Becoming a hiring legend in the procurement industry has never been more important. The depth of the talent pool is notoriously shallow with competition for candidate acquisition incredibly high. Below are my top 5 tips in ensuring that you are seen as an absolute general in the procurement talent war and increase your chances of getting it right.
TIP 1 – Put your stakeholder hat on
We all acknowledge that to succeed procurement leaders have to wear a number of different proverbial hats as they go about their day to day business. As examples they will have their “Supplier Negotiation Hat” for their interaction with new and existing suppliers, their “Team Management Hat” for the motivating and directing the troops and their “Upward Management Hat” for getting the best out of their boss.
Too often the problem with Procurement leaders when they interview is that they interrogate the candidate as is if they are a supplier pitching for their business…this dynamic is wrong! Procurement professionals should be reaching for their “Key Stakeholder Hat” before meeting a new candidate in an interview setting. This will ensure that the interviewer builds credibility and analyses needs whilst also trying to impress and engage the new potential employee…after all there is no bigger or more important stakeholder in your career than the talent that you hire into your team!
TIP 2 – Have a strong and rigorous recruitment process
Use the same great buying process you follow when acquiring business critical goods and services and apply it to procuring the best talent. Manage risks, motivate participants and deliver a favourable and efficient outcome.
TIP 3 – Don’t base your decision purely on a scorecard
Pure competency based interviewing (which has its place as a part of the overall process) has resulted in a rise in the use of depersonalised templates that can encourage a very mechanical assessment of character. Interviewers are at times encouraged to ignore their intuition and first impressions to make sure they form an “unbiased” opinion. This approach is fine if you are buying a laptop but is not an effective way to choose people!
This scorecard approach to interviewing will reduce your risk of a bad hire but may also eliminate the opportunity of a great one entirely.
Make sure you use your experience to gauge candidate’s future aspirations and potential as well as analysing what they have done in the past. You are a procurement expert so if your intuition says someone fits, back yourself and hire them…this candidate could well be the game changer you have been looking for.
TIP 4 – Package negotiation is not a competition!
With your new superstar on board there will be plenty of opportunity to demonstrate your prowess in negotiation so please don’t try and “out manoeuvre” them during the offer management process. So many great candidates in procurement have failed to be hired as a result of this with the time and business impacts huge. And yes…we offer the same words of warning to the procurement candidates too!
TIP 5 – Work exclusively with an agent
This is not a myth dreamt up in sinister agency boardrooms…it works! The benefits to partnering are huge and the results proven. Exclusivity allows the recruiter to focus on quality and not speed ensuring you get more in depth briefings, broader searching and detailed assessment all of which greatly reduce your hiring risks.
For a discussion on any of these points please feel free to contact Andrew MacAskill at firstname.lastname@example.org or to read more of Andrew's blogs visit www.thesourcerecruitment.wordpress.com