Hiring the Right Leaders with Direct Retention Search

June 21, 2017

It’s no secret that leaders can make or break companies’ and organizations’ success. Hiring the right leaders is proving to be a challenge for a majority of companies in the United States. A Harvard Business Review article, “When Leaders are Hired for Talent but Fired for not Fitting in” said, “Based on a recent McKinsey report, fewer than 30% of organization can find the right C-suite leaders, and that newly appointed executives take too long to adapt.” Although there is a vast array of reasons why a new leadership hire may not work out, Harvard Business Review shared three errors organizations should fix to upgrade their selection of leaders:

  • Organizations need to understand the leader’s motives and values
  • Organizations need to understand their own culture
  • Organizations need to be realistic about the new leader’s ability to drive change within the company culture

At Direct Recruiters, Inc. and Direct Consulting Associates (DCA), we also noticed the growing problem of leadership retention, and companies’ ability to hire the right fit. Our solution for this is Direct Retention, which enables small to midsize companies to hire the best executive talent and leadership with confidence and reduced financial risk. Fully vetting candidates with our independent consultants gives us the ability to monetarily guarantee your key professionals will be retained for 1 to 2 years. Below are the following challenges organizations face and the solutions Direct Retention offers.

The Challenge: Finding Top Talent

  • Companies need talented individuals to fill key roles, but this talent is hard to find.

The Solution

  • DRI and DCA will source and recruit high-impact talent to fill your key positions. To do this, DRI and DCA will provide a consultative team approach through 5 phases including profiling client company to clearly understand business culture and the position, reviewing the ideal candidate profile, finding and providing clients with candidates to interview, assisting with the hiring process of chosen candidate, and finally following up after the hire.

The Challenge: Culture Fit

  • Companies know which skills and traits are needed to be successful in their organization. Finding professionals that match those skills may not be entirely clear through an interview process.

The Solution

  • DRI and DCA’s independent consultant, Pradco will conduct skills and cultural assessments backed by science and analytics to evaluate the candidates’ culture fit to the company, making it more clear who the best fit for the company will be.

The Challenge: Compensation

  • Salary and compensation is a large part of a candidates’ decision to accept a new job offer. If companies aren’t offering the right package, it could result in the loss of a great candidate.

The Solution

  • Organizational Consulting Group specializes in compensation studies to ensure offers and benefits packages or competitive and that the client is offering the candidate a reasonable compensation for the position.

The Challenge: Legal Restrictions

  • In the recruiting process, it is common for candidates to have contracts or legal restrictions that could prevent them from changing jobs.

The Solution

  • DRI and DCA’s independent Direct Retention Consultant, Dinn, Hochman & Potter LLC provides legal support to establish legitimacy and enforceability of any contractual, statutory, or common law restrictions from previous employers.

The Challenge: Relocation

  • Top candidates oftentimes need to be relocated to their new position. Clients need to offer the candidates a way for them to make a smooth transition for themselves and their families.

The Solution

HR & Relo Advisors provides relocation assistance and planning to companies to ensure smooth onboarding and transition of the new candidates.

Working Remotely Has Advantages & Disadvantages…Is it Right for You?

June 7, 2017

Last year, it was estimated that almost 45% of US employees worked remotely, mostly from home.  By 2020, it is estimated that about 50% of the workforce will be working remotely. Cloud services, mobile platforms and video conferencing have made remote work possible and very acceptable to both employees and employers.

Many industries are making it known that they are friendly to telecommuting including IT, HR/Recruiting, Education, Accounting, Health, Law, Marketing, Nonprofit, News/Media, Sports, and Travel. In addition, the site FlexJobs.com was created to help those seeking telecommuting opportunities connect with companies and jobs that offer remote work, flexible schedules, part-time hours, and freelance assignments.

However, with everything, there are pros and cons. So before you make the change from working in an office to working at home or from another location, you might want to first consider these advantages and disadvantages:

Advantages

Work from anywhere and anytime. No longer are you limited by a geographic location or a clock. Thanks to telecommuting, employees are now able to work from pretty much anywhere at any time of day. The traditional 9-5 working day no longer applies.

No daily commute. Most people don’t enjoy their daily trek into an office. Working remotely allows you to avoid a lengthy commute by car, train, or bus which enables you to start your workday earlier and calmer.

Flexibility. You would be in charge of your own schedule and possibly more efficient. Working from home and the flexibility it offers may also suit your family life.  You would have the freedom to run errands, take the kids to school, attend school or sports functions, etc. as long as you get the job done and meet any pre-established deadlines.

Less costly.  Working from a remote location or from home, means you save money on transportation costs, eating lunch out, and purchasing a business wardrobe. Unless you do video conferencing, you can wear informal clothes and no longer need to budget for that work wardrobe.

Better health.  Remote workers say they have more time to incorporate physical exercise into their day.  In addition, they are not exposed to sick co-workers. On the flip side, if you’re the sick person, staying home allows you to take care of yourself while still being productive.

Fewer interruptions.  Working remotely allows you to focus on the job at hand without the distractions of socializing and office chatter.  You have the ability to get into the zone and buckle down to complete your assignment.

Disadvantages

Need for high self-discipline. It takes a lot of dedication and self-control to work at home and not succumb to distractions. It’s easy to lose motivation and focus which are pitfalls to your success. Therefore, it’s important to be intentional about how you’re using your time. You need to structure your environment in such a way that keeps you engaged.

Lack of workplace social life. You can easily interact with co-workers and clients via technology but it’s not the same as face-to-face meetings, lunching together or just everyday banter. Remote workers often feel isolated.  To counteract isolation, try going into the office now and then or schedule lunch dates with bosses and colleagues.

Overlooked for promotions. There’s a danger of being overlooked for promotions or career development opportunities when working remotely. Those visible employees in the office who are aggressively campaigning for the position will probably have the edge. You can try and counter with regular visits to the office and open lines of communication. You need to express your interest in the upward mobility you want.

Total dependency on technology.  As a remote worker, you have to rely on email, smart phones, laptop, etc. to stay in contact with the office and clients. You are totally dependent on the right technology to be in business. It’s also up to you to keep up with technology that evolves so rapidly.

Blurred lines. You would think that working remotely would allow you to enjoy more of a work/life balance but actually, it doesn’t.  When you don’t have a clear separation of workplace and home space, they can blend together. You might not be able to just switch off from work and find yourself constantly checking your smartphone and emails.

There’s no doubt that remote work is on the rise. It’s easier than ever to stay connected in our era of email and smartphones and many employees believe it increases their quality of life.

Please let us know if you work remotely and if there are any other advantages or disadvantages than listed. You may comment below.

Norm Volsky Interviews Evie Jennes, President & Chief Commercial Officer, swyMed

June 6, 2017

Norm Volsky, Director of Mobile HIT at DRI recently had the chance to interview Evie Jennes, President & Chief Commercial Officer, swyMed. Evie shared information about swyMed, their latest solutions, her career, and insights into the telemedicine industry.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and swyMed.

As the President and Chief Commercial Officer, I am ultimately responsible for the sales, partnerships and marketing direction at swyMed. When it comes to working with a company, I am particularly attracted to young organizations that need to grow. I also love to travel and have been working internationally for more than 20 years including 7 years in Eastern Europe and more specifically, Russia. My time there included working at a number of start-ups in that region as well as for larger multi-nationals in the early 1990’s. In terms of my career, I have spent about half of my time in Healthcare, and the other half in FMCG, VC Funding, and various manufacturing projects.

As far as swyMed goes, a major barrier for telemedicine to date has been the bandwidth, or I should say the lack thereof.  More specifically, there is simply often not enough, in both rural and urban settings, to reliably conduct video encounters for real-time telemedicine outside the four walls of a hospital. At swyMed our whole business was built around solving this problem. We believe that we have addressed these issues head on with our truly unique video software which has a patented data transport protocol that overcomes latency, and our latest  solution, the DOT Telemedicine Backpack, which leverages this software.  Between the two technologies, we are able to deliver reliable connectivity, and a video encounter from basically anywhere which is a huge differentiator in the market.

What is swyMed’s key differentiator in the Telemedicine market?

I think what people need to realize, and they slowly are as telemedicine moves outside of the hospital, is that even if you are the most sophisticated telemedicine vendor in the marketplace, with the most robust virtual care platform, if the end user doesn’t have the bandwidth to reliably conduct video encounters outside of a hospital or clinic, the technology is limited. When we founded swyMed, we made the decision to focus specifically on providing the necessary solutions to make telemedicine possible in rural areas as well as urban areas with congested networks. Today, our patented data transport protocol allows users to get around traditional networking challenges, to deliver on-demand video telemedicine encounters in even the most rural and remote locations, where they need telemedicine the most. Day in and day out we work with our clients offering a Mobile Integrated Healthcare solution that enables them to reach places and patients where it was never before possible.

Tell us about your DOT Telemedicine Backpack.

The DOT Telemedicine Backpack is swyMed’s most recent and largest product launch to date, which we scheduled around this year’s HIMSS 2017 conference. The offering is the industry’s first lightweight, mobile telemedicine solution that truly gives care providers the ability to connect to doctors for real-time video encounters-- anytime, anywhere,  even in the most remote areas, or on the go. Truly, a “Doc-on Tap.”

For example, say you live in a rural area where communications infrastructure is limited or in a city where networks get congested -- telemedicine will likely be challenging, potentially having a significant impact on the speed and quality of care and ultimately outcomes. Not to mention it is extremely frustrating not to be able to connect when we want to.  We have likely all experienced this with our home internet, Skype, FaceTime, etc. But in this situation, these challenges can ultimately lead to care-givers choosing to forgo using the telemedicine technology they have, which in turn limits care.

Armed with swyMed’s DOT Telemedicine Backpack, users can now leverage even the faintest whiff of a network signal and elevate it to a level where high quality, reliable, virtual care is possible regardless of location or infrastructure challenges.  And for the areas that have zero networks, we have satellite built in, thus offering a connection literally everywhere on earth. The DOT Telemedicine Backpack is an ideal solution for mobile telestroke programs, community paramedicine, remote triage, disaster response, and critical transport as it extends the reach of providers and care-givers.

What are the biggest challenges on your plate right now?

As a leader at a young company, driving visibility and sales of our software and the DOT Telemedicine Backpack will of course remain a top priority for me throughout 2017. One of the biggest challenges right now is that our prospective customers need to find a way to pay for the DOT Telemedicine Backpack. The excitement around the DOT Telemedicine Backpack is palpable in virtually every meeting we have.  Our customers very quickly see the many challenges we solve, but purse strings remain tied, and budgets tight. Health systems need to change the dynamic in how they view the price for our (and other) solutions.  It would be helpful if the ROI, which in our case is quite significant, was weighed against the initial investment in the DOT Telemedicine Backpack a bit more. It is being done, but not consistently as of yet.  We as an industry need to continue educating our customers on how we are ultimately saving them money and improving patient outcomes.

The pace of telemedicine adoption can also be a challenge. The industry recognizes the obvious benefits and value that telehealth brings to care, but these findings need to be backed up by legislative changes that reimburse for telemedicine visits. The good news is that every day telemedicine is growing in terms of reach and impact, and with this success we do see some movement on that front. We hope to see that trend continuing.

Other than ATA, what conferences and trade shows do you attend?

Besides ATA, HIMSS is another big event for us obviously as it’s the biggest healthcare IT show of the year. We also make the EMS State of the Sciences Conference (dubbed by media as "A Gathering of Eagles") a priority as it has become one of the most progressive and important EMS conferences nationally. Given our business model, the emergency management community is a top target for us so it’s great to be able to be part of the conversation related to the most cutting-edge information and advances in EMS patient care.

In the coming year we will also focus on particular states that would be best served by our solution and attend conferences there.

How do you manage your geographically dispersed team?

We get asked this question a lot despite all the technology we have at our disposal today, many people still feel as though you should be in the same room or same building to be successful. At swyMed we challenge this belief by having a team that’s dispersed over two continents.  And it works because first and foremost we have colleagues that work exceedingly well together. I have been part of many organizations and this is one of the absolute best teams, if not the best, that I have been a member of. We complement each other’s skill sets, we are completely frank with each other so there are no politics, and we genuiunely really like each other as people, which is so important.  We also use our own video software platform for weekly management meetings, sales meetings, and spontaneous meetings.  The technology allows us to still have the ‘watercooler chat’, but on video vs. in person. Then of course we do see each other at customer visits, conferences, etc., which is always fun, and fruitful.

On your LinkedIn page, you mention having the entrepreneurial spirit. Since this isn't something you are taught, how did you develop it within yourself?

I think that I was born with an entrepreneurial spirit and it was then encouraged by my parents, and especially my father.  I was the kid with the lemonade stand, who was canvassing the neighborhood for babysitting jobs until I turned 16 and could get a ‘real’ job.

The seven years I spent in Russia and other Eastern European countries really developed my ‘entrepreneurial spirit’ as it was the ‘Wild, Wild East’. If you were not creative with problem solving, resourceful, and entrepreneurial you were not going to make it even with large multi-nationals budgets.

What are the traits or qualities of a great leader?

I managed fairly large groups of people when working for multi-nationals and this is when I developed my management skills.  As a leader I had a few rules that served me well and I still follow them today. Hire people that are smarter than you are, ask good questions, and listen to the answers.  Treat the people you work with, and those that work for you with respect. The people that work for you should feel and know that you have their back. Do what is ‘right’ even if in the short term it is not in your best interest.

 Norm Volsky
Director of Mobile HIT
Direct Recruiters, Inc.
440-996-0059
nvolsky@directrecruiters.com

Robots Take Jobs But Also Create Them

May 23, 2017

By Barb Miller, Marketing Manager

A recent report produced by Pricewaterhouse Coopers states that 38 percent of U.S. jobs (nearly 4 in 10) will be replaced by robots and artificial intelligence (AI) by the early 2030s. With so many jobs disappearing, many futurists and economists are considering the possibility of a jobless future.

We’re more optimistic and don’t believe it’s all doom and gloom. While it’s true that some people will see their jobs become obsolete, there will be opportunities for workers to acquire new skills in order to obtain other well-paying jobs. Robots in the workforce will not merely take jobs away, but also create them.

Just ask Amazon. Robots are helping to create 100,000 new jobs over the next 18 months! Thanks in part to more robots in its fulfillment centers, Amazon has been able to drive down shipping costs and pass those savings on to customers. Cheaper shipping made more people use Amazon, and the company hired more workers to meet this increased demand.

At IBM, the arrival of “Watson,” a broad collection of online tools that use artificial intelligence to help diagnose disease, among other things, is considered a job transformation and not job replacement.  Watson is not stealing jobs. It operates alongside humans, not in lieu of them.

Yes, the robotics revolution is here. There’s no way to avoid it. We advise that you take advantage of this new era and consider robotics as a career path. There’s a high demand for robotics talent in all the major industries including agriculture, health & medical, retail & hospitality, consumer goods, infrastructure, security, energy & mining, manufacturing, and supply chain.

What are the hottest jobs in robotics right now?

Robotics Engineer: A robotics engineer has the responsibility for developing the robot on paper. It takes research and high technicality. Also, as a robot is being built, an engineer will oversee practically every aspect of the development of the robot.

Software Developer: Each robot has a computerized internal system that is written and coded by a software developer. Obviously, the software developer must be highly skilled and proficient in computing coding and software design.

Technician: Robotics technicians build, maintain, test and repair robots. They may also work on robotics-related automation production systems. Therefore, they must have a strong background in hardware, electronics, and circuitry.

Sales Engineer: This professional will prospect, qualify, quote and close business opportunities. They must also be able to consult with the buyer and make any changes in the design to satisfy their needs.

Operator: Robotics operators are needed to ensure basic and safe robotic operations and adjustments as required.  They often read blueprints and ensure correct machine settings.

What traits are essential for those entering the robotics field? According to ROBOTIQ.com , here are a few crucial ones:

Systems Thinking: The understanding of a robotics system by examining the linkages and interactions between the components that comprise the entirety of that defined system.

Problem Solving: The ability to foresee problems before they even arise and troubleshooting if they do arise.

Programming Mindset: Very essential skill for robotics. Robotic programmers will interact with hardware and electronics plus must be comfortable learning any new language.

Mathematically Inclined: To succeed in robotics, you will need a good grasp of at least algebra, calculus and geometry. This is because robotics relies on being able to understand and manipulate abstract concepts, often representing those concepts as functions or equations.

Good Communication Skills:  Roboticists are a channel of communication between the different disciplines. Therefore, communication skills are vital. Being able to use your speaking and writing skills effectively is important. Also, very helpful is having good instructing skills.

Technology Design: Being able to design things that work is a must. It also means being able to figure out why something isn’t working properly and come up with possible solutions and having skills in repairing.

There’s no doubt, robots and AI will change the landscape of the job market and a new generation of jobs will emerge. The robotic revolution will come with a new wave of hiring.

Has your job been affected by Robotics and AI? If so, how? Please comment in the box below.

Norm Volsky Highlights Companies at ATA 2017

May 8, 2017

By Norm Volsky, Director of Mobile HIT

As an executive search consultant in the Healthcare IT space, it is my job to be able to identify emerging technology companies that are poised for significant growth. Since I am specifically focused on Mobile Technology and Telehealth, I have plenty of companies from which to choose. I do research daily and during my discussions with industry thought leaders, I make it a point to ask them what companies in the space they find intriguing and unique. I feel it is my job as a member of this industry to share this knowledge/information with my network so that you could be exposed to these organizations too.

Below are companies I have had my eye on all year that I met with in person at ATA to learn more about their story and vision.

TruClinic- Cloud-based Telemedicine platform that easily connects patients and providers inside their existing workflow. Their hardware agnostic approach enables their customers to launch a telemedicine program with zero capital expense. TruClinic allows patients to schedule appointments and pay bills online to enhance the patient experience. TruClinic is also focused on improving clinician satisfaction and reduce the total cost of healthcare which is perfectly geared towards the value-based care model.  Security of the platform is unparalleled being compliant with: HIPAA, HITECH, COPPA, PIPEDA & SSAE 16-II. Simply put, TruClinic helps increase accessibility to healthcare by providing a consistent patient experience regardless of the modality of care delivery, whether traditional face-to-face or virtual.

Pera Health- Clinical Surveillance solution that identifies at risk patients using predictive modeling and real time vital sign data. The founders created an algorithm called the Rothman index that uses Vital Signs, Lab Results and Nursing Assessments. Pera Health’s solution reduces Alarm Fatigue, the number of False Positives, Code Blues, unplanned ICU transfers and Sepsis Mortality. In January, the company raised $14M in funding. Pera Health helped both Houston Methodist and Yale New Haven to reduce their mortality rate 30% in nine months and twelve months respectively.

Cloudbreak- Originally a remote interpretation service company that was founded 14 years ago. Since then, they have transitioned to not only provide interpretations services in over 200+ languages but to also provide telemedicine capabilities to its over 650+ hospital customers. Cloudbreak facilitates over 70,000 interpretations monthly. This unique platform allows doctors to be able to bring in an interpreter and a specialist anywhere in the world onto a tele-consult with a patient to provide world class care.

Grand Rounds- Enables patients to get World Class second opinions by leveraging telemedicine. They have been able to attract some of the world’s top specialists on the platform by exposing them to the most complex and intellectually stimulating cases.  Grand Rounds helps its customers improve employee/patient satisfaction, reduce absenteeism and improve clinical outcomes by giving their employees/patients access to the top specialists in the country. Grand Rounds now has 50 state coverage and recently just opened their Maine office.

Fitango Health- Care Management and Patient Engagement vendor helping its customers move towards value-based care. Their HIPAA compliant solution enables all the stakeholders to communicate including: Care Managers, Care Givers, Providers, Network Managers, the Patient and their family. Fitango’s approach is preventative in nature and is geared towards the post-acute setting. The goal is to reduce readmissions and improve adherence to the patient’s care plan.

Azalea Health- EHR, PM and RCM vendor that uniquely has telehealth imbedded into the EMR which solves the reimbursement issue. The solution suite includes patient portal and scheduling capabilities. Due to the fact that many of Azalea’s customers are Rural, there was a need for telehealth which gives physicians access to additional patients.

Cohero Health- Chronic Disease Management app focused on Asthma and COPD. Cohero’s mission is to transform respiratory care through smart mobile devices to enable real time monitoring and adherence. By leveraging Cohero’s devices that send patient data via the cloud, Nurses, Pharmacists and Pulmonologists can intervene when necessary when a patient is at risk. The solutions Cohero provides allow the patient and their care team to monitor the use of their inhaler (both daily use and emergency) and test for lung capacity.

Sensely- Developed a nurse avatar powered by AI named Molly that communicates with patients via their mobile device. The disruptive platform was built to improve the patient experience by focusing on empathy and clinical support. All the data collected is sent to the patient’s clinician so they can monitor risk factors and adjust clinical protocol. Sensely raised $8M in series B funding. Sensely already works with the Mayo Clinic and is launching a program with NHS in the UK.

Carena- Carena is a software-based virtual care provider for health systems. Carena started as a primary care house call service in 2000 and has since evolved into a telemedicine company. Carena works with more than 120 hospitals including Ascension, Catholic Health Initiatives, and University of Washington Medicine. They focus on helping health systems get better connected to consumers in their local markets by providing an easy and convenient way to access the health system anytime, anywhere, and navigate cases more appropriate for virtual care out of the ED and urgent care. Carena works with hospitals and health systems to supplement the services they have and resell the virtual care product to employers and health plans—not competing with the health system by taking patients away (like some telemedicine companies do that work with Health Plans and Employers).

Wellpepper- Patient Engagement platform that improves patient satisfaction, clinical outcomes and access. Wellpepper completed a Parkinson’s study at Boston University and the patients saw a 9% increase in mobility compared to a 12% reduction in the control group. They also have research studies with Harvard, Brandeis and UW Medicine. Their CEO, Anne Weiler was asked to speak at ATA on a panel for Tele-rehab for total joint replacement recovery.

Vivify Health- Remote Patient Monitoring Platform helping move the industry toward value-based care. Helping its patients manage their chronic disease, Vivify is one of the leaders in mobile population health management. In 2016, Vivify not only signed UPMC as a customer, but the health system also participated in their recent $17M Series B investment round. Vivify, along with Iron Bow Technologies were awarded a $258M telehealth contract by the VA in 2017.

Avizia- Robust end-to-end telehealth solution suite that connects any doctor to any patient at any time. Avizia as a company has made it their mission to advance healthcare by helping all patients have the ability to get top quality healthcare regardless of their location or situation. In October of 2016, Avizia wrapped up a $18M Series A funding round led by NY Presbyterian and Northwell Health.

ZipnosisProvides its customer a significant ROI which has been proven to convert 25% of patients from the telemedicine platform to in person customers with an average spend of $3K per year. The providers that were using the Zipnosis platform met guideline adherence up to 95%. Key customers include: Baylor Scott and White, UCLA Health and Mission Health.

Medici- Created WhatsApp for healthcare with an emphasis on user experience. Medici built a business platform for providers to communicate HIPAA compliantly with their patients. While attending SXSW, they had 1500+ app downloads and 17% of people did a consult using the app which is unheard of in the telemedicine space. The text, phone and video capabilities allow for seamless communication, e-prescribing and referrals. Providers can also bill via the app which caters to patients with high deductible plans. Medici is launching in South Africa in May and is looking to expand their international footprint.

I remember going to this show three years ago in Baltimore and I am amazed at how much the industry has moved towards being software focused. The software vendors are definitely trending up as they had the largest and shiniest booths. I always come back amazed at how passionate and innovative this industry is as a whole. All of the companies above are helping drive change towards value based care and I feel so lucky to be able work in this industry every day.

Norm Volsky
Director of Mobile HIT
Direct Recruiters, Inc.
440-996-0059
nvolsky@directrecruiters.com

Attracting the Best Food Service Equipment Candidates

May 3, 2017

By Rachel Makoski, Executive Recruiter, Food Service Equipment

The success of a company relies on having the right talent to fill key roles. Especially in such a niche industry like Food Service Equipment, hiring managers and companies may find themselves wondering what the best ways to attract talent are. Below are 6 key factors in making sure the best candidates want to work for your Food Service Equipment company.

1.  Promoting the Food Service Industry

The Food Service Equipment industry is booming and has a variety of career opportunities, but it is important for hiring managers and companies to promote and build the profile of the industry to be more attractive to candidates and promote those opportunities.  Unless a candidate comes from a long line of Food Service Equipment sales people or the like, it isn’t a career path that most college students are considering or have even heard of, so raising industry awareness is key to growing the potential candidate pool.

2.  Promoting Your Company

Because working in the Food Service Equipment field isn’t necessarily considered an alluring career at first mention, it is even more crucial that hiring managers are passionate about their careers and their company. Excelling in the industry and transferring that passion in the recruiting and interviewing process is vital to gaining the interest of qualified candidates.

3.  Culture

The best candidates not only have the skills for the job position, but they also fit in well with the company’s culture. This is why it is important to strive for the best work environment for employees.  Whether your company focuses on work-life balance, an innovative office space, fun employee events, or all of the above, there are a variety of factors that play into a great culture.  It is important for Food Service Equipment employers to listen to what employees are looking for in their work environment, and build upon that.

4.  Decide What Experience is Necessary

Hiring managers should clearly know what experience is absolutely necessary for the position and where they are willing to make concessions. Candidates will inevitably have stronger experience in some areas more than others, so it is important to identify what skills are vital for the position and where there is room for learning, etc. Food Service Equipment hiring managers are commonly looking for drive and translatable skills as opposed to direct experience, for example, having related capital equipment experience and a sense of drive that can’t be taught is usually more important than direct experience with a specific type of equipment.

5.  Clearly Communicating the Job Requirements

Job descriptions tend to either be difficult to understand what the employer is looking for, or extremely vague. It is important for Food Service Equipment employers and hiring managers to effectively communicate the requirements of the position. A poor job description can immediately turn off a potential applicant.

6.  Competitive Salaries and Benefits

Perhaps it goes without saying, but money is often a big factor in a candidate’s decision to accept or decline a job offer.  When it comes to the interviewing and hiring process, it is beneficial to be transparent about benefits and pay so that candidates have a clear understanding of what they might expect in an offer. When deciding on a compensation structure it is vital to look at what the market dictates for similar roles to ensure that your company can be competitive to those candidates that are truly key players in the Food Service Equipment industry.

In today’s extremely candidate-driven market, attracting the right candidates is more challenging than ever, particularly in such a focused industry. I’m interested to hear your thoughts on the subject. Perhaps you’ve had success using other methods, or have a perspective I haven’t considered. I welcome your feedback: rmakoski@directrecruiters.com

Deposits and Withdraws

How to give as much as receive when interviewing passive candidates

By Matthew Cohen, Practice Leader of Energy & Sustainability and HVAC/R

May 3, 2017

When interviewing a candidate for a job, the goal is discovering as much information as possible in order to decide if the person we are interviewing is the right fit for the position.  However, when interviewing passive candidates, i.e. those candidates who are currently working and are possibly being recruited, we often forget that the candidate is looking for information to decide if the position and the organization is right for them.  I regularly debrief candidates after interviews who tell me they left the interviews without knowing the full scope of the position or important information on the company even when they asked specific questions directly.

When interviewing a passive candidate, it is vital that we provide or “deposit” as much information as we “withdraw” from the candidate to keep the candidate engaged and provide them information for them to make a decision that is best for them.  Below are areas hiring managers can deposit important information that will engage passive candidates:

  1. Company Benefits- With the ever-changing landscape in employer based healthcare, it is crucial that candidates understand the company’s benefits to know what it will cost them per month. In some cases, we see a 5-10K difference in out of pocket healthcare costs which can affect what salary a candidate will accept.  Healthcare providers in network, dental, and vison coverage are also important information.  If possible, I recommend the hiring manager shares this information before any final interview so that the candidate can ask any clarifying questions. Vacation, 401k and any other company benefits are also advantageous to share prior to an offer made to a candidate.
  2. Compensation Structures- While a base salary may be tough to share prior to an offer being made, other aspects of compensation are vital information so that the candidate can understand how they will be paid. Passive candidates should understand how compensation that may include commissions, quarterly, or year bonuses are calculated and paid out so they can ascertain what salary they will ultimately accept.
  3. Company Achievements- When interviewing candidates, we always look to understand their achievements and metrics that show they have a proven track record of success. It should be no different for the company they are interviewing with.  Company growth, awards, recent successes and upcoming projects or growth are valuable pieces of information to deposit when interviewing passive candidates.

We understand there needs to be a balance between what we withdraw and deposit when interviewing passive candidates.  Those hiring managers that pay attention to this balance we find have the most success landing the best talent.

Aaron Kutz Reviews The Best of ISC West

April 12, 2017

By Aaron Kutz, Executive Recruiter of Government Technology and Electronic Security

I recently had the opportunity to attend the ISC West Conference in Las Vegas for the fourth year. ISC West is the largest security industry trade show in the U.S., and gives professionals opportunities to network, attend educational sessions, listen to keynote speakers, and see all the new and innovative technologies throughout the exhibit hall.  With every year that I visit ISC West, I realize how much growth and progress the industry is experiencing. Companies who had small booths in previous years now have grown into a larger presence at the conference, while other familiar faces are staying strong. Here are my thoughts on the best of ISC West:

ISC seemed even bigger than last year. As a show that is said to have over 29,000 professionals in attendance throughout the conference, the trade show floor was packed.  The exhibitors I spoke to seemed to be very happy with the traffic and chance to showcase their products and technologies to a large volume of attendees.

Aside from the traffic levels of the show, each year at the conference there seems to be a buzz about certain topics.  Last year at ISC, I noticed the emergence and focus on the “Internet of Things” (IoT). Following that theme, this year there were more partnerships apparent to allow devices to be connected in the home and across the enterprise. Almost everyone I stopped to speak with was focused on having their technology connect to a variety of other solutions.  In addition, these companies highlighted how end users can utilize the cloud to help their clients with a more affordable, reliable service.

One company that I was very impressed with at ISC West was BriefCam. BriefCam provides users the ability to rapidly review video and take action as needed. I spent some time speaking to members of their team about their one-of-a-kind solution. I was lucky enough to be provided a live demo to see firsthand the capability their solution provides including its unique video layering and search capability. It was like nothing I saw throughout the show anywhere else and I was very impressed with their product.

Overall, ISC West was a great event for my fourth year attending. I would love to hear your take on the show if you were there or more about your take on the industry in general. Please feel free to reach out directly to me to discuss further.

Aaron Kutz
Executive Recruiter of Government Technology & Electronic Security
440-996-0869
akutz@directrecruiters.com

Simple Ways to Improve Your Ability to Secure Top Talent in Today’s Market

April 12, 2017

By Adam Ulmen, Manager, Research & Technology and Healthcare IT Research Manager

As a Third-Party Executive Search Firm, we see the following unfortunate scenario play out daily: we present a solid Candidate to the Client, the Client likes him or her and gives positive feedback, however the Hiring Manager wants to see some more Candidates as points of comparison to gauge the quality of the existing Candidate against other profiles. While on the surface, this seems like a fine practice that should ideally lead to finding the best possible fit for the role and organization, this also directly leads to a delayed and cumbersome hiring process for all involved.

Today’s job market is very Candidate-driven; meaning that your company is competing for the top Candidates at every turn, and those Candidates have many options available to them. When Candidates have several options to choose from, you as a Hiring Manager need to be agile and move with haste to secure these Candidates before the competition does. Two of the most prominent reasons why Candidates will choose the competition over you include:

Slow Hiring Process – In a Candidate’s mind, a slow process reflects the organization as a whole. Slow processes may be interpreted as your company not being very serious about the Candidate or about being competitive in general. This leaves a very sour taste in the Candidate’s mouth and a lasting negative impression of your company.

Inflexible Compensation Packages – Hiring Managers need to be aware of where the bar is set in terms of the market value of these Candidates. Being inflexible on compensation when it comes to top talent is a death knell for your ability to secure the best Candidates. You don’t always need to throw the kitchen sink at a Candidate, but being open to different structures or levels of compensation can transform your ability to attract and maintain top talent.

Regarding the slow hiring process: Today’s hiring process should be streamlined and simplified wherever possible.  As a Hiring Manager within your organization, you have likely interviewed people before and you likely know the culture of your company and what type of person fits in well. You should also be able to tell quickly if someone is qualified and can do the job. Do not stall the process with a high-quality Candidate for the sake of getting comparison points. These high-quality Candidates are being courted by other companies with interesting opportunities in addition to your role, they are expecting a reasonable hiring process and dreading a long and drawn out one, and they are rapidly losing interest in your company within days of your last contact with them while you sink a ton more time into finding comparison Candidates. Additionally, you already have comparison Candidates to begin with: your current staff! Chances are there is at least one person in your organization who is doing a fine job in the same role you are adding to the team, so use that person as your barometer to expedite your process.

Regarding compensation: Not all Candidates are created equal. There is a tremendous spectrum of talent and skill in the market and you need to decide what part of that range you want to attract and what that range requires to land. If your goal is to hire the best possible Candidate, then you may need to pay what that Candidate is worth based on the market and their personal compensation history. If you find that you truly cannot afford the best of the best, then you may need to adjust your expectations across your hiring team and calibrate the search toward Candidates who may need a bit more training and ramp-up, but who are in the price range you are offering.

As a Third-Party firm, we see the above happen daily and it cripples the entire process. We know what the market looks like, we know who is looking and who is not, and we know what it is going to take to land these top-tier Candidates. You as the Hiring Manager can only benefit and thrive by implementing some of the above commentary into your daily talent acquisition strategies.

David Peterson Recaps the Plastics News Executive Forum

April 11, 2017

By David Peterson, Managing Partner and Director of Plastics and Flexible Packaging

At the end of March, I had the great opportunity to attend and speak at the Plastics News Executive Forum at the Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club, Naples, Florida. As it was my first time attending, I want to note that Plastics News did a great job coordinating this conference, which offered strategies, presentations, and networking opportunities for leaders of top plastics processing companies.

Aside from the sunshine and beautiful scenery, the Plastics News Executive Forum impressed me from the speakers, to the great conversations about the industry. The theme of the conference this year was “Engage. Inspire. Lead.” and the agenda stayed consistent with that, buzzing with conversation regarding the Plastics workforce, retention, and talent in the industry. For example, Laurie Harbour, President/CEO of Harbour Results Inc., shed a light on the top challenges for Plastics Processors in 2017, sharing that 92% say their top challenge is recruiting, training and retaining employees. Part of the reason for this could be the decrease of Plastics Engineer professionals. This is something that was discussed often throughout the conference, along with the ways companies can contribute to solving that issue. For example, the Best Places to Work Panel gave great ideas for retention, with one being a “bring your parents to work day.”

For me, the conference was especially exciting as I had the honor of presenting! My topic was “How to Attract and Retain a New Generation of Workers” and primarily focused on Millennials and what we can do as companies to bring them into the Plastics Industry and keep them there. Again, this fell in line with most of the buzz at the conference. It was a great experience to speak at this event! Plastics News wrote an article highlighting my presentation here:  Solving the Millennial Riddle

Finally, I want to congratulate to the Processors of the Year finalists, and the Best Places to Work Award Winners!

The Plastics News Executive Forum was a great event and a great experience this year. I’m looking forward to next year’s event!  If you were at the event, what did you enjoy the most?

David Peterson

 

David Peterson
Managing Partner and Director of Plastics & Flexible Packaging
dpeterson@directrecruiters.com
(440) 996-0590