongly against exit interviews believe that a proper strategy should’ve been put in place way before the employee ever thought of leaving, which in turn would’ve most likely prevented the turnover from ever happening, saving you the trouble of dealing with any exit interviews.

On Tuesday, we’ll go a little deeper into exit interviews and give you some tips on how to conduct them, as well as alternatives you can take. In the meantime, what do you think about these cons? Are they valid? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

Exit Interviews: Are They Worth the Time, Money, and Resources? (Part I)

highway signs on a grey background

When we think about what goes on in the world of HR, we tend to focus on the hiring, recruiting, and managing aspects of the department.

But there is a fourth element to HR that we tend to neglect. We are, of course, talking about the importance of how a company and their HR department handles when an employee leaves or wants to leave.

One way to handle employee turnovers is by conducting an exit interview. However, take a look around the web, and you’ll find dozens of opinions on exit interviews that sway from calling them a super valuable tool to something that isn’t even worth mentioning.

To help you navigate the conversation, we thought we would go ahead and outline some of the pros and cons associated with exit interviews. For today, we’ll focus on the pros of exit interviews. Take a look below:

The Pros of Exit Interviews 

Check back tomorrow when we give you our cons list on exit interviews. In the mean time, what do you think are the advantages of exit interviews? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

Are You Engaging with Twitter Followers More or Less than Top Brands?

In the past, we’ve talked about why engaging your followers is an essential part of using Twitter for your business. Yet, as we noted, there is an abundance of businesses on social media who rarely try to communicate with their customers. 

But we’re not just talking about small businesses that simply make Twitter handles and never use them—we’re talking about some of the top brands who frequently update their Twitter multiple times throughout the day.

Recently, Simply Measured, a social media analytics provider, did a study during the final three months of 2013 on the Twitter accounts of 98 of Interbrand’s top 100 global brands.

Here is what they found:

  • About 92% of the top brands tweeted at least one per day.
  • The average company tweeted at least 12 times per day
  • However, around 54% of these brands sent less than one @reply per day
  • Simply Measured noted that “while top brands are dedicating resources to brand promotion, many aren’t engaging with users in a one-on-one capacity.”

One limitation of report, as noted by Simply Measured, is that some brands may engage customers with direct messages to their inquiries, which Simply Measured does not track.

Still, one-on-one engagement in a public setting (i.e. Twitterverse) is an important way of showing all of your followers that you are listening. One company who understands the kind of impact this can make is Pizza Hut, which Simply Measured said was “one of the most engaged brands on the list,” averaging about 33,659 @replies during the three-month span –accounting for nearly half of total @replies (68,000) of all Interbrand companies on the list.

Other companies paled in comparison, with top brands like eBay only averaging 5 @replies during the three-month span, Amazon with 4 @replies, and Disney at a measly 1 @reply.

While looking at these numbers may put you at ease for the time being, it should also be a great incentive to push you towards engaging your followers more often. Sure, top brands like eBay and Amazon might be able get away with not replying because of their strong presence, but smaller companies can’t really afford to let customer inquiries slide by. Make sure you make a conscious effort to engage your customers and show them that you care.

What do you think about this study? Do you think you engage your Twitter followers more or less than these top brands? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

Facebook Recruiting: Valuable Tool, or Waste of Time?

Recently, Forbes reported on a soon to be published study by researchers at Florida State University, Old Dominion University, Clemson University, and Accenture, that took a look into how well information found on social media profiles predicted a potential candidates’ job performance.

According to the article, 416 college students who were applying for full-time jobs agreed to have 86 recruiters rate their personality, employability, and job performance based solely on the information pulled from their Facebook profiles. Researchers then followed up with 142 supervisors (34% of the original sample) of the now-hired candidates in order to see how well of a predictor Facebook was.

Here’s what they found:

  • Researches noted, “Recruiter ratings of Facebook profiles correlate essentially zero with job performance”
  • The hypothetical employment pool was 63.2% female, 78.1% white, 10.8% Hispanic and 7% African-American, while the recruiters were mostly white and split as to gender.
    • Recruiters rated the women’s Facebook higher than men’s, and white individuals higher than African-American and Hispanic candidates, despite showing almost no correlation to job performance.
    • And, researcher Philip Roth of Clemson found that the “results suggest that Blacks and Hispanics might be adversely impacted by use of Facebook ratings,”
    • Researchers concluded that HR should advise managers to not use Facebook as a means of reviewing candidates.

Not much of a surprise.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise to our readers who remember our blog post about the study conducted by Ph.D student William Stoughton, and co-author Dr. Lisa Thompson, professor of psychology at NC University. In their study, they concluded that screening job applicants based on what found they found on their personal social media pages (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, etc.) proved ineffective in regards to how it reflected on a prospective employee’s work ethic.

As a refresher, here is what they found (you can read the rest of our post, here):

“Companies are eliminating some conscientious job applicants based on erroneous assumptions regarding what social media behavior tells us about the applicants.”

So, what’s the final takeaway?

It always seems like we’re picking on Facebook (especially Facebook recruiting), but what we’re really trying to do is highlight the importance of having a well-rounded and well-balanced recruiting toolkit. As we’ve said in the past, there is no one tool that is the “be-all and end-all” of recruiting, whether that’s Facebook, Twitter, mobile recruiting, etc.

To recruit successfully, you need to use your tools for their intended purpose, instead of trying to jam every problem or situation into one tool. As the research shows with Facebook, one tool is just not sufficient enough to go on alone.

2 Reasons Recruiters Shouldn’t Always Follow Their Gut Instincts

Recruiting is an art, and there are certainly those out there who are great at recruiting. But even experienced recruiters make mistakes every once in a while.

One of the main reasons why experienced recruiters make mistakes is because they rely too much on their gut instincts. Sometimes this works, but when it doesn’t, it can end up with a bad hire that can be very costly for your company.

Here are two important reasons why following your gut instincts can be a bad idea:

1. Following your gut instinct narrows your talent pool 

There’s nothing wrong with doing a little clean up before you begin the interview process—more often than not, you’ll have so many resumes that sifting through them and narrowing them down beforehand is essential.

At the same time, assumptions about a candidate based solely on their resume can really narrow your talent pool. A resume should tell you a lot about a candidate, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it tells you everything. As we’ve mentioned before, try to look beyond a candidate’s experience. Just because they haven’t worked in the field they are applying for doesn’t automatically mean that they’re less qualified, despite what your gut instincts may tell you.

2. Following your gut instinct can ruin a candidate’s experience 

While resumes may not tell the whole story about a candidate, it’s also important to remember not to go too far in the other direction. There are some recruiters who are too stringent during their initial resume screening, but on the other end, there are also recruiters who are far too open and who prefer to let things sort themselves out through interviews.

Being too narrow-minded about resumes can hurt your recruiting, but so can following your gut instinct about a candidate whose resume isn’t as strong as others. If you’ve read a candidate’s resume and have decided to go with your gut instinct and interview them (despite a subpar resume), you can end up wasting both your time and theirs. While you might think you’re putting on a good face for your candidate, droning though an interview just for the sake of an interview isn’t going to do good things for your candidate experience.

A resume should tell you a lot, but it doesn’t give you the whole picture. And when it comes to recruiting, you need to find the balance between logic and instincts. You’re bound to have some good instincts based on your time on the job, but you shouldn’t let those instincts take up too much control over your hiring process.

At the end of the day, a balance between your own experience—your gut instincts—and objective measurements of candidates is what it takes to succeed. Relying too much on one or the other can skew your recruiting process, and is sure to leave good candidates out of the mix.

4 New Years Resolution Ideas for HR

With a new year comes new goals and new standards to set for ourselves.

And since 2014 is only two days away, you might want to get your New Years resolution list in order before the clock strikes 12. To give you a little push in the right direction, here are a few ideas we have for you:

Polish your recruiting tools. 

At AIM Careerlink, we’ve got some great tools for finding the best talent around, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do a little customizing. Throughout this year, we’ve talked about a lot of different tools, like social media platforms and mobile apps, to help give you a well-rounded recruiting toolkit. But as with any arsenal, you need to make sure that everything you have is in tip top shape. Make an effort to keep your recruiting tools as polished as possible as we go into the new year.

Treat your employees right.

Employees are the backbone of any organization, and if you treat them well, then they will do well. Make it a goal to show that you genuinely care about them. Keeping your employees happy is a great way to generate camaraderie and creativity, and boost productivity. Do what you can to make your employees feel like they make a difference (because they really do).

Be nice to your candidates.

If you plan on treating your employees right, then why not go ahead and start well before they even become employees? A great candidate experience is a surefire way to hook in candidates, as well as create a great employer brand. This gives you a much better chance at reaching out to those potential candidates who you might not have reached using traditional recruiting methods.

Work on your cultural fit. 

We’re big proponents of cultural fit here at AIM. Having a team who works well together is an important aspect of a great company. Having a team who can see eye-to-eye allows the team to bounce ideas off of each other, and sets up the support system needed to get things done. It’s no surprise that a solid corporate culture can really do a company a lot of good.

We really could go on, but we think that this list of New Years resolutions is good start. If you can get yourself on the right track by taking these simple cues, then we think you’ll be headed for a great 2014!

Do you have any other New Year’s Resolutions you’d like to add to this list? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter. We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Will Facebook Video Ads Help Businesses, or Cause Them Trouble?

Last week, we checked in on the social media giant Facebook, and considered its status as we make our way into 2014.

As we mentioned in our previous post, Facebook may be running into a little trouble with amount of information it is cramming into its news feeds–but it looks like this social media juggernaut isn’t stopping there.

In recent news, Facebook decided to begin rolling out video ads that will pop up on users’ news feeds. While some businesses can rejoice, they should also be aware of the potential backlash from users that could end up causing some trouble for companies. To prep you for either scenario, we thought we would give you a pros and cons list. Take a look below:

Pros of video ads

  • Videos are a powerful tool. As we’ve mentioned in the past, videos are definitely a powerful tool when it comes to recruiting, so it’s no surprise that these videos could potentially do a lot to boost a company’s branding.
  • These ads are more organic than traditional online ads. Facebook has been known for integrating ads subtly into its platform, rather than the traditional ‘in your face’ method of most websites. The upshot of this approach might lessen the blow because it’s not as intrusive, preventing users from full-on abandoning the network.

Cons of video ads

  • Autoplay can be annoying. Most of us have had this problem before: those annoying websites with music or ads that you just can’t turn off. While these Facebook video ads are silent, they might still be enough to bug users.
  • The potential for sound. The ads may be silent for now, but Facebook is only in the testing phase. We won’t speculate too much, but the addition of sound could cause a bit of a rift–so keep an eye out for that moving forward.

What does this all mean for HR and recruiting?

Simply put, if users are unhappy with the platform, it might cause them to abandon Facebook, putting you out of a great recruiting tool.

That doesn’t mean that you should jump ship right this minute. As we’ve mentioned in the past, you need to be aware of everything going on with your recruiting tools. Some tools have been proven to work, while others are constantly transforming, meaning that you may need to make certain changes along the way.

All tools need a little tinkering every once in a while–even social media giants like Facebook. Making sure your arsenal is in tip top shape is the key to maintaining good order in recruiting and HR–do that, and you’ll be golden.

Hey, You–Put Some Feeling Into Your Leadership!

Calm, cool, and levelheaded is what almost everyone likes in a leader.

But being a great leader requires more than just a good decision maker; you need to show some feeling, as well. Today, we’re going to talk about a few reasons why showing some emotion is important to good leadership, and how to go about putting things into place.

The right kind of emotion?

Before we begin, we should probably clarify what we mean by emotion/feeling. We’re not talking about having full-on outbursts or victimizing yourself by acting like you carry the weight of all who cross paths with you.

Rather, the right kind of emotion for a great leadership is one of compassion for your employees, genuine kindness, and respect. You want to show that you are invested in your employees and that you can empathize with them.

“This leader is just right.”

That leads us to our next point: Neither too hot nor too cold is what everyone wants in a leader. Follow the goldilocks principle–as a leader, you need to walk the fine line between calculating (‘robotic’), and overly passionate.

Passion can be contagious and persuasive.

When you show that you are passionate about your work and that you genuinely care about your employees, others will follow. Showing some emotion is a great way to influence others to push themselves. As a leader, you set the example for the rest, not the other way around.

Compassion shows authenticity.

Showing compassion for your employees helps to create that sense of authenticity that many employees crave. When you show an employee how much they mean to you and your company, it gives them the drive to work harder.

Showing kindness and respect is also great for collaboration.

The relationship between a leader and employee is a two-way street. When you take into consideration the thoughts and efforts of your employees, they will do their best to deliver the results you want, because they feel personally invested in the work they do. In turn, your productivity and creativity should also increase as the projects you do become more of a team effort.

Humility builds trust.

Being open to what your employees say is a great way to build trust. Showing that you are willing to learn from them removes the fear or backlash of speaking out, helping you work against the stumbling blocks that many businesses face due to lack of communication.

A leader doesn’t need to be that mysterious figure delegating from up in the rafters. Showing some emotion is a great way to build a relationship with your employees. By doing so, the benefits that you and your employees receive in the long run will go great lengths towards building your company.

Why Your Corporate Mission Should Read Loud and Clear

A recent blog post on TLNT outlined some research that revealed a pretty interesting statistic. What they found is that many employees have higher job satisfaction when a company is clear about their corporate mission (and when they actually follow-through with that mission).

The 2013 Emerging Workforce Study, published by Spherion, found that an overwhelming majority of employees surveyed (70%) reported higher job satisfaction working for companies with a clear corporate mission statement and follow-through of that mission, compared to just 23% of employees whose companies have no clear mission.

The study also reported the following:

  • 70% of the respondents who worked for a company with a clear mission rated the likelihood of staying with their current employer for the next 5 years as excellent/very good. On the other hand, only 34% who worked for an employer with no clear corporate mission felt the same.
  • 53% of those working for an employer with a clear mission and follow-through rated their growth potential at their current job as excellent/very good. For those working under an employer with no clear mission, only 20% responded with excellent/very good.
  • When asked if they were at least somewhat likely to look for a new job in the next 12 months, only 21% of respondents at a company with a clear mission answered yes. For those who worke for an employer with no clear mission? Nearly double amount of respondents (41%) said they’d toyed with the idea of looking for a new job within a year’s time.

So, what can we take away from all of this?

As we’ve talked about in the past, in recent years, employees have put more focus on taking stock of the companies they work for. Having a clear understanding of an organization’s mission statement is one way that employees gauge their job satisfaction, which in turn can either benefit or put your company at a disadvantage.

Here are a few other key things to consider:

  • The values of employees change all the time. As such, an employer needs to be aware of these values and take them into consideration. For example, the values and priorities of Millennials are much different than Gen X’s and Boomers. If you are hiring more Millennials (which you most likely are), then you need to factor in their wants and needs.
  • The more your employees understand about your company, its goals, cultural fit, etc, the better a chance you have of retaining these individuals. Now more than ever, employees want to feel like they’re making a difference, and that they are playing an integral part in accomplishing the mission of the company they work for.

While corporate missions may have previously been just a small part of any company’s overall approach to doing business, this study shows that such missions are truly cornerstones of the employee process.

What benefits do you see of having a mission that reads loud and clear to your employees? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!. We’d love to hear your thoughts!