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The Four Most Common HR Contract Roles and How to Stay Competitive When Hiring for Them

Hiring Human Resource contractors is more competitive than ever, and the market is particularly fierce for some of the popular HR roles.  The best hiring managers understand the give-and-take that goes with hiring the right talent and hiring them fast. Those newer to the game may find themselves in a bidding war for talent and miss out on capable candidates. If you are looking to build your team with a Recruiting Coordinator, HRIS Analyst, Recruiter or Compensation Analyst, learn what you need to know to stay competitive and capture the right talent quickly.

Recruiting Coordinator

Position overview

The Recruiting Coordinator is an entry-level recruiting role that supports the HR department in a variety of recruiting and HR-specific tasks. He or she typically coordinates the flow of candidates through the recruitment process, from scheduling interviews to bringing new employees on board, and also assists with other administrative tasks. Hiring managers often want six months to three years’ experience in an HR department.

Why companies want it

The Recruiting Coordinator has an hourly rate that many HR departments find appealing; they can often get approval for this addition to the team. The Recruiting Coordinator will lighten the load of the recruiting team and other HR team members by taking on many of the administrative tasks that may be bogging down the department. An effective Recruiting Coordinator will improve and increase the HR team’s productivity.

Why it’s a candidate’s market

These roles are abundant. The best opportunities are attractive to candidates as they have longer contracts and temp-to-perm options. It’s a solid start for a professional wanting a career in HR.

Best advice for the hiring manager

These candidates want to get to work quickly and tend to jump at the first good opportunity that comes their way. As a hiring manager, you need to move fast. This isn’t a role where you can hesitate and continue looking, even after finding a solid contender. If you do, they likely will get taken by someone else.

Human Resources Information Systems Analyst (HRIS Analyst) 

Position overview

The HRIS Analyst focuses on software and systems involving employee management in areas such as talent acquisition, employee engagement, succession planning and training & development. Duties may include running reports, completing data entry, analyzing information and helping implement new systems. 

Why companies want it

As the economy continues to improve, many companies are allocating budget dollars to system upgrades. They want to be current to stay competitive and to keep their operations running smoothly, and they need HRIS talent to coordinate and manage the process.

Why it’s a candidate’s market

The role requires a niche skill set so there are fewer professionals in the pool. Candidates need an HR background to understand the employee population they support, while also being familiar with the type of information they are collecting. These candidates require solid technical skills to use the company’s software tools and to troubleshoot when things go wrong.

In addition to requiring the niche skill set, hiring managers look for very specific systems experience. They often seek candidates with the exact system background their company uses, and this, of course, narrows the candidate pool even more.

Best advice for the hiring manager

Hiring managers need to be flexible. If the candidate doesn’t have experience with your exact software program but they do have that rare combination of HR and technical skills, they will likely learn your specific system quickly. Move fast; if you don’t take them someone else will.

Recruiters 

Position overview 

Recruiters are HR professionals who partner with different departments throughout the organization. They help with the entire hiring process to ensure the best talent is captured. 

Why it’s popular

As the economy continues to improve, recruiters are becoming increasingly popular. Companies are looking to grow and build their teams with the best talent available.  

Why it’s a candidate’s market

Talented candidates are scarce. This, combined with the fact that there are countless companies looking to bring Contract Recruiters on board allows job seekers to be selective. 

Best advice for hiring managers

Consider other options!  I recommend looking at a Senior Recruiting Coordinator who has touched on some elements of the recruiting process like sourcing and phone screens. Also worth considering - those who are returning to the workforce after an absence. While they may have been out of work for a year or longer, their skills are likely well intact.

Contracting makes sense for many of these folks; they may not need benefits and may be more willing to take a risk with a contracting role. If you are looking at a more senior role, you will pay more, but you’ll get someone talented and get them fast. It’s a worthwhile outlay and one that will likely have a strong return on investment.

You can attract these candidates by building flexibility into their position – shortened work day or work from home, for example. If you offer options you will have a strong stream of candidates in your pipeline.

Compensation Analyst

Position Overview 

Compensation analysts are responsible for reviewing salary, bonus, and compensation programs throughout a company. They run reports, compile salary surveys and review job titles to ensure employees are receiving a competitive income. 

Why companies want it

These candidates are sought after to review and restructure compensation plans. Many companies are taking a look at what they offer employees and comparing that to what the market is driving. To do this successfully, they need compensation professionals who can complete this work and help implement new structures and programs. 

Why it’s a candidate’s market 

It’s a very niche role and compensation professionals have their pick of contracts; their skills are sought after and scarce. Why? To get into compensation someone needs to have a blended background in both HR and accounting & finance. Compensation professionals achieve this in one of two ways. Some are mentored in compensation during their first job, while others come out of an accounting & finance background and transition into HR.

Best advice for hiring managers

There are a few directions hiring managers can take to find a competent Compensation Analyst. I recommend a willingness to consider someone with more experience. This approach will likely get your job filled faster.  There aren’t many candidates who have the desired skill set in compensation at a junior level.

If you are adamant about hiring a contractor with lighter experience, be willing to see resumes from candidates with a generalist background who have a strong interest in or experience with compensation. Again, this will open the door to more well-suited prospects.

Flexibility and knowing the market are key when hiring any HR contractor. Educate yourself on the market so your expectations will be set and managed appropriately. By putting in the groundwork, you’ll avoid common frustrations and know when to act fast for the right candidate.

Photo Credit: Entrepreneurs Questions