This one has been in the queue for a while. Earlier this summer, I had the distinct pleasure of speaking with Debbie Tuel. It was the day ahead of Symphony Talent‘s annual user conference. Fittingly, Debbie found herself doing this episode of #HRTechChat from a very cool brewery adjacent to event preparations.
In February 2021, Debbie became chief joy officer at Symphony Talent. When I first spoke with Debbie, not long after she’d landed the new position, I assumed hers was a job in the vein of chief people officer or chief culture officer. As it turns outs, this is not an HR role. Debbie’s charter is to advocate for Symphony’s core message, the idea that talent acquisition should be joyful.
Talent acquisition should indeed be joyful. Plenty of clunky, legacy applicant tracking systems populate the landscape, sure, and this is one of the greatest impediments. But the caliber of technology exists today to take most of the frustration out of talent acquisition for practitioners and job candidates alike. For the latter, all that’s left is the potential sting of not getting the job. And this should be more than enough frustration for anyone in the job search, really. Fortunately, the technology available has become more than good enough. Debbie explains how so and just what, exactly, it means for talent acquisition to be joyful. I thoroughly enjoyed our chat and encourage everyone reading this to give it a watch.
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Brent Skinner 00:00
Hello, everyone. Welcome to HR tech chat. And our latest episode is going to be a great one I have with me here today, Debbie Tuel, who is chief joy officer at Symphony talent. Welcome, Debbie.
Debbie Tuel 00:14
Thank you so much for having me back.
Brent Skinner 00:17
Yeah, so I’m glad to have you here too. And, you know, we had a conversation a while back. And well, first of all, I just, let’s, let’s let our, our audience in on this a little bit. You folks are your annual user conference right now for Symphony talent. Is that correct?
Debbie Tuel 00:36
We are so this is our fifth annual transform conference this year. We are filming it for a virtual launch. So a lot of our sessions will be live but we’re doing a lot of behind the scenes. Kind of B roll filming. Today is we’re in Lansing, Michigan, with Tim Sackett torn Ellis and Chad cheese podcast, Julie, so wash a whole crew of people in the talent acquisition space. So forgive the background noise. We were actually filming at the Lansing brewery. And I think they are like, moving kicks behind me today. I thought I found a quiet space. Apparently not.
Brent Skinner 01:20
That’s quite old. Right? Um, you know, it could be worse. It’s a brewery. That’s really cool. In my opinion. If I actually had a beer with that would be the ultimate we we still, I’m going to do an HR tech chat at some point with with drinking a beer. And viewers may not be aware, but I’m actually standing at a bar. I’m always standing at a bar and our finished basement dinner at our home when I’m doing HR tech chat. So we have that in common today, I guess. Yeah.
Debbie Tuel 01:53
So they literally have a forklift? Do you want me to move in?
Brent Skinner 01:58
quieter? We could, we could, we could restart if you want. Okay, we’re back. Sorry about that guy. It’s a bit quieter now. Debbie wanted to move in. And there were forklifts moving kegs in the background is getting kind of but so we’re not now we’re in the seating area of of the brewery, which I think this will be fun. So nice to have you. You your job title is so cool. Um, and I just you know that that’s frankly, the I’ll just let you know a little, little joke. Today, I sent you an email earlier today says hey, looking forward to the podcast recording today and all that just customer we do that with the guests and I must write almost wrote hi joy instead of Hi.
Debbie Tuel 02:50
It is amazing. When your title becomes synonymous with your name. I will take that as a we are doing something right check.
Brent Skinner 02:58
Yeah, yeah. Where did that come about? Like, what what’s the philosophy behind that? I’m very, very curious.
Debbie Tuel 03:05
You know, I get the question a lot. What is the chief joy officer or I want that title or that is the coolest title ever? Like what do you do? And, you know, we we set on a mission. About a year ago, Symphony and talented acquired smash like a cup from the Smash light business, which is the talent acquisition technology. And we said, okay, what are we as a joint company? What is kind of the driver or the why behind what we’re doing? What is the why behind why customers engage with us? What is the why behind why employees want to work for us, and we did a lot of research using a lot of our internal talent said, okay, you know, we believe that we can make a mark in this industry around bringing joy back to the candidate experience back to the recruiter, and ultimately deliver exceptional experiences, to get people back to work faster. And that’s our space to own. And if, if our executive team is behind this and says, we own this, we need somebody who’s in charge of making sure that we deliver on it, and so that we communicate it to the market appropriately. So I get the pleasure of doing that to make sure that our employees are finding joy in the work that they’re doing that we’re able to deliver a joy to our customers that are using our technology, and that ultimately, that together delivers joy to the candidates when they really need it, which is right now.
Brent Skinner 04:34
I love it. And I mean this this is a huge pain point in the talent acquisition space and I’ve been hearing about it for years and and I don’t think you can really well, I’m gonna back into this part of me thinks now I can’t really be you know, hold them in. He can’t really be too upset with the talent acquisition people because they’re dealing with huge volumes of people. You hear about, you know, you need to get back to people even if you don’t have hire them. Or if they didn’t get the job, you need to get back to them in the, in a timely fashion. All this, if you just a human being with say, you know, maybe suboptimal or clunky or old, say ATMs or you don’t even have a candidate relationship management system or something like that, it could be a very, very tall order, maybe even impossible to, to provide that level of high touch to folks who might not have got the job, but you want them to be a customer in the future, or you may not want them to come back or need them to come back later for a different job that they would be right for. So, so this has been, you know, and you know, this, obviously, this has been floating around talent acquisition for a while. What are your thoughts in terms of, you know, what can talent acquisition be doing? Just, if you look at the average the base, the baseline, you know, what, could people be doing better in talent acquisition, and it’s impeded, maybe by their technology?
Debbie Tuel 05:58
Right? You you covered it actually in the question, there needs to be transparency, there needs to be communication, and we need to treat people like humans, it is the least that we do. And research shows that, you know, 10%, maybe hear back after they’ve applied to a job that is relieving 90% of the applicant base with no communication as to what their status is, what the next step is, was their resume reviewed, even after an interview the communication is lacking. So that’s first and foremost. But if we take a look at what organizations have done in the last decorate decade around the consumer experience, these make drastic improvements, we now see that packaging means everything, little notes to the consumer about how you built your product, and why you vote your products the way it has, and the way that they consume that product makes a difference. And that’s because there are people with inside organizations that are focused on the consumer experience, right, we need to apply that same methodology to recruiting This is just as important, these are the people that are working at your organization. So we need to architect it of how can we do the best job that we can for the majority, and then apply that at scale. And, and it’s difficult there is, you know, some nuances that you need to take into consideration. But if we can start to make minimal improvements around transparency about the process, open communication and treating those candidates, that human as humans, then you’ve done a good job of providing some of that joy back into the experience.
Brent Skinner 07:47
So a couple of things he mentioned first, I love the fact he mentioned treating people like humans, because they are they’re humans, you know, they’re not widgets, or, you know, employees aren’t. And we could go down a rabbit hole right now that I’m gonna try and help us not necessarily, you know, looking at your workforce is more than just a commodity, you know, we’re a cost center, I was having a conversation with another person on the podcast that a month ago. So talking about, you know, you need to actually move your workforce, we’re talking about actual people who are already hired, right, who are working for the organization, move them out of the cost column, into the asset column, literally, somehow figured out how to do that in your accounting system so that you can start that looking at them as something to invest in treating people like humans, there’s a lot of potential very good upside to that. And what’s interesting is that, and maybe we could speak to this a little bit. And let me just add a little bit more flavor here. So as you were talking, I was thinking, Okay, what are some of the dynamics like economic dynamics that have prompted organizations to be so attentive to their customers and potential customers versus that may not be there, when it comes to treating potential new hires? Right. And it but and then it occurred to me, Well, okay, if we look at all potential new hires are all potential candidates as also potential customers then in that kind of weaves in that kind of, you know, combines the two? I don’t know. Am I making any sense here? I
Debbie Tuel 09:32
mean, how do we go we are and I think that works really well. For brands that have a bead in a b2c business, it becomes a lot more difficult. But yes, we need to think about those candidates as consumers. They are your consumers, right? Your consumers tend to be your best employees. But it’s more than that, right? Like they are the ones that are delivering your product. They are the ones that you know, are the face of Your organization, they shouldn’t be an extension of your leadership team. And it’s really simple, right? Like, if you are in talent acquisition, if you’re in recruiting, or even if you’re just a line manager that has, you know, recruiting as a bullet as to what you’re doing, you went through that process with a think back to how was I communicated to? What would I like to do differently? or What did I like about the process? And then how do we scale it? How do we make it to where everyone gets that experience? Something as simple as, you know, we buy CRM, we buy applicant tracking systems, and they come with us doc email that says like, okay, we close out the requisition, sorry, you didn’t get the job, right? Let’s rewrite that in the tone of the organization. And let’s take somebody from our marketing team or our comms team, or even create a role that is responsible for communication. And let’s rewrite it in our culture that sounds more human. But like, as I were talking to you, like we love to, we thought you were a great fit. Unfortunately, we had another, you know, candidate, or, hey, we are going to keep in touch with you. I mean, you need to be honest, too great to have the right tech in place. But if we can even just start changing the language and the frequency with which we’re communicating to customers will be leaps and bounds ahead of where we are?
Brent Skinner 11:23
Well, you bring up a good point. And it also kind of parlays with this idea that well, recruiters are kind of like an organization’s frontline workers, like any organization doesn’t matter what the product is that there’s always a frontline worker, and it’s the recruiter. And, you know, so they really are sort of the personification that they’re, they’re the expression of the brand personified. Right. And so, it’s absolutely essential to give them all the tools they need to, to, to express that brand as accurately as possible. So that they’re not impeded in some way from from doing so. And, you know, there’s so much involved, that’s beyond the technology, too, right? You want to have the recruiters in place that understand that, right. In terms of the technology itself, however, what what is some of the things that that that an organization should look for in the technology itself for talent acquisition that’s going to, in going to enable them to to treat their job candidates like humans, as opposed to, you know, I don’t know widgets or, or whatever.
Debbie Tuel 12:37
You’re right, the recruiters are the frontline of the company. And that’s why part of our mission is we do you believe that you’ve got to create recruiter joy. First. They have to love what they’re doing in order to have an honest conversation that’s going to sell that candidate for your company. And so I think it starts with actually sitting down and talking to your recruiters understanding what are the pain points, where are they getting bogged down? Is it in you know, it, it’s gonna vary procrastinate rate for some, it’s like, Hey, I am having no problem, bringing in talent into the funnel. But I don’t have time to look at that. Okay, then let’s apply some type of technology that’s going to help us it’s screening out the candidates that are coming in. For others, it could be like, Hey, I have no problem. I delivered this hiring manager, 12 qualified candidates, they’re sitting on his desk, I haven’t heard anything. All right, let’s go fix that problem. And that may be a process thing, not a technology, right? I’m not saying that tech solves everything. What we are doing, though, or at least what I am seeing in this space, is we’re seeing some broad strokes, things that are happening. And we’re applying tech, because I think we have this problem. And so I’m gonna apply technology. And now recruiters are forced to learn something else that’s actually adding time to their day, not reducing time from their workload. And they’re getting overwhelmed. And right now we’re seeing major turn across every industry and it’s happening at the recruiter level, as well as their short staff. They’re working on heavy rack loads, and they’re falling back on what they feel most comfortable, which is oftentimes not the technology that’s been purchased for them to be applied for them. So I think it starts with talking to the recruiter and finding out what those pain points are and then addressing those pain points with either the current tech that you have, or changing your processes or keeping people accountable. So for that first and then figure out okay, where can we supplement Where can we enhance the process?
Brent Skinner 14:49
mosquito that got in you know, I mean, you bring up some good points, um, one of the things that we’ve seen in I’m curious that around visibility, sometimes you have systems in place where they’re just, it really isn’t possible for for central HR, or, or the central talent acquisition team or whoever that is to really understand what’s going on in the recruiting process. And that’s, and so there’s no way to actually, you know, to understand what’s going on and therefore prescribe a, you know, a solution or or a way forward for any particular situation. What kind of maybe you could speak to that a little bit in terms of visibility into talent acquisition, is it? Is this is this a sort of a matter of, of centralizing, giving it some sensuality, you know, not not fully centralized, but just giving it a little bit of a bit more visibility into it from command, something like that?
Debbie Tuel 15:56
It’s a great question. And I do see a lot of the Fortune 100 and larger, larger organizations starting to look at how do we pull our people analytics into one central system, to where we can get that analysis, I think that works really well, it can be challenging, because now you need to get these data outputs to be normalized a bit. And that takes work. So it does require some long term vision, and executive sponsorship to get to that place of saying, Okay, what are we measuring? How are we measuring it, and let’s get our, you know, for systems of record to work together to really get that output where it needs to be. And that then does give you that visibility to then say, Okay, here’s, here’s where we’re seeing some things that are broken. And now we have a baseline for measurement for improvement. And I think that’s really key is like, what is that baseline of measurement? And how are we going to track improvement, to make sure that whatever we’re implementing is working how we intended it to, and that we’re showing the business that that investment that they made, whether it be an actual monetary investment, or a time investment was worth it to the business?
Brent Skinner 17:14
Yeah, I think that’s a that’s a big deal. The baseline understanding where you are now, you don’t know what to fix Unless, you know, where you stand present no sort of present state. that’s a that’s a great point. Let’s, let’s switch gears for a second here. Because I’m, you know, and you don’t have to give us or, you know, like a, like an hour by hour, but maybe you could give us an idea of what, what is it day in the life of a chief joy officer like, and you know, do you live under marketing? Do you live under, under HR? Like, where does your role sit? And what is that like?
Debbie Tuel 17:48
It’s a bit of a blend. So I report directly into rapacious our CEO, because this is kind of his his mantra for the organization. I work really closely with our marketing team and taking the messaging out to market. I also work really closely with our growth team, our sales team that works with both new growth within the business as well as our retention and upsell customers, which puts me really close to our customers and prospects. So it’s a bit of a blended role. I also work with our product team and taking some of what we’ve heard back to the product team to make sure that it’s actually being developed into the product. So I, while I report into our CEO, I work within all of those organizations to make sure that we’re connecting the dots across our customer base our product and what we’re taking to market.
Brent Skinner 18:39
That’s that’s a pretty important role, you know, you sort of liaising between many of the sort of essential ingredients of the of the organization. Now, do you see other organizations say, you know, it’s employers who aren’t vendors of technology for talent acquisition for or for HCM or anything like that? Do you see them? Like what would you let’s put this way? What would you equate yourself to? with some of the other some of the other C suite roles out there? like would you quit yourself maybe to a chief people officer at a at some at an employer? I’m not trying to put words in your mouth, I’m
Debbie Tuel 19:22
just Yeah, you’re fine. I wouldn’t I wouldn’t go on the people side. I don’t manage any of our actual people side of it. fit on our team does that she’s amazing. She actually moved her family over to Italy when she took the chief people officer role and has done an amazing job for us over there. She’s got her own story on her own right. It would say it’s more on kind of a blend between evangelist and kind of products. Okay, I would put it right in there. If you were, you know, to kind of compare it to another, another title. So I am I am a sales person at heart, truthfully, I’ve held lots of roles between, you know, sales, I actually ran product for a little bit. And then on the solution side, this was a natural step in my progression as we started taking this on, and repress it, hey, Debbie, would you mind stepping in and helping us bridge this gap and pulling the kind of three streets together to actually execute on the vision. So, you know, a day in the life for me, includes sitting on our leadership meetings and kind of reporting back to the progress that we’re making with our joy vision, sitting and running our customer advisory panels to get their feedback on the work that we’re doing. And then sitting on our weekly product meetings to take that feedback back to product as well as helping kind of aligned what our product roadmap is to what we’re hearing in the market, what we’re seeing from competitors. And then jumping in sales calls whenever needed. So for any of your listeners, I’m sure I’ve bumped into them at some point or another. In their sales cycle I used, I luckily, now get to just jump in as work with a thought leader. On the front lines,
Brent Skinner 21:24
yes, it was Oh, gosh, I just tried to sell me something right. Yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s a it’s a better as a better seat to be in Absolutely. I’ve never sold anybody anything. That’s great. Neither have I. In any event, you know, that a lot of organizations, you know, marketing sales and product, they, you know, they kind of struggle to to align. So, so this is kind of making a little bit even more sense to me, you know, and the joy part of it is, it’s so integral to
Debbie Tuel 21:57
so key. And I will say our product teams is an amazing job of listening to our customers. And there is a really fine line between listening to your customers, because oftentimes your customers will tell you that they need something that they don’t need. So you have to get to like, what is the goal that you’re trying to achieve? Not what is the feature that you want, right? Like you tell me what the goal is that you want to achieve? We then need to go and find out if that is a your problem? Or is this an industry problem, right. And if it’s an industry problem, then this is something that we need to solve for. But we need to do it in a way that’s outside of solving for this one customers problem, we need to solve it for all of our customers. And so we’ll take that and digest that. And then come to our customers and say, Okay, here is our approach to it, let’s do some user testing. And that user testing really helps you in identifying, I may be solving the problem, but I’m watching this person work and it’s not within their workflow, they’re taking too many clicks to get to it, or they actually started here in the process where I thought they would have started there, let’s re engineer this work before we actually take it to market. And so you know that all of that is part of you know, where the funding comes in and delivering customer product that customers love using that drives, you know, value to their day where their recruiters want to work in the system where it’s intuitive. And ultimately, you know, drive success and our passion vision, our CEOs vision, he really wants to be able to take attraction to hiring an automated all the recruiters don’t have to do much in that process. Now, when that’s dream vision, and I think we can automate a lot of it, there’s going to need to be human interaction within that process. But that’s kind of where we’re visually going towards. So if we can start to automate the attraction piece through programmatic advertising, through intuitive sourcing, so we can do all of your talent identification for you and spend your budgets for you to acquire that talent. And then we can do automated engagement, right, we understand what they’re looking at what they’re engaging with, what they’re interested in, how frequently that they’re engaging with your brand, and we can start to serve up content that gets them hooked. And then we can start to automate some of the scheduling and, you know, screening pieces that we can get you to a pretty well automated, top of the funnel type of recruiting to your recruiters can work in the system where you want them which is your HTS, working on that individual requisition, where they’re spending more of their time building relationships with your internal client, your hiring managers, and then working with that top talent, you know, your three, four that are probably you know, of most interest for that role, but as Everybody else still gets a really good experience, because it’s all designed around the experience. So
Brent Skinner 25:05
now we’re getting right to when I was hoping we would, at the outset here is that, you know, decided, how can, how can the technology eventually really help recruiters or organizations be responsive and high touch or you know, have an element of high touch to all job candidates, even though there’s a ton of job candidates, and it’s, you know, if you’re just a human being working with email and a spreadsheet, or whatever it is, you know, forget it. So, in that, in what you just described, as you know, that’s sort of the next, I actually blogged about this, I wasn’t expecting this to come up today, but but it actually makes total sense. You know, I blogged about this about maybe three weeks ago now, just looking at this a series of series I’m doing on the future of work of the third installment is around all sorts of things. But we talked about AI, blockchain, psychometrics and all this kind of stuff. But I think then the next, we start talking about internally about the idea of automation. And what does automation mean, you know, we, we kind of have this, I think there’s sort of reflexive baseline thought, in response to what automation means. It means Oh, yeah, stuff, like really repetitive stuff. That’s administrative work that you need to get rid of, because it’s just this a major efficiency or lack of efficiency there, right. You think about you know, like repeatable tasks on the the automobile manufacturer floor? Or you know, when talking about HCM, you know, like, some payroll stuff and scheduling. Okay, fine. But actually, this, that’s not what any automation is anything that computers can do, can start doing for us. I mean, that, frankly, is any of that is automation, you can make even argue that everything that we do is somehow automated in some way, right. And now you’re talking about what you just described is, is this idea of automating highly complex, highly variable processes. And that’s it, that’s, that’s the next, that’s the next. The next step, I think in automation starting to happen, we see, you know, you see some of the acquisitions that UK, g just acquired everything benefits, which is a, an ai, ai engine for benefits, administration, and open enrollment, all that kind of stuff. So I kind of rambled a little bit there. But what I’m getting at is this idea that you can, you can expand your understanding what automation is. And once you do, and understand that you need AI, or machine learning, or NLP, or whatever it is, you’re calling it right now, to make some of that happen. Now you’re off to the next level, and you’re able to maybe make some difference there for recruiters in this particular athlete. environment, these circumstances related
Debbie Tuel 28:01
to, you know, Mary Grace, Hannah Sue was our first head of product used to say, let’s figure out AI first Intelligent Automation before we move to AI, which is more of a buzzword. But I think it’s all important, right? We want to start with Intelligent Automation. And then let’s get to the point where the, you know, machine learning is applied into it. And then we can get into the to the AI. And you’re right, we can, we can start this really early in the process. These are highly complex things that recruiters should not need to know. If I am recruiting a technical role, for instance, right? I can go in and I can start sourcing for technical people. But it’s not going to be my specialty to understand where I should be advertising to get those people in, it’s not going to be my specialty to write emails that are going to grab their attention and get them to apply. And so that is where we can go ahead and apply automation. and machine learning where we can say, Okay, look, based on previous roles, this is what’s been successful for your organization. And oh, by the way, you just hit you know, based on previous hiring, you know, you need your funnel this big. So, you’ve already got that I’m going to shut off the funds for that job. And I’m going to move them over to this job where you don’t have enough applicants yet. We’re going to boost that to these five channels based on previous successful view and other organizations. And we’re going to manage that money for you. Not even people but the computer is because computer is learning over time, and understands where that money should be spent and how it should be spent. Should that be in job advertisements? Should that be in retargeting display ads? Should that be on a closed circuit TV, right? There’s so many different ways now that we could do it digitally. We can do it instantaneously. And we can save companies a lot of money and that’s just pure advice. tasting, right? And then we’ve got to get to the point where more and more organizations are building out smart CRM, that once you find that talent, you own that talent, and you are continuing to engage and nurture that talent. And that should all be automated as well. They have told you everything you need to know about them, whether that be by giving you that information, giving you a resume or giving you an email address, or just by their actions. We see this all the time on the consumer side, right? And Pottery Barn knows everything about me. So they target me with exactly what you know, I, I see something and Instagrams targeting me like, and then I buy the product, right? We can do that same thing with jobs. As soon as somebody is showing intent of like, I am burnt out, I need a break, I need to switch jobs, I need to think about this, like we should be targeting that thing. Okay, great. I’ve got a job for you. And this is where if we’ve got them, and we’re, you know, following their intent, we can start converting them to where now your recruiters are talking to their hiring managers and saying, Oh, you need a technical consultant. Guess what, I’ve already got a pipeline for you. 12 of them. And here are the 10 that I’ve been most active with our brand recently. Let me reach out to them and it’s a much while we’re waiting for the rep to get approved in the two week process that’s going to take I’ve already got your shortlist of candidates and I never had to advertise that job.
Brent Skinner 31:27
Yeah, yeah. What is what is that move? There’s okay. So those are like the Glengarry Glen Ross leads, right that those are the warm leads. What’s that movie with Alec Baldwin and Albert Gino? And they’re, they’re in real estate. And you know, and the guy says coffee’s for closers. And have you heard of this movie? I can’t. I can’t remember the name of I think it is Glengarry Glen Ross. But the whole idea is that, you know, that the there’s an analogy here so that, you know, only the best agents get the warm leads, right. And the others, you know, they have to kind of, you know, make it on their own. But, but that made me think of that, because those, those are the warm leads those 12 I think he said, 12 right there. I know, it’s just an example out of thin air. But, but those are the warm leads. And you know, if you think about, you know, what, what is like the most inefficient thing a recruiter could be doing, it’s just cold calling, like, yeah, just like, spray and pray. I mean, you know, that’s just, you hear all sorts of different terms. And pray throw spaghetti at the wall? Yeah, exactly. What they’re
Debbie Tuel 32:38
calling is, yeah, I mean, yeah, let’s just put cold calling on there too bright. You can automate that too, because nobody picks up a phone anymore. And you can automate text messaging. You know what, like, fine, if you want to put cold calling on your list, read text messaging is highly efficient, even for job searches. But you can automate that you don’t need somebody behind a computer sitting there texting back can be done for you.
Brent Skinner 33:03
That’s right. And you’re and what you’re doing is, so the another thing that that this achieves, and just just kind of, you know, weaving into what we’ve been talking about it 360 insights is we talked about abstract and concrete HCM, you know, in the, you know, the concrete stuff is it’s easily readily quantifiable from a financial standpoint. So, you know, you talk about all that automated stuff on saving that the AI or the IAA, I love that I get your IRA, right, before you talk about AI. Right. I love that. But that stuff is, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s being much more efficient with your dollars, and so you can save the hiring organization that you’re working with that amount of money. That’s, that’s very easily understand. Yeah, it. Okay, that test is a number that goes right into the GL, you know, and that’s great. Right. But then the other the upside of it is, that’s the concrete part, the abstract part of it is that that’s sort of the upside. So what is how you quantify from a financial standpoint, the ability to speak with 12 really warm leads? All right, okay. You might be able to quantify that from the standpoint of, okay, those recruiters are spending, probably going to spend a lot less time so you know, time to fill is going to take a lot less time for instance, okay, okay. But sure, but then you think about those people, once they’re in the organization, you haven’t, there’s no way to quantify today. Just how great they’re going to be for the organization down the line. So one of the things that I like to say, and this came out of a conversation internally, actually, in the past couple of weeks, you know, your what’s what’s abstract today is going to be concrete later. So what you can quantify what you can’t quantify today, you may well be able to quantify later and this works in the end, you know, the negative two right? If you’re not understanding That because you’re not doing something now, you may not be a going concern in three years. Once you’re going concern, that’s no longer going concern. That’s, that’s the ultimate entry in the in the general ledger, let’s like to say, you know, so, so doing everything that you can today to ensure that your employer brand is buttressed as as much as possible and amplified in the most positive way. And in being able to combine that with, with things that the organization today understands as, as financially beneficial, and can actually record into the, into the the accounting ledger.
Debbie Tuel 35:42
Yeah, and you know, one of the things that we’ve really seen a shift in is talent acquisition saying, Okay, look, we cannot fully own time to fill, because once we’ve handed it over to the hiring manager, we can’t control that right, and like the offer is being made at that point. So we can control time to find time to deliver qualified candidates. And so we’ve seen more ta leaders putting a focus on that, how do we reduce our time to find talent. And so that means that our recruiters have delivered a qualified slate of candidates to that hiring manager and we are going to measure that success. That gives you a piece of the puzzle. Right, but I think we talked about it earlier, how are we getting the big picture? And that’s where you do need the systems to combine? It’s really important to be tracking, are the people that you’re recruiting? Are you able to retain them? Are you looking at your Quick, quick quit ratios, right, the people that you bring in that churn because they were sold something in the recruiting process? Is that true to the organization that has a really good indicator of something that you actually need to fix on the recruiting side, because you’re being dishonest or something, something’s happening, you got to figure out what’s happening, right? So, um, I think you’re absolutely right, like, what what may be graded today will be hard facts moving forward. But we’ve got to get to a point within talent acquisition, and recruiting and HR, where these systems are able to communicate. And there are some HCM platforms out there that have done a really good job opening their ecosystem. But even those that have good API’s, still don’t love to mix and match. There’s a lot of competitive nature, we don’t see the Salesforce type of open ecosystem within HR tech, and I think it’s a big loss to our customers. And something I think our customers, just practitioners need to be pushing on, on HR technology to say, like, we need to work together, we’re gonna make this work.
Brent Skinner 38:03
I was having conversation recently, just as an example. Um, it to me, it just seems almost, I don’t want to say literally impossible, but almost impossible, or so it’s such a gargantuan tall order to, to combine separate ETS with a with a candidate relationship management system. I mean, because to make those to work in, you know, as one, when it’s two separate applications, that to me, just seems to be a very, very difficult task would be maybe more, more advantageous, I don’t know, to combine them or whatever. I don’t know.
Debbie Tuel 38:40
It’s an interesting concept of when we’ve seen playing out for the last 15 years. If you go back to a lot of the big acquisitions that happened, you know, 10 years ago, when SAP acquired success factors and then acquire jobs 12, we saw the start of a consolidation to say, Okay, this should all be one. We’ve also seen it go the opposite direction with, you know, players like workday, or smart recruiters start to build their own CRM, where we’ve come to get in this problem. It’s there’s so different in their purposes, and I haven’t seen anyone get it right yet, which is why we see our customers, Pyrus with any of those players that I just said, right? You’ve got a CRM that is purpose built for communicating to everyone and constantly keeping the cycle going. You’ve got an ATF that is purpose built for clients. They consider candidates for a requisition and once that requisitions close, it is nearly impossible to refine those candidates. So while they agree with you that it would be amazing if that you were in one, I haven’t seen anybody do it well yet. And I think that’s because it’s really hard for like build for those two separate purposes. Once the system, it almost makes more sense to keep them separate and have a really good recruitment marketing platform. And then you know your HCM? Until I’m sure there will be a disruptor out there that will integrate.
Brent Skinner 40:14
Well, the ATMs is almost like, you know, the last mile. It’s analogous to the last mile of an employee compensation, payroll processing, right. You know, there’s, you know, that there’s that last button where you just kind of like, bring the person in a year. And now you’re, it’s like, it’s like when you go into a car or drive to carwash, right? And put your car neutral foot off the brake, you know, and the conveyor brings you in once you’re inside the carwash, once you’re inside the ATMs. And that’s that’s just different, right? The whole whole thing if I could take this, let’s take this all the way, right. Okay. I’m a carwash. And, you know, there’s three carwash drive new car washes in town, how do I get you to come to mind? Right? And once you go through the kiosk, where you pay for the, for the wash, it’s saying it’s 12 bucks where I live, and, you know, okay, that that’s the CRM right. Okay, now you’re getting your parking into the the ATMs. I may have taken that then algae too far. But I think it’s it makes sense, right? You know, you it’s, once you’re in the ETS, you’re, you’re in there, that that’s like it’s already you’re you’re an applicant. Now, where’s the candidate relationship management system, that’s, you’re not necessarily an applicant, applicant means you have applied the candidate, these are people, these are leads that you’re nurturing So, so I love what you’re saying. I mean, it makes a lot of sense. I, you know, I’m looking at the time. And I and I think we may have gotten a little bit long, which is okay, that’s totally fine. But, but I mean, this has been great. Anything, anything that you think you may have missed that, that you were hoping we could talk about, we have a couple more minutes.
Debbie Tuel 41:53
Now, I think we’ve done a good job. I think maybe one thing I’ve noticed, you know, I’ve been talking a lot about large enterprise that tends to be our customer base. But I think these principles can be applied across all sized companies. I do think that this smaller organizations tend to be more nimble and able to execute on these strategies a little bit better, where we need to get to as an industry as a whole as being able to execute that at a large scale. And I think it’s great opportunity in front of us that we’ve done a really good job of making strides if you follow the candies, and the candidate experience or even our recruiting marketing benchmarks report, we are seeing year over year improvement, but we’re seeing baby steps. And I just really hope that in the next, you know, three, five years, we’re able to make much larger steps where people are doing this at, you know, much larger quantities than just in the innovators.
Brent Skinner 42:50
Yeah. Oh, you know, the great resignation might
Debbie Tuel 42:53
might might propel people forward. You know, you have two options. At this point, you either take the short term view, and you burn out your recruiters because you’re just solving for the like fire that’s burning right now. Or you say this is a big problem that we’ve got to fix. And we need to take a, you know, 12 month 24 month view, and let’s re engineer things and I think those that reengineer things are the ones that are going to
Brent Skinner 43:19
beautifully put. Thank you so much, Debbie. It’s been a pleasure to have you on the podcast. Really interesting conversation today. Thank you for joining us. Thanks, Brent. Pleasure being on. Have a great day. You too. Take care. Bye