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Round Up February 2023


Round up is the monthly show on The Recruiting Future Podcast channel that highlights episodes you may have missed and gives you my take on some of the key learnings from the guests.

Episodes mentioned in this Round Up:

Ep 493: The Growing Value Of TA Operations

Ep 494: Confidence and Resilience

Ep 495: Results Not Noise

Ep 496: Challenging A Narrow Definition Of Talent

Ep 497: Rethinking Recruiting To Break Down Silos

Ep 498: The Early Careers Labour Market

Ep 499: Strategic Talent Acquisition

Ep 500: Ask Me Anything

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There’s been more of scientific discovery, more of technical advancement and material progress in your lifetime and mine and at all the ages of history. Hi there. This is Matt Alder. Welcome to the February roundup episode of the Recruiting Future Podcast. If you’ve not listened to Roundup before, it’s a short review of the episodes that I’ve published in the last month to make sure you don’t miss out on the valuable insights my guests are sharing after easing back on the episode count in January to enable me to do some planning. Regular service was well and truly resumed in February with eight episodes of interviews on a wide range of topics.

2023 is shaping up to be a year that is adding significant complexity to the challenges and disruptions that are already baked into our industry post pandemic. It’s impossible to simplify or even generalize what is going on in talent acquisition at the moment, so I’m gonna keep interviewing people with insights and answers around the very broad range of challenges you are all facing. First up in February was episode 493 with an interview that embodied this growing complexity in talent acquisition. With technology becoming more disruptive, recruiting methodologies, getting more sophisticated and data and analytics becoming more important, it’s not surprising that the skillset of TA teams is diversifying and the role of TA operations is becoming more developed.

(1m 42s):
So I was keen to explore how TA leaders can demonstrate the value of TA ops and how it can inform hiring strategies. My guest was Mark Jenkins, talent acquisition operations manager at Product Madness. Mark’s role involves improving recruiting and hiring efficiency through process improvements, streamline funnels, and digital transformation. He has lots of insights and advice to share about the growing value of TA ops. Unsurprisingly, growing complexity means things are pretty tough for people at the moment. Whatever part of the industry you are in, you’ll be facing uncertain times on top of the obvious economic factors.

(2m 26s):
Talent acquisition is heading into a period of dramatic reinvention right in the middle of a trend of TA layoffs, a conundrum at a time of continuing talent shortages and candidate driven markets. Whether you are looking for a new role, reinventing your existing role or getting promoted confidence is critical. It’s also something that we don’t talk about enough, particularly when it comes to building more of it and dealing with imposter syndrome. I wanted to help help everyone take a step back in episode 494 and consider their personal wellbeing.

(3m 6s):
My guest was Jess Jones, an influencer, content creator and de and I talent lead. Jess recently wrote a book about building confidence called . Her experience in TA gives her a unique perspective on how we talk, or rather don’t talk about confidence and resilience in our industry. And she has some great advice to share, particularly around imposter syndrome and vulnerability. Building more diverse, inclusive and equitable workplaces is an ongoing challenge for many organizations. There is still a massive disconnect between the amount of noise generated around de and I and the results being achieved.

(3m 52s):
So how can employers do better and what lessons can be learned from other organizations? My guest on episode 495 was Bruce Jackson, associate general counsel and managing director strategic partnerships at Microsoft. Bruce has just published a new book Never Far from Home, which documents his personal journey from a housing project in Manhattan to becoming a lawyer who represented Pete Rock and LL Cool J and ultimately worked for the president of Microsoft. In our conversation, Bruce shares his insights into the developing d and i strategies at Microsoft and the role employers can play in improving social mobility.

(4m 36s):
Continuing on the topic of social mobility, I find it encouraging to see that it is an increasing focus for many employers as a strategy to diversify their workforces. However, much more needs doing and some seismic shifts are required to broaden the very narrow definition of talent many industries used to recruit. On Episode 496, I spoke to Phoebe Anderson, executive director at Atlas Fellows. Atlas is a not-for-profit organization with the goal of transforming the finance industry by opening doors for under-resourced young people to access life-changing careers.

(5m 17s):
Phoebe advocates for changing entrenched recruiting practices and challenging the narrow definition of talent endemic in the finance industry. The current evolution of TA is not just an outward facing exercise. New thinking around internal mobility skills, culture and experience means that the lines between talent acquisition, talent management, and learning and development are starting to blur. So what can we learn from employers proactively working to break down these silos? My guest on episode 497 was Debbie Clement, VP of talent at PAX eight.

(5m 58s):
PAX eight have a massive focus on a quality experience for both candidates and employees and has reinvented its TA strategy to reflect this. Debbie has a lot of insights to share on the importance of removing internal silos and having an holistic approach to talent. Imagine how fast we could solve the world’s biggest problems if more SAS startups would gain traction sooner. Welcome to the tech entrepreneur on the Mission podcast. This podcast is dedicated to sharing experiences from B2B SAS CEOs who are going above and beyond to deliver chains that is noticed. You will hear their secrets and learn what is required to build a sales business that the world starts talking about and keeps talking about, and how to overcome the roadblocks to do so.

(6m 51s):
The early careers labor market is evolving. The pandemic severely impacted internships. Hybrid working is changing college recruiting, and many employers are reviewing their entry requirements to cast a broader net for talent. Dr. Charlie Ball, head of Labor Market Intelligence at DISC was my guest on episode 498. Charlie is one of the UK’s leading experts on graduate employment with deep insights to share on current market trends that are applicable globally. In our wide ranging conversation, we spoke about the evolution of the early careers market post pandemic, the implications of hybrid working on young people coming into the workforce, and the trend towards employers lowering their entry requirements and must listen for anyone involved with interns, graduates, and college recruiting.

(7m 46s):
So onto episode 499 with some practical suggestions for dealing with the market complexity and why it could actually work to your advantage. As we’ve already discussed, TA leaders are under pressure at the moment. Many are dealing with acute talent shortages, others are having to downsize their team, and everyone is attempting to make sense of the implications of rapidly advancing AI technology. Whilst the immediate pressure can drive a focus on short term thinking, there is a massive opportunity for TA leaders who take a longer term view to reposition tele acquisition within their organizations strategically.

(8m 31s):
So what’s the opportunity here? Which other business functions can we model from and what practical steps do TA leaders need to take? My guest on this episode was Graham Paxton, founder and CEO of kafi. Kafi is on a mission to make talent the engine room of everyone’s organization, and Graham has a vast amount of experience in helping TA leaders think strategically. This was one of the most timely conversations I’ve had for a while with Graham offering both strategic and practical suggestions to harness the challenges of 2023 in a very positive way. Another must listen episode.

(9m 12s):
So after eight years of podcasting, I finally reached episode 500, and I’m still blown away by everything the podcast has achieved. None of it would be possible without the fantastic people. I get to interview the brilliant, supportive sponsors and all of you who listen and spread the word about the show for the 500th episode, I thought I would do and ask me anything as something a bit different. Thanks to everyone who submitted a question, and I’m sorry that I couldn’t include them all. The episode is a good representative sample of the topics you are most interested in. I answer questions on strategic talent acquisition, conversational ai, future skills in talent acquisition, recruitment, marketing, assessment, and podcasting itself.

(10m 3s):
A big thank you to Kafi. Seek out a namely who sponsored the podcast in February, so onwards into March, and you can expect to hear the thoughts of two chief people, officers, my favorite industry futurist, as well as some extensive candidate experience research and an investigation into the future of video interviewing. I’m also very excited about the forthcoming episode 502 as we recorded it in a proper studio and made a video version as well. So don’t miss out If you haven’t already, then make sure you are subscribed to the show in Apple Podcasts on Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.

(10m 45s):
Finally, make sure you go to to subscribe to the monthly newsletter Recruiting Future Feast. Thanks very much for listening. I’ll be back next time and I hope you’ll join me.

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