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Oracle Cloud veterans ‘jump-start’ their recruiting function

Recruiting and retaining a solid workforce is never easy and the current competitive labor market is not helping. Organizations are working all kinds of angles to make themselves even more attractive to potential employees. One avenue that may not initially be considered is implementing a cloud-recruiting platform, such as Oracle Recruiting, which could give your organization just the edge it needs for several reasons.

At the Ascend 2021 Conference, Baker Tilly presented, “Equity Residential, HCM Cloud veterans, go next level with Oracle Recruiting,” during which Rosie Stroh, Equity’s human resources operations director, and Mark Johnson, Equity’s information technology director, discussed what prompted them to adopt the cloud for their recruiting efforts, what the process was like for them and how the firm has benefited from the implementation.

Equity’s cloud journey

Equity Residential – a Chicago-based real estate investment trust – began their journey to the cloud back in 2016, when the firm’s IT, payroll and HR departments were looking to standardize and modernize their systems. Given their prior experience, they knew they wanted to move away from an environment of customization, allow for mobility since employees often worked at multiple sites and implement an application that could be configured to meet their needs. It’s no surprise Oracle Human Capital Management Cloud (HCM) fit the bill.

In the years since Equity’s first cloud implementation, Oracle’s Recruiting Cloud product had evolved, catching up to, and actually eclipsing, Oracle’s Taleo Talent Acquisition solution, which they originally implemented. Functionality was the most important factor, but so was the ability to ‘brand’, Johnson said. Equity wanted the product to be tailored to the firm, which Oracle allows through its flexible personalization capabilities.

Another selling point of Oracle Recruiting was mobility. Equity has a varied workforce and so the platform had to be easy for potential employees at all levels to apply online, with an intuitive and straightforward application process. Stroh said her team wanted it to be nimble enough with their compliance and career site that they could make changes quickly without having to go through a lot of planning or having to get permission from someone else to have it done.

Implementation process

After the product selection, Equity started its search for an implementation consultant. The stakeholders wanted a team that had experience with the entire Oracle HCM platform, Johnson said, because they were aiming to create a streamlined experience for a candidate, and with Oracle Cloud the process doesn’t simply end with the recruiting module, it continues into onboarding, talent profile and there it is a hub for all of talent management.

After choosing Baker Tilly, the team launched the project using Baker Tilly’s “Jump Start” methodology, in which the client gives Baker Tilly access to its existing system to examine how it’s been configured to determine what has been working and what hasn’t. From there the Baker Tilly team interviews stakeholders about their requirements and the positives and negatives of the legacy platform. Armed with that information, Baker Tilly builds a prototype within the Oracle Recruiting product and shows the client a nearly fully functioning system with many of its process built in. From there, a few iterative design sessions flesh out the remainder of the module, tailored specifically for the client. Then it’s time for the “playback” step of the Jump Start approach. During these playback sessions, the client gets to a view into end-to-end process and any remaining adjustments to the environment can be made. Stroh said she has worked with many implementation consultants in the past, but she hadn’t ever been involved like this throughout the project. Historically, with other partners and products, she said they would “spend a great deal of time on requirements, build and design, but wouldn’t ever see the product function until we were already 20 miles down the road. By the first time we would finally see it, it wasn’t what we expected. With Jumpstart, we were able to grant Baker Tilly access to our existing environment of Taleo and they were able to just go from there, since they are so well versed in the system. Jumpstart was really a shining moment from Baker Tilly.”

Another issue Equity wanted to avoid was not being able to handle updates after the engagement ended. One of the hallmarks of Baker Tilly’s implementation process is the governance model, which gives the client the ability to support updates from Oracle on their own going forward as the knowledge transfer happened throughout the project. Stroh said, from the beginning of the process, they involved stakeholders from the departments that were going to be using the tools. Having them be a part of the project from the beginning gave them a sense of ownership, so by the time the project went live, they were a trained workforce who understood the product, she said.

Benefits from Oracle Recruiting

Equity’s new recruiting platform went live in May 2020, launching in the midst of a global pandemic. Having everything together in one system means that IT has taken on the responsibility of performing any updates that need to be made, ensuring changes are made consistently across the entire system and taking that burden away from other departments so they are able to focus on more strategic, value-added initiatives.

With Oracle Recruiting, Equity can:

  • Use its robust reporting functionality to analyze employee data from a metric-driven perspective to help them understand how they are doing as an employer.
  • Get an idea of what makes someone a quality hire and what might be influencing certain employees to leave.
  • Inform how they promote within. If a current employee applies for another role within the organization and they don’t get the job, Equity wants to know why and what it can do to better prepare them for promotion.

Because Equity runs a lean recruiting team, the ability to automate has been invaluable, but even more so for their overall candidate experience. Candidates are able to check on their status without having to make a call or send an email, can join the firm’s talent network to be notified when future jobs open, and find information about the firm’s employee benefits and programs.

For the Equity Residential recruiting team, it has given them the freedom to change the site as needed without having to get permission or depend on another group to do it, which has made them more nimble and responsive. Previously, a recruiter would have little access to a potential employee’s information after they are hired. Now, recruiters can have more involvement in the employee life cycle, using surveys to help them better understand what makes good hires, what programs are helping them develop, when they are ready to be promoted, etc.

While this wasn’t Equity’s first Oracle Cloud experience, it certainly won’t be its last, as the organization has just worked with Baker Tilly to enhance the recruiting experience with Oracle Digital Assistant, they are currently in the process of implementing Oracle Analytics, and continue to partner with Baker Tilly and Oracle to explore additional artificial intelligence recruiting capabilities.

Ascend conference attendees can watch the full presentation here.

To learn more about how your organization can get started with Oracle Recruiting, contact our team today.

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