This paper examines the attributes needed to hire an effective staffing manager, compares human resource planning for a large international bank and for a local police department as well as evaluates the processes behind recruitment effectiveness.
Through globalization and the process of outsourcing and offshoring, employee teams are no longer isolated to merely being within the same building, state or country, rather they are now scattered across a wide breadth of countries, regions and business cultures which staffing managers need to take into consideration.
It is based on this that this paper will tackle the various characteristics needed in hiring an effective staffing manager, the inherent differences between a local and international organization and how to measure recruitment effectiveness.
Hiring a Staffing Manager
When it comes to hiring a staffing manager for an organization, the following are the key skills and attributes I would focus on when deciding on a proper candidate:
Capacity to understand the requirements of a job
The most important capacity for any staffing manager is the ability to understand the needs of a job versus the type of employee candidates that would apply for it. A job’s requirements are not limited to the skills needed in order to perform it well; rather, they extend to the capacity of an employee to be able to understand the various nuances and key details needed to be able to do a job well.
Such an attribute is often gained through experience and, as such, it is necessary for a staffing manager to be able to determine how an employee’s experience correlates into being able to meet the requirements of the job that is available successfully.
Being able to create an effective hiring strategy
Another of the requirements needed by a staffing manager for an organization is the capacity to develop an effective hiring strategy. What must be understood is that most large enterprises have a relatively high churn rate as compared to smaller organizations due to the sheer amount of employees that work there. As a result, it is often necessary to replace a percentage of a company’s employees on a yearly basis.
An effective staffing manager should be able to examine the staffing needs of the company versus its regular employee churn rates and come up with a hiring strategy that ensures that a constant stream of employees are able to replace those that leave while at the same time ensuring that the company does not hire too many workers. This can help to reduce operational losses as a result of having an insufficient workforce.
Other examples of effective hiring strategies that a staffing manager needs to take into consideration are the type of medium they would utilize in order to hire employees. Within the past 15 years the internet has created a means for the HR departments of companies to reach out to a broad selection of employees through websites such as LinkedIn.com.
Taking this into consideration, a staffing manager might consider using traditional means of getting prospective new hires (i.e. through newspaper ads) or use the internet, which is far cheaper. The ability to determine which strategy would be the best and most affordable for the company is one of the qualities needed in a staffing manager.
Hiring Experience within a Particular Industry
In explaining the intricacies in hiring practices, Moeller & Harvey (2011) state that “no two industries are equal” in that a staffing manager in one particular industry cannot be unilaterally placed into a whole different industry and be expected to be able to do their job well without a few years of experience.
Moeller & Harvey (2011) explain that employee candidates in various fields of expertise each have their own different nuances and unique skills that they bring to the table. However, there are subtle differences in their aptitude that only experienced staffing managers are able to discern and are thus able to place the correct employees in the right teams (Moeller & Harvey, 2011).
One example of this can be seen in the case of hiring a game designer for a gaming company, there are different specializations that need to be taken into consideration such as an individual’s expertise in the programming language that will be utilized, the platform that will be used for development as well as their knowledge in developing new applications to suit the needs of the company.
Due to the various technicalities associated with game development, it would take an experienced staffing manager in this industry in order to determine whether someone is a right “fit” for a particular position.
If you took a hiring manager that was experienced in hiring people for call centers and had them develop a hiring strategy for the gaming company that was just mentioned, it is likely that they would put in place ineffective strategies (Guthrie & Olian, 1991). It is based on this that when hiring a new staffing manager, it is important to determine how much experience they have within the industry that the company operates in.
Comparing Human Resource planning for a large international bank and for a local police department
While banks and police departments have a similar need for personnel in order to handle day to day operations, their organizational structure is significantly different, thus necessitating different human resource planning strategies. First and foremost, the organizational structure of most international banks is more horizontal rather than vertical as compared to a local police department.
Vertical organizations, such as police departments are “militaristic” in their organizational structure since a clear emphasis is placed on the structure of authority and how it results in the distribution of tasks. This can be seen in its use of titles such as captain, chief, etc. wherein a pyramidal structure of authority is implemented with little in the way of horizontal authority and capacity for shared responsibility for particular activities.
While banks do have a similar leadership structure, as seen in the case of vice presidents, presidents, CFO, CEO, etc., the fact remains that its organizational structure is more horizontal in terms of task delegation and employee job roles. This can be seen through its various departments, units and resource divisions where there is a certain “overlap” in terms of authority, operational guidelines and shared practices.
Also, the main “luxury” so to speak for banks is that they can often hire and then train personnel and place them into particular positions.
This means that they can source potential employees from a vast pool of potential candidates whereas police departments, with their clear emphasis on rank, cannot practice the same human resource development strategy and have to rely on a limited pool of candidates who have the correct rank despite other candidates showing a greater deal of aptitude and skill for a particular position.
Thus, when it comes to human resource planning the main difference is that placement for local police departments is usually based on achieved rank regardless of skill whereas for an international bank hiring practices are based on perceived skill and capacity to do a job regardless of what sort of “rank” they used to have. Another difference between the two organizations comes in the amount of personnel needed.
For large international banks, it is normally the case that they would need substantial amounts of personnel in order to keep operations running while the amount of personnel needed for a local police department is usually much smaller.
Police departments can usually source personnel from local residents or through graduates of a police academy that is nearby whereas international banks have to take into consideration international locations and source personnel from a wide array of countries.
There are also skill specializations that need to be taken into consideration wherein banks often need a more diverse array of employees with skill specializations (i.e. business development, accountancy, customer service, etc.) as compared to a police department that does not have the need to specialize in as many different kinds of operations.
The last, and certainly one of the most important differences between the two organizations, is the fact that police departments have two classifications of personnel (i.e. civilian and police officer) whereas banks have just one (i.e. an employee).
The reason behind this dual method of employee classification is due to the nature of law enforcement agencies (i.e. enforcing social law and imposing order) resulting in the need for civilians to handle the day to day operations as seen in the case of the HR department of most precincts which are composed of civilian personnel.
This, of course, creates a far more distinct human resource planning endeavor as compared to banks since the HR department has to balance the needs of the precinct between its police and civilian personnel whereas a bank just concentrates on its one type of employee classification.
Evaluating Recruitment Effectiveness
When it comes to evaluating recruitment effectiveness, this can be analyzed through: employee churn rates, proper alignment with job requirement, meeting a company’s hiring goals, and job performance (this can be seen through supervisor reports).
Employee churn rates
This term refers to the rate of employees leaving a company versus the amount who enter or stay. Based on the work of Hilditch-Roberts (2012), it was noted that churn rates are often a good indicator of effective recruitment practices since it is the responsibility of the HR department to hire people that they know would be able to stay for a significant period of time within a company (5 years or more).
The problem with high churn rates in companies is that this can create severe problems in operational performance given the time needed to hire a new employee, train them to be able to do the job properly, and help them integrate into the company culture (Hilditch-Roberts, 2012).
As a result of nonperformance within a specified job role (whether managerial, upper management or lower-tier employee), this limits the capacity of a company to be able to provide services or manufacture products effectively.
It is based on this that when examining the effectiveness of the recruitment methods utilized by an HR department within a company, the employee churn rate would be one of the first indicators of either the presence of good policies in hiring employees that would help to raise the operational performance of a company or the presence of adverse policies that result in employees staying for a relatively short period of time (i.e. 1 year or less) resulting in operational losses.
Alignment with Job Requirements
Another method of evaluating recruitment effectiveness is to examine whether the individual that was hired has the proper skills and experience that are required by the job.
As explained by Blasco & Pertold-Gebicka (2013), when it comes to examining the effectiveness of the hiring practices employed by a company, it is necessary to determine whether proper care and attention have been made towards aligning an employee’s skills and capabilities with the requirements of the job.
Blasco & Pertold-Gebicka (2013) go into more detail in regard to this perspective by explaining that one of the current practices utilized in most companies has been a form of role integration wherein instead of having two employees doing two different jobs, it is often the case that job roles are combined into a single job to save money on employee salaries and benefits.
As a result, job requirements often require a more diverse skill set requiring HR departments to implement more stringent hiring guidelines (Blasco & Pertold-Gebicka, 2013). Failure to do so often results in reduced operational effectiveness on the part of the employee, which is an indicator of ineffective recruitment practices.
Operational Performance of a Company
Another means of determining recruitment effectiveness is by examining the overall operational performance of a company based on the adherence of employees to their performance metrics.
Within the past decade, one of the ongoing trends when it comes to measuring employee performance and thus their eligibility to be promoted to different positions within the company has been through the use of metrics of performance (Carter, 2004).
These are often numerical based means of measuring the performance of an employee via the amount of work accomplished within a particular period of time, the number of orders fulfilled, the amount of sales made, etc. Basically, metrics can be thought of as a statistically proven means of determining the “worth” of an employee based on the level of work they do for the company.
Woodka (2011) explains that it is the correlation of employee scores based on their rates of performance with the expected level of operational performance set forth by the company that helps to determine whether the company is performing at an operationally adequate level.
If the metrics by which employees are measured show that they are underperforming, then this would reflect on the overall operational performance of the company (Woodka, 2011).
If there are low levels of operational performance which can be traced to employee performance and not to external factors (i.e. changes in consumer tastes, natural disasters, etc.), then it can be stated that the recruitment practices that have been implemented within the company are ineffective and need to be changed since the employees that have been hired are not performing at an adequate rate by the company’s standards.
Examples of instances where this occurs can be seen in the call center industry and the retail industry wherein the statistical basis between employee performance and their expected output by the standards of the company can be seen more easily.
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