What happens when employers rethink?



I read this feature on @BBCNews with interest.

It’s natural to keep doing what’s comfortable – right? Even though employers don’t seem able to find the right talent for their businesses, they keep using the same recruitment formula – job ad, cv sift, interview, maybe further interviews, hire, start the on-boarding process. This, in my experience, is a heavy pressure on time and money. Why keep recruiting this way when:

  • CVs don’t really tell you anything relevant about the applicant
  • The interview process doesn’t give any insight nor confidence the match is right
  • Employee’s sense of belonging and connection with the employer starts with the on-boarding process, which in traditional recruitment comes after hiring, generally lasts one week depending on the role.
  • Generic on-boarding processes vary in quality often they don’t include any wellbeing or workplace psychological wellbeing – critical in all workplaces across all industries including higher education as we have seen with the introduction of ISO45003.
  • This process is a barrier to the hidden talent within local communities who need a different way to gain employment and flourish delivering a positive impact to their employer, family and community.

In the BBC News feature, the CMI (Chartered Management Institute) have polled employers and see the clear divide between the enthusiastic recruitment of younger people compared with older.

Having devised and run Growing Talent for over nine years, it’s clear the benefits to all in ripping up the recruitment rule book and disrupting the norm to get innovative results.

On Growing Talent, there are no cvs, job descriptions nor formal interviews. We create a level playing field for applicants and employers. Employers select on those they believe can grow into their roles with the collaborative mentoring Growing Talent delivers.

First stage employer selection is via ‘speed dating’ – no questions on ‘what’s your greatest strength’ or ‘where do you want to be in five years”!

Anyone shortlisted by employers, undergoes a one-to-one meeting on their site to see where the end role is based, get a feel for the environment and team, gain a real understanding of transport costs and time to make an informed decision to go ahead.

Those offered and accepted undergo a weeklong orientation with me including accreditation in the global i-act course for managing and promoting positive mental health and wellbeing. A journey book containing an audit evaluation trail and a mentor for both parties delivers a strong pre-onboarding process and connection with the employer – before even being hired.

Next comes a four week in role paid mutual evaluation which gives the participant the tools and confidence to showcase their ability and future potential in the role and team.

Retention of talent recruited via Growing Talent is around 2 years before people move on within the business to new roles or externally with other employers continuing to grow.

Our age limit is no under 18s. We had no upper age limit. In the words of the employers who have recruited through Growing Talent – they would never have recruited the people they did via traditional recruitment methods because they could not have been able to see their hidden talent and potential.

We have many examples of people deemed ‘older’ like those depicted in the BBC News feature.

V.E applied to Growing Talent when she was 62. A yoga teacher, V.E had a long held dream of opening a retreat to deliver yoga and associated therapies. V.E accepted a role within a front of house role in a corporate setting in London working all shifts, full-time for over two years before leaving in May 2021 to set-up a retreat business!

In 2018, D.F had been out of work for 10 years at the time of applying to Growing Talent just over 50 years of age. With the encouragement and empowerment of the Growing Talent process, they secured their role, stayed for over three years before moving to another employer where they are still working.

Disrupting the norm in recruitment isn’t just essential in attracting ‘older’ applicants but anyone who has lost their confidence and feels a little invisible.

How much talent is being wasted because it’s hidden?

Time for a rethink ?