No question here, just an observation that I thought I would share: Companies simultaneously complain about not being able to find people, but they do not have a training program for new hires.
What prompts this is that I'm still having a rather strong reaction to a manager that I'm working with asking me about having certain technical skills that he is having trouble finding - ABAP in this instance (ABAP is the programming language for SAP). At the time, I just smiled and said I'd never done it, despite having programmed in nearly every other language that exists. Also, I'm not really interested in jobs where your qualification comes via technical skills.
But the question stuck with me. I'm thinking - If this company won't train someone to learn a programming language, what right do they have to complain about not being able to find people? Where would they expect someone to learn something like ABAP? On their own SAP system at home?
We all know that we [i]should[/i] hire for traits and train for skill. But how many of us actually do that? Outside of software vendors, who I believe almost have to train everyone they hire, I'm not aware of many companies that will provide training for a technical job. They expect you to know it up front.
I'm pretty sure I know when this happened - around 2001, during the tech crash. Many companies viewed their training programs as a cost center and cut them to the bone or beyond. We still have not recovered from that cut or the mentality behind it. It would be a huge advantage to a company to provide training; the candidate pool would be broader, salaries could be lower, more reqs would be filled and more productive work could be done. But it will take a revolution in HR to make that happen. Companies will need to fundamentally change the way they hire.
My suggestion is that if you're in HR and you have a resume database: stop. Your goal should not be to build a skills database of people interested in working at your company. It should be to assess every single person that applies to your company. Not necessarily in person, a phone call is sufficient. You want to assess their personality and cultural fit into your company. If you really want to hire for personality, as most experts suggest, you need to break the search for the perfect candidate. The only person on the planet with exactly the skill set you want might be the person who just left.
Yes, I do realize what that means. If you conducted 1/2 hour interviews every minute of your day, you might get through 15 people per day. So, don't do 30 minute interviews. Shoot for 5-10 minutes or less, maybe with a bit more time spent with people who are more promising. In a person-person interview, a lot of times you know within the first 30 seconds that a person isn't right. And you can't do it alone, you need more people to help out with the interviews. And people to train new hires as well as provide training for internal people. This should be HR's role in the organization. It also presents new challenges to the HR organization, many of whom have lost that ability to assess people. To be a truly great company, you have to start with great material, part of which is the people working for you.
On a related note - why do companies want to rely on the generally abysmal marketing skills of potential hires? You wind up hiring the best self-promoter, who is probably not the best candidate.
Just thoughts - even if it doesn't help you, it helps me get them off much chest.