Mobile is everywhere, but this hasn’t been news to anyone for years. Yet despite our awareness of the smartphone phenomenon (and the accompanying tedium whenever someone talks about it as though it is a profound insight), the recruiting world has been slow to leverage the advantages it brings. Many job applications remain bloated and mobile-unfriendly. This is due in large part to pervasive myths among recruiters and HR. “These myths are pretty standard in my conversations on mobile recruiting,” Jessica Miller-Merrell says. She goes on to discuss five mobile recruiting myths that may be playing a role in the sluggish adoption of mobile recruiting strategies. 

  1. Mobile is just something for millennials and kids. Nothing could be further from the truth- 71% of adults now own a web-enabled smartphone, and 54% of those aged 44-55 use it to search for jobs. Imagine missing out on 54% of talent because an app is inaccessible from mobile.
  2. Mobile is for the white and privileged. Not so- in fact, lower income brackets rely on their smartphones more for internet access than their more privileged counterparts. 12-13% of Latinos and African Americans are smartphone dependent, compared with 4% of whites. “Mobile could be your best diversity recruiting strategy,” Miller-Merrell explains.
  3. Nobody responds on their mobile. While this may hold true for phone calls due to the glut of telemarketer and robo calls we experience on a daily basis, it does not hold true for text. “99% of text messages are read and received within 90 seconds,” Miller-Meyer says. Compare this to 18% on email.
  4. No one applies with their mobile device. Except that 90% of job seekers use their mobile device to search for jobs, and 78% of candidates would apply for jobs in the same way, given the appropriate compatibility.
  5. Mobile is about apps. While apps are an important part of the mobile ecosystem, they are far from the only part. Mobile research often starts with a browser-based search engine and ends on a mobile-accessed website. Creating a mobile-friendly job search environment via social media and mobile-optimized web pages goes a long way.

Find Jessica here.

2. 6 Ways Leaders Can Excel At Engaging Employees

While “employee engagement” literature is experiencing a boom of late, its focus tends to be misdirected. Most advice advocates a programmatic approach, with “low-end” employees expected to participate in executive-led initiatives. Roy Osing argues that this is not the best way to engage your employees: “People relate more to other people, not “corporate programs” offered by human resources or business planning,” he explains. Under Osing’s approach, each team leader should take responsibility for engaging those that work under them, cultivating engagement from the ground up. He offers six ways team leaders can better engage their employees:

  1. Ensure every employee clearly understands the strategic game plan of the organization. It is difficult for an employee to contribute if they do not know the final goal.
  2. Define the specific role of every person in delivering the strategy. As in point #1, it is essential for employees to know their part in the bigger picture, both from motivational and action-taking standpoints. 
  3. Equip them with the tools to perform their responsibilities: training, systems, and processes. An employee will not be engaged with their work if they do not know how to operate the appropriate software or follow specific protocol.
  4. Let them know how they’re doing. Feedback is the lifeblood of progress: provide insight into what they did well and what they can do better next time.
  5. Be in their workplace with them. The presence of a team leader is a strong motivator- and a lack of presence can work in the opposite way.
  6. Fight for them internally. “If they know you have their back they will go the extra distance to perform,” Osing explains. Protect them from internal politicking.

Employee engagement tracks well with productivity, but the best drivers of engagement are largely intangible. “Enhancing employee engagement requires individuals to emotionally connect with the goals of the organization,” Osing says.  Find Roy: LinkedIn

3. Delegation as a Leadership Style

Leadership style should depend on the task at hand, resources available, and the results desired. The delegation style of leadership is an important tool in the leadership toolbox, a style that fosters employee involvement and engagement. “These tips for successful delegation of authority will help you help your reporting staff members succeed when they are most empowered,” Susan Heathfield explains. She proceeds to outline five tips for fleshing out your own delegation abilities.

  1. Give the person a whole task to do. “Staff members contribute most effectively when they are aware of the big picture,” Heathfield says. It is difficult for an employee to engage with a small piece of the whole. When they feel part of something bigger than themselves, they will perform more effectively.
  2. If you have a picture of what a successful outcome or output will look like, share that picture with the staff person. “Your employees would rather that you share exactly what you are looking for than you make them play guess,” Heathfield explains. Give them insight.
  3. Identify the key points of the project or dates when you want feedback about progress. It is important to have clear expectations in place to avoid appearing a haphazard micromanager. Set the path and the framework, let your employees work out the rest. If they get off track, scheduled feedback will get them back on course.
  4. Identify the measurements or the outcome you will use to determine that the project was successfully completed. Your employees need to know what is expected of them and what exactly they are working towards. Make sure they understand exactly what you want them to do.
  5. Determine, in advance, how you will thank and reward them. Make rewards meaningful and recognizable.

“The successful delegation of authority as a leadership style takes time and energy, but it’s worth the time and energy to help employee involvement and employee empowerment succeed as a leadership style,” Heathfield concludes. Find Susan: Twitter

4. 4 Ways To Tell If Someone You’re Interviewing Has Passion About The Job

Finding a passionate candidate is perhaps the most critical role of the recruiter or interviewer. “Passionate people dig in for the long haul, even when it’s incredibly hard,” Kris Dunn explains. Enthusiasm and curiosity are not enough, but deducing passion in an interview setting is difficult. Dunn provides four ways to separate the impassioned from those who are simply enthusiastic and curious.

  1. Ask candidates how they stay up to date in their field. A reliance on professional training and formal activities is probably not passion- it is mandatory learning done on company time. The truly passionate candidate will pursue learning outside of the workplace.
  2. Ask a candidate to give you a big question in their field they’d like to solve and why. Probe their answers for creativity and outside-the-box thinking. A focus on generalities and the work of others is a red flag, these sorts of answers tend to denote fake passion.
  3. Ask a candidate how they find others in their profession to connect with. What they talk about, what type of information is exchanged, and how often they connect with others in their field outside of their company are all measurements of passion.
  4. Ask Motivational Fit questions. “If the answers show a consistent theme of talking about BS factors rather than a clear line towards being able to do interesting work related to their field, it’s hard to project them as passionate in their field,” Dunn explains.

Don’t let extraneous passion take the place of profession-related passion. A passion for hobbies does not necessarily translate to professional passion. Those who strive for continuous improvement and innovation in their field will always be an asset in the workplace. Find Kris: Twitter

5. Avoid Hiring Mistakes in 3 Easy Steps

While the hiring of new employees is a sign that a company is growing, it also has the potential to result in HR disaster. Every untested new hire could be a hiring mistake, a lawsuit waiting to happen, or a waste of valuable resources. Aaron Queen provides three steps to avoid the hiring mistake pitfall.

  1. Look at the Long Term. While it is important to address the company’s immediate needs, it is critical to prepare for the future. “If you take a long-term view for hiring, you will be able to find professionals that will fill your company’s needs in the future – and help you avoid going through the hiring process the next time you are in a crunch,” Queen explains.
  2. Look at the Person. Look beyond the resume. Use the interview setting to glean what you can about each qualified candidate’s personality and whether they would be a good cultural fit. 
  3. When in Doubt, Call Them Back. Hindsight is 20/20, and if you think of a stellar follow-up question, don’t hesitate to contact the candidate. Think about the big picture- it may take more than one interview to find the perfect candidate.

Find Aaron: LinkedIn