A Chat with Timothy Visconti

We were able to talk last week with Tim Visconti of PeopleLift, an Atlanta-based talent consultancy. They use HoneIt as part of their main stack (JazzHR is their primary ATS), and their company grew 375% in 2020 during covid. We’re always looking for stories about how HoneIt can impact performance and output, so we hopped on a call. Near the beginning of the call — recorded with HoneIt, no doubt — Tim mentioned something about trust. We got onto other topics, but at the end of the call, we came back around to this issue of trust.

Tim was framing this in terms of operations managers for industrial and manufacturing roles, who often have the hiring final say — so, essentially, “hiring managers,” just not the same as in the white-collar sense you may think of. These ops managers are usually very numbers-driven, very direct, and have a background in lean or Six Sigma, so they don’t want a lot of fluff and wasted time, energy, and money. That’s the antithesis of their job.

The problem is — and you see this in white-collar and blue-collar — the ops managers have come to look at HR with derision. They see HR as transactional: hire, onboard, paperwork, and fire/exit when the time comes. They don’t see HR as a true partner in the business, the data side of the business, the productivity side, or even really the “top talent” side. 

As a result, in a standard HR-to-ops-manager relationship, there is very little trust. The lack of trust means that, across a role with 50 phone screens, there’s a tremendous amount of back-and-forth between HR and the ops manager, there’s a lot of second-guessing, and all of this adds to cost per hire and time to hire. 

For most of these roles, an ops manager would prefer a $2-3K cost per hire (it varies by geography and industry) and a 10-day time to hire. In a situation with limited trust and constant second-guessing, though, you could be talking about a 4-5x lift on price ($10K/hire) and double or triple on time (20-30 days to hire, as opposed to 10). 

For a numbers-focused, efficiency-driven person like an ops manager, these numbers are a catastrophe. So you need to get the trust back into the equation.

But the thing is: trust is a very obvious human-to-human condition. It’s built by conversations and time and relationships and showing up for the other side. How could a SaaS help with that?

How to Enable Recruiter – Hiring Manager Trust

The biggest complaint around recruiters is that they don’t know the role, or they don’t know exactly what the role needs.

What HoneIt basically allows for, among a bunch of other features, is that you have “game tape” on the interview. It’s recorded into the cloud and you can sort by specific answers. So now an ops manager can:

  • Save their own time by jumping to specific questions and answers
  • Check what types of questions the recruiter asked, and in what order
  • Compare the approach of different recruiters
  • Remove bias because they’re (usually) just hearing the candidate, although we do have video calls too

This all allows an ops manager to:

  • Collaborate easier with the recruiter (builds trust)
  • Use more senior recruiters to coach/level up more junior recruiters (builds trust, builds hiring manager comfort with recruiting as a function)
  • Quickly figure out who they like and want to advance (saves time/money, which builds trust)
  • Be largely protected on bias issues (saves legal wrangling and compliance, which saves money, which builds trust)

HoneIt is a relatively simple tool. It has a lot of features, yes, but it’s a basic tool at heart — it enables conversations to be recorded and sorted easily.

When recruiters keep their conversations, they do two important things: (1) is they keep their own relevance, because the conversational aspect of top-of-funnel screens is a recruiter’s biggest value-add, and (2) because there’s “game film” on each interview, they build trust and confidence with the hiring manager because now everyone is working from the same sheet, as opposed to scribbled notes that maybe the Ops Manager doesn’t feel like they can trust. Over time, the sides get more and more on the same page.

Can SaaS replace human-to-human interaction and the building of trust and relationships? No, absolutely not, and we all need that in our day-to-day existence. But can it help build trust in professional relationships? Absolutely. And that’s what HoneIt does every day for hiring managers (or Ops Managers) and recruiters in a multitude of industries.