Tracking Recruitment Metrics and K-12 Hiring Trends: How Data-Driven Recruiting Helps You Hire Teachers 

Caroline Chessia | October 10, 2023

Have you ever interviewed the perfect teacher and gone to set up another interview only to find they had accepted another offer? You’re not alone. The competition for K-12 educators is extremely high and often the first district to make an offer will win the candidate.

To gain a better understanding of where you can optimize your hiring process to speed up hiring, you first need to get a handle on your recruitment metrics. Tracking metrics helps you sort out what is going right (and wrong) in your hiring process so you can hire your favorite teachers before other schools. 

interviewstream recently gave an informational session at the American Association for School Personnel Administrators Conference on how school districts can use their hiring data, and information from K-12 hiring and candidate trends to fill unfilled positions. Here are some of the takeaways.


K-12 Hiring Trends from 2019 – 2023

To understand the need for data-driven decision making in the hiring process, it’s important to ground in current trends happening in K-12 hiring. This isn’t a trend that will surprise most K-12 admins working in HR, but less and less teachers are joining the profession each year. The Center of American Progress reports a 35% decrease in teachers entering into prep programs. Frontline Education’s hiring data consists of data points from 456,000 job postings and 4.8 million applications–and all that data is pointing to fewer candidates applying to open teaching positions. In some areas, it’s as much as a 30% decrease annually in candidates per position. 

It’s a candidate’s market, and future teachers have more choice and power than in the past. If K-12 schools don’t move fast in their interviewing and hiring process, they stand to lose out on the best and the brightest candidates.


Challenges in Traditional K-12 Hiring 

This data shows a drop off in supply of teachers in regions across the USA, not just a shortage. Using traditional hiring practices to recruit the ever-dwindling number of teachers puts you at a disadvantage compared to other schools that have adopted modern technology and processes. Tools like digital hiring tools and recruitment KPI tracking are allowing school districts and school boards to hire top candidates faster than competing districts. 

Traditional practices are, by nature, more time-consuming and resource-intensive than modern practices like digital interviewing. And often, the school that extends the offer first is the school that will hire a new teacher—which means having a low time to hire is essential. 

School districts are combating the lower supply by making their schools “destination districts”. These schools are working to improve their hiring process to cut time to hire, prioritizing candidate experience, and using data to inform their hiring decisions so the candidates they do recruit will stay teaching at their school district. Here’s how they’re doing it.


Getting Started with Data: How Tippecanoe School Corporation Uses Hiring Trends as Data

Doug Allison, the Assistant Superintendent for Personnel at Tippecanoe School Corporation, and the hiring team at Tippecanoe noticed a trend at their schools. Their team noticed an inconsistency in how far candidates would make it into their hiring process. Some schools would reject candidates early in the process while other schools would hire the teacher as a great fit. To combat this, Tippecanoe started using video interviewing to save time while getting a better understanding of their applicants from the beginning stages of the interview process. 

When they implemented one way video interviews as a way to screen candidates, they ended up hiring many more applicants. Doug’s theory is that maybe applicants were intimidated or nervous to be interviewed by the principal in real time. They ask five basic questions and are able to screen many more applicants to select the best fit for their school and culture, which is already making a difference in their teacher turnover

This is just the start of using data to ensure your hiring process is as efficient (and effective as possible) and Doug is excited about the new things that Tippecanoe will be able to try in the coming years now that they’ve seen success with this change. 


How Tigard-Tualatin School District Uses Data to Hire Toward Their Mission and Values

Lenichtka (Len) Reed the Director of Human Resources at Tigard-Tualatin School District’s main problem with traditional hiring was that she and her colleagues weren’t able to screen enough candidates per position. They would spend a lot of time reviewing resumes and pick 5-6 candidates to interview, only for the candidates to drop off or tell them that they had accepted an offer elsewhere. 

One of Tigard-Tualatin’s core values is the diversity of their staff. They have a continued goal of increasing diversity in the district’s teachers and have used data to help aid in this mission. By analyzing data points on their successful staff members, TTSD has been able to direct their college recruitment initiatives to areas where they’ve made successful hires in the past.

TTSD also uses modern hiring tools at their hiring events to lower their time-to-hire. Modern hiring tools have helped TTSD extend offers to candidates faster than other districts, while also screening more candidates – all leading to increased diversity in the district’s teachers. With on demand interviews, they’re able to screen more than 2X the number of candidates that would traditionally be screened via a phone screen interview or on a Zoom call. 

Through using video interviews to lower their time-to-hire and increase their reach, they’re able to get a sense of the candidates and their cultural alignment with TTSD and are able to continue to hire toward their mission and values.


Why a Data-Driven Hiring Process Matters

Objective Decision Making: Data-driven recruiting relies on concrete metrics and information rather than gut feelings or subjective judgments. Helping recruiters make more informed and objective hiring decisions and reducing biases that might otherwise influence the process.

Improved Quality-of-Hire: By analyzing data on the performance of previous hires, recruiters can identify patterns and characteristics that correlate with success in the organization. This allows them to target candidates who are more likely to excel in the specific educational context and improve the overall quality of hire or cultural fit.

Efficient Resource Allocation: Recruiters can identify which recruitment channels, sources, or strategies yield the best candidates for their district. Saving time and money by focusing efforts on the most effective methods. Additionally, a data-driven approach can scale more effectively and provides a framework for consistent, evidence-based hiring practices. Finally, data-driven decision-making helps districts adapt to continuously improve with changing circumstances.


How to Implement a Data-Driven Approach to Filling Your Open Roles

Define Clear Objectives: To implement a successful data-driven approach, start by clearly defining the objectives of your decision-making process. Where are the current pitfalls in your hiring process? What specific goals are you trying to achieve? What are the key performance indicators (KPIs) you’ll use to measure success?

Analyze Current Data: Keep track of key metrics and make data-based decisions to maximize organizational efficiency. Take a look at our blog on tracking hiring metrics, here’s a quick list of some great metrics to track in your process: Candidate drop-off rates, Time-to-fill, Time-to-hire, Candidate Pipeline vs Qualified Candidates, Cost-per-hire, and Quality of hire.

Iterate & Refine: Based on the ongoing monitoring and analysis, iterate on your changes. If the process isn’t delivering the expected results, make further adjustments or try different approaches. If the changes are successful, look for ways to optimize and scale.


Using interviewstream to Implement a Data-Driven Approach to Your Hiring Process

interviewstream cuts your time-to-offer by over 50% while allowing you to screen 33% more candidates. Paired with our advanced hiring analytics tool, interview insights, get actionable insights into the data around your hiring process to help you extend offers to candidates faster than other districts. With two-thirds of the school districts in the USA reporting teacher shortages, you need to be competitive if you want to hire the best teachers for your schools and become a destination district.

Keeping abreast of K-12 hiring trends and actively using the data you collect on your hiring process to make improvements can help you hire the best teachers, first. If you want to learn more about how interviewstream can help you do that, fill out this form. You can also watch our recent webinar to learn more about K-12 trends and how to combat them.

About The Author

Caroline Chessia is the Marketing Operations Specialist at interviewstream. She loves color-coordinated graphs, hiking in the mountains, and every dog she meets—especially the Golden Retrievers.


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