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Establishing successful recruitment processes with the right strategy - Interview

After weeks in the recruitment process that involve endless interviews and time-consuming training, your newly hired expert jumps ship only after a few weeks in the job. This is one of the biggest nightmares for an HR recruiter or manager! "It was not a good fit," is what they are told or have to tell their organisation, again and again. It’s a situation one hates being in but finds oneself in it too many times.  


But with the right strategy, this dire feeling and scenario can be avoided, Senior HR Manager, Doreen Strauß explained in our interview. An expert in the field of e-recruitment at SlidePresenter, she knows that recruitment and talent management processes must be constructed in a manner where they present the company as a unified brand. 


With this in mind, managers and recruiters must value team members who contribute to the  "vibe" of a company- they proactively embrace and embody the values of the organisation. This, in turn, has a positive impact on the culture of the company.


We are looking forward to learning more about the recruitment process at the web-based software service SlidePresenter from Doreen. SlidePresenter enables employees to create and share eLearnings and knowledge nuggets, with each other, in the simplest ways.


SlidePresenter's vision is to establish itself as the third pillar of the Workplace 4.0 alongside emails and web conferences. That way, employees can access the (specialist) knowledge they need for work and training at any location and with any end device. 



1. Looking back to your earlier days, having the knowledge you have now, which position in which department would you hire first and which last? 

For me, SlidePresenter has done many things right. We developed the product until it was ready for the market. Then we built up the various departments around it and made the success measurable in terms of scalable data and key figures. This clearly included the Sales, Customer Success, Marketing and HR teams.


From today's perspective, it’s becoming increasingly clear that excellent customer success services are essential for the software’s success. Accordingly, in hindsight, we would have pushed the recruitment of customer success employees earlier. Especially in these times, when companies are seeking to digitise processes very rapidly. However, we have now successfully made up for this and are continuing to expand. 


In doing so, however, we are not artificially inflating our staff numbers. Instead, we focus on smart personalities who have an intrinsic motivation to proactively drive issues forward and with bold visions. In our experience, we achieve more in this manner than other companies do with a higher number of employees.


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2. Which portals does SlidePresenter use for efficient recruitment and selection processes. Why are they worthwhile?

We don’t use any large platforms to fill our vacancies. We are lucky that, even in times of a shortage of skilled workers, we receive a lot of good applications. 


On the one hand, this is due to the extremely exciting and increasingly important digital industry in which we operate. However, it is also a result of our wonderful team and Sebastian Walker, our managing director. He challenges and encourages our employees through a coaching approach in which all of us develop and grow as we wish.  


In addition, Kununu and Glassdoor help are helpful for us in terms of employer branding and recruitment.


We have set up a "Get the Best Programme" in which existing employees recruit new colleagues. In our experience, satisfied employees are the best leads for new colleagues. Within the last ten months, we have gained half of our new hires through referrals - I think this rate speaks for itself!


  • The only platform we use is a job spreader called to give our vacancies a bit more reach. 
  • We hardly need to use use platforms such as LinkedIn and Boolean at the moment, due to good applications in recruitment. 


In my experience, it has become very difficult to recruit suitable candidates. For a few years now, many HR managers and recruiters have been contacting candidates directly, and the prospects feel overwhelmed by the floods of messages. If you want to be successful, you have to be patient, need time, luck on your side, and a lot of creativity to stand out from the usual approaches. 


We don’t work with recruitment agencies per se. Experience has shown that we recruit the best people together as a team because we can embody SlidePresenter and our vision better than any outsider. Furthermore, our Managing Director, Sebastian Walker, does a fantastic job at recruiting. He takes his time to go through applications for every position, no matter if they are a student or C-level prospect. He works through several steps to get to know the passion, motivation and personality of the candidates. 



3. Which position has been the most difficult to fill?

C-level positions, in my experience and these are on a par with software developers, make up the most difficult positions to fill. Great managers in particular, who are involved in both operational and strategic tasks with the right mindset to fit our organisation are really hard to find.


As a company, we have very high expectations and look for: 


  • intrinsic motivation,
  • extreme ownership,
  • commitment and
  • courage.


Our recruitment process is therefore very demanding. However, those who have successfully mastered it are well prepared. As a result of this, our fluctuation rate during the probationary period is less than one per cent!



4. What are your recruitment goals for 2021? And what are your steps to achieve them?

Above all, we want to continue to grow our customer success team. One of our USPs is the intensive and trustworthy support we provide our customers. We promise our customers that they will be successful with us - and this is what our customer success team stands for.


We would still like to grow in this area as every new customer needs more attention from our customer success team. We are already in the middle of the recruitment process and have hired two new colleagues in 2021.


In addition, we would like to expand our development team in order to launch new innovations in our software to provide new and helpful features for our customers. 


Yet, we are not planning an exact number of hires. We want to grow in a healthy way and adapt the recruitment process as the business scales. 


In my opinion, this is an important characteristic of agile companies. You can plan as much as you like but in the end, things usually turn out differently than you thought they would. We will definitely continue to strengthen our employer branding and create a supportive, positively challenging and pleasant workplace for our employees so they can develop comfortably. 



5.What do your recruitment processes look like and which technology do you use?

We use Kenjo as our HR and recruitment tool. We work with completely standardised processes in every phase of our recruitment. This ensures an objective and extremely fair assessment by all those involved in the recruitment process. 


We always start our recruitment process with the creation of a SlidePresenter video. Here we collect first impressions of the candidates and at the same time give them the chance to demo our software and get a feel of our product. This is a great and unique advantage for us, which has already been positively reflected by many applicants.


After that, they have their first interview with HR. As a Senior HR Manager, I want to get to know the person behind the CV.


This is followed by an initial assessment that is tailored to each position and involves testing using our software.


Finally, there is an assessment day on-site or remotely. This is where the applicant, Sebastian, and the entire team get to know each other. It’s very important for us that not only Sebastian and HR back the hiring decision but that the whole team supports it too. 


In order to objectively track the results, we use the scorecard function of Kenjo. Here we define different characteristics for each vacancy. Everyone involved in the process fills in the scorecard. This way, we achieve a comprehensive and complete overall impression of the applicant.


All these digital and automated processes make our work at SlidePresenter a lot easier and allow us to make more objective decisions that translate into lower fluctuation rates. 


Thank you, Doreen, for the exciting insights into HR management at SlidePresenter.

About Doreen StraußDoreen Strauß_recruitment process


Doreen Strauß is the Senior HR Manager at SlidePresenter with many years of experience in the field of e-recruitment. After HR positions at Shopgate, a SaaS provider in the field of e-commerce and omnichannel, she is very familiar with the start-up sector. Initially, she was responsible for the recruitment of specialists and executives, HR marketing, employer branding and employee support along the employee lifecycle.


Now, at SlidePresenter, she is responsible for the HR management and the entire employee lifecycle in order to hire great talent and retain them in the long term.

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