poaching hr

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  • 7/28/2019 Poaching HR


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  • 7/28/2019 Poaching HR


    INTRODUCTION The term 'employee poaching' can be defined as an act of

    enticing key employees to move from one firm to a


    It has emerged as the biggest HR challenge for

    enterprises, both big and small, across all industry


    High Energy Employees:Prey for Poaching?

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    Poaching talent is the practice

    of proactively targeting and hiringtop talent away from a competitor

    or top firm.

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    INTENTION Securing skills or capabilities faster than if you were to

    attempt to develop talent internally through training anddevelopment efforts

    Securing expanded capacity (i.e. more bodies) that willrequire less ramp up time

    Mitigating high-level talent losses due to attrition

    Damaging your competitors' ability to achieve theirstrategic objectives

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    Poaching activities largely fall

    into one of three categories

    1. Direct sourcing: Firms use new data-mining techniques

    and tools, combined with age-old recruiter phone

    techniques, to mine the organizational structure, employee

    identities, and employee performance indicators of talent

    and product competitors. This competitive intelligence is

    later used to determine who specifically should be targeted

    for poaching. All work is carried out internally.

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    2.THIRD-PARTY POACHINGThis strategy relies on using a vendor or series of vendors to

    identify everything from which firms to target to what

    individuals to go after based on your strategic objectives.

    (It is also by far the most common way organizations that

    find poaching unethical actually practice it themselves. In

    their minds, poaching is perceived as unethical only if you

    do it yourself.)

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    3.ATTRACT THEM WITH "HONEY"This approach utilizes six different channels to drive candidates

    to your organization from other specific organizations, much like product

    firms steer you to their products in grocery stores. The "honey" strategy is

    powered by a number of channels that drive candidates into yourrecruiting process.

    Employment branding

    Employee referrals

    Event recruiting

    Magnet hiring

    Boomerang hiring


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    The Employment Branding ChannelMany firms that have made an attempt to

    manage their employer brand do so with no

    particular goals other than to develop either

    "Best Place to Work" or "Employer of

    Choice" status (note that both of those

    terms are registered trademarks!).

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    Employer Branding Relies On : External recognition as a leader in providing specific employerattributes, such as a value on diversity, innovation, or talentdevelopment

    Consistent messaging that continuously communicates who and

    what the firm is and what value it provides to prospectiveemployees

    A story inventory that provides specific examples of howmanagement programs and practices deliver value to employees

    A specific and differentiated theme (slogan) that competitors cannoteasily mimic or assert

    Recognition for functional excellence

    Lots of lots of press coverage in very specific publications that

    reach into the targeted audience

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    The Employee Referral ChannelJust as most firms approach employment branding with no

    specific goal or outcome in mind, they often develop

    employee referral programs that meander and produce

    mediocre results at best.

    A targeted employee referral program, on the other hand,

    utilizes the employee population to do all of the competitive

    intelligence mining that enables targeted poaching, with an

    added benefit: It gets employees to utilize their personal

    networks to initiate the recruiting process.

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    Employee Referral Channel Relies

    On: Active referrals: An approach that goes to employees with a specific set of

    questions that prime them to remember who they know in specific roles,organizations, etc.

    Top performer referral prioritization: An approach that acts on all referralscoming in from proven top performers before acting on those from otheremployees

    Reference referrals: An approach that contacts references of past hires thatproved to be top performers and asks who else they know

    Stakeholder referrals: An approach that leverages non employees who have avested interest in the success of the company to generate referrals, such asconsultants, suppliers, stock holders, etc.

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    The Events ChannelNearly every organization that recruits will attend at leastone event a year, be it a recruiting event, an industry trade show, ora vendor exposition. But few select events to participate in basedon their probability of attracting employees from specific

    competitors. Utilizing events as a poaching channel relies on:

    Identifying and participating in specific industry trade showsor association events that have a proven attraction to employeesof targeted competitors

    Hosting onsite seminars and certification courses that areattractive to the competition

    Participating in non-industry/non-professional events thatattract a target audience, such as a beer and wine or artsfestival.

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    The Magnet Hire ChannelThe magnet hire channel is quite possibly the easiest one to

    understand. It simply relies on polling top performers to

    identify the most respected or most visible professional who

    they would be interested in working with, and then working

    to hire that person in hopes that they would attract others to

    your organization.

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    The Boomerang ChannelAt some point in time, nearly every employee decides

    to make a change and severs an employment relationship.

    The boomerang channel is used in poaching by

    identifying former employees that are currently employed

    by a competitor and developing specific strategies to lure

    them back which brings the added benefit of lots of

    competitive intelligence about organizational structure and

    management practices, but not trade secrets or product


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    The Internet Channel The final major channel that is used to power the "honey"

    approach to poaching is the Internet channel. Unlike job

    posting and data mining, these approaches use the Internet

    to develop resources that employees of competing

    organizations are drawn to.

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    STRATEGYReward managers for keeping good people and if possible

    reward entire teams.

    Train managers that employees leave when they' re notrewarded, thanked or given opportunities to learn.

    Keep tabs on people who

    have a pattern of leaving.

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    Know who is at risk and work to keep them

    Figure out who the targets are

    Block online poachingBlock phone poaching

    Protect trade secrets

    Reward retention

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    PROTECTING YOUR BUSINESS Using your confidential information (e.g. client

    contact lists/databases).

    Providing services to your customers or clients,irrespective of whether the former employee initiatedthe approach.

    Working for a competing business.

    Recruiting former-colleagues

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    IMPACT ON BUSINESSIt slows down your business.Lose the smartest and most experienced people in


    It adds to the salary burden of the company.

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    ETHICS The ethics of lateral hiring Vanderbilt a professor

    who specializes in strategic management suggest thatthe practice ofpoaching other companies employeesshould be an accepted or encouraged from of businesscompetition.

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    Although not specific to the IT industry therehave been some landmark judgement on the issue of

    employee poaching. Here are a few of them:

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    Pepsi was refused injunction to restrain its

    employees from joining Coke. The rights of an employee

    arising out of an employment contract have beenelaborately detailed in the judgment.

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    Non-solicitation agreement in vendor/ agencyrelationships were held valid and enforceable. It was

    held that employees of either company could not be'poached' by the other company for a specified period

    of time.

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