If Recruitment is part of the HR department, why don’t the leading employers integrate it into the same database as the rest of HR systems?

A Reader asks RecruitAdvisory…

If Recruitment is part of the HR department, why don’t the leading employers integrate it into the same database as the rest of HR systems?

Recruitment is an external, market-facing activity, whereas the rest of HR is a purely internal affair. Your Board of Directors would be very worried if the database housing their own personal and highly sensitive Compensation & Benefits was also being populated with 100,000 CVs applying for jobs in your new Chinese operation, wouldn’t they?

Recruitment processes a  high volume of low value data, HR maintains a low volume of high value data. Large employers will have over 1 million CVs on their database to which they might add 40,000 every week, but Learning & Development will be concerned with the skills, aptitudes & training gaps of only the top 10,000 current staff.

Recruitment has flexible workflows that change regularly, while HR has fixed workflows that last for years. When you are recruiting different roles in different countries, you often have to change or tweak the various attraction & selection processes to suit the changing times and markets. There’s only one workflow managing your Annual Performance Review, and it won’t change for a decade, if at all.

Recruitment has highly localised processes, whereas HR has global standard processes. If you are advertising your mainstream jobs in the UK, you would place them on Monster or other leading job-boards, but not in Spain where you’d be better advised to use InfoJobs.es. In France you have to consider anonymised resumes equally with named ones, and produce reports demonstrating that compliance, whereas this is not the case elsewhere. South Africans are proud that employers there can prove they are recruiting a high quota of Blacks into senior positions, whereas positive discrimination for the hiring decision is against the law in the EU. You must archive CVs in Germany after six months according to the German interpretation of the EU Data Protection Act, whereas the same law in the UK is interpreted much more liberally, shall we say. Recruitment therefore requires flexible & local processes (even if centrally run), whereas you would be soon & often invited to a Tribunal if the career paths of Senior Managers in Brazil were assessed differently to those in the Gulf.

Recruitment has high security exposure, though HR has almost none. If a hacker is going to target your employer, your Careers website and associated recruitment technologies, like job posting for example, are more highly visible than possibly even your payments systems, while none of your HR piece can be seen at all. In summary, Recruitment and HR are connected but should be kept separate. All departments in an organisation should collaborate, but it does not follow that they should all be the same department. When it comes to technology, therefore, a simple connection allowing hired candidates to be exported to the HR system and employee profiles to be uploaded for internal recruiting is enough. Integrating Recruitment into other parts of HR systems, and making it subservient, only adds complexity and risk but not value.

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