Where Do You Find New Talent?

John F. Kennedy once said, “There are risks and costs to a program of action. But they are far less than the long range risks of comfortable inaction.”

The fact is action is a key element to finding new talent within your organization. By having correct staffing levels with the ability to motivate action and initiate change, you are equipping your company with the human capitol to bring goals and vision to fruition. Once we decide what our objective is, what type of skill set is needed, and the level of ability needed, then we are ready to work with human resources to determine the job description.

The job description must be clear, concise, and able to communicate the skill set needed for the position. Next is the advertising and tools available to cast a wide net announcing this opening to the public. In today’s environment of immediate communication there are opportunities via social media to communicate your needs. Indeed.com, Monster, and Facebook are all viable methods that touch a cross –section of potential employees. In addition I utilize the standard tools used to post job opportunities such as internal job postings, employee referrals, job boards, educational institutions and company website.

Lastly, I point out the soft attributes of the position. The exceptional quality of life that Central Floridians experience and the financial benefits of relocating to a state that has no state income tax is a direct benefit to the employee.

In my career I have had the honor of working with some of the most dedicated, talented, and passionate public servants who’ve heeded a call to action. To make our communities a better place to live, work and play, I think John F. Kennedy had it right.



The Rail Systems Division of the Infrastructure and Cities Sector of Siemens in Sacramento, Calif., has been expanding steadily for a number of years as a result of strong customer orders in its core light rail vehicle business and also expansion into other product lines, such as streetcars and locomotives. This has created significant hiring needs in a diverse set of technical positions that range from assembly and welding to engineering, project and quality management and other kinds of positions. Siemens in the United States has about 3,000 openings, primarily in technical positions, and Rail systems and the rest of Siemens Corp., are using a variety of strategies to meet these critical hiring needs. However, Siemens is finding it challenging to fill these positions with the right skill sets.

For hourly production and warehousing hiring in Sacramento, Rail Systems uses the services of a temporary agency that pulls applicants from the general Northern California area. Assuming temporary employees meet qualification standards, perform acceptably as temporary employees and there is then a long-term need for their skills, the employees will generally become regular full-time employees of Siemens after six months. One of the advantages of this process is the onsite human resource assistance that is provided by the temporary agency.

Salaried hiring for Siemens in the United States is done by a centralized, specialized staffing group that advertises open positions on the Siemens jobs and career site. Other applicants are identified by a variety of recruiting, networking and resume mining tactics, and also a referral process that brings recommendations for hire from current employees. The first opportunity for placement into open positions is of course given to existing Siemens employees, consistent with the uniform employee assessment and development process that exists across the United States, with special efforts also made to move interested and qualified employees from different Siemens businesses. Online applicants are then reviewed and brought in for interviews as appropriate, with a key factor being the need to create a diverse pool of candidates for each open position.

In addition, Siemens has established special programs to address its hiring needs. As recently acknowledged by the White House, Siemens has had great success in hiring our nation’s veterans. Not only is this the right thing to do, this bring brings to the workforce the leadership and technical skills that enable our business to succeed. At the start of 2011, Siemens pledged to fill ten percent of the company’s 3,000 open positions with veterans. This goal was exceeded, a revised goal was set, and Siemens is now actively seeking to fill an additional 150 positions with veterans. In addition to this hiring commitment, Siemens has also mobilized job training mentoring initiatives through the Siemens Veterans Network, the first national employee resource group at Siemens.

A second initiative has been the establishment of a strategic intern program where future hiring needs are identified, highly qualified interns are recruited on campus, and the top performing interns are offered regular full-time positions as much as twelve months prior to graduation, withactive employment as regular full-time Siemens employees to start at that point. Active employment may then include participation in early leadership programs in technical fields, including engineering, accounting and finance, and sales positions.A skilled workforce has been a historic strength in America, but more and more jobs require science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills and we are having trouble finding workers with these backgrounds. At Siemens, we’re committed to helping encourage the next generation of scientists and engineers right here in America. An example of this commitment is our involvement in programs like Siemens Science Days and the Siemens Competition that target students as early as elementary school to excite them about STEM and show them that there’s a cool career waiting for them if they choose.