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The Coronavirus Could Impact Recruiting March 11, 2020

The Coronavirus could impact recruiting, hiring, and working in general.

Imagine the following –

  1. Flights have been cancelled indefinitely
  2. We are restricted to our geographical locations
  3. We have to work from home and avoid daily contact with our co-workers

Will this happen?  Probably not. But as a fiction book lover, I enjoy reading about things like this.  If this were to happen, our approach to recruiting, hiring, and daily work would change.  We would recruit using the tools we have today: phones, computers, and videoconferencing.  

Let’s take it one step further.  Now imagine if companies and individuals only interviewed via phone and video before making or accepting an offer; no live, face-to-face interview.  While we all know it’s possible, most companies have this old school mentality that they need to meet the potential candidate in person before they can extend an offer.  On the other hand, the individual feels the need to meet the hiring manager and see the environment they will work in before accepting an offer.  Imagine that this is now not possible; imagine offers and acceptances without ever meeting in person.  Instead of relying on our visual biases, we focus on the criteria of a good candidate or a good company to work for and then focus the interview on this criterion.  What does an in-person interview really do for you?   

Now imagine, you’ve accepted the job and your first day is not in an office with many others but rather at your home office where you are onboarded, trained, and communicated with on a regular cadence ensuring connectivity and performance metrics are met.  As leadership, you may ask yourself several questions, how will I know if the team member is working and not working on personal stuff?  Don’t we need the team member to punch in or to see the person to know how they are performing?  As a new hire, you may ask yourself, don’t I need to prove myself by being visible?  How do I show my manager that I’m working extra hours and going the extra mile?  Will I miss an opportunity for recognition or a promotion because I’m not there

Maybe it’s time for us to eliminate the old way of thinking.  Maybe it’s time to be less concerned with people in the office; do I like my subordinates; does it look like they are doing a good job?  Maybe it’s time to hire, measure, and exit (if need be) to your vision and values.  Maybe it’s time to implement a business system that focuses on the vital few metrics that drive performance.  What will happen?  You take away the excuses and you hire, measure, reward, and exit (if need be) to your values and your performance markers.  The excuses are then replaced by the drive for countermeasures to garner performance.

At TYGES, we made the shift I described about 5 years ago, and we have seen remarkable improvements in our culture and our performance.  We are clear about our mission and values – https://tyges.com/our-mission/.  We don’t have a vacation or sick policy – we have a performance policy.  Everyone focuses on specific goals per quarter and our team members are clear about the roadmap to their success.  We have weekly meetings where we openly discuss performance, current challenges, and make decisions to keep things moving forward.  We’ve even invested in world-class technology that allows us to hire, onboard, train, and engage remote workers. 

I don’t make light of the Coronavirus but rather use it as an opportunity to get companies to explore what they are doing today and what they need to get out in front of change but like most companies, they need an impetus to force radical change.

Tim Saumier

Written by: TIM SAUMIER, President and Founder

Tim Saumier started his recruiting career when he opened TYGES International back in July 2002 after purchasing a franchise from MRINetwork. He has grown the business from start-up office in 2002 to where it is today helping clients around the world solve their talent acquisition problems. While he does place people with companies, he brings much more through his consultative coaching with both companies and individuals hence the reason he has built long-lasting relationships that continue to work with TYGES.

Prior to starting TYGES, Tim spent thirteen years in corporate America with companies like John Deere, Moen, and Philips where he had the opportunity to work in supply chain, operations, and engineering during his career.


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