4th Generation Recruiting and Footprints in the Snow
Interview with Jukka Walliander, Head of Finnish operations at Pleinert & Partner, conducted by Dr. Helena Pleinert
H.P.: Jukka, you have introduced Pleinert & Partner’s 4th generation recruiting concept in Finland. I like to say adopting 4th generation recruiting is like the Neolithic revolution – farming is sustainable and can achieve much higher return on investment than hunting. How would you describe it ‘in a nutshell’?
J.W.: A beloved child has many names and so does this one. Farming could also be called “pipelining” or “continuous recruitment”. With this concept we want to say that all managers should always be preparing for future vacancies because they will always come. Each recruiting manager should have a small database of talented individuals in her pocket for future needs. These people can be found in various ways but they should be actively cultivated i.e. lunch meetings, season’s greetings cards, etc… whatever is appropriate. The main idea is that they must be kept close - not forgotten in the endless depths of HR databases. However, to me 4th generation means more than just the above mentioned. It is acting mentally as part of client organization and simultaneously guiding them to modern recruiting as a consultant but doing the implementation work as well. “Rent a senior recruitment consultant” is our core message and our customer promise is “Faster, better, with lower investment and higher return on investment.”
H.P.: How has the market’s reaction to 4th generation recruiting been so far?
J.W.: The main challenge has been to get potential clients to understand how we are different. Once they have understood the only remaining question is ‘when can we start?’
H.P.: So what makes getting the organization to this point difficult? What obstacles to adopting 4th generation recruiting do you see for organizations?
J.W.: In recruitment there are many misunderstandings and preconceptions based on how things “have always been done”. Indeed things have been done similarly for decades so behavior models have been stagnating. Resistance to change is the most important obstacle by far. We help clients break these mental obstacles.
H.P.: In very general terms – what do you see as your professional vocation?
J.W.: I am a creator. I want to leave my footprints in the snow. My mission is to get people to see things differently. This has been a clear red line during my career and could be called my vocation as well. Another thing I must mention is the human factor. Alone we are nothing and I want to combine creating new things with people and for people – is this complicated enough?
H.P.: Not complicated – inspiring! Thank you.