Publication Date

October 2001


Identifying and acquiring talent is one of the most important processes in human resource management. It is a key element in being competitive in a knowledge driven, talent constrained economy. In addition, it is often the first contact that potential employees have with the organization, so it can be the basis for the entire employment relationship. Increasingly, organizations recognize that a professionally excellent staffing process can be a source of competitive advantage. Moreover, the emergence of fundamentally new information technologies and communication processes – such as the Internet, virtual job fairs, online testing, and global job boards – increase the opportunities and the risks associated with staffing process management.

Unfortunately, existing staffing process measurement systems typically fail to provide the information necessary to understand, evaluate and make rational decisions about investments in the staffing system, and fail to support decisions about staffing by HR professionals, line managers, applicants and employees. As a result, organizations often base decisions about their staffing systems solely on information about the volume of applicants or new hires, or the costs and time involved in staffing activities. This leads to potentially disastrous decisions, and opens the door for competitors. In this article, we propose a framework for a staffing measurement system that truly supports professional excellence, partnership and optimal investment decisions.


Suggested Citation
Boudreau, J. W. & Ramstad, P. M. (2001). Beyond cost-per-hire and time to fill: Supply-chain measurement for staffing (CAHRS Working Paper #01-16). Ithaca, NY: Cornell University, School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies.