Magazine article Management Today

First Class Coach

Magazine article Management Today

First Class Coach

Article excerpt

I've heard a lot recently about the so-called war for talent and, as an interviewer in a traditional old-economy company, I've found that interviewees are better briefed and more confident than ever before, and often have one or more job offers on the table. I've always thought I had a good interview style, but I'm concerned that my skills may need updating or that I should adopt a different approach to suit the current climate.

The recruitment market is transforming itself in the new economy. In the US, monster.com -- a web-based recruitment company -- advertises 140,000 jobs at a time. For those with the right skills, power is moving to employees in a market for IT staff where 1.7 million jobs in IT remain unfilled in Europe.

You are also likely to be doing more recruiting as people move between companies more frequently. This is partly a product of restructuring, but mainly a result of the increasing speed of the business cycle. The development and speed to market of new products and services have become critical to companies' success. In turn, this is leading to a higher level of churn in businesses and a greater demand for talent. In the US, the average 32-year-old has worked for nine companies.

People are looking for several things when they come to an interview. They want to enhance their skills and careers and they are looking for opportunities for personal development. But more and more people are also looking at the working climate, the flexibility of employment practices and the extent to which remuneration and benefits are customised for the individual. So, as well as thinking about your recruitment style and approach, consider what sort of package your company offers new recruits. Flexible employment contracts and reward packages are very attractive as examples of company culture at the interview stage.

The traditional approach to recruitment interviewing treated the interview as a test. The recruit was put through their paces and the interviewer's role was to explore the CV, personal history, strengths and weaknesses of the candidate. These interviews were so predictable that people could be trained in how to do well in them. Consultants and authors have made a great deal of money out of helping people to succeed in such interviews. …

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