HOW Talent session – reporting and insights with Cielo’s Alex Jordan

CLARE RYDER • 04 Jun 2020

In this webinar, our own Giles Heckstall-Smith was joined by Head of Talent Acquisition at Cielo Talent, Alex Jordan. Giles and Alex took the opportunity to discuss the challenges and benefits of Reporting and Insights, a critical area for HR, Recruitment and Talent Acquisition teams.

About Cielo Talent and Alex Jordan

Cielo are the world’s leading strategic Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) provider, dedicated to ensuring their clients attract and hire better talent faster.

Alex spent many years working in agency recruitment and then made the move to gain experience as an in-house recruiter. Five years ago, he joined Cielo as a front-line recruiter and moved through the ranks to set up their internal Recruitment Process Management team. He currently heads up the Talent Acquisition (TA) function within Cielo, transforming recruitment across the UK, Europe and the Middle East.

WATCH - Giles in conversation with Alex Jordan

What should a talent acquisition team/head of resourcing be measuring and reporting on?

We report on anything that comes through the ATS. We look at individual metrics such as source of candidate, time to hire, time to offer, what roles are currently open and how long they have been open for. We can then break this down by recruiter, by team, by account, even continent if we need to. It’s not just what we do with that raw data though, it’s how we analyse and interpret the information. If you look at the definitions of ‘efficiency’ and ‘effectiveness’, efficiency is doing it right, and effectiveness is doing the right thing. We need to ensure we get the right balance between the two.

The key thing for us is getting an understanding of what is working well and what isn’t.

For organisations that don’t have an MI specialist, what basic reports should they have in place?

Talent Acquisition teams need to demonstrate that they are adding value to the organisation. This can be as a result of an increased number of referrals, so you have a measure of EVP and brand effectiveness in the market, or reduced agency use and more direct hires.

Time to hire, time to offer and time between offer...

Other key and more traditional measures are time to hire, time to offer and time between offer and start date. The differences between the three “time” measures are an important distinction to make as they typically cross different parts of the organisation and can’t always be controlled by a Recruitment function. For example, the Recruitment team may pass a candidate to a Hiring Manager to review, they may be passed back to Recruitment to make an offer and then passed to an Onboarding team to complete the new hire process.

Source of hire

Another key metric is Source of Hire. It is vital for us to know that our recruitment marketing is bringing the results we need and if it’s not, we can review the results and adjust our advertising strategy accordingly.

You also need to look at the effectiveness of your recruiters but remember that different sectors and types of recruitment will yield different results. For example, recruiters in a Contact Centre environment will typically have a lower time to hire but manage a higher volume of jobs and applications than corporate recruitment.

Recruitment funnel

My final key metric would need to be the overall recruitment funnel, looking at the number of applicants through to interview, offer etc. This also ensures you have a clear view of where the bottlenecks are in the process. These bottlenecks aren’t often with the recruiter but can give you an insight into Hiring Manager efficiency.

How do you take the data and create meaningful actions?

You need to agree with the key stakeholders what is critical to them. For HR, this may be time to hire, for senior stakeholders this may be information that they can take away and present to the Senior Leadership Team. For Hiring Managers who have hard to fill roles it may be the use of a talent pool to ensure we engage with silver medallists and proactively market to them so we always have a growing pool of talent.

The key thing is understanding what 4 or 5 key measures are useful within your organisation. Come up with a format of report or commentary that works for you, one that can be easily digested and have regular meetings to talk it through. Over a period this will evolve as the business grows or priorities change.

Looking at other stakeholders in a business, what do they report on and what actions do they communicate?

If you take a standard organisation, we provide weekly key metrics such as roles that are currently open, roles that are ageing and other transactional metrics that you would expect. On a monthly or quarterly basis, we create reports to reflect on activity and to identify trends, opportunities, bottlenecks or other areas for improvement. That’s where the dialogue element of reporting is important, as we can take the data, investigate and explore it with key stakeholders for their input. Ultimately the relationship with Talent Acquisition and the stakeholder community is a partnership and it’s important that the dialogue is ongoing.

Do you create protected time to have those conversations and agree subsequent actions?

Yes, very much so. We have regular sessions scheduled to discuss key metrics during which we provide standard reports to key stakeholders. We hold a weekly meeting to provide a general update, look at internal redeployment and other key recruitment activity. We also identify what needs to be changed and why. For example, if marketing effectiveness is not working in a particular area, we will identify this, review and adjust accordingly. If we know from workforce planning that we are going to need to recruit for a specific role then we will engage with candidates before those roles become available.

Have you experienced any challenges in getting stakeholders to engage?

They key thing is to schedule time in advance, so diaries don’t get too busy. Also making sure the way data is displayed is clear, easy to digest and engaging to the reader. It’s important to manage the balance between data and graphics and illustrating these in a simple message which then prompts further conversation. Non-scheduled communication is key as well. Keeping people up to date with activity outside of the scheduled reporting framework is important, managing the balance between the data, the insights and the stories that hold them together.

Do any have any specific tips around visual data or storyboard narrative?

Yes, I have three key tips:


Ask the stakeholder what they would like to see. If they are very analytical then they’re more likely to be receptive to statistical data. If not, a graphical view and verbal summary could be more useful.


Never hesitate to use people in a function that is more creative. Talk to your marketing or brand team and see how they can help you to deliver your message in a more creative way.


Understand what the key messages are you want to portray. As an example, if you want to show a trend then show a line chart and share the key information that is relevant to the audience.


My final piece of advice would be to look beyond your own organisation to see what metrics other organisations are using. The Forum for In-House Recruitment Managers (The FIRM) and Recruiting Brainfood are always useful resources.


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