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“PEER REGREGRESSION ANALYSIS,” Shally & Rob Share Sourcing Strategy

Posted on December 12, 2006
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Flashback Article, originally Posted 29 weeks, 6 days ago at

Shally Steckerl, Founder, JobMachine, Inc.
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We also look at people who turned us down in the past, or who interviewed, but were not selected for that role at that particular time. They may be a much stronger candidate now for a particular position, or they may be a better fit for a different position better aligned with their experience. Interviews and offers fall apart for many reasons. Occasionally we reach out to ex-employees, although in that instance, strict rules must be followed to comply with company policies. For example, right now we are reviewing a strategy for ex-contractors who left more than a year ago, are eligible for hire, and fit our core profiles today. Yet another example is identifying people who worked on a specific product, project, or team in the past and have the appropriate expertise to drive current company initiatives. If those individuals were key players at the time, chances are that wherever they are today, they are of equal or increased influence. Identifying their current location often leads to new talent pools or other previously untapped sources of leads. Sometimes these individuals come from rapidly emerging, but still relatively unknown companies. By reaching that talent first, it enables us to gain an edge over competitors fighting for similar talent from much more visible sources.

This is revolutionary because through peer regression we gain entry into the comparatively unexploited talent markets. Most of the research is conducted using numerous Internet methodologies, but some is done via ethical telephone elicitation that adheres to the code. Chief among our methods are search engine queries and tactics that take full advantage of field commands used in the design of the database and syntax they offer. We also use online databases, social networking tools, etc. Overall, we track about 230different sources of information and discover new ones every day. We don’t always find exactly who influenced whom, but we can make respectable educated guesses. For example, sometimes we find a specific professor who taught a class and ten of the students in that class ended up being very influential in their industry. Call it timing, or good preparation, but regardless of the reasons, for the connection between those successful people, the clue is hard to ignore. Sometimes the best we can do is look at who their colleagues were at the time and that’s good enough. Luminaries aren’t always well defined. What we are looking for is someone who did something innovative that changed or greatly affected the industry, broke a paradigm or created a new market.

It’s not all “blue skies and roses”. There are many challenges with this type of search. It is time consuming, delicate work with no guaranteed results. Organizations need to be prepared to invest time and resources into tapping this hidden supply of talent, but most companies today remain skeptical about the cost-to-benefit ratio. As the talent market continues to shrink, however, this methodology will gain acceptance. Another major source of frustration, even if an organization does recognize the value of investing in peer regression analysis, is that not all recruiters or hiring managers know how to handle or what to do with a truly passive candidate generated this way. Hiring managers must be educated on how to approach, handle, sell and romance such candidates. A strong process and communication plan needs to be in place to support such strategic efforts to ensure maximum traction and results. Leveraging existing employees and leadership is critical, but more importantly, no single department should be entirely responsible for this process. A culture and environment must be created in which this process naturally flows from the business to research teams and back again. Instead of reacting to projects as the need arises, this process must be a constant building of proactive pipelines of passive candidates. Without support from the business, knowing how to handle these candidates, and keeping the pipeline growing, the handful of candidates produced will “wither on the vine”.

This strategy becomes world class and revolutionary because it ties into headcount planning and forecasting. Operating on “instant demand” projects is nearsighted and limiting. The further into the future an organization can implement this process, the more revolutionary it becomes. Not only should staffing leadership work closely with business units on what investments or big bets are being made affecting the future direction of the organization, products, solutions or other offerings, but it should be done one year in advance. Additionally, a PRA talent acquisition strategy must be aligned with those long-term business goals. Imagine an organization capable of developing pipelines encompassing the top one percent of talent well into the next five years of forecasted investments and career direction? Recruiting would no longer be limited to “who you can bring us today,” but instead “who you can bring us tomorrow, that will have a sizeable impact on our long-term strategy.” Top global companies sometimes think this way at the most senior level, but visionaries don’t just come in C and V sizes. They can start early with the company as individual contributors, team leaders, managers or directors, and grow into roles where they make big waves.

What if instead of an occasional accident, this was a planned strategy?

Flashback: Shally Steckerl and Rob McIntosh

We look forward to your emails to set up a conference call to schedule your recruitment organization’s training experience, globally, with JobMachine, Inc. Call Dave at (720) 733-2022 to schedule a discussion on how we can develop customized strategies to meet your organizational needs


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