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Last week, I attended the annual ERE Recruiting Conference in San Diego with a few other members of the Stack Exchange team. The conference kicked off with a keynote presentation, “The State of In-House Recruiting,” by ERE Media’s President & CEO, Ron Mester. In his keynote, he presented the findings of a recent survey they conducted of almost 1400 “in-house” talent professionals. Since so many employers who use Careers 2.0 fall into this category, we wanted to keep you in the loop with the latest news and trends.

Survey participants consisted of readers from ERE, TLNT, and SourceCon. They asked respondents to distinguish themselves by role: recruiters, HR professionals, hiring managers, and c-level executives. To further the breakdown, they separated recruiter participants based on their specific function: recruiting leaders, recruiters, and sourcers. Some of the findings came as no surprise, while others were quite unexpected. The following points contain a few of the more interesting takeaways:

“Talent Acquisition” is in style.

Regardless of job title, the majority of respondents said they prefer the term “talent acquisition” over “recruiting”. If you haven’t already, expect to see more recruiters switching their titles to “talent acquisition” experts. In my opinion, this change in thought may be caused by the pejorative view most developers and tech professionals hold of traditional agency “recruiters.” Our team here at Stack Exchange still utilizes the recruiter title, but in-house recruiters think and operate differently than agency recruiters.

Although titles may change, recruitment is still part of HR.

While startups constantly rethink organizational structure, an overwhelming 75% of “talent acquisition teams” still report to, and consider themselves to be, HR leadership. Another 15% report directly to a CEO/COO and the remaining 10% work in environments structured differently from either option. Regardless of the size of your organization, maximizing use of different resources is crucial. After all, recruiting is a company-wide activity; staying involved with all departments will go a long way.

Recruitment performance measurements are changing.

All survey participants agree that recruitment teams should be measured on “quality of hire” above all other metrics. Surprisingly, recruitment, HR, and C-level professionals view “hiring manager satisfaction” as the 2nd most important metric; while the hiring managers themselves find “candidate satisfaction” more important. Recruitment and HR employees feel “candidate satisfaction” should come next, while hiring managers and c-level disagree, placing “applicant quality” 3rd on the list. As you plan your recruiting strategy, make sure everybody agrees on what metrics are important. Prioritizing metrics will help get your entire team on board in the recruiting process and allow you to identify what’s most important to your organization.

Recruitment teams are growing out of necessity.

53% of organizations expect their teams to grow by December of 2015. 54% of recruitment leaders believe filling open positions, across all industries, will be even harder next year. Participants ranked different industries and identified Professional Services, Manufacturing, and Transportation as the most challenging to hire for, with financial services, health, and tech not far behind. I recently wrote a separate blog post on How to Grow Your Recruitment Team As Your Company Scales, which details the importance of planning the growth of your team alongside overall organization expansion.

Recruiter’s roles are not getting any easier. The pressure to find top talent and beat out other companies is increasing. Recruiters are going to need to find ways to give themselves an advantage in an increasingly competitive job market. For in-house recruiters, this means leveraging available communities and finding innovative ways to engage passive candidates.

tech recruiting 101


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