Technically People
Technically People

Episode · 5 months ago

Recruiters: Say No to Being Treated Like Assistants


Isn’t recruitment the recruiter’s job? Not as we know it. And not if Mike Dwyer has anything to do with it. The Global Talent Acquisition Lead is creating a culture of recruitment at Feedzai, where every employee shares responsibility for talent acquisition. It’s a point of differentiation, he says, since the people doing the work are more likely to build meaningful relationships with candidates.

That culture will free recruiters to evolve, says Dwyer. They’ll become internal talent consultants who empower, enable and educate, delivering the resources employees need to be a vital part of recruitment. Dwyer adds: It’s time recruiters say no to being treated like administrative assistants. Instead, they should own their rightful place as experts. 

In this episode, we discuss:

- The definition of a culture of recruitment

- What the recruiter of the future will do  

- The need for empathy in recruiting and hiring

- Navigating the complexity of post-pandemic return-to-work plans

Find ever y episode of Technically People on Apple, Spotify and mo re. Find us on our website and jo in the conversation on LinkedIn.

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Welcome to technically people, a communityconversation by and for workplace futurists brought to you by the tech recruitment platform builtin. The podcast features insights from leaders, thinkers and doers on the vanguard buildinghuman centered workplaces of the future. Along the way, you'll hear conceptsthat will stop you in your tracks, concepts that inspire you to ask yourself, what's the most futureforward way to approach my people leadership? We all knowthe future of work isn't waiting around, so let's get on with the show. Welcome listeners. This is technically people, which is a community conversation about buildinghuman centered workplaces of the future. We interview thought leaders, thinkers,doers practitioners with insights about work and, in fact, what work will looklike when it reaches its highest potential. So I'm your cohost, Tiffany Myers, and I'm here with my fellow host Sheridan or Sheridan. How you doing? Ready to make a podcast? I am ready and I'm especially excited totalk to Mike just in the prep work. He is very interesting and I thinkwill be very provocative for our listeners. That's right. So let me introduceMike. More officially, he is the global tea lead at feeds I, and feeds I is a SASS company that's committed to making commerce say.Mike is a TA veteran, so he's worked in rolls strategically and tactically forcompanies of all sizes and all industries. I think it's also important to knowthat Mike is an Improv comedian. He performed with a playground theater for manyyears. So I think you'll see some of those comedic chops and merge aswe speak. So welcome, welcome, Mike. Thank you for being here. Thank you. Know, it's what it's a pleasure to be here.Big Fan of built in and really excited to get the conversation going. Fantastic, be provocative and funny and all the other things that I've that the nopressure. I know, no pressure. Yeah, nothing better than whatsoever.Yeah, nothing better than being told to be funny. It's the recipe fordisaster. But let's pretend I didn't say it. So tell me. Whatis something that everyone believes to be true deep in their heart about recruitment thatyou are vehemently opposed to? Yeah, I would say that what I'm beaminglyopposed to is thinking that recruiting is the recruiter's job. Isn't that your job? Is something that when I talk about, when I talk to key stakeholders withinthe organizations that I've worked about building a recruiting culture within the organization andwhat that means, meaning that everyone in the company is recruiter, there arepeople who think, isn't that your job to do the recruiting, and thenI educate them on what is really happening today in the market, even moreso since the pandemic, in the fact that the people have the choice togo over they want. There's zero unemployment the technology space, or close tothat, and every candidate is being reached out to by four or five differentrecruiters, staffing firms, all with a variety of levels of experience or understandingof what they're actually recruiting. And there's no it's cancer numb to it.So the employees, the people actually do the jobs that are the leaders withinthese organizations. They have a much better chance building a relationship with a targetcandidate sooner than a recruiter, and the recruiter I see as more of afacilitator of that experience and also just development of pipelines and sourcing strategies to connectwith those folk, aligned with a strong employment brand that's building out content thatalso shares what it's like to work within the company. Yeah, I knowthat. You said when you joined feeds eye, so did your employer brandexpert. So you made sure to bake that in from day one. SoI want you to define a little bit...

...more for our listeners what a cultureof recruitment means. Well, I mean from one standpoint I'm saying everyone's arecruiter and people can say, wasn't that your job? I have a job, which is totally true. Right. They do have a job. Andif you're in the text base, your job is probably wearing a lot ofhats, dealing with a lot of ambiguity, building something, building the play whileit's flying, etc. To build that recruiting culture and in power employeesbe involved. You have to always be thinking about how you're scaling it,and so when I'm talking about people helping with recruitment, we want to empowerthem. So I see giving hiring managers leaked in recruiter seats, creating customizedtemplates for them to reach out, giving them a number of reach it outreachesthat they need to do on a weekly basis and then following up with themand the rest of the team. Once hiring managers see that people are actuallygetting back to them and they're great candidates, that's really a big driver. Butwe have to do it in a way that's scalable so that it's nottaking up a big part of their day. And that's the thing with when you'retalking to people about building recruiting culture, is that they're like, well,I don't have a time for that. Well, actually, you do.It actually will, if it's done right, will only take you maybefifteen twenty minutes a day and maybe two phone calls a week if you're doingwell with people that you actually find that are interesting and many, of course, hand them off to recruiting and we take it from there. But there'sways to make this not be such a heavy lift or something that's intimidating.I know you're fired up about is about the fact that too many recruiters aretreated as administrative assistance. Well, there's a lot of things about recruiting anHR that haven't changed. For years. Recruitment was a fairly administrative role becauseof there was not linked in, didn't exist. It was very hard forhigher managers or people within the organization to even be involved. And you're postingads of newspapers or the people were sending their applications be an email to anendbox that all the recruiters had visibility into and then being reached out to andset up interviews and stuff, and so it's really hard for them. Butnow, because of the technology is out there, were able to empower peoplemore to be involved, but it was fairly administrative. I tell my teamand all the time, and we're the experts, when you're a recruiter andyou're dealing with humans at the level that we are, who are very complex, and all the issues or challenge that come up when you're taking one ahuman from one company and bringing them over to another company like this is amassive endeavor. It's impressive that it happens. Ever, basically, when you thinkabout the complexity of people and how different everyone is, the means aredifferent. And then we're able to do that. And then when you're workingwith the higher manager and they are having unrealistic demands or just like just getme the I need more profiles, and I profiles you mean humans. Youneed more humans. The higher manager and excited a very commoditized way at times, and so we have to educate them and they need to understand that we'rethe experts and that we're not here just processing and pushing paper or scheduling interviews. We are a collaborative partner and that more often than not we have amuch better idea of what is me to help fill a roll then the highingmanager does. So how do we bring in more profile humans into the organizationor into the pipeline in a collaborative way? Right, we're trying to have acompetitive differentiator and I think that more often than not that that's actually leveragingthe people that work within the organization. That's the competitive differentiator. I wantto find out from you how does engaging employees across the organization at tie intoengagement levels? Yeah, I mean, if you're not referring people into theorganization, if you're not happy, they're right. So you could probably someextent tie referrals into employee engagement. If your referral rate is increasing, especiallyfrom worse people that have been in the company for a longer period of timeyou can assume that they're fairly happy.

I think that, especially when you'reespecially like when your marketing, then eternally you're showing them when it's like towork in data science. You've got a data science man, you're talking aboutthe organization, talking about what they're looking forward to Canada, talking about thecore value that resonates with them the most for their team. All of thatas positive reinforcement the organization being given to employs by people who work. They'renot necessarily the CEO or the HR leader, but by the actual people. Soit hits a couple of different facts to couple different initiatives in almost anyHR team right employee engagements always it's always on the top three and, ofcourse, driving referrals and hiring faster, better people. So you had earliertalked about one of the problems being how recruiters are perceived versus what they do, and actually in our last conversation we talked about an article that's still tothis day fairly famous that is about that. Really it's about perception versus reality,and it's that fast company article written by the deputy editor of Fast Company, titled, probably to stir the pot a little bit why we hate hr. And overall, the author fires off a ton of salvos around the profession. So HR isn't business savvy enough, HR isn't joined at the hit withexecutives. HRS behold into the chief financial officer, which means that they focusinstead on cutting benefits and and payroll. So five years later there was afollow up in fast company titled a Little Bit More on the soft side.WHY SHOULDN'T WE HATE HR? So this still a while back, in twothousand and ten. And what that author does is the the cofounder of FastCompany is he flips the script, puts the onus on companies. So ifcompanies are not as invested in humans and in culture as they are are in, say, the bottom line, they're not going to save its seat atthe table for the recruiter, the HR professional, anyone involved in Ta employerbranding, etc. So, Mike Again, this is we're talking about two thousandand five and two thousand and ten. It seems like a eons ago,one decade and one pandemic later. How have things changed and how havethings stayed the same? Yeah, I mean it's so exciting. I meanit's really an exciting time to be alive, to be in leadership within HR department. From my perspective, a lot of things that are happening today arethings that I was dreaming about ten years ago. I remember recruiting and doingsales before Linkedin, and my God, how that changed. Everything changed.This cold calling, all that way away, really, for the most part,building out in organic presence of your expertise to help build relationships with prospects, with something that I thought was a much better, more genuine way ofselling and recruiting, and that's come to fruition. Now technology from an Imean, you look at the HR tech landscape, it's it's stupid. There'sjust so much HR technology out there across all the different areas that are beingused to leverage and help create data, to build to align with the business. More so, that has changed a lot in the last ten, fifteen, tap ten plus years. Empathy has become a key ingredient to making acompany successful, more so than anything, because a glass door, which Iam not a fan of. I'll put that on the record right now andright here. Not a fan of glass door, because the Internet is anegative place and people are very much able to they'll easily post something they getave verse something positive, but there is something to it and that it isforcing companies to be a bit more transparent and they have to, especially theCEO's. They have a big target on their back with glass door. Theyhave a specific rating that on there and that bothers them. It's bothered everyCDEO that I've worked with and I think...

...there's some pauses around that and thatthey have to be better with their people because they don't like having their nameout there with people, you know, especially if you have ten or fifteenreviews and they all say the exact same thing. Yeah, that's there's sometruth to that, although it's a kind of an echo chamber as well,so if some of it's probably them reading the review, like yeah, Iagree with that, but I because of just the ability for the whole reviewworld of've lived in today, I think there's a lot of need to makesure that you are treating people well. And then I think the pandemic hasdone a lot of just think of, for the the percentage of women inthis country who are out of work versus men, because the pandemic right justa massive difference there and the fact that men have had to be at home, working at home taking care of their kids and they're like, Oh myGod, this is a really a job. Big a surprise there, but evenleaders right. So I think there's there's a lot more of a levelplaying field in understanding people's plights, and you can even take that into what'sbeen going on with that, the black lives matter movement, and that we'reall seeing an understanding more other people's challenges and because of that we have tochange how we work and how we manage people. To some extent. Ithink that's I think that's really exciting. It's just the beginning. There's somuch work that needs to be done, but we're going to have to,as companies, really change how we're working sooner than later, I think.Yeah, so I think the pandemic is also a perfect example of how howcovid has made it more okay, somewhat more okay, to talk about mentalillness, and that in fact requires empathic leadership a thousand percent. So aswe started out this conversation, I think we were talking about all the workthere was to be done for the recruiter in the way that the role needsto change and now we're hearing from you all of the progress and also allof these opportunities that are really exciting to you about where we can go.And so, looking into your crystal ball, if you have one, and noneof us do, but we can pretend paint a picture of the ofthe future of ideal recruits. D's roll. Yeah, I think ideally we cometo a place and there's good a technology has to come there to someextent as well, where we have been able to move into that more ofa strategic consultative mindset across the board, with recruiting, which we're not atwhen some of that is just people that are more junior, that don't havea lot of years of experience and aren't willing to stand up to a managerand say no. But if the technology is there, if the data isthere and if it's easy to access, then they will have a better conversationaround that. We have a really great ats. The reporting isn't great.It's a very common problem and we have to use a data visualization tool connectedto that to help tell those stories. But it's still not completely there,and so until we get to a place, I think, where the data iseasily modified and is easy to digest for the peat person putting it togetherand able to share it and the person who's reading and digesting it. That'sgoing to continue to be a bit of a challenge. I would love tosee as a more of an employment brand standard for companies, just that we'reempathetic, we care about your mindset, that it's something that's more a leadingpoint in a competitive differentiator as opposed to benefits, a keg, a fullrefrigerator of Lacroix. That's what I would like to see and hope to see. So that was a beautiful snapshot of an ideal future for the recruiter andI think a perfect way to close out part one and I'd love to kickit over to Sheridan for part two. Thanks, tiffany. So, Mike, you talked a lot about how two thousand and twenty changed it for therecruiter, but I think the candidate changed a whole lot too, and it'sbeen very interesting to see some of those...

...transitions. I think I did areport for our board called the migratory patterns of the tech professionals. We sawthem leaving. Some of you know the hot spots like San Francisco and NewYork like. Certainly they're migrating back, but you know, it really becamea much more distributed going to work force than we'd ever seen before and remotereally empowered some of that. And I'd love to just talk with you aboutbecause some of the things that have changed with the candidates, like, certainlywhere they want to live is an important one, but have you noticed anythingelse as you're trying to fill rolls? I think that the horses left thebar and to some of the tech companies are getting it and there Google's ableto make offers that are Google, cough prices in Chattanooga, Tennessee and herethat that person's going to go there. I just lost a sorcer in Londonto a role at Tick Tock and I could compete with tick tock like what. We had a great relationship, we had great it was looking so goodand my tick tock came in took her right away. So I see thebigger company tech companies get it. They can offer competitive calm and employees havealready been proven out that they can work from home. They've proven its themselvesand we have to really relook at our location strategies to fill roles, becausethe job market is even tighter than it was before the yeah, internally we'recalling at the roaring s because, tach on it, I've never seen techunemployment this low and it's like there was all this pent up demand from peopleslowing hiring during two thousand and twenty just to see where things shook out.So there's this pent up demand. But also, especially in the Tech Rols, we started to see that the companies who thrived were those who had alreadybeen investing in their technology, and now those companies that maybe were laggerts aredoubling down and it's an insane market. It mean great candidates have multiple offers. What would be your advice to a talent leader that is really struggling inthat and, I know, in getting the hiring managers and turning the organizationinto a recruiting organization as part of that, but is there anything specific we cando? Yeah, and my boss, the head of HR for feeds eyes, she just did a geolocation podcast, actually just went live today on oursite talking about this specific thing. And it comes down to the dayDada and looking at two thousand and twenty and what was the productivity level?How do the performance reviews go? Where they what was the the baseline ofthe business that it did? Sales increased, it maintained, it did a lot, a little. What was your attrition rate? And if you're seeingthat those things were not going down or state and you've pulled your employees andthey're more often than not, want to be working from home, then it'ssomething that you really need to look at and putting place the right kind ofway to support people that kind of environment as well. Right, if youare a company that was spending a lot on real estate, take some ofthat money and invested in flying people in and getting them in a together onesee, I guarantee. I'm sure you're saving, still staying a ton ofmoney. And and then how can you engage with them and send them thingsthat are Schwag and whatnot, celebrating them in other ways? I think that'sreally a something that is important. One thing that I did share with youguys, that I saw from Amazon was this disclaimer that they are putting intotheir emails now about being truly human, and it is. It's acknowledging.It's like a disclaimer they put at the bottom email that says that you aresomeone who were a digitally driven organization. Things happened at a fast pace.I'm sending you emails at a specific time for me. I don't expect anexist response from you and Mealy, it's on your timeline and when you're comfortableto get that back to me. So...'s like, those are the typesof things that we should be doing, especially for not working in the sameoffice and we're working with people in different time zones to acknowledge and be moreempathetic to them as we're rolling into this smooth new world. That's such avaluable lesson to make sure that you are really thinking about who you're sending emailsto. The other big thing that we're noticing is the great resignation. Right, so we got the roarings and the great resignation and it's very interesting whenwe start to think about what's driving that, and they're really three mitigating factors.First, people are waiting for the vaccine policies or to get their vaccines, to figure out what that's going to look like before they return to theoffice. The other one is, I mean it's been a hell of ayear. Excuse my language, and I think a lot of people are lookingfor some time off and to enjoy vacations and see loved ones that they maybe missed for the year. So they're taking extended vacations. And what we'realso saying is some people actually you're changing jobs to have almost that gap yearbetween one job in the x the next, so that you have a long periodbefore you have to restart. When you think about that great resignation,how do you combat that or make sure that you're keeping the talent that youneed to stay happy and even getting them to help you bring in those newhaving a mandatory coming back to the office after being remote for a year?To some extent it smells a little bit like mistrust and that you don't trustyour employees or that you need to have them around you, which is verys kind of a mentality as far as I'm concerned. And so how areyou have to trust people? But you should be able to look at yourdata to see what the reality of it was. Right. Its back toyour last your last question, but in retention, I think empathy is goingto go a long way and you can look at all the different ways thatyou can make those signals to people and also just admitting that you're not perfect. We are running a business, we are trying to be profitable, butwe also have made mistakes and involved in under a lot of pressure, andhere's how some of the ways that we're going to help mitigate that in thefuture, along with, of course, the opportunities and making sure that you'reevaluating and getting people consistent feedback and incentivizing them in the right Mike. Wejust did a big survey about the great return to work and a lot ofcompanies have not finalized their policy and I think employees and candidates are waiting tosee what that looks like. When you think about formulating a policy like whatdo you think we should be really considering? What I love is we keep comingback to empathy and emotional Iq, and it's common sense right, butI just do a lot of companies, blood of leaders, don't get itright. Like put yourself in the shoes of your employees. Put yourself intothe shoes of a working mother who has is trying to juggle multiple things fromher children to working. To put yourself into the shoes of your fairly entrylevel employee has three room and they don't have any place to to work,and I'm giving two different examples right. There might be working for home momwho would love to be able to stay at home right and then you havea person with three roommates who's absolutely wants to come into the office. Andso people are complex and I think that you have to come up with aflexible solution that meets everyone's needs first and then, second look at how you'repotentially able to say some money somewhere and ensure productivity. But at first it'slike understand your employee set. If you have a large organization, I knowthat can be challenging where you have twenty different people what twenty different types ofPersonas of people who have twenty different needs. So you have to make some decisionssomewhere on where you're going to cut off, like what you can enable. I do think, though, a couple different offering and then collecting dataover the next year is important. But... have to do something, makethe call. Nothing there's no perfect answers. Never happen. I think that's goingto be my we're getting ready to go intoire two minute takeaway and look, we're not going to get this perfect because as you said, it's Ihate the word unprecedent, as never become a cliche for me, but nowit's one that I find myself over using, because everything does seem like it's thefirst time we've ever done this, and so I think as leaders,were just all going to have to do what you said, listen, beempathetic and make calls that may not be perfect, but it errate on themand continue to refine, and that's really how you create the future of work. So I really enjoyed our conversation and, frankly, have learned quite a bit, and I even as a hiring manager, because I would say thatI do not put the time into recruiting that you have said. I needto, and at the end of the day, it is the people whomake our company at success, and so we want to all join together tobring in the best talent that we possibly can. So those are my takeawaysfrom our conversation. I'd love to know what three things should our listeners ifyou could just tell them, like, Hey, these are the three mostimportant things. One would be the empathetic to the to your fellow employees orthe people that work for you, and that the candidates. They're out therelooking for jobs. Really put yourself in their shoots, use your imagination andthink it's not that hard and really think about them and what they're going through. Another is that building or cruty culture doesn't necessarily take hours and days andweeks to do right. There is a way to come up with the process, to scale it and enable people to be a part of it, andit's going to ultimately get you better, more qualified people faster and it's goingto strengthen the engagement of your employees. And then the other one is forrecruiters. Be Confident. You are the experts, you are the ones onthe front lines, you're the ones with all the scars from the people comingout of nowhere with something that you were sure you had them and they somethingcame out because people are complex. But know that, trust your gut,be the expert that you are and be confident leverage data when we can.So, Mike, this is a year that the HR community is really supportedone another in a way I had not seen before and learned on the flytogether. So, if any of our listeners want to get in touch withyou, what is the best way to do that? Linkedin just a massivelinkedin user. I'm not promiscuously by the way. I have a very cultivatednetwork of people, but anyone who's listening to this podcast I'm happy to connectwith and I'm always I always enjoy helping other people. That's a big mancherfor me. Thank you so much and I just love the passion and insightthat you bring into the space and enjoyed our conversation today. For listeners,if you'd like to learn more about us, you can visit at us at technicallyPeoplecom, where you'll find the latest episodes and blog post on these keytopics. You can also subscribe to technically people on your favorite podcast player.Thank you for spending some time with us today and we look forward to havingyou joined us on our next episode. Built in is a tech recruitment platformthat's in constant dialog with leaders about the future of tech. Built in's PODCAST, technically people, expands those conversations to help fellow futurists create in lead exceptionalworkplaces, environments that inspire in Demand Tech professionals to join your company and thrive. To learn how built in can help your company attract best in class professionals. Visit Employers Dot built Incom you've been...

...listening to technically people, a communityconversation about the future of work. If you want to hear more cutting edgeideas about creating humans inter workplaces, subscribe on your favorite podcast player and you'llnever miss an episode. And if you're over the moon about what you've heard, we'd be honored if you took the time to give us a five starreview. So, signing off, until we meet again in the future,.

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