Recruiting – the Cisco Way

Last Updated: 10 Jan 2022
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RECRUITING - THE CISCO WAY Answer part a The importance of recruitment and selection Recruiters play an important role in the success of an organization. They essentially act as a filter that -- when used properly -- only selects the best candidates. In a constantly changing business world, companies need to hire people who are adaptable, loyal, knowledgeable, dependable and confident, thereby creating a foundation for success. Cost Cost is a major reason why effective recruitment and selection is important. There are many ways in which poor recruitment practices can result in financial losses.

For example, if a candidate's competency is not accurately assessed, he may make mistakes that can hinder productivity. If he needs to be retrained or replaced, this takes up more company time that could otherwise be invested toward remaining competitive. Retention Improper recruitment and selection practices can often result in high turnover or involuntary separations. If a recruiter is not careful when analyzing resumes and conducting interviews, he may hire an employee with a weak work ethic or a tendency to move quickly from one job to the next -- "job hopping. Another so-called "red flag" is a gradual decrease in responsibility Loyalty and Productivity Loyalty and productivity are linked. Interviewers should inquire about a candidate's greatest achievements throughout the career. Generally, loyal employees will have a track record of striving for excellence, resulting in a more competitive, innovative and profitable business. Legal Issues Discrimination is a serious concern among recruiters. If discriminatory hiring practices can be proven, this could result in serious harm, both financially and in terms of reputation.

Things such as language proficiency or physical capabilities should not be listed unless they are absolutely essential for the role. Influence on recruitment process of company by changing dynamics of the global InfoTech industry … Recruitment is undergoing a change. Not just a small scale evolution but a fundamental seismic shift. A change that will see the recruiting landscape change forever. A change that will see many traditional recruiters falling behind and being replaced by new, differently skilled recruiters, ready for the challenges.

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The current global recruitment landscape is changing. The global war for the best talent is real, (note the use of “best”); talent is geographically mobile and happy to move for the best job; talent is more demanding, not only in pay but career progression and training and development; the experienced talent pool is shrinking in volume; convergence of talent, as recruiters fighting in a smaller talent pool attract candidates across different sectors.

Recruitment agencies are failing to be creative in attracting unique talent to their databases, hence perpetuating “recruitment chess” of the same talent across companies. Not everyone is looking for a job. Different market research exists but the benchmark seems to suggest that, for any given role, only 10% of relevant/experienced talent is actively looking for a role at any given moment in time. That means that 90% of candidates relevant for your role/s are not engaged in job searches. The best candidates typically among them.

Hence in a candidate short market, with a host of competition for particular skill-sets, the global war for the best talent is being fought out among 10% of active job seekers. Businesses can no longer control what is said. Today there is a shift in the balance of power. Technology is shifting the power away from the publishers, media, the elite, corporate to us, and the people. Recruiters need to embrace this, as must as their PR ; Marketing departments. The rise in the use of the Internet is probably the most significant development in the recruitment field in the early 21st century.

There is, however, little evidence that the Internet produces better-quality candidates, but it does deliver more of them and more employers report that online recruitment made it easier to find the right candidate. Candidates themselves are increasingly choosing this medium to search for jobs, with 89 per cent of graduates only searching online for jobs. The benefits of online recruitment to employers include the speed, reduced administrative burden and costs, and no geographical limits. The benefits to applicants are that t is easier, faster and more convenient to post a CV or search a job site online than to read a selection of printed media. This is all very well if you have skills that are highly in demand, but if employers are tending to post vacancies on their own websites, candidates still have to trawl the web in order to find vacancies and even ‘web savvy’ applicants may be deterred by the perceived impersonal nature of online recruitment. Also there are still some people who are either not comfortable using the Internet or do not have ready access to a computer.

Thus there is still a role then for conventional advertising. Whatever the pros and cons, online recruitment continues to expand and employers are now combining more traditional methods with online recruitment by using printed adverts to refer jobseekers to an Internet vacancy (Murphy, 2008). Other employers such as Microsoft are enhancing its brand visibility and credibility by having a wider Internet recruitment presence. Microsoft uses its online tools to impact and influence its public image and reach a broader audience and thus create a diverse workplace with varied skills and talents.

One initiative is the introduction of ‘corporate recruitment blogs’. The idea is that potential job candidates may be attracted to the company through what they see on the blog and make contact through the specific blogger who will initiate the recruitment process on behalf of the company. Cisco, well regarded for its leading-edge products, is also known for its progressive corporate culture. The company builds employee loyalty with generous benefits as well as work schedules that respect employees' outside interests.

Like many high-technology companies, Cisco hands out bonuses to employees who make hiring recommendations that pan out. The company also offers contests and prizes, in one instance rewarding a worker who recruited the most salespeople with a one-year Porsche Boxster lease. Answer part b CISCO’s recruitment philosophy The company followed a policy of hiring ‘top 10-15%’ people in the networking industry. This was a mechanism to remain the industry leader. Its vision statement was, “Attracting, growing and retaining great talent is critical to sustaining Cisco’s competitive advantage. ” The company began to use newer echniques like the ‘build-the-buzz’ strategy, which was centered on the primary market for its products, i. e. , the Internet. Cisco changed the way it wanted advertisements in newspapers. It listed specific job openings and featured its Internet address in its ads and invited prospective candidates to apply. This helped in directing all job seekers to its website where it could inexpensively post hundreds of openings and provides information regarding them. The website also offered features through which applicants could fill their resumes online or create one with the help of Cisco’s resume builder.

Friends program The focus group’s exercise ensured that a candidate would approach the company if he had been informed by a friend about better opportunities at Cisco. This led to the launch of the friends program in April 1996. Cisco also organized art fairs, beer festivals and certain annual events in which people from Silicon Valley participated More than 1,000 Cisco employees volunteered for the Friends program, attracted by the referral fee, which started at $500 and a lottery ticket for a free trip to Hawaii for each prospect they befriended and who was ultimately hired.

Cisco also found that applicants and recruiters were not totally comfortable with, the time-consuming recruiting process. To speed up the process, Cisco hired in house headhunters to identify qualified candidates for managers. Amazing people It encouraged internal referrals for recruitment through a program called ‘Amazing People. ’ This facilitated the employees to refer their friends’ and acquaintances for positions within Cisco. Employees earned a referral bonus if the company hired the person they referred.

After streamlining its recruitment policies in 1996, Cisco conducted an Employee survey to find out how the new recruits felt on their first day at work. Cisco launched Fast Start, an employee orientation initiative. It installed software, which tracked the hiring process and alerted the team about the new recruit’s arrival. As a result, every new recruit started with a fully functional workspace and a whole day of training in desktop tools. Efficiency of various recruitment tools Fast Start not only eliminated all problems but it also enabled new recruits to know about ‘life inside the company. Every new recruit was assigned a ‘buddy’ who clarified all doubts and answered questions about Cisco. New recruits also had a two-day course called the ‘Cisco Business Essentials,’ which covered company’s history and business units. The managers of the new recruits received an automatically generated e-mail two weeks after their new recruit arrival. It reminded them to review their departmental initiatives and personal goals. Cisco believed that its new recruitment philosophy should also be made a part of the overall corporate culture.

Cisco’s job site was recording around 500,000 hits per month. The company generated a stream of reports about who visited the site. Cisco’s hiring cycle also came down to 45 days. The recruitment costs were also below the industry average. Referral rates at Cisco were twice the industry norm. The retention rate of the Company had also increased. Analysts claimed that Cisco’s innovative and aggressive recruiting initiatives were to a large extent responsible for the company’s expansion at 40% per year and recruiting 250 employees every week.

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