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Talent Acquisition Tips & Takes with Charlie Saffro

The future of HR, especially in recruiting and talent acquisition, has been changing rapidly, and it can be hard to keep up and plan ahead with that pace of change. Turning to experienced experts in the HR field can offer a wealth of advice, wisdom, and forward-thinking that helps HR teams create a better plan for the future. 

Charlie Saffro is one of those top experts. She founded her company, CS Recruiting, in 2010 to help companies recruit in the logistics, transportation, and supply chain space. She’s driven by her passion to connect people and built her business from the ground up to the successful company that it is today. If you’re looking for recruiting tips and entrepreneur advice, her LinkedIn page is a great source.

Charlie shared her thoughts with Cangrade on what she thinks 2024 will bring for the recruiting world, her best talent acquisition tips, what the rise of AI and other exciting technology means for the HR world, and her journey as a founder and leader. Her insights will help you become a better recruiter and leader in 2024. 

Can you tell us about your role and background?

I founded CS Recruiting over a decade ago, and my journey has been quite a ride. I started recruiting in the logistics industry during a period of time where I worked for my husband and honed my recruiting skills and knowledge of the Logistics and Supply Chain industry. I then spun off my own recruiting firm and worked as a solopreneur for the first year or so. Opportunities continued to come my way, so I seized the moment and scaled the business by hiring a team to support me. Fast forward to today, I am the CEO of CS Recruiting and lead a team of 25 people. I put a huge emphasis on our employees in my role and use my experience, observation, and expertise to shape our culture and teach other leaders to do the same. 

What skills do you think have been critical to your success?

The key skills that have fueled my success include resilience, adaptability, and a deep understanding of the intricacies of the transportation and logistics sector. Being a strong communicator, empathetic leader, and having a strategic mindset have also played crucial roles in building and sustaining CS Recruiting.

How do you keep your skillset competitive?

Keeping my skillset competitive involves a commitment to continuous learning and constantly being curious. Staying informed about industry trends, attending relevant conferences, and fostering a network of professionals in the field is integral to staying relevant and top of mind.

How do you balance the strategic and day-to-day tasks in HR?

Balancing strategic and day-to-day tasks in HR is about effective delegation and recognizing when to step into a leadership role. I’ve found that empowering my team to handle day-to-day operations allows me to focus on the bigger picture, steering the company toward its long-term goals.

How do you keep up with the evolving HR landscape?

To keep up with the evolving HR landscape, I make it a priority to stay connected with industry thought leaders, subscribe to reputable publications, and engage in ongoing personal and professional development. To me, it’s about anticipating changes and proactively preparing so I can best adapt to them and show up as the best version of myself. 

How do you balance data-based talent decisions with your instinct as an HR professional?

Balancing data-based talent decisions with instinct involves a blend of quantitative analysis and gut feeling. While data provides valuable insights, my experience and intuition guide me in making decisions that align with the unique aspects of the logistics and supply chain sector.

What’s the biggest challenge you’re currently tackling in hiring and talent management?

Currently, my team and I are addressing the challenge of hiring and talent management by prioritizing a people-first approach. This involves fostering a positive company culture and ensuring that our employees feel genuinely cared for and connected to their work. We know firsthand that company culture is what drives both recruiting and the retention of valuable team members. 

What trends do you think we’ll see in the upcoming year? Which are you most excited about?

Anticipating trends in the upcoming year, I hope we’ll see an uptick in the hiring market and more companies will get aggressive with their hiring needs. Once the market finds balance again between the supply of jobs and available talent, I am hopeful that we’ll see a continued focus on remote work flexibility, an increased emphasis on employee well-being, and a heightened importance placed on diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. I’m particularly excited about the potential for positive shifts in workplace dynamics but also recognize the economy and hiring trends will drive these shifts. 

How do you balance and prioritize DE&I in your talent management processes?

Prioritizing DE&I involves embedding inclusivity into every aspect of talent management. It means actively seeking diverse candidates, fostering an inclusive work environment, and regularly assessing our processes to ensure fairness and equality. I like to think of it as this: D = Having a seat at the table, I = Having a voice at the table, B = Having your voice heard at the table.

What technology are you most excited about for HR and why?

The technology that excites me the most for HR is AI-driven tools that enhance the recruitment process. Streamlining candidate sourcing, automating routine tasks, and leveraging data analytics contribute to more efficient and effective talent management.

How are you building a future-ready workforce?

Building a future-ready workforce involves a commitment to upskilling and reskilling. Providing opportunities for ongoing learning and development ensures that our team remains agile and adaptable in the face of industry changes.

What’s one piece of advice you’ve received in your career that everyone should know?

One invaluable piece of advice I’ve received in my career is to embrace empathy as a strength, not a weakness. It has been a driving force in shaping our company culture and fostering genuine connections, ultimately contributing to both the bottom line and the well-being of our team.

Discover more recruiting and talent acquisition tips you can use today here.