Monday, February 04, 2013

SAP Jam Can Help Retain Talent In Your Organization


When my colleagues and I were designing Career OnDemand we spoke to close to hundred recruiters around the world. We asked them about the places they go to for talent. Most of them said that they go outside the company to professional networking sites such as LinkedIn and other interest specific professional networking sites such as Stack Overflow for engineers or Behance for designers. Not a single one of them said that they look internally. I asked them why and they said that there are places and tools to look outside while there are no places or tools to look for a people inside a company.

I realized that in almost all companies internal candidates were being overlooked, partly because they could not be found. Most internal candidates in such organizations either look for a job outside or become disengaged. This is not only unfair to internal candidates but also a huge drain on the recruiting dollars and talent management investment in a company.

I am pleased to say that SAP Jam has taken steady and significant steps to address the root cause of that problem. First, SAP Jam creates auto groups for employees based on the organizational chart and enables teams to collaborate and be found with a simple search. Second, employees can create topic specific groups to exchange information and knowledge about specific topics to get work done, which surfaces experts on the topic.  Third, administrators can identify experts in every group and make them featured members, even if they are not very active in internal social networks. By making useful tools for people to get their work done, Jam enables internal employees become find-able.



The video above talks about employees finding experts. However, what is not obvious is that this rich pool of information is a great place for a recruiter or hiring manager to look for talent. 

There are three ways a recruiter might go about finding the right internal candidate for a job.

1. Recruiters can do a simple people search using key words and identify people based on their titles, the work they have done and the conversations they have had. They can filter the results by date range and sort the results by relevance. Recruiters already do this in LinkedIn and know the value of search.

2. Recruiters can join the top groups focusing on the topic and notify everyone in that group about new jobs in that area. Even in a large company such as SAP the popular groups for every topic can be easily identified with a simple search. This is significantly better than email blasts to the entire company or location, which is what most companies do to find internal candidates.

3. Proactive recruiters can join groups focusing on specific topics. They can then use the “Track a Term” feature to ask Jam to periodically email them a list of people who are actively discussing topics. This feature works like Google Alerts for talent. A mobility recruiter for example can join groups related to mobility and track terms such as iOS, Android, Windows8 and so on and SAP Jam will keep her posted about the people who are discussing those topics the most. Since this list will reside in the recruiter’s email folder, he or she can search for internal people right within the email client.

We have a long way to go before this problem is addressed efficiently. For example, we could have custom apps for recruiters to search for talent within a company. SAP Jam has made a very good start. If you are interested in talent retention by enabling recruiters and hiring managers to look internally, consider SAP Jam.

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