week’s E-HR

Recruitment unplugged

Case study: Centrica

About the organisation

Centrica is a leading supplier of
energy and other home and roadside services, including telecoms. It is the UK’s
biggest household supplier of gas and electricity through the British Gas brand
and offers roadside and financial services from the AA. It was formed in 1997
following the de-merger of British Gas.

The aim

To bring online recruitment into Centrica to manage
the high volume of applications.
Application numbers have risen
every year since 1994 and between 2002 and 2003 it leapt from 21,000 to 40,000.
In 2003, the organisation reviewed its approach to recruitment and a case was
made for placing recruitment online.

System supplier

Centrica wanted an automated
recruitment process, and end-to-end e-recruitment company i-GRasp was commissioned. i-GRasp’s Global Successor
software streamlines the recruitment process, starting with candidate

The approach

Gas Engineering
was identified as the first area for implementation of the system. The academy
was launched in December 2003 to address the national skills shortage of
qualified servicing and installation engineers. i-GRasp developed an online
recruitment portal using Global Successor, which contains information about job
vacancies and career opportunities at the academy. Its job was also to
encourage and attract applications from candidates with the right calibre of
skills to support the organisation’s growth.

resourcing manager Malcolm
Buchanan says: "We had been observing the development of online
recruitment and felt this was a good time to implement a new approach to help
manage candidate interest."

The solution

three months, i-GRasp
worked with British Gas’s resourcing
team to create the online recruitment service. It features information on job
vacancies, profiles and case studies of employees. There is an online
application process with candidate-matching facilities. It features an
Interview Zone, where candidates can select interview times and obtain further
information, such as directions.

The bottom line

to hire, cost per hire and administration time have decreased and positions can
be managed online. A total of 10,000 applications have been received online
since its launch.

feedback from applicants and employees has been positive," Buchanan says.

Gas has built a talent bank of engineers based on candidate scores, and these
are held in the bank for 12 months, or until a vacancy arises. Centrica is working with i-GRasp to replicate the system
throughout the organisation and is looking at online psychometric testing.



New products and services…

ExpressShift is a web-based
application from Swebtec
that manages the recruitment process of temporary and shift staff from vacancy
identification and candidate-matching through to fulfilment. When a new
position becomes available, ExpressShift
automatically generates a suitable list of available candidates through its
matching logic. It sends a text message or e-mail notification to the
candidate, who can send back either an accept
or decline message.


ADP has unveiled its new outsourcing strategy and service and it hopes it will
make it the UK’s
number one payroll department. ADP Freedom can totally remove an organisation’s
payroll process and function while still allowing it to keep control and
provide in-house analysis and reporting. The web-based system is securely
hosted by ADP and enables customers to get results and information in
real-time. (A Freedom user will be featured in a forthcoming e-HR case study).


Data mine

Management Society www.stress.org.uk

public awareness of the problem and offers a helping hand to those who need it.
Essays cover workplace stress and bullying. You can request its free Stress
Management Guidebook.

Stress Management Association www.isma.org.uk

Holds a number of events and conferences
including National Stress Awareness Day, which is held on 3 November.

You can find out more here. Also promotes good practices in the area,
validating stress management trainers and coaches.

& Safety Executive (HSE) www.hse.gov.uk/stress/

HSE views stress as a serious problem for organisations and its research
reveals that five million people in the UK feel ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ stressed
by their work. Plenty more statistics, research, reports and good advice can be
found here.

National Work-Stress Network www.workstress.net

Sponsored by the Hazards Campaign, a network of
resource centres and campaigners on health and safety at work.

The network works alongside trade unions, employers, professional
organisations, politicians and individuals. Useful downloads are also included
and you can sign up to its newsletter on this site.

for Stress Management www.managingstress.com

organisation that offers stress audits and provides counselling and coaching
services. You’ll find a range of articles and you can sign up to the newsletter
and find out about its free stress management forum.

Gadget of the month: Harbinger HFM digital
voice recorder

What is it?

A digital voice recorder with 36 hours recording
This pocket-sized device is also an FM radio and MP3
player. There are three sensitivity recording settings for group meetings,
individual interviews and a suite of recording/playback facilities.

What will it let me do?

a traditional dictaphone
will let you do – but more and from further away. The microphone records over
distances of up to 25m.

How much does it cost?

Around £180.

Where can I find out more?

exclusively through www.gadgets.co.uk

News in brief…

Hotgroup has bought careers
and jobs site Workthing
which includes the e-recruitment technology provider PeopleBank Technology – from Guardian Media Group.
Following this and other acquisitions this year, Hotgroup becomes the number one online recruitment
business in the UK,
in terms of monthly jobseekers and size of candidate database. It bought Gis-a-job in May and NetRecruit in January. www.hotonline.com

Centrefile has achieved 80
per cent take-up (850 employees) of its newly launched flexible benefits
scheme, FlexAbility. The
high take-up is being attributed to the relevance of the benefits options,
effective communication and change of management and use of appropriate
technology to support enrolment and administration. Typical UK
take-up is closer to 40 per cent. FlexAbility
is being delivered through Source, Ceridian’s integrated HR and payroll
solution. Thomson Online Benefits provided consultancy services. www.ceridiancentrefile.co.uk

Top resource…

its five-year life span, E-reward’s reward management content – which spans
research, reports, reviews, guru guides and more – has increased in relevance
for today’s HR professional. For all its heavyweight information, its clean
design approach makes it easy to navigate around the site. Keep abreast of
developments and thinking by signing up to its monthly newsletter. www.e-reward.co.uk

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