HomeHRD Live Podcasts“Why do you want to work here?” Fixing broken hiring practices with Liz Ryan

“Why do you want to work here?” Fixing broken hiring practices with Liz Ryan

  • 3 Min Read

Liz Ryan joins the HRD Live podcast to discuss fixing the broken hiring practices that prevent long-term competitiveness in the talent market

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‘So, why do you want to work here?’ We have all faced this question, in some shape or form, during in an interview process. Many of us may have asked this question of a prospective candidate. This question, argues Liz Ryan on the latest episode of the HRD Live podcast, is a part of all that is wrong with our broken hiring practices. It characterizes the power imbalance between hirer and hiree across a full recruitment process that alienates applicants and ultimately harms the employee value proposition. We must turn our approach to talent acquisition upside down.

It’s time to fix our broken hiring practices

“Who said I want the job?” begins Ryan. “I came to learn more. Just like a first date.” In far too many organizations, talent acquisition leaders place unrealistic expectations on applicants looking for more information; or even passive candidates who aren’t looking for any role at all. This doesn’t just apply to the interview process, but to all components of the application cycle, including filling out details on an ATS.

“What we’d never do is ask our customers to populate their own Salesforce record,” Ryan explains.

So, why do we treat prospective applicants any differently? The outcome is damning for talent acquisition and HR leaders. “The recruiting process in most organizations is extremely insulting to candidates. In other words, our future coworkers,” says Ryan. “We’re screening out people with too much self-esteem.”

In lieu of outdated questions and unrealistic expectations, Ryan shares an array of anecdotes, analysis, and practical steps for turning broken hiring practices on their head. In turn, organizations can take an approach to hiring that creates an outstanding employee value proposition, increases the attractiveness of their organization to active and passive candidates, and nurtures a more agile method of recruitment amid rapid changes to the labor market.


00:09 – Introduction

00:49 – It’s a highly competitive market for talent. What are the most broken and outdated hiring practices that are causing organizations to lose this fight?

04:49 – Are there any non-traditional models of talent acquisition, such as talent networks, that you recommend in lieu of job descriptions and applications?

07:34 – If companies are being priced out of the talent they need by competitors, how can they respond? Is focusing on brand values and high-quality EVP good enough?

14:46 – What skills do HR leaders need to personally develop to create an improved candidate experience?

18:19 – As they plan for the uncertain future of work, how can HR leaders make their talent acquisition processes and ecosystem more agile to adapt to changes in the labor market?

Liz is the CEO and Founder of Human Workplace, a coaching and consulting firm whose mission is to reinvent work for people, and the world’s most widely-read career and workplace culture authority. Liz is a former Fortune 500 SVP of HR and the author of Reinvention Roadmap: Break the Rules to Get the Job You Want and Career You Deserve; Red-Blooded HR: Essays on HR as a Force for Good; and Righteous Recruiting: Essays on Reinventing Talent Acquisition for People. She is the host of the Work Related Podcast with Liz Ryan, an international keynote speaker, an operatic soprano and a mom of five.

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