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June 25th, 2018 / by Mike Cooney

Fair Chance in Washington State

Washington State’s new Fair Chance Act went into effect June 6th, 2018. This version of a ban-the-box law specifically prohibits employers from obtaining information, either in writing or verbally, about job applicants prior arrests or convictions until after the applicant is determined to be qualified or the position. Once... more

October 26th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

Are We Done Asking For Salary History From Candidates?

A progressive new Massachusetts law banning asking candidates for salary histories during the interview process was signed on August 1st of this year.  This law has quickly gained traction, more than any other employment law prior.  Just four weeks later, New York City and the state of California have already signed similar laws.  Now a delegate from D.C. will introduce the legislature to Congress to make it a nationwide ban.

Little question, big impact

The driving purpose of the law is to increase pay equity among workers, mainly women. Since women are underpaid relative to men performing the same or similar work, the continued practice of basing a new hire’s compensation off of their last jobs compounds the ongoing inequity. Although other groups stand to gain as well.  Recent college graduates who started their first jobs during the recession may see their rates catch up. According to some HR leaders, this... more

July 28th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

The Free Agent Market – NBA Free Agency Can Help You Make The Next Great Hire

Now that the NBA free agency has nearly wrapped up and the big names are settled, it’s interesting to see how the strategies used in the NBA relate to strategies used when acquiring top talent for your business.

The most shocking outcome of the NBA free agency was no doubt Kevin Durant’s decision to sign with his home team’s fiercest competitor the Warriors.  Many teams were courting Durant. The highest-level executives flew to him to make their pitches. The Boston Celtics went farther by using existing top talent and even pulled in Tom Brady, quarterback for the New England Patriots to try and sway Durant. Many teams offered higher and higher salaries to Durant.

In the end the team that ultimately won Durant did so by presenting him with the best chance for joining championship level team, one that could become a dynasty – as some are already predicting. Perhaps, even... more

June 27th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

When Luring Candidates Away

With the recruiting market running so tightly, employers will want to be ever more creative in sourcing candidates. Our recent installment looked at ways organizations can continue to attract top talent in a tight hiring market. However, there’s another potentially untapped pool of candidates that hasn’t been addressed yet, the passive candidate. In a candidate driven market, luring passive candidates to your organization can be one of the missing pieces to acquiring top talent.

In contrast to active candidates, passive candidates are the ones that aren’t actively looking for that next opportunity but rather are the ones that will stop and listen when contacted. They are not checking job postings or surfing the job boards and career sites.

The first step is shifting the recruiting strategy and putting “recruiting” back into the mindset. This means that you will be selling the passive candidate on your opportunity and your company instead reviewing... more

May 14th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

What A Real Estate Agent Can Teach Us About The Job Market

Anyone looking for housing in the Portland metro area right now will tell you it’s a full time job. With inventory at all time lows and prices at all time highs, sellers have a flurry of offers and competition to get offers accepted is fierce. If that sounds familiar, you might be noticing the resemblance to the hiring market.

In times of low inventory, real estate agents will suggest buyers set geographical boundaries wider than ever to try and boost the number of options. Buyers will realize that the most desirable homes and locations will not be cheap. Offers go up against 30 other offers at a time, causing buyers to resort to unconventional situations to make their offer stand out – offer prices 29% above list price and letting owners stay rent free for up to 60 days past closing and even writing love letters to the owners for... more

March 25th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

The Squeeze Is On

The latest data shows national unemployment rates at 5% and only dropping from there.  In February, 242,000 new jobs were created and six straight years of record breaking growth shows no signs of slowing.  Locally, the Portland Metro Area’s job growth was among the fastest in the US and it’s unemployment rate has plummeted to 4.3 %, the lowest since the days.  The unemployment rate is half that for those with a college degree.

This scenario creates unique challenges in talent acquisition and employee retention.  The post and pray model will not fill candidate pools in this environment.  The squeeze is on for businesses to remain competitive in recruitment strategies.  What can employers do differently to fill and, more importantly, keep positions filled?

With so few candidates looking for work, the net will need to be cast much wider. The good news is there are many things employers can do... more

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