Always pleased to hear use in solution selling of metrics, I glean current boasts from the exploding deployment of AI in recruiting.
A while back I came across RPA vendors; Robotic Process Automation. Now far removed from the “Press 1” of automated call handling. We all know SkyNet is coming, right Sarah Connor? Even Davos with their Fourth Industrial Revolution theme prioritises the onrushing Artificial Intelligence set to take over swathes of jobs currently performed by unsuspecting workers. And at all levels of organisation too.
So I was intrigued to learn this month that the evolution beyond psychometric testing means video is being assessed to help judge a range of elements from a candidate’s facial expressions to use of language to (de-humanisingly?) determine probable role success.
Here’s the MSM quote which caught my eye:
“It is helping to save 100,000 hours of interviewing time and roughly $1m in recruitment costs each year for us globally, It is, however, just one of many tools we use for our graduate recruitment.”
My first comment relates to the bookends of caveat. The client keen to make vague any direct improvement. That word “helping” is a cracker. Allowing the customer to cunningly befog accuracy and accountability. When coupled with the “just one of…” concluding proviso, it makes for quite the double-whammy. Add in the pre-amount “roughly” and that’s liberal obfuscation.
Yet despite such deliberate watering down potentially lessening oomph in written form, this tale remains dynamite in salesperson speak.
Even the final para of their online piece includes this nugget buried within; “the … team has seen over 1 million pounds in savings in just one year”. That’s your starting point face-to-face. No mere ‘helping’ here. Leaving the bewildering decision to label the preceding link “finds top talent faster” utterly devoid of any Sales merit.
They like a corporate logo style pic above client name and a sentence synopsis of sales punch. On their page listing 14 case studies (only) five have a number included. I’m tempted to say, over 35%. As one trumpets ‘improving time’ “over 90pc”, another, ‘reduced time’ (by 50%) and three promote “cut time”; by 35, 80 & “nearly” 90pc. So all numbers that feature are solely percentages.
As I often hear myself repeating… a percentage is not a value.
The website headlines flow with percentages. Vague and practically meaningless. Yet click through and you get the odd duration decrease. Time is money, and all that. Roundabout cycle reductions, like “from 3 months to 2-3 weeks” as a sample add more weight.
Hard cash wonders are almost invisible. Understandable in one way. I know myself how arduous it is to try and get a client sign-off on such. Yet that absolutely does not prevent a savvy seller from using the monetary values. Conversationally. And frequently.
Indeed, I come from the school where a metric is only so should it contain the financial figure. Whether made or saved, this is the only permissible punchline to any proper metric delivery. Program yours to follow this logic.