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Posts from the ‘Hiring’ Category

Reaching a Middle Ground: Reconciling the Millennial Generation with the Boomers

By Alana Couvrette, 2017 CEO for Month

By 2025, Millennials will represent 75% of the total global workforce[1]. Considering these numbers, I would argue that one of the greatest challenges our society will face is reconciling the Millennial generation with the more seasoned one, the Boomers.

A lot of generational stereotypes are out there. Pundits will say that Boomers are old, set in their ways and technophobes. Millennials, on the other hand, are viewed as selfish, entitled and hopeless narcissists. However, instead of pointing fingers, we should think more constructively and put our efforts into identifying ways to stop this growing generational chasm.

Although at the individual level, there is cause for a change in mentality, thought leadership should originate chiefly at the macro level: through organizations. Workplaces are where generational reconciliation must occur, which means that organizations must play a leading role in creating the conditions for its success.

Initiatives like Adecco’s CEO for One Month help this reconciliation effort by breaking down institutional and hierarchical silos. On one hand, it allows the millennial generation to interact directly with senior management, giving them a chance to learn from their expertise and vast experience. It’s an opportunity for the Boomer’s institutional memory to be transferred to younger generations.

On the other hand, it also encourages senior management to move out of their comfort zone and incites them to be open to new ideas. Millennials can help Boomers stay relevant, in a world of constant change.

However, we don’t need initiatives as articulate as CEO for One Month to create change. It can be as simple as implementing a mentoring program or organizing weekly “Lunch with Senior Management” sessions, to foster dialogue between employees.

We shouldn’t pursue this objective simply because “it’s the right thing to do”. There is pragmatic impetus to unite generations. In the long run, investing in bridging generational gaps will result in a stronger, more efficient work culture.

Successfully navigating our intergenerational future requires crafting the right organizational strategies -sooner rather than later.

[1] https://www.forbes.com/sites/workday/2016/05/05/workforce-2020-what-you-need-to-know-now/#3b1973c2d632

The Future of Women in STEM: A Multifaceted Approach

 

Katie Bieber is an IT Recruitment Consultant in Roevin’s Edmonton branch. She brings over three yearKatieBiebers of professional experience to her role and in Edmonton’s tech sector.  Katie focuses on clients in the IT realm and has developed exceptional connections and a network of candidates in the STEM field. She works with many passionate and pioneering candidates who overcome impressive hurdles as the only women applying for a role or being the only women on a team. Their perseverance and success have inspired her own passion for promoting women in the tech arena.


With March being National Engineering Month – coupled with International Women’s Day falling on March 8th — Adecco is continuing our look at the underrepresentation of women in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields.

The topic has become an increasingly important point of discussion. Various government bodies, reports, studies, organizations, mission statements and think tanks have explored it in recent years.  The problem has almost unanimous support — both from diversity advocates and the STEM sector itself. In 2010,  Natural Sciences and Engineer Research Council of Canada (NSERC) released an 84-page report on Women in Science and Engineering in Canada which explored the “under-representation of women in the various fields of science and engineering” and noted that this long-recognized problem was “of concern to the…NSERC”.

Are women really underrepresented in STEM?

Undeniably, yes!

WomeninSTEM_infographic

According to the 2011 National Household Survey, women accounted for only 39% of university graduates aged 25-34 with a STEM degree, compared with 66% of university graduates in non-STEM programs.  Moreover, the percentage of women working in the fields has barely changed in 30 years. In 1987, 20% of the STEM workforce were women. Today, it is still only 22%.

And as NSERC pointed out in their report, “Virtually all countries in the world, to varying levels, have fewer women than men studying in the NSE” (natural sciences and engineering).

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Webinar: How to answer the 15 most common interview questions

  This year marks a significant shift in the workforce. Millennials now represent the largest percentage of the workforce for the very first time, with 28% already sitting in management positions and 2/3 seeing themselves in management roles within the next ten years. As more millennials assume management positions, you may be noticing changes in […]

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Webinar: Millennials in Leadership Roles

 

millennials-webinar_dec7

This year marks a significant shift in the workforce. Millennials now represent the largest percentage of the workforce for the very first time, with 28% already sitting in management positions and 2/3 seeing themselves in management roles within the next ten years. As more millennials assume management positions, you may be noticing changes in the nature of the workplace. Why? Because there are distinct differences between the work styles, expectations, and career perspectives of this generation compared to their predecessors.

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Hackathons: An Innovative Trend That Can “Shortcut” IT Recruitment

hackathon

laura-tarrant_headshot_finalLaura Tarrant is a Senior Account Executive for Roevin Technology— Adecco’s specialized IT division. Laura’s focus on IT recruitment and career coaching has led her to become a true expert in the field. Her monthly blogs dedicated to the IT field receive 2,400 followers from within the technology industry.  She understands that talent is more than just a skill set; her innovative and engaging recruitment strategies minimize inefficiencies of the recruiting life cycle while delivering stellar IT talent to her clients.

Below, Laura provides Adecco Lēad Blog readers with cutting edge IT recruitment trends.

Many innovative companies—particularly those in tech—rely on hiring big-picture thinkers to propel their organizations forward and keep them on the cutting edge. Many, unfortunately, are experiencing a technical talent shortage. In order to capture talent that thinks outside the box, employers need to implement creative recruitment tactics to match.  One such method that has proven incredibly successful and popular in recent years is the hackathon!

What are hackathons? They sound sinister…

Despite their name, there is nothing dubious about them. Started in Silicon Valley, hackathons are usually two-day (or sometimes week-long) networking events where like-minded people gather to solve development or organizational problems, grow their knowledge and produce impressive technology.  Many are hosted by think-tanks, tech companies, incubators, NGOs or major corporations. Brilliant young developers, designers and systems architects take part while industry veterans judge their work. Savvy recruiters and employers can take advantage of these events by connecting with both sets of attendees.

Why are they useful for recruitment?

They are an inexpensive recruitment strategy which can give you access to on-a-dime interviews with a variety of brilliant technical talent, let you see their soft skills and problem-solving abilities “in the wild” and get a sense of how they will perform on the job. In fact, many participants take part precisely to impress recruiters or employers who may be monitoring the event. Often, a job position or internship is marketed as the “prize” for taking part!

In addition to the recruitment and networking opportunities these events offer, hackathons can be held internally to introduce fun, creativity and competition into otherwise non-stimulating workplace processes.

Below is a peek into the types of hackathons that have become popular, tips for tech candidates on taking part and advice for employers and recruiters on sponsoring existing hackathons or organizing their own.

Virtual Hackathons

Virtual hackathons take place online and often for the purpose of sourcing international talent.  During these hackathons, participants are given programming concepts to contemplate or a programming challenge to solve—allthewhile competing for the overall title of “champion” and a spot on the leaderboard.

Recruitment Perspective: Organizations are given an inside look at how developers, scientists, students, entrepreneurs and educators from around the world approach problem-solving and compete against each other. If you are a small team with a limited budget—but have the ability to advertise and create brand awareness overseas—this recruitment ‘hack’ is highly recommended for your recruitment efforts.

Tip: For step-by-step instructions on attending and setting up a virtual hackathon, visit: http://www.the-hackfest.com/tips-virtual/

Interactive Hackathons

Interactive hackathons are conducted at pre-defined locations and begin with a presentation about the rules and theme of the event. Attendees are giving an opportunity to brief participants on a project they are working on with an obstacle they need help overcoming. Talent in this battle-of-the-brains ranges from “junior” to “subject-matter experts” who join together to unlock problems and suggest ideas while working in teams based on their individual interests and skills. At the conclusion of an interactive hackathon, a collaborative wrap-up session gives each team a chance to present and explain their findings, execution and achievements.

Recruitment Perspective: Let’s face it—traditional interviews with developers don’t always reveal how a candidate will fit into a company’s culture or if they will succeed in a real-time work environment. Interactive hackathons not only offer the ability to discover these unknowns, they are a less intimidating approach to recruitment and give employers the opportunity to perform on-a-dime interviews while networking with upcoming talent.

Tip: For a step-by-step guide on successfully running an interactive hackathon visit: https://hackathon.guide/

In-House Hackathons

As mentioned, hackathons are not exclusive to external recruitment efforts. They can be a great way for your staff to tackle an organizational problem together, solve development challenges or address your clients’ issues.  Your employees can also use them to prove their skills, management abilities and try out new roles. It’s no wonder that internal hackathons are increasingly being used by major corporations such as Manulife, Deloitte and many others.

If you’d like to administer your own internal hackathon, start by coming up with a project collectively and then setting up small teams of 2-5 employees.  Deliver the challenge and watch as the creative juices begin to flow. Fight the temptation to direct your team on how to do things during this event. While it may be hard to resist, you will boost participation by allowing your team to have a hand in every detail along the way to the solution.  By utilizing internal hackathons, you will foster a work environment that breeds innovation and challenges employees to build things creatively without a specific roadmap.

HR Perspective: Never underestimate your ability to unleash the hidden talents of your internal teams. Hackathons work as a tool for getting one’s feet wet into new ways of thinking.  They spark innovation, foster trust, engage employees, strengthen communication, encourage interaction and build strong collaborative teams who work towards a common goal. When a solution is constructed together, it is much more likely to stick.

Tip: For a step-by-step on running your first in-house hackathon visit: https://stormpath.com/blog/running-your-first-internal-hackathon

In today’s “Talent War”—in which people change jobs frequently, competition is global, salaries are competitive and opportunities are everywhere—smart, tech-savvy, agile workers are highly in demand, yet hard to recruit. Companies want to hire the best and brightest but rarely devise an innovative hiring process to make them stand out from other potential employers.  Hackathons can be a great tool in your arsenal to get you the forward-thinking IT talent you’re seeking.

Get more IT recruitment tips from Laura on Twitter @Recruiter_4_You and LinkedIn.

From New Immigrant to Superstar: promoting diverse talent is a business advantage

Even though Canada’s Employment Equity Act was instituted 30 years ago (1986) and diversity in the workplace has certainly improved since[i], we as employers still have a long way to go.

Several studies have shown that while “[o]n average, immigrants arrive in this country better educated, in better health, and at similar stages of their careers as those born in the country…the evidence suggests that…they have been much less successful in achieving success than earlier waves of immigration.”[ii] Access to job opportunities, upward mobility, earnings, and income have been poorer for visible minorities than non-visible minorities in Canada.[iii]

While visible minority men and women have higher educational qualifications (more visible minorities have university degrees than their non-visible minority counterparts in Canada), fewer are reaching top income levels. The earnings of visible minorities simply do not match their educational achievements.[iv]

And while we’re making progress in female leadership (women currently hold 19.5% of board seats[v]), other minority groups are still dramatically underrepresented in leadership roles in Canadian organizations– visible minorities hold only 4.6%, persons with disabilities hold only 2.7% cent, and aboriginal people hold only 1.1% of board seats.[vi]  The corporate sector is the worst offender, with only 4% of leadership roles being filled by visible minorities.[vii]  While companies may place a great deal of importance on hiring visible minorities, it is clear that they do not do enough to retain them— often creating a higher turnover rate among visible minorities when they see no opportunities to advance or feel they do not fit in.[viii]

These disappointing statistics do a disservice not only to thousands of highly qualified professionals from minority groups but also to the very companies who are failing to promote them: diverse workplaces have more satisfied workers and lower absenteeism, they tend to be more innovative and less prone to groupthink, and are able to reach a more diverse customer base (i.e., there are tangible financial benefits to having a more diverse workplace).[ix]

Canadian companies need to have effective programs for building and utilizing the talents of a truly diverse workforce and recognizing their hard work. Attracting and hiring diverse talent is only a first step.

shutterstock_344201303Adecco doesn’t have all the answers to solve this systemic problem, but we do have a Diversity Committee who is working on awareness, advocacy, outreach, research, client education and having a multiplicity of voices represented in decision making. We also promote the Power of Workplace Diversity to our clients— some of Canada’s largest employers.

Most importantly, we practice internally what we advocate to clients. Hiring and promoting diverse talent is not just a “best practice” for us; it’s our standard practice and commitment.

Today, Sohail Dossani is the manager of Adecco’s Central Order Management and Corporate Recruitment Centre divisions— but he started a long way out from a managerial role in an office environment. He came to Canada in 2002, and within a decade, worked his way up from a fast food restaurant to leading 2 important departments and being the overall “go to” person for the world’s largest Staffing firm. Below is his story. We hope it inspires employers to recognize the benefits of hiring a diverse and talented workforce and giving new immigrants a real opportunity to succeed.


Hope

Sohail grew up in Pakistan, where he earned a degree in Computer Science and landed a job with IBM— first working in Karachi and then Dubai.

One day, his boss announced that he was moving to Canada. This got Sohail thinking about his own career and future. He decided that he too would apply to immigrate to Canada for better opportunities. His former boss had been successful in getting a job in the IT field, and Sohail was optimistic and hopeful about replicating his success. In fact, he wasn’t the least bit worried about it.

Disappointment

Unfortunately, his hopes were deflated soon after his arrival in Toronto. He applied for job after job in the IT field but came up empty. His degree was of little help for getting hired, and his lack of Canadian experience was a hindrance to landing a job that matched his qualifications—(a bottleneck many new Canadians face, but has since been banned in Ontario and successfully opposed in court in other provinces). Being new to the country, he didn’t know what employment resources were available to him or where to start; he didn’t know the processes for working with various agencies and community groups, or which were reliable.

“There were plenty of electronic resources but hardly anyone you could sit face to face with to get information,” remembers Sohail.

He decided to just go door to door to businesses to try secure work. “It was very hard,” he recounts.

He eventually ended up getting a job at a factory and was responsible for labeling fire logs. Unfortunately, he saw many health and safety violations going on around him but continued to work there as it was the only job available to him at the time— an unfortunate choice many people in similar circumstances are forced to make.

Promise

Sohail approached a popular fast food restaurant for extra shifts to supplement his income and gain field experience. The manager hired him on the spot; after all, a man with a university degree was standing in front of him asking for minimum wage work. While continuing to work at the factory, Sohail lead the night crew at the restaurant.

Before he moved to Canada, he never imagined himself working at a fast food restaurant, but he appreciated the safety and managerial training they company had in place. The role also helped him make an important decision: to go back to university to attain his master’s degree. He soon became the closing manager at the eatery and was eventually able to leave his factory job.

Opportunity

While studying during the day and working in the restaurant at night, Sohail was living next to a large electronics manufacturer in the north of the city and saw workers coming and going day after day. He decided to drop off his resume and learned that the company was using Adecco to fill open positions.

Sohail wanted to be proactive, so reached out to a counselor in the Skills and Employment program (SEP) at his local mosque for assistance in finding new job opportunities. Serendipitously, an Adecco recruiter had been working with the mosque for community recruitment and job support. When the counselor heard about Sohail’s interest in the electronics firm, he quickly put him in touch with us. At that time, the firm was only hiring for an entry level production worker— a role Sohail was overqualified for. Our recruiter advised him to stay in his supervisory fast food role a little while longer, while she searched for a better-suited position for him.

Success

Soon after, the same electronics company was looking to hire a functional tester and debug operator, which was much better suited for Sohail’s credentials and qualifications. He was hired! While the salary was lower than his previous position, he was grateful to be working in a discipline that let him use his resident skill set and put him closer to his primary field of IT. He was confident that he’d be able to work his way up!

Sohail worked in production at the firm for 2 years until Adecco needed a new on-site manager to supervise our staff working there. While he didn’t have much HR experience, he was skilled and highly respected by his colleagues. We interviewed him for the new role and were convinced of the same: he was experienced enough to manage the on-site staff and could learn any HR skills he was lacking. We hired him as the supervisor for the weekend and night shifts. This was one of Adecco’s largest accounts, so to entrust him with this important responsible really demonstrates his competency and our confidence in him. He exceeded all expectations: he became a full-time Adecco colleague and was quickly promoted to Partnership Manager, supporting 4 of our large partnership clients across Ontario along with multiple service delivery teams. Perhaps most rewardingly, Sohail was able to hire other deserving people in this role.

Leadership

When Adecco had a vacancy for an Operations Manager to support the SW Ontario Region, we didn’t think twice. Sohail had proven his commitment, drive and quick learning abilities. He served as the Ops Manager for over a year and was then given yet another opportunity: becoming the manager of Adecco’s COM department in London, ON. The Central Order Management team provides centralized services for Adecco’s national accounts, particularly those who operate across multiple geographic locations.

Sohail has now led the team for over a year and has worked hard to restructure the team’s responsibilities, processes and customer service delivery. His initiatives have not only streamlined team support across the organization but have also allowed us to pursue and deliver exceptional service to large accounts which we simply would not be able to do without a well-run COM department.

Sohail is in charge of many large accounts, yet still has time to answer questions from across Adecco’s 40 offices, and always seems at ease. He tackles his growing responsibilities and occupational challenges with optimism, tenacity and a smile— much like he did when he first arrived in Canada.

Superstar

It was this attitude and disposition that lead Sohail’s colleagues to nominate him for Adecco’s prestigious Superstar Award—which he very deservingly won. The award is given to 11 colleagues who demonstrate excellence across our core values and comes with an all-expenses-paid trip with a guest.

Despite all his success, Sohail is still humble about his achievements. “I did not ever expect this in a field that I was not primarily educated or trained in,” he says. “It truly feels like success. I feel that the hard work has definitely paid off in building my profile from the ground up. My family is very proud.”

Sohail got an opportunity from Adecco when he was just starting out, but he has earned his career growth since then by taking advantage of training resources (such as Adecco’s free SkillBuilder application offered to all Associates), and by going back to school. He also took courses in HR to improve his skills when he found himself in an unfamiliar profession. And he turned to his co-workers for advice and support when he needed it.

It’s the same advice Sohail gives to new immigrants today:

“Use the value-added resources available to you and make them work for you. Improve your skills and education in any way possible. Just keep seeking opportunities to learn and grow your skill set. Don’t wait for them to be offered to you.”


Sohail was given an opportunity by an employer who did more than just “value” diversity. We recognized that the talent we hire should be based on merit and commitment, not credentials or stereotypes. When an organization eliminates candidates based on prejudice, they not only break the law, but also hurt their own organizations by smothering varying viewpoints, hindering a diverse workplace culture, and limiting connections to a multiplicity of client groups and talent pools. When they take the time to get to know applicants— and look at what they can do— the organization benefits exponentially.

When asked what has made him so successful in a field he never imagined being in, Sohail cites the same reasons many successful people do— whether new immigrants or seasoned veterans: like what you do and who you work with. “The colleagues within Adecco really helped give me the support that I needed and helped me stay motivated as they believed in me.”

Sohail is such an integral part of the Adecco family, we couldn’t imagine it any other way. We saw the possibility he held, and he has continuously worked so hard to live it up to it. We encourage and advise all our clients and Canadian employers to do the same. Do more than just “value” diversity; practice it and it will reward your entire organization.