Toolkit: How to succeed in your first 90 days as a talent acquisition leader
July 12, 2022
The first 90 days in any leadership role have their challenges. There’s a lot to take in and digest. But if you’re a talent leader who is stepping into a new role at a new company, it can be even more intimidating, especially in such a competitive labor market.
It goes without saying that you’ll play a critical role in the success of your organization as the wider business will be relying on you to provide the talent needed to bring future success. A talent leader’s responsibilities, however, go beyond building a workforce of the future. You’re also expected to support growth through talent, HR technology, and real-time labor intelligence while also advising the C-suite. In today’s tight talent market, with ever-changing candidate and employee expectations, this can be challenging to say the least.
To get started, we recommend creating a 90-day plan. This will help you can stay on track in your new role as a talent acquisition leader. You should focus your plan on your company, its objectives, strategic goals and future workforce, while also considering the impact that external challenges can have. And you need to be agile and ready to pivot if the need arises. If the last few years have taught us anything, is that things can change at the drop of a hat. Think back to March 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic caused the world to come to a standstill. The pandemic had a huge impact on the world of work, and it really highlighted the importance of being agile.
Start with a comprehensive assessment
Your 90-day plan should include an assessment of the current state of your people, talent acquisition technology and processes so that you can develop an effective talent acquisition strategy. When you’re assessing the people element, be sure to identify those, both internally and externally, who will be able to help you achieve your objectives.
We’ve outlined some key tasks that will assist you when you come to build your talent acquisition strategy. We’ve also created a high-level checklist to help you keep track. It’s important to remember that every organization is unique and has different challenges based on skills, scale and breadth and depth of what they’re trying to achieve. By no means exhaustive, the preceding checklist will help you determine where you can (and should) focus your efforts in the first 90 days. Remember to prioritize tasks based on feedback from key stakeholders, employees and candidates.
First 30 days in a new talent acquisition leader role
During the first 30 days, you should spend time examining the current and future business strategy and the impact talent has in achieving those goals. An important step, it will inform all your decision-making.
Try and understand the business strategy of the executive leadership team and assess their appetite for change and investment in talent. This will give you clear parameters to help shape your thinking. Engage with as many senior leaders within your organization as possible, preferably in regular business meetings rather than in talent acquisition-focused sessions, as that will provide greater insight into opportunities.
Once you understand the objectives, look at what’s already in place across your talent acquisition function. There will be ongoing operational delivery issues that you need to get involved with but try not to get too deep too early. Remember, those first few weeks are the only time you’ll have a truly independent view while being able to ask the questions that will become more challenging later. Review and assess everything in your team’s remit including the skills of your people, the processes they operate within, hiring metrics and the talent acquisition technology supporting (or hindering) them.
WilsonHCG is an award-winning, global leader in total talent solutions. Operating as a strategic partner, it helps some of the world’s most admired brands build comprehensive talent functions. With a global presence spanning more than 65 countries and six continents, WilsonHCG provides a full suite of configurable talent services including recruitment process outsourcing (RPO), executive search, contingent talent solutions and talent consulting. TALENT.™ It’s more than a solution, it’s who we are.