Novo Group survey cites challenges for recruiting top talent

The Novo Group Inc., a Milwaukee-based integrated corporate recruitment advisory firm that helps organizations attract top talent, recently surveyed executives and candidates to gain insights from both sides of the hiring equation.

The firm’s firstCorporate Recruitment Benchmark Survey found a startling disconnect between executives and candidates.

“Your best candidate is already working – for the competition,” the report advises.

Two of the key issues facing recruiters today are the growing number of passive candidates (those employed and not actively looking) and the lack of proactive sourcing (reaching out to candidates who are not submitting their resumes), the report says.

Novo’s survey findings showed that over half (55 percent) of the candidate pool is employed and not actively looking for a job, and of those employed, only 9 percent stated they were happy with their job and not looking to make a career move.

“With corporate America leaner than ever, employed candidates are crunched for time. The reason many of them fall into the category of ‘passive’ candidate is that they just don’t have the time to actively pursue a career move,” said Cindy Lu, chief executive officer of The Novo Group. “To connect with these candidates, recruiters need to not only pay attention to where passive candidates spend time in their search but they also need adequate time for sourcing proactively.”

The report said a disconnect between priorities and concerns can cause a company to misalign resources and time.

“A disconnect between priorities and concerns can cause a company to misalign resources and time,” said Lu. “Ultimately causing companies to miss out on the one thing it needs most to succeed – top talent.”

The following are some additional highlights of Novo’s findings:

• In-house recruiting is running lean with over half (65 percent) having two or fewer in-house recruiters solely focused on recruiting.

• Eighty percent of the companies surveyed use outside help to supplement internal recruiting efforts.

• Thirty percent of companies surveyed are not tracking any recruiting metrics, and only 25 percent are tracking quality of talent/hire. A recruiting function cannot know how effective it is and can’t increase results unless it measures quality of hire.

• Twenty-nine percent do not know their annual recruitment budget.

“With almost half of candidates in roles below C-suite execs open to new opportunities, HR execs need to focus on retention, internal succession and external talent pipelining — making connections that help you to develop a pool of future candidates,” the report stated.

To view the entire report, visit

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