Hiring Solutions for Essential Employers with Jessie McGowan

As organisations around the globe confront the challenges presented by the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, even the most seasoned talent leaders find themselves in uncharted territory. We’re creating a mini-series with our experts here at PeopleScout about the issues that are most pressing during this uncertain time. 

This profile shares insights from PeopleScout Leader of Business Development in North America, Jessie McGowan. Jessie spends the majority of her time sharing our solution offerings with prospective clients, where she calls upon her years of experience leading a diverse portfolio of RPO client partners. 

Jessie shared her insights about hiring solutions for essential employers from her home in Charleston. 

A lot of people are feeling overwhelmed right now. What are you hearing from talent acquisition and HR leaders? In what ways and industries do those teams need support right now? 

There is a lot going on in all industries as we react to what’s happening in the world today with COVID-19. Mission critical industries like grocery, healthcare, logistics and other supply chain roles that hire drivers or selectors, manufacturing — specifically medical device — are seeing tremendous increases in their needs to find and hire qualified talent. And, unless they’re working with an RPO provider like PeopleScout that’s built to flex, they’re not going to have the adequate talent acquisition staff to meet the demands of the business.   

What are some easy ways employers can find that support? 

PeopleScout has a few offerings. One is Recruiter On-Demand (ROD) — where we provide a qualified recruiter to work as an extension of an organisation’s team on an hourly basis. ROD can also be leveraged as a project approach, where an organisation can have a provider support a certain function of their hiring process or a certain number of hires for a period of time. For instance, if you received 500,000 applications last week, how are you going to get through them? Unless you’ve already built a highly efficient automated process, a partner like PeopleScout can help improve that process for organisations. 

What do these solutions look like in practice? How are they implemented? 

Recruiter On-Demand can be deployed within about 24 hours. We have qualified recruiters with a wide range of domain experience like frontline or retail hiring, healthcare, manufacturing, drivers and IT. First, we assign the right fit recruiter and quote an hourly rate. Then, the organisation provides our recruiter access to their applicant tracking system or system of record and an email address so that PeopleScout can become invisible to the candidate throughout the process.  

Our Recruiter On-Demand solution is simple and straight forward, and we work hard to keep it moving and efficient. Once we’ve landed on the business terms, we assign an engagement leader who will schedule what we call a “kickoff” with the client to document the process and discuss expectations. We’ve been doing this a long time, so we’ve built the process with the intention of keeping it really easy for talent acquisition leaders, and we’re able to launch it very quickly in a seamless manner. 

How do we use the solution in a way that keeps everyone, including employees and candidates, safe? 

That’s a great and timely question. Most of our recruiters worked from home even before the COVID-19 outbreak, so virtual work is part of the PeopleScout DNA. As a matter of fact, some of our most complex, high volume recruiting solutions are 98% virtual, where a very small subset of team members might sit together in a delivery center in Chicago, Charlotte or Toronto, for example.  

At PeopleScout, we have a lot of experience in building world-class virtual solutions that are designed to provide an exceptional candidate experience and deliver efficiency. We are able to advise talent leaders on utilization of digital interviewing tools such as texting or prerecorded voice or video. We also have our own proprietary tool, Affinix™ talent technology or we can advise a leader on what might be best for them and available in the market. We’re flexible and focused on getting talent acquisition leaders what they need to be able to deliver to their business and stakeholders, and we have a lot of experience, especially building a no-contact, virtual solution. We can source, qualify, schedule talent, offer positions, and even onboard new hires all virtually, over the phone or by utilizing technology. 

Can you talk a bit more about what a virtual solution looks like in practice? 

Our virtual interview management solution is designed to complement your existing hiring process and it can be set up in a matter of days. It would include process steps such as: 

  • Phone screening: includes on-demand and live options 
  • Video interviewing: includes on-demand and live options 
  • Scheduling tools: enables candidates to self-schedule available interview slots or be scheduled via recruiters’ assistance  
  • Results-based automated interview progression: allows you to define the criteria that determines whether to automatically advance candidates 
  • Feedback-driven advancement: creates settings based on recruiter rating and scoring criteria 

Interview notifications and updates can be pushed out to the candidate, so they understand at any given moment where they are in the interview process. And, hiring leaders can also see the progression of a candidate throughout the process. So, while at PeopleScout we’ve been supporting an essentially 100% virtual recruitment process for years now, we can appreciate that this is a new approach for many employers, and we can walk them through what to consider as they implement a virtual hiring solution. 

A lot of us are feeling a lot of stress and anxiety right now. What recommendations do you have for someone who is leading a talent acquisition team that feels like they’re in crisis? 

Sometimes it’s hard to see what the right plan might be when you’re dealing with the type of stress and anxiety that surrounds us these days. That’s where we can help. PeopleScout is highly consultative — by asking a few key questions, we can help a talent acquisition leader identify the right levers to pull to drive the result that they need. We’re happy to walk a potential partner through a quick diagnostic to see if we’re a fit and if we can be helpful. Sometimes, even if we’re not the right fit, just having the conversation can be helpful in getting down to the root of what talent leaders really need right now. And we’re happy to share our knowledge and be helpful, especially during these tough times. 

Are there any final thoughts you’d like to leave us with today? 

The hope is that this is temporary. And that very quickly we’ll go back to solving more familiar talent acquisition challenges, like how to find more great people. But, at this time we’re poised to be flexible, and creative, to help solve the new problems we’re all dealing with today. 

To learn more about ways employers can respond to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, visit our Resource Center

Post by Jasmine Patel

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