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What Can You Do to Eliminate Unconscious Hiring Bias in IT?

April 14th, 2017

To say unconscious bias does not impact the Information Technology industry would be disingenuous. Everyone understands that a lack of diversity impacts larger social issues, but few people take a step back to understand the underlying cause of these hiring issues. The concept is referred to as unconscious hiring bias and it impacts more personality aspects than just the things we can see, like race and sex. Hiring managers often have their own bias regarding the types of personalities they want to hire, and this not only impacts their hiring process but also the candidates who apply and interview and the employees that work for their company. Candidate quality can be impacted by your unconscious hiring bias as well. So how can you eliminate unconscious hiring bias in your IT department? Let’s take a closer look.

Diversify sourcing channels.

If you keep going back to the same well, you’ll keep drawing the same types of people. By diversifying your recruiting sources, you will also increase the diversity of the people who will apply for your open positions. Do you hire primarily through online job boards? Referrals? Word of mouth? Social media? What can you add to your hiring roster to increase the diversity of candidates?

Have a structured interview process.

The enemy of a diverse hiring program is an unstructured interview. When you go with your gut on who to hire and who to reject, you may be allowing your unconscious bias to take control of the decision-making process. Instead, create a structured interview process so each and every candidate has the same experience. Create a checklist so you can compare apples to apples along the way.

Focus on culture add, not culture fit.

Many hiring managers focus on the candidate’s “fit” with their corporate culture. But what if we looked at the issue from another direction? Rather than ensuring that the individual will fit well with your current team, imagine what they can add to the employment experience at your company. What do they bring to the table that no one else does?

Set diversity goals.

You can also give yourself diversity goals to help increase your chances of hiring more people with a variety of backgrounds. Consider the current state of each department? How can you improve the overall diversity in those areas? What are you missing and what could help expand your office culture?

Review skills tests or samples.

Finally, don’t let the hiring decision be guided entirely by chance and gut feelings. Throughout the process, allow candidates to participate in skills testing or to submit samples of their work. You can judge these blindly to make the best possible choice based on skills and abilities, not allowing any other unconscious bias to get in the way of your choice.

Are You Ready to Work With a Top IT Recruiter in Dallas?

Contact CornerStone Staffing today to work with a leading IT recruiter in Dallas!


How Can You Build a Pool of Reliable IT Freelancers?

February 9th, 2017

The IT industry is changing and a lot of top performers are working as independent contractors or freelancers without committing to a full-time position with a company. If your company is reliant on skilled information technology experts, you may be wondering how you can compete in this gig economy and build a pool of reliable IT freelancers. Here are several things you can do to improve your relationship with independent contractors.

Treat them like everyone else.

Even if your IT freelancer works from home or is only occasionally in the office, make an effort to include them in company culture. Make them feel welcome in your organization. This will go a long way to giving them buy in to your company and the people they work with and for. They will be more interested in making a positive contribution rather than just collecting a steady paycheck.

Provide steady work.

Speaking of steady, to keep a freelancer happy is to keep them busy and engaged. Don’t just throw busy work at them, but be ready to give them necessary projects. If you don’t have anything for them, they will move on and freelance for someone else. You may never be able to get them back. If you provide steady work, you’ll be able to develop a long-term relationship with your IT freelancer.

Share feedback.

Just because your freelancer doesn’t work for you full time doesn’t mean you should avoid providing feedback. Let them know when they’re doing a good job. Talk to them about concerns you have. Be open with communication and allow them to approach you if they have questions as well. This positive back and forth will help you both work together well and accomplish more.

Be flexible with their schedule.

Lastly, remember that a freelancer is not a full-time employee. This means that they will have a non-traditional schedule. They may work from home. Or they may only work a few days a week. Rather than focusing on the hours they put in, focus on the results of their project. Know that a freelancer does this job so they can have a flexible schedule and as long as they are completing the necessary tasks, everything should be okay.

Work with a Top IT Recruiter in Dallas

Do you want to work with skilled and engaged independent IT contractors in your business? Contact CornerStone Staffing Today to work with a top recruiter and staffing agency in Dallas TX!


How to Gain Valuable Information in the Job Interview

January 19th, 2017

Gain InfoAs a job seeker, your most important task is to gain as much information as possible while selling yourself to the hiring manager. This can be a delicate balancing act between gaining and giving information. But there are a few things you should ask or look out for that can give you valuable insight into the company culture and what it would be like to work there. Here are four questions that will be critical to gaining the most important information from an interview.

1. Is this a new position or is it a replacement?

Knowing why a position is open is a key to finding out how you should sell yourself. If this is a new position, it means they are growing or adding important new roles to their company. This is your opportunity to make your mark in something they’ve never experienced before. On the other hand, if they are replacing an employee, it is helpful to know if this was a problem situation that resulted in a firing or another cause to create the open position.

2. How long do employees typically stay with the company?

You want to know how long a typical employee stays with the organization because if there is high turnover and constant rehiring, there may be a reason for that. It will be important for you to understand whether or not this is something that will work with your career.

3. Do people go out for lunch or happy hour?

Knowing how social a company is will help inform you about the overall corporate culture. Do people go out for lunch? Do they go on their own or as a group? Do people bring lunch in and eat at their desks? Some companies even encourage a weekly happy hour to help their staff socialize and build better bonds. Look at how they handle social interaction and whether or not they fit your values.

4. What are the company growth and client breakdown?

Lastly, you want to know the data that supports the company’s success. How has the company grown in the last year, the last 5 years, and since it was founded? What is their target client and how is that broken down. How many clients do they add each year? What clients have been lost in the past and why?

Are you ready to interview for your next new career move? Contact CornerStone Staffing today to work with the top staffing agency in Dallas!


Is Relocating the Career Step You Need to Make?

November 24th, 2015

RelocatingAre you stuck? If you’re feeling burned out with your job, the problem may not lie in the job itself. A chance of scenery is often a good way to boost your excitement level again. Before you decide if relocation is right for you, there are some important things you need to consider. It is a big commitment and shouldn’t be taken lightly, but if it is done right then it can save your career and give you peace of mind. If you’re considering relocation as your next career step, here are the questions you need to ask yourself.

How will it affect your family?

Are you married? Do you have kids? How will their lives be affected? Your spouse may have to find a new job. Is that feasible in the job market of the new city? What are the school districts like? Also consider how this will affect the family you’ve left behind. How often will you visit? Will this change holiday traditions?

What will the company reimburse?

Some companies will pay for relocation expenses, such as travel or an apartment, while you look for a new home. Others will not. Your decision to move may be affected by the finances that are made available to you. The good news is that you have the negotiating power. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want or to compromise when an offer is made.

How does the city fit your needs?

Another aspect that few people consider is whether or not the city will be a good fit for their personal lifestyle and core values. If you belong to a religious organization, that’s a great place to start to learn more about the people and the kinds of opportunities you’ll have to make friends. Then look at resources that you’re accustomed to and see if they are available in the new place.

Will this new job be a good fit for you?

While the city should be a fit for you personally, your new job should be a fit for you professionally. What does the future look like with this company? It would be a challenge to uproot your family and move only to find out the organization isn’t as stable as you thought. You should also determine if you’ll fit in with the new team or the environment.

What is the cost of living?

Finally, you need to determine the overall cost of living differences between your old city and the new one. Does the salary they’ve offered allow you to have the same standard of living but in the new city? The biggest deal breaker of all is if the salary and the new cost of living are not in line with one another.

To put it simply – we have the industry experience and contacts necessary to help you succeed. You will have access to a wide range of jobs in DFW; many of which are not advertised anywhere else. Contact CornerStone Staffing today as we are one of the top staffing agencies in Dallas with locations located throughout DFW.

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Conduct Exit Interviews That Provide Real Feedback

October 29th, 2015

Do you have an exit interview process in place in your company? Do they work to provide you with good feedback that you can use to improve your workplace experience? There is a lot of mixed information regarding exit interviews so it is important that you know how to conduct an effective version and what to do with the data you receive. Before you face a resignation in your office again, here are some tips to creating exit interviews that really work.

Focus on valued employees.

When a bad employee leaves the company, it really isn’t necessary to determine why they left. Instead, focus your energies and talking with top performers who have given their notice to find out the reasons why they’re choosing to move on. This will help you make improvements to keep top talent on your roster.

Pick the right exit interviewer.

The exit interview should never be handled by the employee’s direct supervisor. They will be unable to be objective and may take statements personally. Instead, have a neutral third party talk with the employee. If you have an HR department, they should handle it. If not, you may want to use a trusted outside business consultant. The cost will be worth the benefits.

Explain the purpose.

It is important that the employee understands the purpose of the conversation. You’re not trying to get them to admit anything personal or trick them into staying with the company. You want them to know that you are looking for constructive criticism and things you can improve in the future. They should also know that their participation is voluntary, but helpful.

Keep it confidential.

The results of the exit interview should never be shared outside of HR or upper management. Do not discuss exit interview information with other employees or even the former employee’s direct supervisor. The only exception to this confidentiality is to share information that may be helpful to improve processes and policies in the future.

Track the results.

Lastly, there will be no improvement if you do not track the results of the exit interviews in a way that help you determine why good employees are leaving the organization. Is it primarily due to policies that they don’t prefer? Or maybe you learn that your salary is not competitive, or that you don’t have a solid advancement plan for star employees. Use the information you get constructively.

Our regular, highly personal communication gives us a staffing insight that’s second to none in the DFW area. And it’s just one reason why we’re able to match the most qualified candidates for the openings that you have. Contact us today to work with the best staffing agencies in DFW and throughout Texas.

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Avoiding Employee Burnout in Summer Months

July 18th, 2014

This winter was long and cold for people all over the country, even here in Texas. But now summer offers its own challenges when it comes to motivating employees at work. During these hot, lazy summer days your employees are thinking about anything but the work at hand. How do you keep your employees on track during these hot summer days? Here are a few tips.

  1. Flexible summer schedule. Your employees want to enjoy the beautiful weather and spend time with their families who are out of school. Summer hours can give you an opportunity to allow your employees more flexibility. This new schedule doesn’t have to impact your production if you design the program with your specific business in mind. You may close early on Fridays, offer the opportunity to work 4 10-hour days, or provide work from home options.
  2. Take lunch outside. Use the weather as an excuse to give your team a social break in the middle of the day. Host a picnic or barbeque once a week. You can even incorporate games or activities to get people active. If you can’t coordinate something like this, offer an outdoor space that your team can take advantage of during their lunch breaks.
  3. Celebrate at a summer party. A weekend summer getaway for your team and their spouses can help reinvigorate your staff and keep them engaged. It gives them an activity to look forward to in the days leading up to the event. Plan some fun activities but also allow time for relaxing and enjoying the company of coworkers in a non-office setting.
  4. Surprise events. A really great way to engage your team is to do the unexpected. Without letting anyone know, invite a massage therapist in for the day. Host a 4 o’clock cocktail party on Friday afternoon. Have contests for prizes like movie tickets or gift cards from local restaurants. Award silly prizes for random things like best parking job or most decorated cube.

Are you looking for creative ways to motivate your team in the summer? Contact CornerStone Staffing Temp Agencies in Dallas TX to learn more!

4 Steps to Make Sure a Candidate Accepts Your Offer

June 13th, 2014

The job market is competitive. The tables have turned on employers who once found themselves in control of the hiring process, with more available candidates than jobs. Today, certain skills are highly sought-after which means that companies have to be more diligent about making sure that their top choice candidates accept their opportunities. Here are four steps you can take to make sure a candidate accepts your offer:

  1. Sell your company.
    While interviews are often looked at as a way for candidates to sell their skills to a business, it is equally as important for a company to sell their business to the candidate. What makes you an employer of choice? What can you offer a candidate that your competitors can’t? Use the interview process to entice candidates to your organization.
  2. Be fair with money.
    Many experts believe that the real reason behind the so-called skills gap is a problem with salary inequity. After the recession, businesses were gun-shy about offering bigger salaries. However, more and more candidates are less likely to take jobs if they don’t feel the salary is fair. Use online services such as Salary.com to determine the range for the jobs in your area before negotiating a salary.
  3. Create a company culture.
    Your office environment is as important as the individual jobs or the salary. Your employees spend more time in your office than they do at home with their families, so they need to feel comfortable and engaged with their work. Think about additional benefits you can offer right in your building. This can include a relaxing break room, wellness programs, or even work from home options.
  4. Listen to needs.
    Before making an offer to an employee, talk to them about what they are looking for in an employer. There may be some things you can accommodate with very little additional work on your part and these can improve the overall working experience for everyone in your company.

Are you ready to make an offer to a top candidate? CornerStone Temp Agencies in Dallas TX can help you today!

4 Things to Look for in a Candidates LinkedIn Profile

May 30th, 2014

LinkedIn has quickly become the number one website for recruiters and other hiring managers to look for candidates. Recent surveys have indicated that 93% of hiring managers and recruiters use the site as part of their hiring process. It is important to know what to look for before beginning a search on LinkedIn. Here are four things to look for when you’re considering candidate profiles.

  1. The complete job history. Some LinkedIn users think that throwing up a couple of words for each job is enough. However, quality candidates will treat their LinkedIn profile like an online resume. Look for details, job duties, and accomplishments. Also, be mindful of typing errors, grammar, and spelling. Just like a resume, the LinkedIn profile should be professional and complete.
  2. Recommendations. It is becoming increasingly more difficult to get large corporations to provide verbal references for employees. Thankfully, LinkedIn offers an alternative. Users can request recommendations from former coworkers or managers who provide these directly on the site. Of course this can be easily faked so look for recommendations that are well written and specific about experience.
  3. The profile photo. While photographs have been frowned upon as part of the hiring process for decades, the social networking component of LinkedIn asks users to upload a professional image on the site. Candidates without photos aren’t likely to be active on the network and will likely not respond to your requests. However, never base hiring decisions on the photograph.
  4. Links to other sites. A good LinkedIn user will take the time to add other media on their profile. They will link to their blog, their Twitter account, or even post presentations. These things can help provide additional insight into who the candidate is and how they might fit in with your organization. Take the time to review these additional sites as well.

Do you want to know more about using LinkedIn for recruiting? Cornerstone staffing agencies in the DFW area can help you today!

Hiring Nightmares to Avoid: It’s About the Salary

January 17th, 2014

Before you make your next hiring decision, consider this very sticky trap: the question of salary. While there are many possible nightmares including poor onboarding and a bad company culture fit, salary is probably one of the easiest to solve. Here are a few tips and thoughts about calculating a new employee salary and hiring the best people for your business.

  • Don’t risk losing a good employee with a low offer. Many companies over the last few years have reduced salaries in order to keep their business above water during the recession. It might be time to recalculate this strategy. The old adage “You get what you pay for,” is undoubtedly true. Talk to your candidate about their expectations and take these numbers into consideration as you make a decision. You may pay a little more than you expected or planned but it will cost even more when a lower paid employee leaves for more money or if the candidate turns out to be a bad fit.
  • Avoid pay compression. This means that there is very little difference between the pay across multiple levels of your organization. New salaries may be just under those of current employees or, in some scenarios, they might be paid more. This can be extremely bad for employee morale. Keep up with the current market and pay your current employees what they are worth rather than keeping outdated salary information. Create a forecast and plan and know what you should be paying current employees and what the market pays incoming employees for necessary skills.
  • Beware the other end of salary negotiations. Most potential employees will be quite genuine when it comes to negotiating their salary. Candidates have been shown the formula for calculating  a reasonable pay scale for their skills, experience, location, and cost of living. However, a red flag may be raised if a candidate becomes unreasonable, angry, or argumentative about the salary they feel there are owed. If you begin negotiations and don’t find the other party to be respectful it may be a sign that you should not extend an offer and instead move on to another candidate.

Do you know how much you should be paying for certain jobs? If you are looking for staffing agencies in Dallas TX, contact us today.

The Dallas Job Market: The Impact of Temporary Staffing

December 20th, 2013

While the Dallas area has been consistently ranked number one for jobs among metropolitan areas there is one specific aspect of this success that has been overlooked. Temporary staffing has been a hallmark in the successful job market in the area. In spite of a slowdown in October of 2013 temporary staffing still grew twice as fast as other employment in the region. While many employees are looking for permanent work they may be missing out on opportunities through the staffing services in the area. Here is a look at the temporary job market in Dallas in 2013 and how it will carry over into the New Year.

  • The avoidance of temporary projects. So many candidates are shying away from opportunities with temporary staffing agencies in the region; however, this can be a detriment to the job search. While these positions may start at a lower salary and without benefits they are a doorway into permanent employment. Many local companies are working with agencies to help them with their hiring process and without starting as a temporary associate there is no opportunity at all.
  • The “try before you buy” attitude. Temporary-to-Hire is an agreement between a client company and an employment service. This allows for a company to assess a candidate’s job performance as they are working and determine if they are good fit for the job, the environment, and the team. This agreement usually lasts for 90 days and at the end of the time the company can choose to hire the employee on as a permanent staff member.
  • Short term projects for long term change. Other area corporations need additional help for large scale projects or changes in demand from their own clients. This is especially true for organizations such as call centers or industrial production. Employees who are flexible for these types of opportunities may have changes for long term employment that wouldn’t be open to candidates who do not share this level of flexibility. Staffing agencies love to have reliable and flexible employees to contact for these sorts of opportunities.

How do you think that temporary staffing can help your job search in the New Year? If you are looking for temp agencies in Dallas TX, contact us today.