How to Better Engage Hiring Managers in Your Recruiting Process

One of the most common challenges I hear from the HR professionals I talk with is how to better engage their hiring managers in the recruiting process. The hiring manager is one of the most important stakeholders in the recruiting process, but they are often the hardest to effectively engage in the process. It really isn’t that surprising, since most hiring managers are primarily focused on the operations of their unit and often don’t have a great deal of time to devote to recruiting.Here are some tips on how to better engage your hiring managers in the recruiting process.Collaborate with Managers up-front to determine good initial screening questions and criteriaEspecially in today’s economy the chances are good that you will receive a flood of applicants to any job you post online. In many processes the recruiter screens the initial applicants and only passes the top candidates on to the manager for feedback. In order to find the best candidates and make sure top candidates don’t slip through the cracks, you should set up some good screening questions and criteria for the recruiter to use.Some questions can be pulled directly from the job posting you created, which you carefully composed such that it attracted the right type of candidate. For example:
Do you have a Bachelors degree?
How many years experience do you have in direct sales?
Are you willing to travel up to 50%?
Other questions may require deeper analysis and a discussion with the manager about what makes an ideal candidate or who has succeeded in this role in the past. For example:

What do you like most about being a salesperson?
Please describe your home office equipment and environment (i.e. for a telecommute position)
Describe a recent time when you had to respond to a customer issue and what steps you took to solve the problem.
These questions can be asked during an initial phone screen or interview. But many Applicant Tracking Systems are able to streamline the process by asking applicants to answer these questions during their online application. For example, with a well designed system the recruiter is able to create any number of screening questions to pre-screen job applicants, and even score the responses automatically and “knock-out” applicants who are unqualified.Make it easy for Managers to review candidates A few years ago I was the manager at a company that used an Applicant Tracking System to streamline their recruiting process. Everything worked great – recruiters posted jobs online, applicants applied and were pre-screened and scored, and everything was stored in a central database which both the recruiter and manager could access.The problem was when it came time for me to go in and review applicants to my job, it was so cumbersome that the process would grind to a halt. Each person I had to review took 5-10 clicks to get to their information, the system was sluggish and unresponsive, and it was difficult to submit and view feedback on the candidate. I remember wishing for the “good old days” when I would just get a paper resume on my desk!Managers are busy just like the rest of us and if you don’t make the review process simple and quick they won’t use it, or it will delay your time to hire. Here are some questions to ask to make sure your review process is easy for managers to use:

How many people will the manager need to review? Will they be receiving every single applicant to your job or only the top candidates that the recruiter sends them?
If managers will only be reviewing top candidates, how easy is it for the manager to find and view their information? How many clicks does it take before they are viewing the candidate’s resume. How many clicks to move to the next resume to review?
How easy is it for the candidate to submit feedback on a candidate, and view the feedback of others?
Does the process require the manager to login to your recruiting system to view candidates, or are you able to send them resumes through email to collect reviews? Many managers don’t want to memorize another login to another system and would greatly prefer to receive candidates via email.
Collect better feedback through forms and questionnaires Many applicant review processes consist of the recruiter emailing a resume to a manager with the single question “What do you think?” While there’s nothing wrong with this simple approach, there are advantages to collecting more structured feedback from managers through a questionnaire or form.When you ask somebody what they think of a particular movie, you’ll likely get back a black-or-white answer like “it was great!” or “it was awful”. But if you ask them to rate a movie on a scale of 1-5 on some key criteria (story, acting, music, costumes, etc) you’ll get a much richer review and separation between other movies they may have reviewed.The same applies to reviewing candidates. When you ask a manager to answer structured questions and provide numeric rating on a candidate, you’ll force them to think broadly about the candidate and not just provide their first-impression. Ideally if you are going to use manager review forms and questionnaires in your process, you will want to streamline the collection of the data with online questionnaires, ideally in an Applicant Tracking System. And once again, it needs to be easy for the manager to complete the questionnaire or they won’t use it.In an applicant tracking system, you can create Manager Feedback Questionnaires and have them asked directly on the page where the manager views the candidate’s resume and other information.Support different levels of involvement from your managers Finally, every manager will have his or her own style and will likely want a different level of involvement in the recruiting process. Some managers are very “hands-off” and just want the recruiter to find a good candidate for their department with the least amount of work on their part. Others are very “hands-on” and want to see every single candidate that comes in and decide themselves which ones meet the initial qualifications.As such, you should keep in mind that whatever process you put in place should be flexible enough to accommodate the requests of different hiring managers. For a manager who wants to delegate to the recruiting group, you should be able to send them only top-candidates, already pre-screened, for them to interview. For a manager who wants to be more involved, you should be able to set it up so that person can see all applicants and see everything that’s happening in the system.If you are implementing an Applicant Tracking System, make sure it has flexible workflow support to allow you to implement these types of different processes efficiently.

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Influencer Marketing Is Now Bigger Than Digital Ads

Everywhere you look people are online looking at their phones and interacting with different social platforms.If you haven’t noticed we are surrounded by influencer marketing on all four sides.We inhale and exhale influencer marketing constantly every day and still many of us are not fully aware of what it really is.While the world is modernizing and the people’s voice growing, we have broken through into a new era of digital marketing, a more natural type of marketing done through influencers.Influencer content may be framed as testimonial advertising where they play the role of a potential buyer themselves, or they may be third parties.It identifies the individuals that have influence over potential buyers and orients marketing activities around these influencers.”Marketing with influencers is turning influencers into advocates of the firm.”Before we go into any details about this type of marketing, one should clearly know what it is.What is influencer marketing?
This kind of marketing focuses on an individual, rather than large groups of consumers to advertising the brand’s message.The individual here is referred as the ‘influencer’ who is hired to get out the word for your brand.In this game of influencer marketing, these influencers may be the potential buyers themselves.They usually play the roles of content writers, journalists, bloggers, CEO’s, creative people, advertisers or advisers.They are connected to other people around them and are looked to for advice and opinions and are regarded as influential.Content marketing and social media marketing are regarded as the two major forms of influencer marketing.How does influence marketing work?
Nowadays, users give more reaction to ratings on social media or opinions of a person rather than believing in advertisements.This is made the basis of influencer marketing where an influencer will write about the products in their personal and social channels.People tend to believe what the influencers have to say about something, over the media.Many marketing companies don’t even have influence marketing on their radar as it such a unique method of the product. In many cases, it’s out of their control as more of an individual voice takes hold rather than the standard static corporate ad.Digital ads are not given the same interactive and emotional response by the consumer.The feedback and ratings on social media about a particular brand or product also adds greatly to the product or brand being showcased and is the new product placement platform.Why is influencer marketing now bigger than digital advertising? & How did that happen?Trust and honesty is a very important factor in marketing.We all know which media we trust and distrust and in most cases just simply by the subject header.Traditional media is scrambled with misinformation and the general consumer would rather interact with their products or services of interest on a social level.Consumers do not buy goods or services unless they are completely assured that the product or service is perfect for their needs in every way.It is believed that if you influence the mind, you have the world in your hands and that’s what influencers are doing.Influencers have built up relations in order to gain trust to become, influencers. Much commitment and nurturing have gone into building those connections.When it comes to building up relations and creating a positive message around a specific brand that is where influencer marketing has a higher standard compared to digital advertisements.Let’s throw light upon, Influencer marketing as ‘THE NEXT BIG THING.’
As seen on: “Social Media”.
As the world has shifted to social media, consumers look upon at fellow consumers to inform their purchasing decisions.Instead of looking at companies, as they did in the past, they now look at each other and at their favorite personalities, who are consolidating massive followings on YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and other platforms.The rise of the social media influencer has created a world of possibilities;It has opened up a flood of new waterworks for brands to connect with consumers directly and on a larger scale through more organic natural marketing method of influence like a new age word of mouth.
Provides a better description with an Interactive messaging platform. With each social media interaction or reaction, it promotes the possibility for hundreds of more people to view your message through the social connections in their network.
While digital ads are solely comprised of precise information about the goods, an influencer approach to the market has its own ways of attracting people with all the accurate description and information about the products and services in a more interactive, consumer arena, that has an organic life to the message.Influencers are trusted to provide the updated details of the products or services they are dealing with and the message can also be slowly released over many days weeks or months.It is considered the job of an influencer to gather up all the points about the marketing campaign and forward that message to the consumers.To ensure this, the influencers are often paid for their job. If not paid, then they are provided with incentives by the company they are working for or in some cases sharing content with their readership for no other motive than to educate and to encourage interaction among the network.Unlike digital ads most of the time influencers are “not selling anything” and are simply sharing information to create a more positive network of influence or to encourage participation and interaction on topics that can truly help. They might choose to follow up through other methods of communication like an email newsletter to promote products or services an advertising services.When comparing social marketing to digital ads, I sort of side by side comparison, a static digital ad does not provide depth as they comprise of banners and poster type ads and do not have any opinion oriented objective.The old and outdated information may soon turn away consumers.
People are more likely to trust other people than advertisements
Influencer marketing has the concept of ‘word of mouth.’ This pretty much sums up how people get to trust the influencers. Where advertisements could be nothing more than made up stories or exaggerations in the sight of many consumers, people are likely to trust their fellow friends and society when they tell them about a certain product.That’s when influencers form relations in order to promote the market;The influencer campaigns help a lot in the process The earned trust helps the market to flourish, after all, marketing is based on gaining consumers trust so let’s have the consumers interact with the message.
Much simpler
Influencer marketing is a much easier and simpler way of marketing than the digital ad marketing.Not only is the way of attracting people simpler but the way of actually putting it up does not require many efforts other than the creative element.In this era where everything is made simpler by the internet, successful marketing has been made an achievable task by the social platforms and online facilities.You write about it and post about it online and within minutes thousands of viewers are peeking into your blogs and journals.The online facility helps to connect people worldwide.
Market grows faster
Apart from being a simpler way of marketing, influencer marketing helps to boost up markets at a great rate.Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.- Albert EinsteinThe influencer way of marketing has an advantage of doing wonders online which helps to connect influencers with people from all over the world.
Any queries about a product are immediately facilitated and generally much more appreciated than an email, support ticket response or any other type Q&A delivery.
May it be social media or content driven market, people get the answers to many of their questions about a product immediately in influencer marketing and much more view the comment responses making the viewership quite extraordinary.In the case of social media marketing where the advertisement is placed on all the frequently used social sites, people get to know about other opinions about products, which greatly helps them sum up any purchasing decisions.Apart from this, they are also connected to other people on the social media (which in this case acts like influencers) who tells them about many goods and hence solves many queries.In the case of the content driven market, influencers are already there to respond to any queries of the consumers. This way any doubts about a product are removed.
It’s powerful. Yet simple.
Influencer markets are powerful in their own manner. The content shared by influencers is powerful and authentic. They have the ability to gain people’s trust and reliance, all that is needed.Thoughts and opinions are shared through influencer markets and better relations are created even with consumers that live miles away.”The marketing roots with any social platform are quite strong and are not easy to cut down.”
The writings can do wonders
All those bloggers, journalists, content writers, CEO’s out there portrays the market accurately through their writings which depend upon proofs, opinions, and ideas of many consumers.These pieces of writings are much more convincing than the digital ads that consist of a couple of pictures and slogans. The writings talk about the feedbacks and opinions of other people and influencers which is a quality that digital ads market surely lags. We just might have seen the peak of the market for digital advertising and ads.
The advantage of videos
Digital ads that usually consists of banners and posters have become very less influencing when the social media is filled with videos about the products.Living objects are automatically more attractive than still lives. Influencers have started making use of videos in their contents to influence the people which is turning out to be another plus point of the influencer marketing.
Celebrities as Influencers
Consumers are influenced greatly when their favorite celebrities post about a certain product.This has become a growing area of influencer marketing that celebrities are used as influencers to attract people towards a specific product. Like television commercials, where celebrities are used as influencers, they are made influencers on social media nowadays where they post about how they have become the customers to a certain product.This practice does not even require any convincing as many people will blindly believe in the quality of the thing when their favorite celebrity buys it.No wonder, influencer marketing is taking over.
Online feedback
When influencer market is on social media the feedbacks of the consumers becomes very important for marketing purposes. The market grows with positive feedbacks, and similarly, it shrinks when the feedbacks are not in the favor of the goods and services.People today believe greatly in the ratings and online opinions of the consumers.Influencer marketing is largely driven by this concept of online ratings and participation and thus is rapidly growing.
Honest opinions
Consumers value opinions and ideas more than advertisements.In the world of influencer marketing, the opinions of people act as influencers on the social sites and are just as important.If not all then most of the feedbacks and opinions of people about a particular service or product are honest.Finding honest opinions about a thing, a person, or a company is able to purchase the product.In the case of digital ads marketing, there are hardly any opinions shared as the ad platform does not allow for such interaction.
Time efficient
Influencer marketing is instant and is purely based on the established relationship between the influencer and their network.The fact that influencer marketing is taking over digital Ads just might be happening now.It has been estimated that in another few years influencer marketing will take over all the other marketing strategies and will become the biggest marketing practice by the year 2020

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Home Based Business Ideas: Energy Efficient Products and Services

Have you ever taken a look at a home based business in the network marketing or direct sales sector? If the answer is yes, that’s fantastic; you have an idea of what network marketing is all about. The awesome thing about a home based business idea in network marketing is that the cost to start your business and buy into a proven system is minimal. Most home based business ideas in the network marketing sector are pretty much under $1000.00 and most are $500 or less. Now we come to the success rate of people who start businesses in the network marketing sector for under $1000. What I have noticed is that when you have not mortgaged your home and entered into a major contract with another company somehow the urgency of owning the home based business and the drive to succeed seem to diminish. Before we ever get into the various products and services available in the network marketing sector in today’s climate we have to discuss the psyche of the person wanting the freedom they are requesting. I have spoken to so many people who start out with a bang and kind of loose their gusto in 3-5 weeks. Sometimes people will last for about 4-6 months then the fire diminishes. Why is that? Well, I know one thing, if I had 50k or more invested into a home based business idea it would not take 4-6 months before I throw my life savings away.  Although, since many network marketing business are under $1000, most people don’t have enough on the line to take their network marketing home based business ideas seriously enough to succeed.  Let’s assume you have the drive to move past that 4-6 month mark. This seems to be the mark where unsuccessful people stop and successful people continue to push forward.  Now you have to decipher if you are in the right business model for optimal success.Most network marketing companies have traditionally been in the cosmetic, weight loss and health and wellness sectors. In recent history (the last 15 years) there has also been a big surge of technology home based business ideas also such as cell phone businesses, satellite home based business, Wi-Fi home based businesses and others. Even more recently, in the last five years to be exact, there has been a huge push in the energy efficient products and services industry.  I get excited when I think about the history already made by the first two residential energy companies to offer their services to consumers by way of the network marketing home based business model.  According to Jim Melloan, project manager of the Inc. 500/5000 project Stream Energy grossed $848,000,000.00 for the year 2009.  This company was founded in 2004 and officially started doing business in March of 2005 in Texas.  Home based business owners are able to start a business with this company for less than $500 and are able to refer their friends and family to save money on their electricity and/or gas bills.  They later expanded to Georgia in 2008 and are now expanding to Pennsylvania. Next we have another notable company named Ambit Energy, founded in Texas in 2006; it followed Ignite’s footsteps offering the home based business idea for less than $500 in the Texas market.  It soon expanded to New York in 2007 and Illinois in 2008.  I know because I was part of the excitement!  In 2009 the company had a record 20,369.4 percent growth with revenue at $325,000,000.00!  So with these numbers in the home based business/network marketing sector you would assume there are some winners that are just like you and I, who are making a percentage of that success right?  Of course there are and I witnessed this happen first hand.  For under $500 in both companies, multi-millionaires were created!  There are several thousandaires and many people who have found an additional income that has saved them from foreclosure, replaced car payments, paid for their children’s educations and much more! So far I have discussed two companies with astounding numbers reported that concentrate on doing one thing, saving the average family money on their electricity bill.  There’s another trend happening in the energy business.  A new company called America Approved Energy Services Direct., LLC has emerged offering a home based business in the same space but with a few tweaks!  For one, America Approved Energy Services Direct., LLC aka AMA Nation was founded in October 2009.  Peter Jensen, Robert Gries and Scott Turner came together to offer a home based business opportunity in the network marketing sector with the product once again being residential electricity. AMA Nation started out in Connecticut, and then soon expanded to New York City.  Over the last year they have have a lot more territory than the first two.  Currently, America Approved Energy Services Direct., LLC is the marketing arm for several suppliers which allows them to provide this home based business idea in 8 states for opportunity seekers wishing to concentrate on the residential market which include NY, NJ, CT, MA, RI, PA, MD and TX (soon to be 9 with IL)!  So with the astounding numbers posted by Ignite and Ambit in only two and three states respectively, AMA Nation will certainly shock the industry with their three-year numbers.  Now here’s another shocker, by July of 2010 America Approved Energy Services Direct., LLC has also allowed their home based business opportunity seekers to acquire business in the commercial sector of energy deregulation as well. Opportunity seekers looking for home based business ideas are also able to do business in 15 states on the large commercial side of energy deregulation.  So when it comes to energy deregulation, America Approved Energy Services Direct., LLC now has the largest footprint in the industry.  By August of 2010, America Approved Energy Services Direct., LLC also added over 200 energy efficient products and services to its repertoire allowing home based business owners to also make money in other emerging markets such as solar panels, Led Lighting retrofits and much more.  The most impressive factor in all of this is that you have the income potential of a major franchise in a network marketing business model for less than $225.  So many people are recouping their initial investment within the first week of being self-employed in the energy business. My team and I have been getting many ideas about how to build our business from local news happening around the world!  For instance, the article titled All Agua Fria high schools will have solar panels written by AZ Central.com on 16, 2011 at 07:30 PM gave us the idea to start calling the schools our children attend to discuss the energy saving options and grants available.  Another article written by LehighValleyLive.com discussed how IKEA Aims to Extend Solar Power Trend to Costa Mesa which gave us the idea to start going after department stores and restaurants in the California area.  So with AMA Nation, my team of independent home based business owners and I have found this business model to be much more lucrative because we are able to tap into the entire energy efficient products and services industry. 

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