- November 28, 2018
- Posted by: David Marshall
- Category: Business, Management
When it comes to finding new talent, the onus shouldn’t be on Human Resources to do all the work. HR can find potential talent by ticking off all the boxes, but it’s ultimately the manager who should be responsible for testing the individual skill sets and determining whether they would be a cultural and talent fit for the organization. The HR person will never fully understand the function that needs to be performed.
This isn’t to bash on the HR department. After all, they perform a very important function within the organization, but talent recruitment shouldn’t be a big part of their job.
For example, we know that every résumé gets a spit and polish before it goes out. People modify their résumé to suit the job description they’re applying for, but an HR person usually can’t tell whether the candidate can actually do the job just by looking at the résumé.
They’re going off the job description the manager gave them and trying to match it to the candidate’s résumé. On the other hand, the manager or supervisor should be able to tell when a candidate has the requisite skills and when they’re fudging their experiences a little bit.
In fact, the manager should be required to do this, since they’re ultimately responsible for the output in their department. If they hire an idiot, then that decision rests fully on them, and they’ll hopefully learn not to hire more idiots in the future. But the HR person can hire a whole parade of idiots, and nothing will happen to them because it’s not their department’s output that’s affected.
Where Does the Problem Lie?
Many of us have been in organizations where you might say, “we need an invoice clerk.” You give that information to the HR person, and several weeks later, they come in and introduce you to your new invoice clerk. But the truth of the matter is the HR person probably has no idea what an invoice clerk does or what skills are the most important. So how exactly would they test for it?
I think managers should spend 15 – 20 percent of their time looking for new talent in their vendors, customers, competitors, and people they meet on a day-to-day basis.
The problem is, this is not something that’s usually on a manager’s job description so they don’t keep their eye out for potential new talent for the company. How do you fix this problem? Make it an expectation and a part of their job duties.
So what can HR do if they’re not recruiting talent?
For one thing, one of the most important jobs they can do is make sure the company is following EEOC and other hiring laws. They’re the ones who should be ensuring corporate compliance from an HR perspective. They need to see that all the laws are followed, policies are met — they’re the conscience of the organization and not just the talent identification and acquisition.
Bottom line, HR people need to stop beating themselves up over this! I know a lot of HR people regularly struggle with how to find new talent, and they spend a lot of time beating their heads on walls trying to make it happen. They have entire conferences built around this problem, but they’re not plugged into the same network and talent pool as the department managers. So let the managers do the work and stop being so hard on yourselves!
I’ve been a manufacturing executive, as well as a sales and marketing professional, for a few decades. Now I help companies turn around their own business, as well as speak at conferences, trade shows, and chambers of commerce. If you would like more information, please visit my website and connect with me on Twitter or LinkedIn.
Photo credit: Amtec Photos (Flickr, Creative Commons 2.0)