Sourcing School by RecruitingDaily

A New Dawn for Talent Intelligence and HR Technologies with Martin Burns of Udder and Evan Herman of Hermanomics

October 27, 2023 Brian Fink, Ryan Leary, and Shally Steckerl
Sourcing School by RecruitingDaily
A New Dawn for Talent Intelligence and HR Technologies with Martin Burns of Udder and Evan Herman of Hermanomics
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Want to unlock the future of HR Tech trends?  Ryan Leary and Brian Fink engage in insightful conversations with HR experts Martin Burns, GM of Americas at Udder and Evan Herman Sourcing Recruiter at Hermanomics.

Together, they navigate the trending waves in HR tech, discuss the effectiveness of skills-based hiring, and predict future industry trends. Immerse yourself in the fast-paced evolution of talent intelligence, the key role of learning adaptability, and the rise of innovative sourcing tools. 

Special mini series recorded with Oleeo at HR Tech 2023 with hosts Ryan Leary, Brian Fink, and Shally Steckerl.


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Speaker 2:

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, welcome to Recruiting Daily Sourcing School podcast. I'm Brian Fink, he's Ryan Leary and we are sponsored here today at the Olio booth, where we are coming to you live from the floor of HR Tech in Las Vegas, we are joined by not one but two guests. We've got Martin Burns, who I know everybody knows he is HR famous.

Speaker 3:

Yes, I just called you out on that. You didn't know him no.

Speaker 2:

I knew him, I've read his stuff. I just have never met him.

Speaker 4:

I was like Martin Burns you're on the bet.

Speaker 2:

I was like we're in the booth, we're doing this thing and we're joined by Evan Herman from Hermanomics. Hey everybody, what's going on? Party people? What's the vibe on the floor? Who wants to take a stab at that? It's busy.

Speaker 4:

A good way. It's not as packed as it has been sometimes, but as far as conversations and need and all that is to come out. So there's a lot of buzz happening. There's a lot of good conversations. I think we're back. I think we're back.

Speaker 2:

We're free again. Okay, so talking about being back, this is actually my first HR Tech. I think this is Evan's first HR Tech.

Speaker 1:

No, hold on, hold on. This is your first.

Speaker 2:

HR Tech For the first time. And yeah, because last year, when we were going to come do this, I was in the process of not knowing if I was getting fired or whatever at Twitter.

Speaker 1:

I did not know, this was your first HR Tech.

Speaker 2:

Okay.

Speaker 1:

Well, you need to walk the floor and go see all this way and go get some good stuff.

Speaker 2:

It's only for Maddie. So, evan, you've done six.

Speaker 3:

Yes, this is my sixth leaning just a little bit.

Speaker 2:

Everybody getting close to those mics. It's my sixth Awesome, all right, so Ryan is counting on his fingers 14. Wow, it's like teenagers up in the room. The 16. Incredible 16.

Speaker 1:

I've been the more HRTX's than your daughter's been alive, maybe 17. Yeah, sure Wow.

Speaker 2:

Okay, so Ryan, tom Martin, you're saying that it's back. Right, and this is my first year. What was the topic that was talked about in 2022 that did not make it to the floor in 2023? Interesting question.

Speaker 4:

Well, it's generative AI, but, that said, ai it always been like a buzzword for a decade now in HR Tech, so that's probably the biggest thing that I'm seeing. That is, skills.

Speaker 2:

Skills Everybody's got skills.

Speaker 4:

Everybody understands how to do it. Most of them can't, but this is typical of the industry. There's always something like that happens wherever it gets busy. You talk to them in a phrase and then it goes away, but hopefully it leaves behind some positive techs, some positive change. But so right now the zeitgeist is skills in AI or generative AI, I guess.

Speaker 2:

Okay, all right, evan. What about you? What are you hearing on the floor?

Speaker 3:

What I'm seeing a lot besides what Martin already mentioned about gender and AI, etc. Is a lot about talent rediscovery and leveraging what you already have in your existing database and your existing tools and getting more out of it.

Speaker 2:

Oh, okay, that's interesting. That is the second time today that I've had a conversation about talent rediscovery. I mean, personally, I think that retention is the new recruiting, about how you're gonna go deep in your own organization and focus on internal mobility. But, as Ryan said, I haven't made it around the floor to kind of pick up on that. So let's go back to this topic of generative AI. It's already been established, or there's a lot of evidence and I just put that in quotes that it's gonna make recruiters more productive.

Speaker 1:

I thought you were doing it, say evidence, Evidence.

Speaker 4:

By the way for everyone, brian uses air quotes. This is a podcast, I know, I know.

Speaker 3:

It's not a bit easy.

Speaker 1:

He points.

Speaker 2:

he uses air quotes, so I've got a question. Is we talk about it creating a better recruiter experience? What is it gonna do for a candidate experience? Any thoughts on that?

Speaker 4:

Yeah, I have a bunch Like two things. First, I don't think that we really understand that candidates can automate stuff too, and they are. So what's coming? It was in the Commedist produce soon. There's a huge volume of applicants just over and over and over again because they've automated their applying process on their side. So we probably should think about that too. But in terms of, I don't think most organizations really got anywhere near ready for the automation they claim they want, because they aren't sure what to automate. They haven't done really deep process mapping yet. They haven't figured out what their actual organization's doing on a day-to-day basis when it comes to hiring. So they assume the hiring manager following the current process, everything's fine. Reality is, most hiring managers immediately break the process and that function that works for them. So until you go through and talk to all your hiring managers every single one of them groups and say when you get a resume, what do you do physically with it? Like you print it, you email it, how do you email it? You know what. Do you use Gmail? Do you use the corporate? Do you use the CRM to go through? How do you move things around? And if you can get them to tell you the truth, you can figure out where everything's going to get screwed up, and once you have that map built, you then can fix it. You can optimize. I wave my hands around a lot because I do that it's all good, we're in a video podcast now.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, there we go.

Speaker 4:

But the idea, though, is that until you figure out foundationally, what's actually happened at your organization, you can't fix any of your problems, because you don't know where they are. Yet you can't throw a I at stuff until you actually understand what you're throwing it at, because otherwise you just make your problems faster and smarter, supposedly. That's really Garbage in, garbage out, yeah yeah, yeah, or you're fixing the wrong problem. Really You're pushing it. You're pushing them one thing and you're causing a bubble somewhere else and then it puts pop up. So, first thing, get foundational, figure out your and also your data mapping, figure data mapping out and map all your data and how to apply it to your processes. And then you can look and say here's where we can fix this. We need a CRM or we need a source and tool or we need training. But until you do that, you're just buying buzzwords and random technology and helping you fix the problem that you are quite sure what's causing it, if that makes sense.

Speaker 2:

So, martin, is there a technology that's on the floor today that you think is gonna go away?

Speaker 4:

Well, I'll let them eventually. But that's entropy. I don't wanna jump out there say that. But yeah, I don't wanna call people out, but I think there is. I think the skills buzz is gonna die down. Because we are there yet and we don't understand it yet.

Speaker 2:

Evan is shaking his head and affirmative with you. Evan, you wanna jump in here about the skills buzz?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, absolutely, it's been a buzzword for kind of years and I think to me any good recruiter in recruiting organization they've kind of already been doing that, maybe just not by name or maybe not consciously. And also personally, I think that it doesn't go far enough. Skills-based hiring anyways, that if you have the experience, you presumably also have the skills. And I think we all have seen the shortcomings of that and you actually need to do what shortcomings?

Speaker 2:

with skill-based hiring is because I'm sitting here and I'm thinking and I'm kind of defensive about this is that I like the fact that I work for an organization where we focus on skills-based hiring. We don't focus on people who have quote unquote a degree right, that is a preferred, that is not a required, but skills like knowing Python or knowing Java or making those commits. Those are skills that we can look at and that we can see in their GitHub and Stack Overflow profiles, that we can speak to and we can hire for those skills. Now, on the flip side, I'm not hiring for salespeople, so I don't know that I can see into a salesperson's skill-based Maybe skills has limitations to tech or to nursing or to areas where quote unquote there is proof in the pudding right.

Speaker 3:

Yes, I absolutely agree with you on that. What I was pointing out and what I meant was that like if you just see on a resume, somebody says they have those skills, so it's more just hiring Keyword yeah, on paper, like I have those skills. Well, how have you used those skills? Are you actually good at that? Are you actually expert at that, or do you just nominally have that skills? In that sense, hiring by skills versus based on credentials or just nominal experience is no different than the predecessor to skills-based hiring. It's just rebranding experience-based hiring and then no longer requiring a degree. Okay. So what I mean is how have you actually used that? And so what I call it and I partially borrowed from Lou Adler is success-based hiring. How have you actually successfully applied those skills? And in learning how they've actually made accomplishments, you've seen how they've actually applied those skills successfully. So it's taking real skills based on hearing to the next level.

Speaker 2:

You know Adam Posner. In his podcast, the POSCAST, Posner had a. He posited the question that we should be asking instead of you know, tell me about the hardest thing that you've done the one Lou Adler question. We should be asking what impact did you make on the business? And that that's universal, whether you're hiring for sales, whether you're hiring for marketing, whether you're hiring for IT, or I made a reference to medical Ryan. What do you think there, bro?

Speaker 1:

I wasn't paying attention.

Speaker 2:

Okay, bro, I'm good with that.

Speaker 3:

You just lull into sleep the sound of my voice.

Speaker 2:

It's all good.

Speaker 4:

He's here to look pretty. That's all it is.

Speaker 1:

I was still thinking about Evan's previous point around skills based hiring and thinking back to our conversation with Alper. Oh yeah, find him.

Speaker 2:

yeah, sure, yeah, find him.

Speaker 1:

And he was talking about and you know some of the abilities that they now have, where you know maybe skill number or skill set A is what you're thinking. They're able to associate B, c and D with that and then pull that back in based on where they work, who they've worked for, who they reported to all that information and, I think, as a in the recruiting process anyway. I think that's incredibly powerful.

Speaker 2:

Oh, I think that was super powerful, Like he made me, Alper made me sit up and learn something real quick he did.

Speaker 4:

And I think part of it too is and I'm with you, Brian, on the, on the not looking at degrees, and part of that I mean it's more about. I think it's just. It's a bit so fuzzy that we don't know what we're doing. A lot of these organizations would not do that but they're throwing money at it. And I was worried about that, so I think that'll die down a bit. I think we'll still stay with the idea, though, that you know your experience matters. Your degree is less important. Based on if your experience can make it, it shows that you can do the job. But also, I think we can start looking more at not just the skills you have, but your ability to gain new skills. Ooh, okay, that's what I think is because you're hiring for some of their future work, not their past. You can build on the funniest skills, but the ability to learn and I'm not talking like it's evidenced by degrees, but see the ability to learn and develop and grow your career and who you are that, to me, sets and predicts that you keep doing that. So wherever you go next, you're going to pick up new skills, because things constantly change, especially now. So if you're hiring a software engineer, never hire a software engineer, because they know your current tech stack really well.

Speaker 2:

What are they doing next?

Speaker 4:

Yeah, hire them, if they can, if I figure out how quickly they'll learn new tech stacks, because you may change your entire stack in three months. And then where do you hire everyone? Or take those who have and train them in new technology? I think the second option is a lot easier If they can learn. That's the key thing yeah.

Speaker 2:

So going to that? Should we be hiring for culture fit? No, I think that's different. I think it's more about Well, what if it's a culture of lifelong learning?

Speaker 4:

Well, sure, that's a great overlap, but I do think it's either, because I think both matter. I think looking at culture matters, but also the risk of culture is you can just basically hyper-excelerate your homogenized environment.

Speaker 2:

So you can hyper-excelerate, yeah.

Speaker 4:

Yeah, you can basically just make things worse, faster and faster, because if your culture is not a good culture, yeah, to add on what Martin just said, I think instead of culture-based alignment, which often produces some diametrical debate, For those of you who are watching the podcast I just made she just made a fist bump, okay.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, but it gets kind of heated on that. What's more important is not are you culturally aligned, but are you aligned with the mission of the company? Okay, and can you adapt as the mission changes? Can you adapt to that and screening for that?

Speaker 2:

Well then, that actually goes to the book is the Alliance it's an orange cover, it's by Reid Hoffman and I can't remember the co-author of it where he talks about tours of duty and the ability to change your mind, I know the book.

Speaker 4:

Yeah, it's Reid Hoffman and somebody else. I can see the cover. Yeah, yeah, he said orange.

Speaker 2:

I was like, oh yeah sure I've read up on that. Yeah, that's a book. I think that was inserted in the nomenclature about 2016, 2015.

Speaker 4:

Yeah, that sounds right yeah.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so tour of duty Like that, like that, a lot, all right. Well, let me ask We've asked about takeaways that you've had from the event, but we haven't asked, and we asked about 2022 to 2023. What do you see taking place from 2023 to 2024? What's next?

Speaker 1:

Hmm.

Speaker 4:

I think it's sort of a magic baseball.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, well, you can collect your thoughts. So I'm in the market a lot, talking to both sides, both the vendors themselves and the buyers, the talent acquisition teams and most of the large enterprises and I actually posted about this earlier this week that I think we're in the earliest stages of actually the slow death of talent intelligence as a standalone and separate tool. I think they're being unified by some of these great AI sourcing tools that are doing in live time what these talent intelligent tools say. They need 48 hours minimum turnaround time to do on their custom reports and if they don't start adding and becoming sourcing tools themselves, then all they are is just more data without actually anything actual to do about it, whereas if you're sourcing tool giving people actual people to contact and the data like this is where the female Java developers are most best concentrated in these cities and then actually giving you specific people to contact, that's a lot better than just you know. Austin, texas has 10,000 female Java developers. San Francisco has 20,000 things like that, and I think and I've seen this with actual buyers in actual demos talking about dropping these talent intelligent tools and using that spend towards sourcing tools.

Speaker 2:

Martin, what are you seeing out?

Speaker 4:

there. That's interesting. I actually want to build a little bit because I think it's interesting, if you don't mind.

Speaker 1:

So I was looking at have you seen Claire's new tool.

Speaker 4:

So Wilson HHG's that they bought Claire last year. Claire, it's phenomenal.

Speaker 2:

We had Mark Mape's on. We should probably have Michael on, because Michael is the yeah.

Speaker 4:

Michael and I went and talked to like we just we, he and I are like woo together, so we got weird in a good way, but they're building a. Really they've got a really interesting build to generate Almost a couple seconds of labor in the next report. That would take an analyst two months to build like that. So take that to your point. I love what you're saying and the next logical step is to say here's this many in San Francisco and here's where they are. Here's their emails, here's their phone number and we've created the. Oh, here's 20,000. Here's the ones we know are qualified based on our you know, data set and here's their information. That's a phenomenal way to do that. I love that. That's really cool. So who's actually doing that?

Speaker 2:

Well, it's coming about by someone. Oh, I see there's a twinkle in. There's a twinkle in Evan's eye.

Speaker 4:

Well, I can't yeah, I can't disclose who's doing that. Whoever it is, we'll find out.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, let's just say there's a couple of large financial services companies that are strongly considering doing that, and that's what led me. I don't do hot takes, I do real takes from real situations, and if these companies are thinking about it, then the others are soon to follow, and that's why I feel confident in that prediction.

Speaker 4:

Yeah, that's a good point, that's great.

Speaker 3:

What I'm saying is talent intelligence. I don't want anyone to misunderstand me. It's not dying. I think that as the more and more revenue goes towards getting talent intelligence from these sourcing tools, they'll acquire or merge with the talent intelligence tools. They won't be able to survive just being a separate talent intelligence tool. They got to be able to do more for their clients and it's probably going to be by being acquired or merging.

Speaker 2:

Okay, all right. So 2024 acquires and mergers a little bit of the disposition and change in terms of talents, intelligence and its mashup with sourcing. Martin, what do you got for 2024? What's on top?

Speaker 4:

Yeah, so the building on the M&A PC is mentioned. I think we're going to see some activity in that level this year because there's been. This is typical. When you have an economic downturn, something weird happens, that you get like what happened with COVID. Just briefly, when everyone went home, people start building point solutions at home as they came and they're bored and they have things to do and new ideas.

Speaker 3:

So we have a lot of those floating around, right now.

Speaker 4:

But then you start seeing acquisitions happening. We saw this are happening already. I think we'll see more this year and next year. Actually, it's just the industry kind of pulls together a bit.

Speaker 2:

Okay, all right, well, we oh.

Speaker 1:

Ryan, one thing we didn't do.

Speaker 2:

Ryan, what's up?

Speaker 1:

I don't think we went through what each of these gentlemen do. Oh, you know what?

Speaker 2:

That's a good point. We jumped right into it Like I got excited because of who we were partying with.

Speaker 1:

So, martin, you've recently joined, I am.

Speaker 4:

GM of. Well, actually, because of lack of a comma on my name tag, you can't see a podcast. People are old, but it says Martin Burns GM dash America's utter, you're America's utter.

Speaker 2:

Which I think. Like I said, I think it's Texas or possibly Mexico.

Speaker 4:

Florida something else? Oh, oh, oh Shh.

Speaker 1:

Martin Burns entered the chat. What is utter?

Speaker 4:

The utter is a UK based consultancy that focuses on, well, all things TA really in HR. So everything from implementation, some integrations as well, frankly, with vendors On the vendor side go to market strategy, those kind of pieces. But on the client buyer side, a lot of process work, a lot of the good stuff coming in helping to figure out the big problems, helping them implement new technologies, number of really strong partnerships over in Europe high bob, smart recruiters, a bunch of others and I started with these guys two weeks ago and they want to expand, bring the service levels to the Americas, and they're clients who, where they work with all the love of them they are renowned as being probably the best consultancy in Europe as far as quality goes, and so we want to bring that here, maintain that and build up the same service offering for clients in the States and help them with their implementations across various platforms that serve an SI, as well as building up some branding and creative abilities to our clients who want to help them build career aspects for their clients.

Speaker 2:

Cool, cool. And Evan, what about you? Give us a 30,000 foot view about what it is that you do in the TA space?

Speaker 3:

Sure, I do what I call TAP Intro. My company name is Hermonomics and I'm a talent acquisition partner providing introductions to talent acquisition tools. So I'm a matchmaker for tools instead of people.

Speaker 4:

Okay there, and people can be tools too, though, so that could work in both directions.

Speaker 1:

That is true, that is true.

Speaker 4:

Oh I should probably drop by email too. I guess it's martin at udderrox.

Speaker 2:

All right. Well, hey, I appreciate everybody being on the show today. Thank you for giving voice to what's going on at HR Tech. I'm Ryan, he's Brian. We are brought to you by Olio at wait. Wait, did I say that wrong To backwards.

Speaker 1:

She's Ryan.

Speaker 2:

I'm Brian. We're brought to you by Olio here on the floor at Recruiting Daily's Sourcing School Podcast. Thanks so much. Listed throughout this podcast, please remember.

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