How can your recruiting team create a smooth transition to a virtual recruiting strategy?

Updated: Nov 11

Thinking a tool is going to solve all your campus recruiting needs is like thinking you’ll get JACKED right after you purchase a gym membership…


Hate to break it you, but that’s not happening 😅


With so many companies having to switch their campus recruiting efforts overnight, the question remains…


How and where do I start?


Before you start pulling your hair out


Here’s a digital strategy system check from the pros themselves Todd Good & Kelsey Weissgold


1 Define if your digital recruiting strategy will be 100% digital or a hybrid model (sounds simple, but often goes unanswered)


2 Define how you’ll measure your digital recruiting efforts besides just the total number of hires. Hiring is an exercise in patience so you'll need to start tracking essential inputs such as the number of touchpoints per candidate, the total cost of travel saved or the ability to bring on a representative pipeline


3 Define how you’ll create engaging events; sourcing is only half the battle. How will you create engaging and educational events for candidates besides a 30-minute infomercial known as an “info-session?"


Not sure how, but I somehow suckered Todd & Kelsey to providing a ton of value for $0


Maybe it was the hat?


Rishav Khanal 0:00

Welcome back to recruitingU. And I know things look a little bit different. Not a black shirt and a better hat on. But no worries, folks, I am getting a haircut really, really soon Fingers crossed. But I'm excited to have, frankly, two of my favorite people on and No, I don't think I say this to everybody. I hope not. But either way, Todd Kelsey, excited to have you on. I'm excited for introductions and to really dive into the topic that I think it's going to be relevant for all of us listening to this. But as you all know, before we dive into all that we'd like to start these things off with a really dumb, irrelevant, fun fact. So I'm not sure if you're aware, but in 1992, there was a ship a cargo ship that was carrying around 28,000, rubber duckies fell overboard, and they're still out lost at sea somewhere. So it's supposed to come from Hong Kong to the US and people are still finding them today. Look it up if you don't believe me, I did. I did did about two minutes worth of Google search of some fun facts that I can share. So don't quote me if if things are wrong, but this is all about your your content and the things you want to share. So trying to get over to you introductions, give us a little background into into who you are, what you do, and something that you feel like your colleagues wouldn't necessarily know about you.


Kelsey Weissgold 1:18

Right off the bat. Awesome. Well, I know Todd and I are both excited to be here. So thanks for having us a shot. Um, before I introduce myself, though, just to put it out there. The commentary and thoughts that Todd and I have today, we want to make sure that they're shared us our independent thoughts. We both work for IBM. So these are not official IBM statements just us chatting with you kind of in this forum. But my name is Kelsey at IBM right now. And I work on a team at IBM focused on early professional hiring and intern talent on a global scale. So we help the IBM teams across the world get standard best practices in place about how we go to market as one of one firm and recruit across the world. And I think one Fun fact, my my quarantine Fun fact is that I have become a gardener all of a sudden, trying to grow stuff in a garden outside, which is not very much like me, but I have some tomato plants and some peppers. So yeah, try to be a gardener.


Todd Good 2:18

Nice. Um, well, once again, thanks again. Um, my name is Todd good. Um, I actually lead a digital recruitment team. So kind of right on top of what we're discussing here today. Um, so I manage a team of four, digital recruiters and focus on diversity and exploring ways to reach out to students that were not able to have a physical contact with with your typical campus recruitment. So I've been with a IBM for about eight years was in campus recruitment prior to this specific role. So I have a good background of early professional hiring as a as a whole. A fun fact.


wasn't going to share this one. But I'll share this one.


One thing, not a lot of my college friends know, I met my wife on an internet site. So kind of right on top of where we're at, I guess, recruiting on the personal side, previously to the professional side. So yeah, I guess I'll share that fun fact. There you go.


Rishav Khanal 3:21

Thanks for being vulnerable. We like that. Yeah, I'd like Kelsey, you had a good one. But I think Todd might have. Yeah,


Kelsey Weissgold 3:29

the digital recruiter through and through.


source: https://news.stanford.edu/

A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Rosenfeld found that heterosexual couples are more likely to meet a romantic partner online than through personal contacts and connections.

Todd Good 3:31

Yeah, super professional and personal.


Rishav Khanal 3:35

So I mean, with that being said, let's get into it, right, where we like to be short and sweet. Um, so playing this fictitious scenario, and I've got a little hat on but putting on this hypothetical hat that I'm a campus recruiter, for a company. And my boss has come to me saying, hey, Rishav, I don't know what universities are going to do this summer, but I'm still going to need to hire students. So what you are going to be responsible for is coming up with a campus recruiting digital strategy. I said yes, on the inside, I was freaking out. I had no idea what that meant. I'd heard of it before. But I'm really hoping for you to to kind of give me that a to z game plan on what I need to do, how I need to start and some of the numbers that I need to put out there in order to ensure that it is a successful project. Let me move to additional strategy. So whoever wants to lead it, I kind of want this to be open forum, but handing it over to the experts here.


Todd Good 4:36

Yeah, I can go ahead and take this and I could probably speak for hours about this because it is a topic that you can really deep dive I'll go more high level. And of course, we can always dive in a little bit further. So this was kind of the approach of where we were at probably 18 months 24 months ago. So before this whole pandemic happen. This is something that we were on the forefront as far as looking into as far as more of a virtual Our digital recruitment portal called both things, as far as that's concerned. So, yeah, what we were exploring was, how do we reach more candidates without having to spend more money? Because, of course, budgets limited, resources are limited as well, you only have so much staff as well. So that was some of our overall approach. But if you are building over a digital or virtual recruitment strategy, I say the first thing to look at is, is this gonna be a full time strategy? Is it guns blazing just going to have a full on digital approach? Or is it gonna be a hybrid approach? With this pandemic, I don't think anybody knows that yet. How campuses are going to go back how you're going to do campus recruitment, here, depending on the state, the school, and also your own company, whether they're going to let their employees travel. I know a lot of employees do have restrictions as far as maybe travel or large event sizes, so on so forth. So you're really going to have a lot of different hurdles to overcome with the campus recruitment strategy. But that's probably your first thing to look at. When we were building up, we were going only 18 months ago, this upcoming year, probably will change some of it. But 18 months ago, we were going to go that hybrid approach, we still had a campus recruitment team. But it was my goal to build a virtual recruitment team as well. So working hand in hand with each other, but they're two separate teams.


Kelsey Weissgold 6:31

Yeah, I think that big enough that we've had the luxury to your point of like, being able to slowly ramp up to digital, they've been working on it for a while. So we were years back, we were only campus digital wasn't even a word we understood. And I think visuals come in. And now now it's almost switched. It's more digital, less campus. But we started that off early on by kind of evaluating all the schools we go to, and putting them into kind of buckets or tiers based on how we would interact with those schools. So there were schools early on that emerged as like, great schools for digital sourcing. And they had the right mix the students the right career centers had the right technology and the students presence footprint digitally. But I think now tied in to the work your team has done has shown that you can do this anywhere. It's not just certain schools. But yeah, having that phase stepping stone to get to a full digital methodology was helpful. I can't imagine trying to go all in right at once. I think a lot of companies are probably up against that right now that can be done. I think we're fortunate, though, to be able to gradually get there.


Todd Good 7:28

Exactly. And so once you figure it out what the approach is that you're wanting to accomplish this, then you're starting to set what goals you're looking to accomplish. I when we are building out the team like Kelsey alluded to, we had the luxury to build up team. But some of our goals were increased the high high touch points with candidates. A lot of times with a physical campus event like a career fair, you have five minutes tops talking to candidates face to face, we're with a digital approach, you can spend a lot more time because for instance, my digital team has built up. They're completely virtual recruitment, they're not going physically to any campuses. So they're able to build that rapport with candidates, they can get on the phone with candidates, they can do video chats with candidates, so on so forth. So you're building a lot more of that relationship with the candidates, we're on campus recruitment, you don't always have the time because not only you have short time periods face to face, you're in airports traveling, and you're all you're all over the place. So you don't have that time that you can really spend to nurture those candidates where you can on the virtual pro approach. Some of the other goals were decreased spin, I wanted to decrease, become a little more campus agnostic, decreased travel, spin, travel spins huge. If you have a limited amount of resources as far as a campus team, they're bouncing from one side to the other. The country that costs a lot of money for a half an hour influence session is the spin that you're spending more on travel and you are on the ROI what you actually get with candidates a lot of the time, as I mentioned, the high increase of the high quality candidates, that's a huge thing for us. We also wanted to increase our diversity slate as well, I think every company has diversity initiatives. we're no different. Um, when you are doing digital or virtual recruitment, you can spend a lot more time to figure out the type of candidate going after so little more high quality candidates where career fair, you're dependent on who approaches you. With virtual recruitment, you can figure out who you want to approach. So and even in that hybrid model, even if it's 100%, virtual, or if it's just sourcing for a physical event, but using your virtual tools, you can invite the candidates that you want to come to your actual events. So 100% of the cancer, you're talking to our value you already kind of done that pre screening. Back there were like a career fair. You have no clue who's approaching us kind of going in blindly and hope and you have a very small percentage of the people that may qualify for your overall events. And then overall I enter law school is probably The overall gain experience, which I think I alluded to a little bit more. But yeah, I mean, when you have short touch points on a physical approach, that's your one time kind of first impression, whether well or not being the type of day you're having. There's a lot of different plays into that. I mean, you can communicate your job well, like, in five minutes, a large company like we work for, how do you express every job that we're hiring for? It's very difficult, like, I can look at your resume. It says one thing, but you may be great for another position, if I were to talk to you your soft skills, so on so forth, you can be in it technology, but your soft skills really are better suited for like it sales, I wouldn't have got to know that over a period of time. But in a short timeframe, I really wasn't able to do that, where on the digital side, you can really figure out what it can it's looking for, so on so forth. So I say really setting what your goals to accomplish in a virtual recruitment platform is definitely gonna be huge. Um, and then you're kind of building downline. I don't know if you want to touch more about the goals? Because before I go into the


Kelsey Weissgold 11:03

Yeah, I think just the lead together, one thing you said it just kind of points on those points in, I think your team has seen a lot of success on that diversity recruiting, because of the high touch approach, you're able to happen because of the candidate experience, you can provide digitally, right? I think you learn with sometimes the diversity candidates, they it might require getting a relationship built and knowing the company and trusting the company. And you're still able to do that, even honestly, in many ways more so than you've ever been able to, but it's that high touch candidate experience equals a great diversity pipeline. Yeah.


source: https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/

According to Garter, in this new post-covid world employers will take a greatly increased role in the mental wellbeing of their employees.



Todd Good 11:38

This is kind of the overall approach, I think, is the next step you're going to do to kind of have these in an order of a thought process here. But obviously, you can primarily for a course early professional hire anything that's kind of our subject area. But how are you? If you go if you're going to go into the virtual or digital approach, how are you going to do that your tools, and you have to have some way to source candidates, contact candidates, so on so forth. So a lot of companies have some tools that they may or may not use whether or not promoting any specific companies whatsoever, whether it's LinkedIn recruiter or handshake is a huge job board at certain schools or Simplicity's, and other job board, other schools or whatever the case. And there's a lot of other tools out there, there's tools coming up daily.


2020 Top Job Boards for Diversity Hiring





As far as for AI, there really are, depending on the types of jobs you're hiring for, what you're trying to accomplish, so and so forth. And you could spend days and days and days on demos of all kinds of different tools, it all depends on in the course what your budget pertains. So that's another that's a key factor. Because if you don't have the tools in your tool belt, you're never going to accomplish your goal. So that's something huge to really research and continuously evolve, what tools you're using nine, you may have a contract with a company for this year. Well, it just not accomplishing what you're trying to accomplish. So you always constantly and not I know I spend time, part of my job is also kind of our tools or a vendor manager as well. I'm constantly sitting on demos to kind of explore what we can do. And I right now with this pandemic that we're having, having our virtual events are going to be huge moving forward. So I'm seeing more and more time not on the sourcing tools like I used to. It's more on the event type tools of one on one chats or virtual chats, or how do you host larger virtual career fairs for a company, whatever the case is being seen, what tools are going to be more efficient to host virtual events as we move forward? Because if we can't do face to face like campus recruitment has done in the past, and everything is going to be computer, you're going to be depending on how you can approach and what tools and the biggest thing that I never really thought about it up until this year, I probably should have. But while I was sitting on vendor calls, I always saw what we explored as the employer. Now we're asking more, give us the candidate view. That's huge. I mean, what's the candidate experience side? And that's not something I always, always looked at previously, but it came up a couple months ago, like can we get a demo of the candidate side. And that's huge. Because that's going to be your approach, I know where it really is going to be the way that you attract the candidates. They have a horrible experience signing onto the tool or multiple hoops to jump through. Why did they do it is not valuable to them. So, um, the approach is definitely gonna be huge. And then it's kind of I'll go to other topics and turn it over here. Team setup. So I know you mentioned question your campus recruiter and your boss came to you, so on so forth, for instance, our current team setup for us due to being a little bit larger company, so we have a luxury to do this. We do have a campus team that primarily has what we call our primary schools that they have feet on the ground. And then we have a virtual recruitment team which we basically every school we don't have feet on the ground, they can can basically approach so I depending on the demo tools you can reach hundreds and hundreds and hundreds hundreds of schools, which is thousands and millions of students that you can actually approach. So the virtual team has no limit to who they can actually approach this limit of who's on the internet, their profiles, so on so forth. Um, and then tracking a candidate is your last thing. And this is why we can go hours and hours and hours into and there's something I really was huge about this past year working with Chelsea specifically, as well as tracking your input sources. Depending on the tools you have internally, with your CRM, your ATF, whatever they can track, but you want to know where your candidates are coming from, especially from a virtual approach, because you're even on the campus approach. You're spending all this money no matter where you're spitting in as a company, and you have to be able to track your ROI and where your candidates coming from if if they're coming from these digital approaches, or these digital outreaches what tools have been valuable. And that's where we started tracking that we're able to see, okay, well, this tool is not getting what we want it to I was we signed the contract with with that tool, this tool is netting 95% of our overall candidates, of course, we're going to renew it, then we'll probably expand that partnership as well. So being able to track your input sources, whether it's campus, your diversity conferences, your specific tools, and be able to track that ROI, where you're getting the quality and the value of Kansas and all your hires is key in any camp campus approach. I think more and more companies are doing that. But it's been more valuable for us this year. And we're able to track our invested sources as well. Like we said, we're spending money on a lot of these tools, so forth, so forth. So we're like, okay, we have this amount of here, you're able to prioritize different camps in certain different ways on depending on your sources, so on so forth. So I think that's another huge factor as you build up a virtual approach to be able to know where your students are coming from, are they just stumbled across your careers website? Or are you doing the effort to drive those candidates in? So


I'd say that those are the biggest topics, of course, we're going through one last thing as far as your engagement strategy, sorry. So I put some notes before this call just as looked over the engagement, virtual


Rishav Khanal 17:11

follow ups, if you can see it in the studio, it's glitching right now, but it's eight and a half. This is good. So I'm literally, you're always


Todd Good 17:20

good with notes. I say the last thing with virtual recruitment, I think this is where this year is gonna be a lot different than a lot of because some virtuals recruitment strategies, like I've mentioned early on, were just send a message to candidate apply for a job. That's not an end, hopefully, maybe we need them on campus, that's not going to happen this year I or is going to be very limited as far be able to meet them on campus. So what are you doing as far as your engagement strategy sitting behind a computer, because that's gonna be your first touch point with those candidates, messaging. But one thing that we started incorporating on the virtual side, and I think the campus side is definitely gonna have to incorporate a lot more is Virtual Education session. So inviting him to webinars to here's a LinkedIn profile, how to build up your LinkedIn profile, here's a resume, which I thought was a cool idea, our Canadian team actually establish that we stole it from them and brought it into a virtual aspect last year, we've had like HBCU kickoff calls, and like different topic areas, empowering women and technology, so more of a fireside chat. So some are smaller, some are larger in approach, but having more webinar based approaches for kids and having it like a monthly cycle most like touch points. Um, and then like I said, education as well. So how do you pass assessments if your company has assessments? Or what do how to pass how to ace an interview, like different types like that, you're going to have to have some of those approach those virtual approaches, whether it's pre recorded video that you can send the candidates, or if it's actual QA or panel type discussions, whatever the case may be, that's where I went back to saying, I'm doing a lot more demos as far as virtual events, because that's where you're really gonna have to do so is it where you're doing a lot of pre recorded video, or you're gonna actually have live sessions like, this is where you're able zoom calls, I mean, everybody's doing zoom, oh, I see a teacher and she has zoom calls weekly. Now students, and I teach her how to do zoom a few months ago. But yeah, so that's another thing as far as Oh, we're on gate engagement strategies, just not gonna be able to send messages to students. And because digital in the past may have been like your 25% of the approach of your hiring campus was 75%, or wherever that breakdown was virtual this year is gonna be a huge chunk of your overall strategy. So if you don't Ace it, if you don't know where to go, you can't be dependent on the campus recruiters necessarily go into campuses. Unless your strategy is just every campus its happens to open up in those states and that's how you devise your strategy. I don't know that's the right strategy to go about it. So you are going to be really dependent on your virtual strategy this year.


Sorry, I know that was a lot. So I'll take a look, you'll see,


Kelsey Weissgold 20:09

that was a lot of great content, I think you did paint a picture of like for companies that are getting into this, like where they need to start. And I think one thing that we can emphasize is that, you know, it seems possibly expensive to talk to all these vendors and to set up platforms you haven't used before. And you buy tools that you didn't usually have to spend money on. But I think what we're seeing is a trade off in our budgets that were spent previously sending our hire recruiters to campus, find them out across the country that's now shifted to spending that in investments for for digital sourcing. So it's not impossible to do it with your current budget. I think also, for smaller teams, not impossible to do it with less budget. I mean, you get out your recruiters are really smart on it and know how to find a great pipeline candidates in places that aren't even platforms would pay for its, you know, that's kind of an I guess, the takeaway here too, for any candidates, and maybe watching this, but the point is to make sure you have a good digital footprint, so we can find you on platforms like LinkedIn, that don't require us to go out of our way to purchase a new tool, or even like your personal website, or GitHub projects, whatever it may be to search through all those to find candidates.


Todd Good 21:17

That's a fantastic point, Kelsey, you know, I was just talking to some vendors yesterday or about pushing to students. Yeah, I mean, with candidates, if you're watching this, make sure you're updating your courses on some of these. Yeah, because I, it's not as much major focus anymore. For companies, it's skill based projects, what are your skills, what are your projects, I am in courses as well, because we, as we know, from a company, we look at a syllabus of a school and know which courses would fit the job profile that we're currently hiring for. So if we're able to see and search by your courses, that's a huge factor as well for can so it's not in when we hired developers, and everything else happened, no have like a CS major, it just they had the skill set, or they're self taught, and they're able to fit that mold of that actual job. So updating your your footprint, your personal profile, no matter what it is, in a lot of these vendors, I mean, they have free versions, or schools, like they have a job board. They offer to recruiters and there's no cost. It's just when you want to do the, like huge engagement profiles of some vendors where you had to pay for like a platinum package where Okay, so maybe with every version, even like I mentioned to earlier simplicity and handshake, which are job boards of pretty much every school in the US and other countries as well. They have free versions of the profile where you can search for students. So you don't have to spend the thousands and thousands of dollars to reach students. I mean, LinkedIn is free. And you can search students on that. Yes, you want to step it up, go LinkedIn, recruiter like licenses, of course, you spend extra money there, but there are free versions. So the small, small companies with very limited budget, you can still search for candidates out there. So I wouldn't say you have to have extreme amounts of budget. We don't. I mean, we're able to accomplish a lot with the resources that we have.


Rishav Khanal 23:12

Yeah, this is I'm on a page and a half. So let me go through it chronologically, because I want to make sure I didn't miss something. And we'll kind of put a bow on this, because it seems like the hypothetical campus recruiter me has a lot of work to do. And time is the biggest factor. Right? So I think the first place we started from is asking myself and my team, is our recruiting strategy, specifically digital going to be full time, or is it going to be a hybrid? Right. And I think that's where you all started from. And you have the luxury Kelsey, you kind of mentioned this where you had time to slowly ramp up where there were some recruiters are doing that versus just kind of diving right in. And that's okay. I don't think that scares me. So maybe the hybrid model gives me that luxury. And then the second is understanding Okay, all the schools that I look at, how do I put them in buckets? Do I just place these schools and just boots on the ground feet on the ground? Or do I go all virtual? Like, what are the tears that I'm classifying it as that and then the the KPIs and the numbers. So something that you talked about is increased the high touch point of candidates, decrease the travel, spend or decrease just campus recruiting costs in general, and also increase your diversity slates and last thing was the overall candidate experience all fantastic numbers to really measure besides just how many hires Am I getting off of x tool that's really hard to determine. And it takes a while to accrue those numbers. And then we transitioned a little bit into just the tools that myself and my team are able to possess, right what tools Am I providing them as far as their art But what tools exist in their tool belt to actually go out and do this? And then another layer? This is, I mean, this is a dense topic is, as opposed to just sourcing tools, companies of your size you'd mentioned you're now transitioning towards event type of tools. So virtual chats, virtual events, how are you going to conduct that? And when you're looking at that, asking to double down and look at the candidate view, as well. And the analogy that I always talk to with companies is, Hey, if you're a vendor, and you're only showing companies the employer view, it's kind of like you're taking a personal trainer to a gym saying, hey, you're all your candidates that you can potentially train, but the gym is super crappy. You're expecting people to come into that gym and students to come into that job board, and it's crickets. Well, then the personal trainer a year from now is going to come back to you and that renewal team is screwed. They have no fighting chance. Um, and and then the sort of the last part is just your overall team setup. Like what is that going to sort of look like we kind of touch base on that. And lastly, when we look at education sessions, focusing on how to conduct ask resume roast, I love that HBCU making those events things like that. So lots of good things to cover. Thank you both for for hopping on. I think we kick butt and anybody listening to this if you're like me, I know you're gonna want to close this podcast and get to work as soon as possible to cover. So thank you guys.


Todd Good 26:35

Course. Anytime. Thank you



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