Getting a Hold on Your Metrics


Getting a hold of your metrics means a lot more than just refining the way in which you measure and collect information on the state of your company’s hiring function. In order to truly get the most out of your hard work, blood, sweat and spread sheets, your metrics have to do more than just collect dust.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of accurate measurement, but recording metrics for metrics sake just isn’t the point of the whole exercise.

The point of this data is improvement, and the potential that good metrics have for growing your hiring function is immense. The only problem is that, much of the time, the same HR people who put in the time to collect and catalog  the right metrics can’t quite tell the story that the data is pointing at. Even if the numbers are all laid out in front of you and your executives, the bottom line and organizational impact of recent HR decisions and your hiring function as a whole can still be lost in translation.

Before we get into the way that metrics should be packaged and presented to people outside of HR, the first thing to get straight are the metrics themselves. Hopefully, you already have more metrics than you know what to do with. If you need to start from the ground up or just want to brush up on the fundamentals, here’s “Recruiting Metrics 101,” one of our White Papers which details the best ways to record and report hiring metrics.

To get things started, I’ll paint you a little picture of where your metrics should be. At a minimum, your hiring metrics need to accurately measure:

  • The source of each hire that you make (referral, job board, etc.).
  • Days to Present- Days from launch of job until the candidate hired was first presented to the hiring manager.
  • Days to Accept- Days from launch of job until candidate accepts the job offer.
  • Recruiting Cost Ratio- Total cost of recruiting staff/tech/resources divided by compensation hired from those efforts.
  • Retention Rate of Employees- Percentage of new hires still employed at different time benchmarks (90 days, 6 months, 12 months, etc.)
  • Performance of Employees- Percentage of objectives achieved or hiring manager satisfaction survey of new hire performance at different time benchmarks (90 days, 6 months, 12 months, etc.)

There are plenty of other metrics, such as hiring manager satisfaction, that are important, but the ones on this list should be your bread and butter. With these figures alone, you can determine: which sources are most efficient at providing quality candidates, the efficiency of your company’s interviewing process, as well as how committed the average hire is to your company.

Like I said, this is the bare minimum as far as metrics goes, but keeping track of these figures will at least give you an idea of where your hiring function is and reveal any problems that you may have with sourcing/interviewing inefficiency or retention.

Once you’ve gotten a hold of the numbers, it’s time to get a hold of the way that you’ll present them to the higher ups at your company. Try to look at it from their perspective. They’re focused on the big picture, the bottom line. This makes it your task to present the problems with your hiring function in a way that reflects the problem’s impact on the company as a whole. It’s one thing to say that retention has dropped by 18% in the last 2 years, but expressing this in terms of cost to the company will get you a lot further in your efforts to convince your execs that HR is worth investing in.

In other words, money talks. Instead of reading the laundry list of statistics and figures, tell a story. Tell them where your hiring is, why that’s costing you, and the benefits that improvement will bring.

Think ROI people! You can bet your boots that the executives at your company are.


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