"The secret of my success is that we have gone to exceptional lengths to hire the best people in the world."
The conversation as to who makes more effective Recruiter – Agency, or corporate people – blazes on. Fortunately for the reader, I have no intention of adding to that debate here. On the other hand, I have some ideas on how to create better and more effective Corporate Recruiters by having them adopt some of the philosophy and tactics that drive revenue and success in the agency world.
How to create better and more effective corporate recruiters:
Recruiting is Sales.
Recruiting is a function that is different from all HR functions. Benefits is not, OD is not, Employee Relations is not, and Compensation is not. This bears repeating so please forgive the redundancy. Recruiting is sales. The reason for this is simple. A Recruiter’s job is to support the organizations strategic goals and objectives by providing candidates possessing the skill sets required for organizational success. If you fail to hire the candidates required to get this done, you are not doing your job. I do not mean to be harsh but that is the bottom line.
Pick up the phone when required
. Use the phone and talk with the candidate. Emails are slower than death and texts give you no chance to hear the candidate’s voice and get a feel for what they are thinking. Job changes are difficult for most as the candidate must wrestle with everything from spousal concerns, compensation issues, commute and a hundred other issues. It is never enough to know what your candidate is thinking. You need to know what they are feeling. Talk to your candidates often.
Sell the company
. Sell the job, the benefits, the commute, the free lattes, the career path, local restaurants, and anything else that will help to close the deal. (Agency speak). If for no other reason, whether you like the word sales or not, step out of your comfort zone and do whatever is required to make the hire. Understand that because like it or not, your Hiring Managers are waiting for you to walk in and say that the candidate has accepted the offer. Free donuts, a few high-fives and endless thanks for a deal closed is far better than the doom and gloom of failure: of the candidate accepting a competing organization’s offer over yours. Besides, if you fail to make the hire, you must start all over again and that is never any fun.
Push hiring managers to make a decision
. Be kind and sensitive as they have other things to do but educate them on why speed is so important. If you do this, they will see you as an asset who is looking to make their life better as opposed to a person who is just pressuring them for no good reason. (In my early days at Computer Corporation of America, I would literally chase hiring managers down the hallway and back stairs to corner them to press for a decision. (I would like to tell you a few other things I did to move the process to fruition, but I am too embarrassed).
Stay close to the Candidate
. Remember your last job change? Was it fun? Usually not! The Recruiter needs to see themselves as the guide, as the trusted confidant who will take them comfortably into new and snake infested and territory. Explain the process early in the interviewing process and make them feel comfortable with what is happening. If the Recruiter does not have the trust of the candidate, it will be harder to make the hire.
Speed is critical
. Hiring is a binary function. You either succeed and make the hire (Corporate speak) or you fail and do not make the hire. There is no middle ground for partial success. Please understand that the hiring process must move quickly because as it is said in the agency world, time kills all deals. Recruiting is a push business and if you stop pushing, things ground to a halt. I urge you to move quickly before someone just like me swoops in and takes your candidate right before your eyes because I am lightning fast. (You can be too. Speed is an attitude, not a core competency. You can do this).
I can go on forever here, but no one wants to read a ten-thousand-word article so eight hundred and ten words will have to do. Suffice to say, making great hires is what your organization wants to do but they can’t do it without you as the Recruiter being the driving force behind making that happen. If you can employ some of the above-mentioned concepts, you can, more easily than you might realize, become great! Is that not what all of us want?