Last week I had the pleasure of chatting to a headhunter at Hammer & Hanborg about the next generation workplace and how they use appear.in both internally and for talent acquisition. Here's what Elisabeth shared about her future-oriented workplace.
Hammer Hanborg is a leading headhunting agency
First, who's Hammer & Hanborg?
At H&H we are headhunters and workforce advisors primarily within the communication industry. Since we don’t know what occupations will show up in the next years, we're making sure we're not limiting ourselves in the search of talent. Because the future is unpredictable and the industry is developing so quickly, we always recruit based on values. We can’t know for sure what skills will be needed in let's say 5 or 10 years from now. In addition to matching great candidates with their future workplace, our mission is to advise the industry and participate in the debate around how the future working life is being designed. In other words I guess you could say we are a consultancy house specialized on "the future workplace".
What is it like to work at H&H?
I like it a lot! There are many players in the recruitment industry, and I feel that H&H is a solid workplace that has taken the lead as a modern example. By that I mean that we are willing to change. For example, since the values of the working life are changing, that's something we're concerned about and discuss both internally and externally. The values have shifted from duty and prestige to passion. It's supposed to be fun to go to work, and we want that for our clients as well as ourselves.
Also, recruiting is a greatly thankful job. I get to help people find their first job, or dream position – and that's very rewarding. It's fun to work with something you're passionate about. We make sure to practice what we preach.
How do you use appear.in at work?
appear.in has taken over for the other video tools we've been using in the past. We introduced appear.in to the HQ in Sweden, and they just love it! We use it for both meetings and candidate interviews. Since our HQ is in Sweden, all-hands meetings happen over video.
Sometimes we run the introductory or first-time interviews with candidates over appear.in, especially if they do not live in Oslo. Occasionally we even interview Norwegian candidates in the US who wants to move back home. Lately we've also had some workshops over appear.in - in collaboration with an advertising agency in Sweden.
Personally I even use appear.in to stay in touch with my friends from University in Amsterdam, where I took a Masters in political communication.
Why have you chosen appear.in for video meetings?
The ease of use. There's no cumbersome things like login for guests or adding of people to the service. It's completely intuitive and simple. Other services I've tried have a lot of layers and bad software.
Why is collaboration over video important to you?
I would say it's crucial in the interview setting. Video adds a level of professionalism. Being able to see the person you're talking to in the eye, the body language and simply having tying a face to the voice you're talking to. Face-to-face communication gives you an immediate vibe and gut feeling – which is lacking in a phone call. When talking over video, you've "met" the candidate before sending her or him to the client looking for an employee.
Just as important is the experience by the person being interviewed. They like to see us as well! It builds trust. Video gives us both the interpersonal or relational context one only achieves by talking together face-to-face.
What's your top tip for increased productivity in a team “on-the-go”?
Structure, self management and team familiarity are the three top things that come to mind.
First of all, I would say It's important to be equipped for the future, where self-management is going to be an important factor. Here at H&H we have to be good at administrating our own time since we're responsible for our personal progress. When this is the case, it makes you more productive and better at time management after some practice.
My second piece of advice is to keep meetings short and efficient. Spend as little time as possible on meetings and be aware of how you manage your time.
Last but not least tip, is that you must be aware of your own strengths and weaknesses. You must know who to talk to about what or who to ask for advice. It's not enough to know your own capacity. My advice is therefore to get familiar with the strengths and weaknesses in the entire team to stay on top of things. Surround yourself with people that compliments you and each other. At H&H Norway we are five very different peronalities, and this makes us dynamic and prepared for the future of work.