Tools for Recruiters: The Complete List | The HR Tech Weekly®

Tools for Recruiters: The Complete List

Tools for Recruiters: The Complete List

If you want to see the best tools for recruiters in one place, then you’ll love this guide from Talent Hero Media.

There are over 70 free and paid tools designed to simplify your job as a recruiter.

Bonus: Don’t have time to check out all the tools? No worries. Download a free PDF version of this guide right here.

APPLICANT TRACKING SYSTEMS

BreezyHR

ATS
This newer entrant to the ATS market has already earned rave reviews from its loyal user base for its amazing customer support, smooth UI and end-to-end functionality.
BreezyHR

BrightMove Recruiting Software

ATS
One of the few ATS offerings with publicly available pricing, BrightMove is highly touted by its users as responsive to new ideas. In fact, you can suggest new features and vote for them, with the features that get the most upvotes moved into the development queue.
BrightMove Recruiting Software

Bullhorn

ATS | CRM
A staple of the ATS market, Bullhorn has many enterprise customers and large recruitment agencies as customers. It has many fans among those who use it on a daily basis but note that the price point is definitely geared towards larger customers.
Bullhorn

CATS

ATS
Used by both external recruiters and HR agencies, CATS is known for its end-to-end solution that starts with job postings and finishes with analytics on completed campaigns.
CATS

Crelate

ATS | CRM
A combination ATS and CRM, Crelate is lauded for its wide-ranging feature set, modern UI and strong customer support.
Crelate

Greenhouse

ATS
Lauded for its intuitive user interface and beautiful design, Greenhouse receives consistently positive reviews by everyone who adopts it. In addition, they have an iOS and Android app that lets you use it on the go.
Greenhouse

HireHive

ATS | CRM
A low-cost alternative ATS, HireHive excels at automatic job board posting, managing employee referrals and branded career sites.
HireHive

HiringThing

ATS
A full service solution for both external and internal recruiters, HiringThing offers best-in-class customer service and quick turnaround on new features requested by its users.
HiringThing

JobAdder

CRM | ATS
JobAdder is a CRM and ATS in one and is well known for its range of mobile apps that let you access the platform from any device.
JobAdder

Jobscience

ATS | CRM
Marketed as a sales, recruiting and back office system in one, Jobscience receives excellent reviews from the external recruiters who use it.
Jobscience

iCIMS

ATS
Founded in 1999, iCIMS is a tool that is widely used by both recruiting firms and internal recruiters. Given its longevity, it is clearly well liked by many although there are some who complain that it could use a refresh.
iCims

Lever

ATS
Considered one of the top ATS tools, Lever has features such as one-click sourcing, two-way email sync, and @-mentions that you will not find in many of their competitors.
Lever

Loxo

ATS | Sourcing | CRM
The feature that sets this ATS apart from its competitors is Loxo AI, a proprietary intelligent sourcing assistant that helps you find the top talent for your role while you spend your time elsewhere.
Loxo

OpenCATS

ATS
Although it does not have the prettiest user interface, it does have one feature that sets it apart from every other ATS on the market – it’s free. As the only open source ATS currently available, users (at least those with development backgrounds) can have direct input into new features without paying a dime.
OpenCATS

PCRecruiter

ATS | CRM
One of the earlier entrants to the ATS game, PCRecruiter, founded in 1998, receives positive reviews from its dedicated user base for its customer service and willingness to continually update the product.
PCRecruiter

Recruitee

ATS
Known for their incredible customer service (their founder replies to emails on Sundays), Recruitee takes collaborative hiring to the next level: everyone in your team from the least tech-savvy to the most nerdy can work on hiring together with this cloud-based ATS. In addition, Recruitee provides beautiful careers sites for your employer brand as well as candidate-friendly application forms that you can fully tweak.
Recruitee

Workable

ATS | Sourcing
Workable is noted for its full feature set, easy learning curve, top notch customer support and a new sourcing tool called People Search. They also offer a $50 per job per month plan for recruiters who have less burdensome hiring needs.
Workable

CONTACT FINDERS

AmazingHiring

Contact Finders
Geared exclusively towards finding technical talent, AmazingHiring scours Github, Stack Overflow and Kaggle profiles to find potential candidates, including those who do not have a LinkedIn account.
AmazingHiring

ContactOut

Contact Finders
Considered the best by some, ContactOut touts that it can find 2x more emails than the competition and given that it offers 100 free credits per day, there is not much risk to test out their claim.
ContactOut

Hiretual

Contact Finders
A free Chrome extension, Hiretual is raved about by sourcers and recruiters for its ability to consistently cut down on the time required to find talent and their contact information. It is free for 15 contacts per month before increasing to $59 per month (billed annually) for 200 contacts per month.
Hiretual

Hound by Jobjet

Contact Finders
Working only on LinkedIn, Hound will find email addresses and phone numbers but can get expensive for those who search a lot.
Hound by Jobjet

Hunter

Contact Finders
Hunter is a bit different than other email sourcing tools as it can find all available emails on a given domain and also verify emails, in addition to the features you expect from a standard contact finder.
Hunter

Lusha

Contact Finders
Limited to 5 free phone numbers and emails per month, Lusha gets positive reviews by many but you will have to pay to get full use of the product.
Lusha

Nymeria

Contact Finders
Focusing on finding emails associated with LinkedIn and Github profiles, Nymeria has two simple and reasonable pricing options – free for 300 emails per month and $9 per month for unlimited emails.
Nymeria

Prophet

Contact Finders
Prophet is a Chrome extension that allows you to visit the Twitter, Facebook or Google+ page of a person and find emails and phone numbers. It comes with 15 free credits per day and you can get more by sharing data with the community or purchasing them. Note that the company does not have a website.
Prophet

SourceHub by SocialTalent

Contact Finders
SourceHub is a clever tool that helps you construct boolean search queries by combining synonyms for the job title, skills and location you enter.
SourceHub

CANDIDATE RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT

SugarCRM

CRM
An open source and developer-friendly CRM, SugarCRM is a great solution for the recruiter who knows they need to keep better track of their contacts but does not want to break the bank.
SugarCRM

Vincere

CRM | ATS
Marketed as a combination CRM and ATS, Vincere allows you to search for and manage candidates, create fully-branded microsite job boards and post your jobs across the Internet.
Vincere

INTERVIEWING

GreenJobInterview

Interviewing
Whether it is face-to-face or one-way interviews, GreenJob offers the solutions you need for your video interviewing needs.
GreenJobInterview

Interview Mocha

Interviewing
Interview Mocha has over 1000 skills tests that you can use early in your interview process to determine which candidates have the required skills.
Interview Mocha

Interview Stream

Interviewing
Interview Stream’s Hire platform allows you to set up screening interviews using a library of questions and pre-populated media, or face-to-face live interviews.
Interview Stream

Odro

Interviewing
Odro is online meeting software for the techphobics of the world. With no downloads or installs, this tool should work well for interviews, especially those that may require screen sharing.
Odro

sparkHire

Interviewing
sparkHire has a full range of video tools to help you optimize your interview process including one-way interviews, interview evaluation, interview scheduling and a mobile app.
sparkHire

RECRUITMENT MARKETING

Beamery

Recruitment Marketing | CRM
Beamery connects to all of your other recruiting systems and gives you one system to manage and engage every candidate that touches your brand – past, present or future. They help companies nurture passive talent and build a pipeline for future roles.
Beamery

Clinch

Recruitment Marketing | CRM | Sourcing
Clinch is a robust platform that combines recruitment marketing, a CRM, employer branding, and sourcing tools in one end-to-end solution. Features include a career site and landing page builder, social and email integration and robust analytics.
Clinch

Jobvite

Recruitment Marketing | ATS
Serving a range of customer sizes from startups to enterprise customers, Jobvite offers tools that go beyond your typical ATS including Jobvite Refer (tool for sharing job openings in your employees’ networks) and Jobvite Video (on-demand video interviewing).
Jobvite

Phenom People

Recruitment Marketing

Offering many features similar to its competitors, Phenom People’s main differentiator is its unique ability to turn visitors to your career site into potential applicants even if they don’t fill out your job application.

Phenom People

SmashFly

Recruitment Marketing | CRM
SmashFly’s Total Recruitment Marketing Platform and Services proactively markets an employer brand and jobs through every recruiting channel using marketing automation technology and modern marketing practices. It empowers companies to attract the right people to their organization using the art and science of fit, enabling companies to generate leads and nurture relationships to hire faster and more cost-effectively. It is ATS-agnostic, integrating with your current system to provide a complete view into the candidate journey, from first source all the way to hire.
SmashFly

SCHEDULING

10to8

Scheduling
The free plan of this tool should be sufficient for many recruiters as it allows for 100 appointments per month and includes SMS notifications, a feature not offered at the free level by any competitors.
10to8

Calendly

Scheduling
Loved by its users for its simplicity and rock-solid integration with all popular calendars, the free version of Calendly will be sufficient for many recruiters who want a simple scheduling tool that reduces back-and-forth emails. The paid version can be integrated with additional tools you might use such as GoToMeeting and many CRMs.
Calendly

ScheduleOnce

Scheduling
This is a tool for the recruiter with more complex scheduling needs. The higher-priced tiers, while slightly expensive compared to the competition, have features such as pooled availability and master booking pages, that are ideal for environments where you will be scheduling more than just one-on-one meetings.
ScheduleOnce

SimplyBook.me

Scheduling
Known for its robust feature set, SimplyBook.me has a free tier that may be suitable for some recruiters.
SimplyBook.me

TimeTrade

Scheduling
TimeTrade invented the online appointment scheduling industry in 1999. The company’s secure, cloud-based solution meets the customer and client engagement needs of large enterprises as well as mid-size and small businesses. Thousands of companies—including 500 of the world’s top brands—rely on TimeTrade’s technology for their scheduling needs.
TimeTrade

Vyte

Scheduling
With almost all features available to free users, Vyte is an excellent option for recruiters with more basic scheduling needs.
Vyte

YouCanBook.me

Scheduling
While the free version of this software is not heavily advertised on their sign up page, it may have enough features to tide you over until you want to pay for more advanced tools such as appointment reminders, padding appointments and Zapier integration.
YouCanBook.me

SCREENING

OnboardIQ

ScreeningATS
Focusing on the hourly workforce, OnboardIQ is an ATS that helps you automate interviews, background checks and document collection.

Outmatch

Screening
Outmatch is designed to predict how candidates will perform and has tools such as job-fit assessments, behavioral interviewing, and online reference checking.
Outmatch

SkillSurvey

ScreeningSourcing
SkillSurvey is a multi-purpose tool designed to assist with referencing checking and sourcing via referrals.
SkillSurvey

Social Intelligence

Screening
Similar to a criminal background check, Social Intelligence uses a combination of technology and trained analysts to screen candidates online records for unlawful or inappropriate behavior.
Social Intelligence

Sterling Talent Solutions

Screening
Founded in 1975, Sterling Talent Solutions is a full service screening and on-boarding solution that offers plans including pre-hire background checks and drug testing and post-hire employee audits.

Weirdly

Screening
Weirdly offers a customisable quiz to rank candidates against your ideal fit. It can act as a stand-alone, light-ATS or be integrated into your current recruitment process.
Weirdly

SOURCING

Broadbean

Sourcing
Broadbean is a straightforward job distribution and sourcing tool that focuses on doing a few tasks really well.

Crystal

Sourcing
Crystal scours the Internet for every piece of information on your candidates and coaches you on how to write emails that are tailored to their communication style. This ensures that the people you find for your client are more likely to respond.
Crystal

Entelo

Sourcing
The Entelo platform uses big data, predictive analytics and social signals to help recruiting organizations find, qualify and engage talent.
Entelo

Headreach

Sourcing
Officially marketed as a LinkedIn-based lead generation tool, Headreach can also be used effectively to find the emails and social profiles of potential candidates.
Headreach

Hello Talent

Sourcing
This sourcing tool allows you to build talent pools collaboratively that can then be sent straight to your ATS. Best of all, it is free for 2 pools.
Hello Talent

HireKeep

Sourcing
Post your job on HireKeep and their algorithm will determine which candidates meet the “affinity threshold” to match with your company. The software will even schedule interviews with those who have matched.
HireKeep

HiringSolved

Sourcing
HiringSolved offers features that are not common in sourcing tools including Diversity Search (a tool to help increase workplace diversity), Scan (automatic updating of outdated records in your ATS and CRM) and Verticals (algorithms designed to find candidates in specific industries).
HiringSolved

Ideal

Sourcing
Typical sourcing tools force recruiters to do tedious, time-consuming tasks such as resume screening and keyword-based searches. Ideal uses artificial intelligence to automate sourcing, resume screening, initial candidate outreach and even interview scheduling.
Ideal

Joblyon

Sourcing | ATS
Joblyon has a strong focus on on creating beautiful job postings that will be readily shared on social media.
Joblyon

Leoforce

Sourcing
Their flagship product, Arya, uses artificial intelligence to identify talent that not only has the right skills but also is aligned with the corporate culture.
Leoforce

Recruit’em

Sourcing
Recruit’em is a powerful free search tool that lets you use Google to search for profiles across various platforms including LinkedIn.
Recruit'em

Simppler

Sourcing
Calling themselves a “data driven employee referral platform”, Simppler helps employees of a company find candidates for open positions within their own networks.
Simppler

Talemetry

Sourcing | CRM
Talemetry integrates with your ATS and allows you to post job ads, source candidates, build talent pipelines and manage candidate relationships in a single platform.
Talemetry

TextRecruit

Sourcing | CRM
TextRecruit lets you manage communications with your candidates over text, increasing interaction rates significantly.
TextRecruit

OTHER

Boomerang

Other
Boomerang allows you to schedule emails to be sent later and reminds you about old emails that you have archived, ensuring that you never forget to respond to a candidate or client.
Boomerang

Data Miner

Other | Sourcing
A data scraping tool like Data Miner can be used in many powerful ways by a recruiter. For example, if you need Javascript developers, you can find a list of conference attendees for a Javascript conference, scrape the data and upload it to your CRM or ATS.
Data Miner

IFTTT

Other
Although not specifically geared towards the recruiting market, IFTTT lets you create “applets” that combine different services together. For example, you can get an e-mail notification when a LinkedIn contact changes jobs.
IFTTT

Populate

Other
Populate keeps headcount data in one place so that managers and stakeholders can review and approve headcount or budget changes and you can review your analytics to help with your comprehensive HR strategy.
Populate

Zapier

Other
Calling themselves “automation for busy people”, Zapier lets you move data between web apps automatically (perhaps a recruitment marketing platform and ATS), saving you time and ensuring data integrity.
Zapier
Bonus: Don’t have time to check out all the tools? No worries. Download a free PDF version of this guide right here.

Source: Tools for Recruiters: The Complete List | Talent Hero Media

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Cloud Is Growing, But Will It Be Your Organisation’s Downfall?

cloud-is-growing-but-will-it-be-your-organisations-downfall

Written by Hesham El Komy, Senior Director, International Channels at Epicor Software | Specially for The HR Tech Weekly®.

hesham-el-komy-sr-director-channel-epicor-press
Hesham El Komy, Senior Director, International Channels at Epicor Software

The reality today is that most enterprise applications are well on their way to being cloud based. We’ve seen it with simple workloads such as HR and payroll, travel and expense management, and in the last decade we’ve seen the cloud as the new normal for customer relationship management (CRM) deployments. In fact, a July 2016 Gartner report[1] predicts that the public cloud services market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region will grow by 18.3% in 2016 to US$879.3 million. More specifically, the cloud application services (SaaS) market is forecasted to grow by a staggering 207% from US$166.1 million in 2015 to US$509.8 million in 2020.

So what are the benefits of cloud based ERP solutions? Below are eight reasons why moving your ERP system to the cloud will benefit your business and support business growth.

  1. Freedom of Choice

Put quite simply, not all cloud ERP systems are created equal. Specifically, very few ERP vendors respect your right to choose the deployment model that is most appropriate for you, and revise that decision down the road as your business grows or technical needs change. Your right to transition between on-premises, multi-tenant, and single tenant is an important one. It recognises that the “best” deployment model for you today might not be the best model in a few years, or even a few months. By providing the choice of Multi-Tenant (with its compelling economics and seamless upgrades) or Single Tenant (allowing more administrative control and administrative ownership), you can choose the model that works best for you.

  1. Compelling Cloud Economics

Despite the cloud having proven its value beyond just good financial sense, there is no doubt that for companies of all sizes the economics of cloud deployment are undeniably compelling, moving from capital to operational expenditure. Some of the more hidden economic benefits of the cloud include:

  • Not being as capital intensive as an on-premises deployment because of the subscription-based pricing model.
  • Better and more instant scalability, allowing clients to add (and sometimes remove) users to their system on demand and saving them from having to invest in hardware and software at the “high water mark”.
  • The direct and indirect costs of your infrastructure, from server to database systems to the actual hardware and replacement cycle cost.
  • The hidden costs of maintaining the servers yourself.
  • The benefit of the reduced deployment times (and corresponding improved ROI) that are typical for cloud deployments, as the necessary infrastructure is in place already.
  1. Better IT Resource Utilisation

At the end of the day, most IT departments are stretched pretty thin, and find themselves spending too much time on low-value (but admittedly critical) activities such as verifying backups, applying security updates, and upgrading the infrastructure upon which your critical systems run. There is tremendous business benefit to assigning those tasks back to your ERP vendor as part of a cloud deployment, freeing up your IT department’s time to work on more strategic business projects such as creating executive dashboards, deploying mobile devices, and crafting helpful management reports.

  1. The Cloud is More Secure

Today, it’s hard to imagine a client who could possibly create a more secure operating environment than leading cloud providers. Indeed, Gartner reports[2] that “Multi-tenant services are not only highly resistant to attack, but are also a more secure starting point than most traditional in-house implementations.”

Security today is a comprehensive, end-to-end mind set that has to be built across every layer of the ERP environment from the physical network interface cards to the user passwords. It means a holistic approach to anticipating and minimising possible natural, human, and technical disruptions to your system to ensure uptime and peace of mind.

  1. Upgrades

Cloud deployment redefines the experience by designing upgrades—big and small—to be deployed by the ERP cloud operations staff as part of standard support services, without imposing software installations on your staff. Minor updates are transparently deployed in a non-disruptive fashion, and major upgrades are announced well in advance, and include a sandbox training environment and end-user training.

These major upgrades are designed to require little to no project management on your part, short of double checking that everything is working the way you expect it to and ensuring that your internal users are prepared to take advantage of the new version.

  1. Mobile and Collaborative

Moving to a cloud-based system gives everyone the real-time system access they require as a routine part of their jobs while driving out the inefficiency of paper-based processes and the burden and security risk of figuring out how to deliver this yourself.

Opening up your ERP system by virtue of cloud deployment allows you to retire the poorly defined ad-hoc “integration by Excel file” workflows that might have cropped up across your organisation. In their place, you can deploy real-time integration processes that link your employees, suppliers, partners, and customers.

Cloud deployment brings the opportunity to redefine many of your legacy business processes and workflows in a way that leverages these more open, connected, instantaneous integration paths.

  1. Business Consistency and Process Alignment Globally

Increasingly, companies have staff working across multiple locations and they aspire to provide the efficiency of a single unified ERP system across the enterprise to support them. Deploying a single cloud ERP globally (where the only infrastructure requirement is Internet access) removes many operational obstacles, and gives you the confidence that your continued expansion efforts can be accommodated without a significant IT effort by simply enabling that new location in your existing cloud-based ERP system. With consistency comes improved transparency and increased efficiency.

  1. Reduced Risk, Greater Visibility, Better Value

Many clients choose a cloud-based system (ERP and other workflows) because it allows them to deploy a much more complete solution than they could otherwise manage or financially justify under legacy deployment models. Not having to make a massive upfront investment in the ERP system and its supporting infrastructure is critical in allowing smaller companies to perform beyond same-sized competitors from an enterprise application quality and completeness perspective.

ERP solutions aren’t just software. They are tools that can be used to help grow your business profitably, offering flexible solutions that provide more accurate information in real-time, driving smarter, faster decision-making, and enabling customers to quickly meet changing market demands to stay ahead of their competition. The cloud increases the business benefits that ERP offers and can accompany your business on the road to successful growth.

Sources:

[1] Gartner, Inc., “Gartner Says Public Cloud Services in the Middle East and North Africa Region Forecast to Reach $880 Million in 2016,” July 04, 2016

[2] New Report: Gartner MQ for Cloud-Enabled Managed Hosting, North America

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5 Signs it’s Time for an Upgrade to Your Candidate Management System

An Effective Recruiting Solution is a Must for Professional Recruiters

Recent studies show that professional recruiters continue to be in high demand in the U.S. and abroad. Businesses routinely list “recruiting and retaining talent” as one of their top challenges for 2016 and beyond. What is also abundantly clear is that recruiting is constantly changing and the future is clearly digital. Therefore, it is essential to have the best candidate management tools available if in the recruiting space.

What is more, we are seeing that candidates expect a fast/easy application process. Also, a recruitment’s ’employment branding’ is key along with employers needing to focus on ‘passive candidates’ and using data analytics (social networks and other digital profiles) in the recruiting process. A talent management solution should be consistently updating to meet recruiting challenges.

Recruiting agencies, executive search firms, legal search firms, and corporate recruiters if your current Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is proving cumbersome and unusable–this article is for you! Crelate is building software for recruiters that helps them solve their difficult HR Tech challenges.  Five signs it’s time for an upgrade to your recruiting software.

#1 Excel Spreadsheets are the Primary Organizing Tool for Sourcing

Crelate Customers Often Migrate from Excel

Excel is a great product and useful for many important business tasks. However, it isn’t so hot when it comes to organizing a pool of potential placements with all of their pertinent. Dozens of our customers have migrated over from Excel-based solutions and universally they self-describe as a “complete mess”.

Also, recruiting professionals can easily access their database of candidates and get the important information they need to continue connecting the right people with the right opportunities if they have a full-featured product. Endlessly scrolling through Excel columns looking for important data is an incredibly inefficient process. By using a superior ATS recruiters can avoid wasting valuable time.

#2 Candidate Management Tools haven’t been Updated Since Parachute Pants were in Style

Candidate Management Needs Recruiting Software

If your current recruiting software is built on Microsoft Access or requires remote desktop into a remote computer to access there are better options available . In the software business a couple of things are paramount. First, it’s important to have vendors provide new features on a regular basis. Second, the features added to the application should be useful and lessen the friction that often exists between users and technology.

Therefore, new shinny features may or may not make the lives of recruiters easier and more productive. Your candidate management provider should constantly be in conversations with their user community to understand clearly the challenges that recruiters face on a daily basis–and specific ways that technology can lessen the burden. Enhancing the user experience is the goal and having an on-going dialogue makes this possible.

#3 Recruiting Software is Not geared toward Applicant Tracking and Building Relationships

At the absolute core of an effective recruitment software is the ability to easily and quickly help recruiters build relationships with potential customers and clients. Recruiters are in the business of connecting with a lot of people quickly in order to marry the best candidates with the right opportunities. Recruiting solutions need to have efficient ways to track conversations, notes taken, key dates, connections among recruiting communities, and so on. Moreover, it also needs to be accessible as well as available on the go–though mobile and/or tablets. Additionally, recruiters need a Recruiting CRM that will help them track all of their current business relationships with companies. Further, CRM solutions can track future deals that are in the pipeline. Crelate is currently building a CRM to add to our platform.

#4 Clamoring for a Better way to Organize your Work Day

Crelate Helps You be Productive

Recruiters are super-busy and often have several appointments every single day. What you need is an ATS that will assist you in being productive and keeping track of you commitments. Your ATS should provide calendar invitations to everyone on your team and give you notifications throughout the day/week with reminders. Also, it would be great if a recruiting solution could allow users to quickly assign tasks to their team. Furthermore, tasks such as resume parsing, initial meet and greets, phone screens, interviewing, or checking references can be easily managed with Crelate. Consequently, your ATS should make the entire process of recruiting work more smoothly and with less headaches.

#5 Motivated to Explore the advantages of Cloud-based software Over your Old System 

Finally, you may have heard the phrase “Cloud Computing” but are unsure that it means. Cloud computing is based on the internet by allowing users to easily access software through applications built through the internet (as opposed to programs or software downloaded on a physical computer or a server). The cloud is where most of us spend our daily lives. Everything from updating your Facebook status to checking a bank balance is part of being in the cloud. In addition, cloud-based solutions offer: flexibility, automatic software updates, increased collaboration, the ability to work anywhere, document control, and better security. It’s time to upgrade your candidate tracking solution to a cloud-based software and explore the incredible advantages of cloud solutions.

As recruiters continue to make connections for clients and candidates in the digital age, having an effective candidate management tool is going to prove to be critical. Check out what Crelate has to offer by setting up a free demo today!


Source: 5 Signs it’s Time for an Upgrade to Your Candidate Management System – Crelate

Growth fears: How can businesses align business growth with employee satisfaction?

Written by Sabby Gill, Executive Vice President (EVP) International at Epicor Software, specially for The HR Tech Weekly® blog.

Happy Employees

When a business experiences sudden growth, it creates a myriad of emotions from joy and excitement to dread and fear. The progressive mind-set that stimulates growth can inadvertently cause us to be less sensitive to the negative emotions that might emerge as a result. Because we are creatures of habit, it is probably not surprising that some of the increased complexity and ambiguity can be quite unsettling. Paradoxically, this emergent fear can start to hinder growth, as leaders pick up on it and start taking preventative measures to avoid damaging customer relations, reducing service quality, and minimize the mounting pressure on operations.

The reality is that progress is part of doing business, and with some careful planning and forward-thinking, the growth period does not have to be ridden with pain. The right IT infrastructure can help to facilitate some of these big changes and make the process a lot smoother.

Recent research conducted by Epicor has explored the different approaches organisations take to growth. It’s been found that the three priorities tend to be in turnover and sales, profits, and expansion into new industries and product areas. The outlook for 2016 is positive; 70% of respondents expect growth in 2016, and 79% have made (or are making) investments in integrated IT infrastructure as a key to supporting growth.

But what happens if the growth is unforeseen, or experienced as a surge? Leaders can find themselves on their back foot if they have not developed the appropriate skillset to handle the new changes.

Rob Morris, Head of Innovation and Thought Leadership at YSC, the premier global leadership development firm, believes that hiring for and developing the right skillset for growth goes a long way in dealing with the excessive demands placed on the workplace.

“Although we plan for growth in linear and rational ways, it often looks more like chaos in practice. When growth happens at such an unpredictable pace and scale, you don’t usually hire for that growth. As a result, you will not have the people resources to deliver on the new scale that you have created for yourself. The downside is people end up doing more than they expected, and often outside of the roles they were hired or trained for.”

A growing business can hinder employee satisfaction

A risk associated with business progress is employees becoming increasingly disengaged in the workplace due to heavier workloads, pressures, and deadlines. According to the Epicor research, 43% of leaders are concerned that as their business grows, workloads may increase to a level that places too much pressure on staff, prompting key personnel to leave the organisation.

Morris believes that a key predictor of job satisfaction is whether employees find ‘meaning’ in their work and warns that an employee’s personal values and missions can become misaligned with the company’s goals once the company starts growing.

“If I am asked to do things outside of the boundaries with which I joined the company, suddenly I may be less committed to it. If employees have less of a connection with the tasks involved or when they take on too many new tasks, too fast then it creates job dissatisfaction.”

It is vital to have the right infrastructure in place to support employees during growth. If technology can be used to ease the strain of increased workloads, employees can even find themselves empowered by growth. They may, for example, find themselves working on a wider variety of tasks, working closely with leadership to drive growth, and gaining more access to corporate knowledge if their roles are facilitated by the right technology.

How can businesses reduce the ‘pain’ of growth and plan ahead?

Any big change in a business – especially a surge in growth – can be disruptive and can filter through the organisation. According to Morris, this collective expression of pain typically manifests as resistance or disengagement. But businesses can get ahead of this curve by planning for any potential problems and ensuring they have enough resources to cater to increasing demands by the workforce[1].

The Epicor survey findings revealed that the top two stimulants for growth are ‘technology leadership’ (40%) and ‘skilled workforce’ (39%). This can be a two-edged sword. Organisations that are stuck with legacy systems might find themselves falling behind, unable to adapt to new business processes, or meet the demands of employees who expect modern technology in order to do their jobs. On the other hand, the organisations that leap onto new technology, will find themselves ahead of their competitors, ready to embrace new challenges.

A key facilitator in managing this process smoothly is to make investments in the right technology as the “demand for quick communication and transaction” increases[2].

Many progressive businesses are already doing this – according to the Epicor research 79% of businesses have made or are making investments in integrated IT infrastructure. Increased data visibility, for example through the use of the latest enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions, can allow businesses to perform in-depth analysis of key KPIs, so that they can manage costings and profitability more confidently. Customer relationships can likewise continue to prosper during the growth period with agile and scalable ERP and manufacturing execution systems (MES) that meet their demands.

According to Morris, employees need “emotional support to withstand the pressures of growing.” He also recommends “fostering a robust culture so people can be resilient throughout the growth surge.” It’s clear that this culture can be more robust if people are supported by the technology they need to do their jobs. Although it seems counter-intuitive, e.g., deploying technology in support of an emotional challenge, investment in the right IT infrastructure is therefore essential, and will help maintain the emotional well-being of employees throughout this transitionary period.

[1] http://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2013/apr/22/growing-a-business-efficiently

[2] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sponsored/business/the-elevator/12095150/steps-to-business-growth.html

About the Author 

Sabby Gill - EVP - EpicorSabby Gill brings more than 20 years of international sales, operations and enterprise software industry experience to Epicor. In the role of executive vice president, International, Gill is responsible for operations including sales, professional services, and field marketing, with a focus on accelerating company growth throughout Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) and Asia Pacific (APAC).

Prior to Epicor, Gill was senior vice president of International Sales for IGT, a gaming technology company. He has also held executive management roles with leading technology companies including HP, CA Technologies, Oracle, PeopleSoft (acquired by Oracle), and DEC.


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