Automation: Changing the Game for Candidates and Clients


Kendra Cato: Exciting times. Thank you everyone for your patience. Have we dealt with the technical difficulty? It would not be, you're three living in a virtual world. If we still did not hit some bumps along the way, I appreciate your patience. We're going to dive right in. We have a ton to cover. My name is Kendra Cato.

Kendra Cato: I am the Director Enterprise Strategy with Bullhorn. We are the largest global software provider for staffing and recruiting across the globe. And I'm super, super excited to introduce today's panelists. Amy please. Did you go first? 

Amy Reed: Oh yes. And thank you for your patience. It was me with the technology.

Amy Reed: I'd hate to say yes. After three years still. Haven't gotten it right. I'm the vice president of operational strategy at CHG healthcare. I've been there about eight years and getting the staffing probably the last 15. And before that about 10 to 11 years in the hospitals I'm working so excited to be here and some of my new direction has been on technology.

Amy Reed: And how does it help move our business forward? I come up through recruitment and operations. So this is a new area for me to help focus on. 

Lawrence Dearth: Yeah. Hey everybody. I'm Lawrence Dearth our president over here at Insight Global. Most people call me Larry. We're about a $4 billion staffing company in North America.

Lawrence Dearth: We work across a wide array of industries. Technology business, finance, engineering, health care government services. We'll place about 80,000 candidates this year. And my organization has about 1500 recruiters in it. Really appreciate the partnership with Bullhorn, really excited to be here, to talk about how we're leveraging technology, to be able to help make all those matches that all the customers need right now.

Lawrence Dearth: So, Kendra, I'll turn it back over to you. 

Kendra Cato: Well, I appreciate it. Thank you for joining today. I want it to. Kind of do a little bit of level setting because late last year we held our first grade survey. That's focused primarily on candidate and worker needs versus staffing pros. And so we had surveyed over 2000 North American and UK workers, and we came away with three key things that I thought would be great, provide some great context for today's discussion.

Kendra Cato: One of them being. Now is the time to leverage digital transformation and the candidate experience and two candidates really like working with recruiters, but they want them to meet them on their terms. And three, don't sleep on the value of human touch, which none of us are surprised about there, especially these days.

Kendra Cato: Now an interesting point. Although three out of five freelance workers would rather work with recruiters, a whopping 90% said that they wished it were easier to do so. And that the process with working with staffing firms was more streamlined. So they love it.

Kendra Cato: They love it. They love what we do. Recruiters and working with staffing firms, but that 90% are saying, God, you guys, you could really be doing a better job at this and making it easier for us. So it seems like candidates are ready for change and some firms are stepping up to that. And so it's time for us to meet the moment.

Kendra Cato: Larry, I'd love to ask you what has been the catalyst for Insight Global and your leadership team and thinking that the industry is ready and poised for disruption. 

Lawrence Dearth: Yeah. Well, I think that we're just now obviously, COVID changed a lot, but what COVID really did was even in this recovery period where hiring is coming back to such a great extent, there are so many more jobs than there are workers right now.

Lawrence Dearth: Right now, we do feel like we're right back in this low unemployment space that we were in pre-recession and I remember pre COVID. You really started getting into this vernacular around how you know the candidate is the customer. The candidate has to be the one that knows that you as their career have their best interest in mind.

Lawrence Dearth: When you start working with great candidates, you better be prepared to submit them to three, four, or five different positions. You better give them optionality. And a lot of verbiage with stuff that was reserved for customers prior to, COVID not all of a sudden COVID hits and you know, unemployment goes down and then it feels like everybody's looking for work, but now we blink.

Lawrence Dearth: And 18 months later, two years later now we're back again. And we're in that same scenario where the candidate really is the customer. I know Amy, especially for you in healthcare and in nursing, in our healthcare practice. That's always been a very common phrase, but now we're seeing across a wide range of industries.

Lawrence Dearth: Obviously remote work has really played a heavy factor into that. Because now every candidate actually does have the optionality at their fingertips. It doesn't take a recruiter to connect them to opportunity because their job searches nationwide. And so I think that the role of the recruiter in that has to be an advisor facilitator.

Lawrence Dearth: You have to make that process easy. You have to instill trust. And usually that comes through transparency. And so much of that has come from, you know, just the. Yeah, that again, even after going through a recession, just a short, you know, 18 months ago, we're back in a very competitive candidate market.

Lawrence Dearth: It feels like it's been that way for the better half of the last decade. 

Kendra Cato: Yeah. Agreed. Agreed. You brought up a good point. Larry. We had, you know, customers coming to us. Just in the last few years, they launched their healthcare business. And to say, Amy, you were ahead of the curve, right? Your candidates have always been your customers.

Kendra Cato: And you've known that they needed to be treated differently if you will. And so having folks firms that are just now getting into this arm of the business, they're realizing they can't just copy paste with what they were doing and how they were managing candidates. So what other ways on your side of the business, have you seen things change?

Amy Reed: And I think, you know, you hear it yourself, we saw a little bit different, you know, on the nursing segment, it didn't slow down. It actually skyrocketed, so it was, how do you provide that experience with the volume that was coming in? On our other side of the business, it did slow down like most of what we saw, I think the hard thing with healthcare is balancing all the needed paperwork.

Amy Reed: Unfortunately, there's a whole lot of it in healthcare. And so that's always a hurdle. You have to figure out how to make it easy and intuitive. And folks don't want to talk to you. You still have to have recruiters. You still have to have that human touch. That's meaningful. They want to get out of all kinds of hours.

Amy Reed: Again, their healthcare they're working at night, they're working early mornings. We Contact with them. It's how do you make a system that's intuitive, easy to use for them to walk through and even complete the hardest stuff. Again, healthcare requires a little bit more paperwork. And so again, how do you make it easy for them, but sticky.

Amy Reed: So if it's in one spot, it's harder for them to go to other agencies. So even if you have a lot of jobs it doesn't really matter at this time, it's about your recruiter and about the ease of working with us right now and onboarding because unfortunately healthcare, a lot of us have a lot of jobs right now.

Amy Reed: So that's not, you know, and we have a lot of great candidates that you can't keep them. If it's hard to work. 

Kendra Cato: You brought up a great point. They want to talk to recruiters, but now when it's time to fill out paperwork and make sure certifications are set, they just want that in a bucket somewhere.

Kendra Cato: And when everyone's able to pull from it as needed, 

Amy Reed: I mean, the recruiters, that's not their area either. Like I don't want to be administrative. So how do you make it easy on the candidate and easy on the recruitment team? 

Kendra Cato: Yeah, that makes sense. So the paperwork aside, how has your business used technology to improve the candidate experience?

Kendra Cato: Are you going to take this? 

Lawrence Dearth: Sure. Go ahead. I'll get ahead. Yeah. And you bring up such a great point. I actually love learning from all of the things that our healthcare practice is doing, and even the partners that we've met in this new industry, because I feel like what you said. That industry is so far ahead of the candidate experience, as it pertains to things like onboarding and in paperwork, it's very similar in places like government services, or if you're working in highly regulated sectors, even if you're placing a software engineer with a major bank investments division, it's a pretty heavy lift.

Lawrence Dearth: And so there's a lot of innovation that's happened on the healthcare front that I think is wonderful to bring into contingent staffing everywhere. Yes. What's really important though right now is the matching process in my experience because every great candidate that is open to remote work is now open to a hundred X the job opportunities that they had beforehand, it can be really overwhelming for a candidate.

Lawrence Dearth: And so what they look for is they look for. Agency or a company that they can partner with as a recruiter where you have technology enabled recruiting technology, enabled job selection. So where we're really moving forward is with the opportunity for the introduction of things like machine learning.

Lawrence Dearth: And the candidate matching process. Hey, if I am a candidate that applied for a job through one of our inbound channels, like LinkedIn, or indeed, how can I make sure that I have a tool that allows my recruiter to immediately match that candidate to the best five jobs that we have a bill for. They don't have time to go over 50, but now they're eligible for five hundred.

Lawrence Dearth: So, how do you use technology to be able to make sure that those are the best five conversations? And if you're submitting them to five places that they're going to get one of those roles, I think that's a really big thing. The other big element of it is just like any industry where now. The customer, which in our minds obviously is the candidate for this discussion.

Lawrence Dearth: And if you're taking a look at your customer, if there's a lot of options, if there's a lot of inventory, the number one way that you can increase efficiency is by putting that into your customer's hands. So for the candidates, like making sure that you had really easy searchable interfaces for all of the jobs that you have open for us, it's getting them into trickle on email marketing campaigns that actually hit them with jobs that they're a match for, even when they're currently submitted to one job or another, or being able to troll through your alumni networks with those same pertinent jobs.

Lawrence Dearth: If you can use that same technology that your recruiters use to match the candidates to the roles, and then you empower your candidates with it. What happens is more often than not. They're going to find a job that 's the best fit for them, just like nurses and a nurse in a major city are going to know what hospital they really want to work at.

Lawrence Dearth: And then you become more of a broker of that transaction. So those are a few places that we can use technology to really help just enhance the candidate experience, which right now is what it's all about.

Kendra Cato: Larry, you don't have to hit mute here's sales books in the background, excited about that's why we're all here. Right? So, Amy, I know you mentioned again that the ability to apply search and complete paperwork, but what are some other critical elements of your candidates employment that technology helps with?

Amy Reed: Again, when you have so many jobs, it's a bit overwhelming to kind of search what you're looking through from a again, healthcare sector right now. But I would say a couple of years ago, our focus was client. Like that has to be the priority. Let's, you know, bring technology to them and it quickly shifted maybe a year ago, year and a half ago, it has to be the candidates.

Amy Reed: And so the focus has been on creating some type of. Portal access for them. It's out there, the apps, the portals you know, all of us trying to create, they're all similar, but it is about one stop shopping. And that has been the focus this last year and a half is utilizing some of the Bullhorn tools, some of our internal tools to create access for.

Amy Reed: So right from the start, how do you create a portal for them where they can apply? Come back whenever they want, see the jobs they're matched to back to kind of Larry's comment of how do you serve up the job? Possibly, they were searching on the internet. So they're on our website. How do you start to serve that up?

Amy Reed: Not in a way that freaks them out, that we're watching what they're doing. But you're bringing them to the top, you know, there's interest there, but all of that through kind of a one-stop shopping. I think it does become overwhelming in their email box to get the job alerts and the newsletters and fill out this paperwork and do this.

Amy Reed: And so if you can bring them back to one place, which is really hard to get in the house it does improve that customer experience and kind of retention and stickiness with you. And that has been the focus. 

Kendra Cato: Okay. Amy, that leads me to. My next question, because when we're thinking about automation specifically, right?

Kendra Cato: How are you deciding what parts of your operations, your engagement process they're going to automate? You brought up a few points just now, but is there anything else related to that? 

Amy Reed: Yeah, I think when we started bringing this out, this was a little new for us. And that's hard in a sales environment because you start to cross over that.

Amy Reed: You don't need me anymore. I've heard that comment. You need 'em you just see them for the really meaningful, like deal closures and relationship building. And we did start with the candidate side that had to be the focus. What are some easy things that don't touch on toes much? So you can get the buy-in and get the adoption.

Amy Reed: Like you've got to get the buy-in and adoption from them. And so it was taking off some of those easy efficiency gains to say that look it not that you're going to make 50 less phone calls. You're actually going to make 50 more. Cause I took things off your desk, some of that administrative type tools, and that's where we started the focus.

Amy Reed: And then you start to look at retention, you know, how do you keep them? How do you keep them on your site by serving up at the jobs, serving up the information to them. But I think when you start to dip your foot into automation to get your team to buy in, it has to be the easiest stuff they see the wind for.

Amy Reed: Otherwise it looks and feels like automation to them. And it's hard for them to show it to the candidates. 

Kendra Cato: Sure. No, that makes sense. Now we need them. You certainly do. And I, you know, our grid survey results said the same thing we want to work with. They want to work with recruiters that are excited to work with them.

Kendra Cato: So how can we make it a more meaningful experience for them? Larry, do you have anything to add on. 

Lawrence Dearth: Yeah. You know, what I'm really excited about too is with all of these additional options, and maybe it's just with our purview, but you know, we're operating at any given time with between 20 and 30,000 different odds hours.

Lawrence Dearth: And so for us, I think to myself, how can I get those roles in automated fashions in front of as many of our potential candidates as possible. But not just with, you know, job board automation or programmatic advertising that we're leveraging, but then even the next step, like once you have candidates that apply, how can you do things like being able to automate workflows where you're.

Lawrence Dearth: Recruiters and account managers can tag screening questions for those applications so that they're only seeing relevant applicants. When those applicants apply, being able to have that useful integrations to be able to have ease of scheduling. You'd be shocked at just how important something as simple as scheduling is.

Lawrence Dearth: Is if you're a candidate and you're working with five or six different recruiters, the ability to have simple outlook integration, simple stuff, built into LinkedIn or indeed, or whatever ATS you're working with Bullhorn, you know, you're like, that's it, that's a huge game changer for a candidate, because if it's one thing that I think that this world is really over is the back and forth. 

Lawrence Dearth: We have really grown to be an on-demand culture or an on-demand culture with, you know, we ingest our movies with how we order our groceries with how we schedule our doctor's appointments. The candidates are no different. They want an on demand ability to be able to talk to their recruiter and go through their jobs that they found on that.

Kendra Cato: Makes sense. Definitely. You can order anything from a case of soda or beer or whatever you want to call it these days to see your car service. You know, so. 

Lawrence Dearth: I played four times to schedule a meeting with you when, during that time, they've already done all their weekly grocery shopping, upgraded their insurance about everything else. 

Kendra Cato: 100%. So, with. Thinking of on-demand, but let's take this a step further. I know Amy, you just touched on this briefly when mentioning retention where's recurrently experiencing this talent shortage. That's no secret. So redeployment has been a huge focus because of that. So what part can technology and automation play in improving your redeployed rate?

Amy Reed: Yeah. You know, I speak a little bit before the pandemic, because right now the redeployments are a little different just because we're turning through the, you know, the nursing and the physician side. But it is keeping those jobs in front of them. And I think, you know, it's the way and avenues we offer them.

Amy Reed: I think as you guys were touching a little bit on how quickly they want to connect on demand, if you're not offering. A variety. And that means by phone, by text, by some type of Calendly type of appointment type link through your website, through chat, if you're not offering multiple avenues to communicate with them and make it easy you will lose them.

Amy Reed: They will find the job they're looking for. And not that there's not easy redeployment in the healthcare sector right now, because all the jobs are out there. So you still have to keep them attracted and keep those I'm going to say, you know, a week out, how do you connect to them two weeks out?

Amy Reed: How do you connect with them? The job is coming to a close, do you want to stay? And that goes for the client as well. And how is it going? You know, at the one week mark, most of our stuff is 13 weeks, kind of real time, onesie, twosy, locums and you have to Stanford and both parties, or again, there's plenty out there in a shortage in healthcare.

Amy Reed: And so they'll jump ship and go to the next one. What's nice to see during the pandemic, it has been. Not as much about the job and pay, where that was always it, you know, in healthcare, if you had the job and the pay, it didn't matter how good of a relationship you had and ability to redeploy them. It was the person that had the job and that is a little bit different now.

Amy Reed: It is that relationship and being able to communicate with them and keeping them in touch with our recruiter. 

Kendra Cato: Is there any other catalysts for that, Amy? I'm sorry, I'm curious beyond the job and the pay these days, is it the relationship, the location? Is there anything else that. 

Amy Reed: Yeah, I, you know, again, there's a burnout and so unfortunately we have, we're moving from A to B we'll be also moving to C cause they don't want to be there and they're burned out.

Amy Reed: So it is a location, but there's just so much opportunity right now. You know, I go back to, I think Larry said 30, 25, 30,000. I mean there's 30,000 times two or three openings in each of those jobs right now. It's just overwhelming. And so it is having to use our technology more today with our candidates to serve up really what they're looking for.

Amy Reed: I don't want to log in and see 10,000 jobs in California. How do we use that to narrow down what Kendra's looking for? And we just didn't have to do that before that volume. Wasn't there for that. And making sure we don't lose them. And so, you know, through this, you grow your candidate pool and client base.

Amy Reed: At some point, the pandemic is going to ease at some point. How do you keep that? And that does go back to using our automation and technology to keep that stickiness and relationship with them, or we'll lose them at that time when it turns. 

Kendra Cato: Helpful. Thanks there. You had something to add there? 

Lawrence Dearth: Oh, I was just going to say, I thought that was so well said.

Lawrence Dearth: In particular about giving multiple channels for your current consultants or whoever's working for you able to get issues in front of your people. It's two, it's twofold as it comes to redeployment. It's a heavy technology on it because that's what helps you track. Who's coming up on any assignment. This is really big in places like our technology sector engineering sector, but being able to track that manage that is important.

Lawrence Dearth: But being able to use automation, loneliness for things like surveys or chat or NPS scoring. Being able to leverage sentiment analysis is really important to be able to identify who potential at-risk people are. So you have all of these at risk, or you have all these technology enabled things that help you identify who you need to be working with and who's potentially at risk, but then it's like, well, we believe that there's a huge leadership development element to this as well. 

Lawrence Dearth: We've embedded. We have a consultant engagement organization. We have a vice-president solely over consultant engagement and she has in her organization over 40 liters. So these are people that are working in a distributed support team somewhere in corporate, these are leaders that are in the offices.

Lawrence Dearth: Actually, people that we would consider our lead recruiter level and those leaders are the ones that in the offices are working with their teammates, their recruiters, their account managers, the national accounts teams, to be able to identify where the issues are and that'd be able to drive immediate resolution to it.

Lawrence Dearth: We feel like that embedding of a leader. From our consultant engagement organization used driving things like our active submittals, who's mitigating negative turnover, mitigating our back, our failure to start ratios. That leadership development in each of our offices has been an absolute game changer for us.

Lawrence Dearth: So part technology, part leadership for sure. 

Kendra Cato: Yeah, that's, I'm sure you'll get many follow-up questions on that one, Larry, because that is such an interesting, and a first for me personally, I'm hearing of how you're really utilizing this and using it to drive business, but also growth and better understanding within your offices.

Kendra Cato: Yeah, that's awesome. Okay, so now Tech is only part of the story. You know, selfishly, I believe it's a huge part, but how else are you ensuring that the solutions are being adopted across your business? Maybe once you take this one first? 

Lawrence Dearth: Well, you know, if you think about the model that I just outlined, actually with redeployment and consultant engagement, we replicate that across the board in all areas of our business.

Lawrence Dearth: I think that. In staffing, it's really important to have dedicated leadership teams towards whatever you think you need to get better at. You know, for us as a big staffing company, we have a really robust, you know, direct placement and executive search leadership team. We have a robust managed services team.

Lawrence Dearth: National accounts team what's really important is that these aren't just strategy leaders, but they're leaders that are in the. Day to day doing the work with the people that are actually either supporting clients or supporting the candidates. And so for us, being able to have a leadership development organization that focuses on things like one of our shirts, I use leadership here to serve that focuses on things like.

Lawrence Dearth: Being able to stay really connected to the candidate and the customer. You know, we have over 300 leaders in our organization alone that are actually in candidate or customer facing roles. And so if you think about all of these things, You know, and how do you implement new technology? How you leverage that to be able to drive things like better candidate matching or better redeploy, if you have that leadership development organization at the ground floor and they're leading into the candidates and the customers, and then you as an executive team are really leading into.

Lawrence Dearth: You know, what is going on the ground and how are these tools helping you or do we just need to get other stuff out of your way? It is the critical element of being able to get anything implemented in a larger organization is having a strong leadership organization on the ground. And we've been really blessed to be able to have that.

Lawrence Dearth: We've got wonderful people here. 

Kendra Cato: Fantastic. Okay. I will be picking your brain myself later, so thank you, Larry. Amy, do you have anything you'd like to add on how you're ensuring these solutions are being adopted? 

Amy Reed: Yeah, I think, you know, Larry hit that support from leadership has to be there and it is the hardest thing.

Amy Reed: I'm just going to say, you know, it's absolutely what light is the hardest thing to get adoption, no matter what you roll out, especially if it feels like it's taking a piece of what you do away. But checking in with your teams, did we build it right? Did we make it harder? So even if your customer is your candidate what I found is you start to build technology.

Amy Reed: You focus so much on that experience for the customer that, you know, our first year out of the gate we piled it on the internal folks. And so the adoption wasn't great. And so it is making sure that you balance both of those customers. That they understand why we're doing it. You know, the hardest and the easiest thing to do is communicate.

Amy Reed: So having that right leadership that supports it, but making sure you're communicating the why are we pushing this technology out? What are we doing? You're painting and vision for them, because if they stand that it's really hard to follow along and adopt it. But the hardest thing to roll out is the adoption of this technology.

Amy Reed: But again, without a vision, they're just not seeing what the use of it is for. So if you pull in, you know, some of the technology, we talked about the portals, why do I have texting? Why do I have meetings? If you don't paint how those all come together, they'll struggle with adopting. And it's just one more thing you're laying right on to them.

Amy Reed: So I think that's probably the best thing for us in learning lessons. We just started layering on technology and not explaining what the vision looked like. And it was hard to adopt. 

Kendra Cato: Yeah, making sure there's alignment on that vision and the why is so, so crucial. So everyone feels that, you know, their decision to participate is not just related to their role today, but their opportunities within the firm and the growth across the business.

Kendra Cato: So it makes absolute sense there. One thing when just talking about change management and adoption Larry. I know you had mentioned this in previous conversations about how, because of remote work these days, it's looking more and more like a national search when you have an open job, you know? And we're hearing this from other large firms as well.

Kendra Cato: How are you going about upskilling or just reframing folks' approach when thinking about it this way? Internally and with candidates. 

Lawrence Dearth: Yeah. I mean, so there's so much that you have to, there's so much that goes into that model when you're creating, because they're really talking about is if you've got 1500 recruiter nationwide, but they're all only working on Rex in their current market and they're coming across all these candidates, but they're not broadening their reach out to other.

Lawrence Dearth: Markets that they could get that. Can they connect with opportunity? It's going to be really hard. And so, you know, for us, I think the first thing that you have to do is you have to really mean that you have to name whatever objective you're trying to achieve. If you want to change, if you're, and it's gotta be simple and clear for us, we call it the candidate first mentality.

Lawrence Dearth: He should I submit that candidate to a second customer, even though he's kind of submitted to the one. Yeah. That's the candidate first mentality you got to do. What's in the best interest of the candidate right there, because they need options. Right. Hey, you know, we've got a candidate who is, you know, two months off from finishing up their assignment.

Lawrence Dearth: Man they're unhappy. We've gotta be able to get them into something new. Is it okay if we start? Yeah. Okay. We've got to talk with that client, of course, but our hands are tied here because we have the candidate first mentality. We've got to take care of our people. Like consultants are part of our family.

Lawrence Dearth: So for us, like you got to name it first and then if you really want to drive improvement through a space, you've got to find a way that your team likes being measured by it. If that makes sense. So for instance, for us, we've got 75 offices. We have made it such a point of pride. If you're a recruiter and you have placements in five or more offices, what does that mean?

Lawrence Dearth: That means that I'm actually, every time I'm working with a single candidate, I'm broadening my search to the overall market. And that's allowing me to be able to say, okay, throughout a quarter or throughout a year, I'm going to make placemats with 20 different account managers and 20 different customers and five to 10 different offices or whatever, because I have the candidate first mentality.

Lawrence Dearth: So when I go through and I meet with that, talk with that candidate, I'm going through VMS sync. I'm going through our search engine to be able to find those jobs. I'm getting a connection to the three or four opportunities. And from there I'm actually being. So you got to have a simple and clear communication strategy that everyone in the organization can get onboard with.

Lawrence Dearth: You've got to enable them with the technology to be able to go execute on that for thus, for us, those are our matching platforms and that's VMS syncis a part of that equation, right there? And then the last time, and it is, you've got to be able to create some sort of lead measure. That's some sort of analytics on some that you can measure over time.

Lawrence Dearth: You can see that the people who aren't graded that also our greatest success. Executives are great at thinking of great ideas and boardrooms and coming up with great taglines for it, but people on the ground, if they're listening to you and it's not leading to success, long-term that thing is just going to fall flat.

Lawrence Dearth: And so will your next message that you try and roll out? So, again, simply clear message technology enablement around that message and the way to measure and reward performance. 

Kendra Cato: That last bit is huge. The communication piece that you both already touched on. Absolutely. But being able to measure and reward that and make sure it aligns with your recruiters, actual success makes a lot of sense.

Kendra Cato: When thinking about the candidate first mentality, it takes me back to. Another piece of the grid survey results, where, like I mentioned, 90% of respondents indicated that they really wished finding jobs were easier. The staffing firms over half of them had given up on a search as the process took too long.

Kendra Cato: And then finally those that had tried working via an online platform so that it was actually far easier than working directly with a staffing firm, which was pretty wild. When you think about it right there. It is much easier to work with an online staffing firm, but we would still prefer to work with a recruiter.

Kendra Cato: And I mean, online platform, excuse me. But we would still prefer to work with a staffing firm and work with a recruiter. So it seems like a huge opportunity for us. Right. How do we need to respond to this? And What's your plan? If you have one, the business has to respond to this. Larry. 

Lawrence Dearth: Okay. I guess I can start.

Lawrence Dearth: Well I loved Art had a talk at Bullhorn engaged and it was actually fascinating. So the same day, last year, Art had this conversation at Bullhorn engage about what he called the move to the middle, where you see big staffing is moving towards technology enablement. And then digital stepping platforms like the Upworks of the world are moving towards traditional staffing.

Lawrence Dearth: It's just like a big race. And, you know, in Art's version, he's talking about some of the advantages that we have in staffing the same day, the CEO of Upwork gave an almost identical talk in their earnings call and was talking about, they actually have the edge in the race because of technology enablement. For me, I think that you've got to lean in and listen to the stuff that I was saying, but I'm kind of on his side of the fence on this one, because I do think that if you can enable your customers and enable your candidates with the same ease of search and rec or candidate identification, What you're going to be able to do is you're going to be able to take away the flashy user experience lower than some of those other technologies have.

Lawrence Dearth: They're great technologies by the way. If you haven't, if you don't believe it, then you should download one of the hiring manager accounts and start playing around with it and go do your own searches herself. There's some real genius into how. They open up hiring managers, eyes to the candidate marketplace.

Lawrence Dearth: And so for us, we're investing in not only public platforms to allow our customers to search through our candidates, but also additional ways that we're leveraging things like machine learning and collaboration tools, to be able to create an ecosystem. For staffing more similarly is more similar to the real estate market where you have, you know, your customers have access to the candidates and they can see what candidates you're working with and your candidates have access to your jobs.

Lawrence Dearth: And that recruiter and account manager is really playing more of a broker role, more of a facilitator role. And if you can do that effectively. It's my belief that you can actually beat the technology platforms to the middle, because it's much harder to stand up an organization of like 2,500 or 3000 recruiters and account managers than it is to be able to build a search engine for your own little debt for your own database.

Lawrence Dearth: Leverage with technology partners like Bullhorn, and to be able to have that work properly. But I do think that we have to adopt that model where healthcare has always had this. I'm sure Amy's got some great insights in this. It's like beating them to the middle by giving better access to your customers and your candidates around what the respective inventory looks like.

Lawrence Dearth: And that's where then again, the recruiter experience can reign Supreme and we can help facilitate all those. 

Kendra Cato: Agree. This race to the middle is an interesting one. Okay. I tend to agree with you, Larry, but I am certainly interested in Amy to hear what you have to add here from a healthcare perspective. 

Amy Reed: Yeah.

Amy Reed: And I think, you know, as much as we've tried in healthcare, I think the one thing we've done for years is not be transparent. In posting, you know, we're the only ones that have this job, that's hide where it is. That hides the salary. Let's, you know, that has been it for years. And I think it's just not, you're not able to do that anymore.

Amy Reed: If you want to be a part of any of these sites to post to, and get your word out. You have to be transparent. Who's going to search for a job that has no salary? Who's going to search for a job that you don't quite have the location of ? And do I want to go there? And so I do think that's a big change for healthcare for years in staffing and healthcare.

Amy Reed: We've hidden that. And I think some of our partners have pushed us. They've given us that information to say, you have to be more transparent. This is how you're losing people. So I think that's been a big change for healthcare. As far as exposing a little bit more. I mean, we've got competing brands internally and they try to hide stuff.

Amy Reed: And you just wind up competing. It really comes down to the experience that candidate has with us and the relationships and the ease of working with us. And you have to release that, you know, if you're going to go work with somebody else at the same exact job, then we deserve to lose it. We didn't put our right foot forward.

Amy Reed: We didn't make it easy for the candidate. We didn't make that relationship. I think, you know, from our, from this site standpoint, you got to give them, like, we talked about various tools. Same thing with various avenues in, like, if you just want to give me your name and your phone number, I guess that's all I'm going to get and that's okay.

Amy Reed: We need to be okay with that and stop requiring it. I think, you know, even again, probably more so healthcare. Can you give me these 10 things that otherwise I don't want to call it. We've tried to give that access. And again to drive more to our sites, anything we're sending out is still driving them back to our main site, but you've got to give them options.

Amy Reed: Like, if this is all you want to give me right now, you have to be okay with that. And if somebody is willing to sit down and do everything, and it's just interesting to look at the data, if you get them into it, you attract them and they register. 80% of the time they're finishing stuff. If I lose it, then they come back.

Amy Reed: We're looking at 50, 60% cause I've lost their attention. And so again, if you can keep in mind your site and make it simple and easy, get them in the door. Otherwise the drop-off rate is significant.

Kendra Cato: That's so true. I had a customer a few months ago, say that she had, they had the CIO. She said they went through and did all this work on the onboarding piece and had narrowed it to it.

Kendra Cato: It's 12 minutes to 4 minutes. I think it was something super drastic, single digit. And she had heard 18 or 19 year old daughter just test drive it just to see. And she was halfway thing was just like, mom, this is so long, like who has time? It's wild. I think these are up and comers. Right. And internally, I'm getting some more research around this because the gen Z and other folks are really their drop off rate.

Kendra Cato: You're going to be even more significant. And so how can we work with what we're getting and then making it still a meaningful process for them as they decide to engage with you? Such a good point. 

Amy Reed: And it's a balance like you're right. I want to get the information quickly from you. So I don't lose them because we've had folks all over testing some of our new sites the same way.

Amy Reed: This is too long. You're asking too much. But also as a healthcare worker, I know at some point you're coming back to ask me for all my malpractice information on my licenses. You know, there is a balance there that, how do I attract you without losing you, but you and I both know at some point I gotta come get this information at the right time to get that from them.

Kendra Cato: Fair enough. Okay. We're coming up at the hour. I will say, I have noticed that we have some great questions here. So Jan sharing for a potential webinar or something to follow up if we can get Amy and Larry on air to agree. So we can dive into some of these questions. In the meantime, with just a few minutes left, what is one free piece of advice you would give someone who's really just considering their candidate and client journey using automation?

Lawrence Dearth: Well, okay. One, one piece of advice automates your internal systems first, and your people will lead you to know where you should focus the majority of your other efforts. Like if you're spending all this time, automating around the customer and around the candidate, but you forget that you've got to automate your internal systems.

Lawrence Dearth: First, the reminder tools that your recruiters get, the tools that your recruiters can use to be able to schedule meetings internally, the tools, your collaboration tools automating their training and onboarding process. Right? That, is it something that is, you know, we coach customers on so much and you know, I'm sure it is this way in a lot of companies.

Lawrence Dearth: Yeah. How are you systematic about the way that Hire new employees, train new employees, onboard new employees, keep them on their developmental program. Do things like proper leadership reviews and making sure that they're feeling supported. You can very very easily. Just by spending too much time capital in one area.

Lawrence Dearth: Tell your internal employees that the candidates and the customers are more important than they are. If you haven't already done the legwork of automating their experience with recruitment. You know, there's a false or there's a phrase floating around an insight global called RX. Right. You know, everyone knows like CX the client experience or the candidate experience.

Lawrence Dearth: The recruiter experience is the single most important thing to your success as a staffing company. So I'd start there. But if you do that, then you can go really have some fun with your candidates and your customers. 

Kendra Cato: Well, thank you, Larry. You actually answered Jennifer Cousin's question here too.

Kendra Cato: On, do you find the data helps drive adoption? Yeah. A clear. Yes. And starting internally, we'll help you get the data. You need to drive that adoption. Okay. Amy, you're in the hot seat. 

Amy Reed: Yeah. I need to balance that out for me. Again, lessons learned, don't assume you know what your customers want. If you go build something and find out they're not using it, it's the worst thing you could have invested time in, go and understand if it's, you know IT, or if it's staffing healthcare staffing, nursing physicians.

Amy Reed: I understand what they want to make their experience better. I think we tend to run and we assume we know what they want and they access, they want, and the interaction they want with us. And we go and build it only to find out it's not used. So first and foremost, go figure out what your customers want from you before you take off on that digital journey.

Amy Reed: It's expensive. It is as close to right as you can, and then learn quickly and fail fast. Like you just, you're going to learn very fast, but keep touching your customers. And hearing from them quickly so that you can adjust it's okay to put something out in a first draft and it doesn't work, but listen to your clients and your customers to fix it and make adjustments and continue to evolve.

Kendra Cato: That's such sound advice and a mantra of ours here at Bullhorn. No doubt. So appreciate, you know, behind the scenes, when you give us the opportunity to pick your brains and learn more about what needs are, appreciate you today, just joining this panel and thank you to everyone who has stayed on. And so many of you with such great questions.

Kendra Cato: So we will certainly circle back if given the opportunity to cover some more of those. Thank you to Jan and to the whole crew at the World Staffing Summit. This has been a great experience and yeah, looking forward to learning more throughout the week. 

Lawrence Dearth: Thank you, Amy and Kendra. And it's all of our partners overboard.

Jan Jedlinski: Appreciate you guys. Appreciate. Thank you so much, guys. Appreciate that you join us. 

Amy Reed: Thank you. Thank you for your patience. 

Jan Jedlinski: Absolutely. No problem. And yet for the rest of the audience to stick around, we'll have a short break and then will have a couple cool more sessions coming up. So yeah, stick around and I'll see you later.

Kendra Cato: Great. 

Amy Reed: Thank you.


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Kendra Cato

Lawrence Dearty

Amy Reed




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