Executive Insights Roundtable Part II: 2024 Recruitment Recommendations

2024 Recruitment Recommendations

Well, we’ve covered the predictions for 2024 recruitment trends in the first installment of our two-part series here

In this blog, we’ve collected the sage advice from our trusted TA leaders on how to succeed at hiring in 2024. Take note because following these steps could mean the difference between a fantastic hiring year or a total recruiting flop. 

Part II: 2024 Talent Acquisition Recommendations

 

Invest in TA Analytics

With tight budgets across the board, it’s critical to have an understanding of your hiring data, also known as  “people analytics,” “talent intelligence,” or simply, “hiring intelligence.”

Embracing talent acquisition analytics is not just a choice. It’s a strategic imperative. Recognizing the need to invest in hiring intelligence is key to survival in a fiercely competitive market. 

People analytics provides invaluable insights into candidate sourcing, performance metrics, and workforce trends, enabling informed decision-making. By harnessing data-driven strategies, you can optimize your processes, identify top-performing sources, and enhance the overall quality of hires. 

Talent intelligence also empowers talent acquisition teams to predict future hiring needs, reduce time-to-fill, and streamline recruitment costs. By leveraging data to refine recruitment strategies, recruiters can cement their ability to attract, hire, and retain top-tier talent in a rapidly evolving professional landscape.

Here’s our experts’ advice on talent acquisition analytics and hiring intelligence:

Bob Pulver

"One of the areas that I’ve heard is having trouble moving up the priority list is Talent Intelligence. It is not simply a cliche that your most important asset is your talent. There is no autopilot for the execution of your strategy (and AI ‘copilots’ are exactly that). We have entered one of the most disruptive eras the workplace has ever experienced. 

Investments in talent data and workforce analytics expertise, and the strategic workforce planning (SWP) initiatives they drive, are essential to achieve the total talent intelligence organizations need to compete for and retain top talent. 

The insights gained from aggregating data collected throughout the hiring funnel, from applicant volume and demographics to interview insights and assessment results, is crucial to understanding broader impacts on culture and performance. 

Investments in hiring intelligence can be substantiated by emphasizing the cost avoidance of a bad hire, the quantification and ongoing evaluation of Quality of Hire, and fuel for the SWP exercises that require the total talent intelligence mentioned above."

Bob Pulver, Founder and Principal Consultant at Cognitive Path

 

Julie Coucoles

"I would advise budget owners to invest in TA analytics. Budgets will certainly continue to remain tight in Talent Acquisition for 2024, so it's even more crucial to understand the company's hiring data. Looking around at nearly every other part of the business, data and analytics are crucial to understanding how the business is running. 

Acquiring talent is often the most costly of the budget line items, so understanding at a granular level is imperative. Given we haven't made it out of the recession yet, companies will want to flex their TA teams as much as possible, using their data as a way to truly understand what it takes to hire efficiently."

Julie Coucoles, Independent Fractional Talent Leader and Search Consultant 

 

Map Asks to Desired Outcomes Using Data to Make your Case

If you’re going to ask your CFO for funding to put into people analytics and recruitment software, make sure you’re mapping these requests to your company’s growth strategy and providing data to back up your reasoning.

Aligning recruitment goals with the overarching mission of your company is crucial for organizational success. By strategically linking hiring needs to the broader mission, businesses can cultivate a productive workforce that is not only skilled but also shares the company's values and vision.

To effectively communicate this alignment to the C-suite, you need data. Whether you’re showcasing the impact of talent acquisition on key performance indicators, or demonstrating how a mission-aligned workforce contributes to the bottom line, data is the key that will support C-suite buy-in. 

Here’s our experts’ advice for mapping budget asks to outcomes and supporting them with data:

Pete Lawson

"Get creative, leverage data, map your asks onto the mission and direction of the company and don't take no for an answer!

For the most part, HR and TA budgets have been hit really hard over the last 18 months. Teams have been downsized, tools have been cut and hiring has been prioritized down. Although this may be the reality at certain organizations, if you asked any one of the CEO's at those organizations if they would like to attract and hire less talented people for their companies, you would get a resounding NO! 

Unless a company is going to close their doors and shut down, they should always be thinking about hiring and leveling up their talent despite the unfortunate decisions they have had to make to downsize or pivot due to the current economic landscape. With this in mind, I feel like this is the perfect time for organizations to build a solid framework and foundation for their strategies around Employer Brand/ Employee Value Proposition, Talent Bar/ Rubrics (QOH- how you identify and evaluate top talent), and Retention Strategy or Attract>Hire>Retain. 

If I was looking to build a strategy and fight for budget around this internally right now, I would be looking at our engagement survey data, external brand data and our retention data to determine where the company may be burning money and negatively impacting both the brand and the success of the company due to turnover or wasted 3rd party recruiting fees. 

Then map that onto our company objective and goals and the story should speak for itself, and hopefully open up the door to leverage a bigger budget to build on these objectives and optimize the function."

Pete Lawson, Founder and Principal Consultant at Inspire Talent

Carolyn Frey

“Be clear on what the highest priority items are to support your business and people goals: clarity, keeping it simple, and focusing on the areas of highest return for the business strategy are critical.”

Carolyn Frey, Chief People Officer at Hungryroot

PJ Johnson

“Schedule a 2024 briefing with your current sales and future sales teams, their leadership and engineering staff should be included if possible for your products and future products. 

Outline what is working and what isn’t working. Ask them to outline what you aren’t currently using in their product suite. 

Have them show how it could benefit you, what the estimated cost would be, and the savings or productivity benefits that they can see by using it. 

Have them also highlight how it helps the HR function do more for their other business unit partners. Have them highlight integrations they are seeing their product fit into, why they believe you should adopt them, and what the cost to value would be for you. 

Ask them to give you a briefing on other products being used across their customer base that are complementary, how it is benefiting those customers. They don’t need to name the customers. Learn from the sales teams.”

PJ Johnson, Chief Revenue Officer at Sud Scrub

 

Tony Scott

“I’d make sure everything is aligned to some desired business outcome, and the more strategically important the better.   But don’t stretch this too far.  Must be real and must be credible.  In addition to making the case FOR the budget, think through the arguments as to why someone would be AGAINST the spend and be prepared to discuss the reasons why those objections are outweighed by the positives.  Finally, figure out way ahead of time who the relevant stakeholders are, and solicit their feedback and support way ahead of the financial process.“

Tony Scott, Chief Executive Officer at Intrusion

David Hanrahan

"Immerse yourself in the business goals for next year. Are those finalized yet? What all info do you have at your disposal? Eg. a spreadsheet of the top and bottom-line numbers by quarter or something more specific? 

From that info you can start to work backwards in terms of "things that must be true" in order for the company to reach its goals. What specific people / talent things must be true? Eg. skillsets needed, org design changing, leadership effectiveness increasing, retention of the XYZ team, etc., increase of velocity or performance across the company, greater efficiencies in some people processes like how goals are set, etc. 

When you know what must be accomplished by quarter from the People team to support the business goals, you can start to outline what critical investments are needed that directly support those. Sometimes we say things in the People team are really important because they support us in People, but it's questionable how they support our stakeholders (the company). 

When it's crystal clear on the linkage, the budget asks become a lot more sound."

David Hanrahan, Chief People Officer at Flare

IMG_7439

"Embrace the power of data storytelling. The ability to narrate a compelling story with data will be crucial for HR and talent leaders going forward. 

Start by collecting and analyzing data on your hiring successes and challenges. Transform this data into a narrative that illustrates how strategic investments in talent acquisition can lead to better Quality of Hire, and, more importantly, improved business outcomes. 

Focus on how data-driven hiring can enhance diversity, boost employee engagement, and drive retention. Use success stories, employee testimonials, and industry benchmarks.

By articulating the story that your data tells, you can make a persuasive case for the budget and support needed to advance your talent acquisition strategies in the coming year. This lets you reposition your talent strategy as a growth engine, not a cost center."

Brandon Redlinger, VP of Marketing at Crosschq

 

Continue to Do More With Less

“Doing more with less" is a long-standing key component of cost containment. Leveraging technology, automation, and artificial intelligence can expedite the hiring process and optimize resources for heightened business efficiency and lower recruitment costs. 

The strategic integration of technology accelerates time-to-hire while liberating human talent for more focused and relationship-centric tasks. Recruiters can do what they do best: engage candidates by building relationships, enhance the candidate experience,and support critical decision-making, increasing productivity and reducing cost-per-hire.

Here’s our experts’ advice for finding ways to do more with less and achieve cost savings:

 

Bob Pulver

“Whether it is streamlining recruitment processes, mitigating HR service desk tickets, or eliminating other manual tasks and workflows, automation frees up critical resources to focus on higher-value activities.

There is likely a long list, and often this is where human creativity, ingenuity, connection, and empathy shine through. Investing in automation is thus an investment in human-centric talent experiences, and it will pay dividends faster than you think. 

Talk to domain experts to identify automation opportunities, including the levels of effort to automate and the expected impact (time savings, ticket volume reduction, cost avoidance, etc.). Call out the total ROI, and propose how some percentage of that savings can be reinvested.

Bob Pulver, Founder and Principal Consultant at Cognitive Path

Thomas Klein

“I would ensure that we all have a simple, yet clear communication document/material relative to ‘cost benefits’ and a good recourse toolbox to share with senior leadership as the budget planning takes place, which is now.   Cost containment is going to be a focus for 2024 as my industry (hospitality) is forecasting an extremely challenging year.”

Thomas Klein, Founder and Principal Consultant at Tak Hospitality

jay wilkinson 

"Cut expenses 5% and have contingency plans for another 5%. As workloads remain constant or increase and staffing is flat or down, be clear about priorities in 2024 and aggressively cut scope to avoid employee burnout/turnover. 

Make sure HRBPs and CFO contacts are on the same page and aggressively manage vacancy, external hiring, retention agreements, sign on bonuses, etc."

Jay Wilkinson, SVP: Director of HR People Analytics and Employee Engagement at PNC

Pete Lawson

“Organizations who have cut their TA teams or downsized should really be thinking about how they can create a great TA function without all the people overhead. 


There are opportunities to leverage tech solutions to build self-serve TA functions that will allow for the company to hire on their own without sacrificing candidate experience or lowering the talent bar.”

Pete Lawson, Founder and Principal Consultant at Inspire Talent

Levi Barbosa

"We've all been juggling the 'do more with less' mantra, and that's not going away anytime soon. It's the perfect moment to rethink the breadth of our TA teams. 

Plus, with the economic rollercoaster we're on, likely sticking around for a bit, nailing the value of our tech stack is non-negotiable. It's about making every dollar count and proving that our tools aren't just flashy—they're fueling our success."

Levi Barbosa, Talent Operations at Nubank

 

Double Down on AI

AI-enabled HR transformation stands at the forefront of revolutionizing recruitment strategies in 2024. Use smart automation to boost efficiency, speed hiring, and elevate the accuracy of your hires. However, remember that unless you fully understand how AI works and its impact in the context of your organization, it can be easy to get roped in by a vendor whose promises are based on buzzwords, not reality.

Artificial intelligence isn’t capable of being an all-in-one hiring and firing machine. Instead, AI should be leveraged to enable recruiters to make more informed decisions, resulting in better hires and reduced time-to-fill, and to enhance the candidate experience by personalizing interactions, providing real-time feedback, and streamlining communication. 

Here’s our experts’ advice for doubling down on AI and choosing the right vendors:

 

jeremy a lyons

"Identify your AI strategy - AI is here to stay so it is less of a function of ‘will you use it’ and more ‘how you will use it.’ By carefully curating your approved AI vendors and having a clear strategy, you will likely save yourself some trouble in the future.”

Jeremy Lyons, RecOps Consultant and Co-Founder at RecOpps Collective

Levi Barbosa

"2023 really shook things up with AI, right? Looking ahead to 2024, it's crystal clear we've got to double down on AI for recruitment—it's revolutionizing our workspace. I'm talking about smart automation that's going to crank up our efficiency and help us make sharper decisions. That’s where Talent Operations services come in—think WezOps :)”

 Levi Barbosa, Talent Operations at Nubank

ernest ng"Get budgeted for a specialist or vendor who can help guide you and support you through all the AI noise and give you clear direction in your AI-enabled HR transformation. Lots of noise around AI, pitch sounds good in theory, but understanding whether it will work in your context is important. 

You have to be discerning about who you trust, as many people providing “objective” advice, aren’t really that objective. Ask for disclosures of conflicts of interest if they are going to help you with software selection. Get many customer references, it’s the AI Wild West right now. If you aren’t an expert, it’s easy to get fooled."

Ernest Ng, VP - Strategy, Research, Content and Incubation at HiredScore

Bob Pulver

“Most organizations are using technology to support decision-making, and in HR this could include hiring, promotions, layoffs, and compensation, among others. It will be increasingly important - or even legally required - for any AI, algorithm, or autonomous system to be audited for adverse impact as a result of bias or discrimination.

Assuming this is the solution provider’s responsibility would be a big mistake. Earmark budget not only for complying with current or expected legislation, but also for AI governance on the solutions HR relies upon, as well as L&D investments in upskilling the workforce on responsible, ethical, and fair practices for data and AI.”

 Bob Pulver, Founder and Principal Consultant at Cognitive Path

 

Clean House and Update Your Approach

The end of the year is the perfect time to take action and do a little housekeeping. Is your candidate data clean, organized, and ready to support your recruitment goals? Is your entire hiring team on the same page, from your recruiters to your interviewers to your hiring managers? Take advantage of the “quiet December” to prepare for 2024.

Take a good hard look at your talent acquisition technology. Your ATS and HRIS should be scrubbed until fresh and sparkling, with redundant, incorrect, outdated, or duplicate data removed or updated to give your recruiters a fighting chance. Now is also the time to decide on what tools you can budget for to improve recruiter, hiring manager, and candidate experience in the year ahead.

Interviewers are critical to your hiring funnel’s success, but far too few have a dedicated person or team assigned to this critical task. This can make it even harder to finalize hiring decisions and secure top talent.

Here’s our experts’ advice for “cleaning house” before the New Year rings in:

 

IMG_4217“Plan now - not later! I've seen Q1s basically be completely lost because of poor planning ahead of time. Q4 is typically a slower time in the People space, so use that time to get all of your ducks in a row for the upcoming year. 

Pull your data and slice it to see if there are any leaky buckets and/or levers you can pull to optimize any processes - run cost benefit analysis if you need to add tools, what are the man hours vs the automation hours you'd get if you implemented something to take care of that for you? 

Get a realistic view of your headcount process - is your TA team staffed appropriately to be effective? Clean up your ATS and HRIS systems so your data starts the year as fresh as can be. 2024 you will be thankful that 2023 you put the time in to set you up for success."

Meredith Sanders, Independent HR & Talent Acquisition Consultant 

jeremy a lyons

Upgrade and update your training programs - Refresh your interview and hiring manager skills training and put everyone through them again. Interviewing has changed and so has the data you collect around it. Use data to back up the Why here."

Jeremy Lyons, RecOps Consultant and Co-Founder at RecOpps Collective

 

Moving Forward Confidently Into 2024 With Crosschq

Crosschq gives you all of the tools you need to achieve your recruitment goals and support your company's overall mission in 2024. 

Not sure if you’re ready for 2024? Worried about something specific? Don’t know where to start? Contact our team for a demonstration today, and find out what Crosschq can do for you. 

 

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Topics from this blog: Talent Acquisition Recruiting Hiring Intelligence

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