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Hiring Authorities: Engaging A Recruiter?

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Author: Joe Giacomin
(248) 453-0092

A long-time friend and colleague used to say; “Recruiters are like Kleenex, when you need one, you need one bad and when you’re done using it” … well?

I believe the recruiting industry has evolved since that statement originally surfaced, however some rather diverse views remain about what role a recruiter plays in the hiring process.

I suppose, if you engage the services of a recruiter who is knowledgeable about your industry and specific requirements coupled with a verifiable record of best practices and success, that full advantage should be taken of the value he/she can offer your organization.

And when it comes to the hiring process, I believe most people will agree, “Point A to Point B” is often riddled with Points C, X, Y and Z.  Hiring authorities and recruiters (it truly works both ways) need to stay in touch, communicating in a clear and timely fashion, even when the process appears to be redundant or even a little uncomfortable.

There can often be more focus and attention if the assignment is fully retained or engaged (arrangements where the employer has some financial “skin in the game”) as opposed to a pure contingency search. However, a hiring process can be very effective and successful, regardless of the contractual agreement, if a solid working relationship is established.

Following, are some suggestions hiring authorities may wish to consider when engaging a recruiter:

  • Begin by clearly reviewing the job description and specific requirements of the position with the recruiter. Companies often submit “boiler plate” requirements which are helpful but may omit the true essence of the position. Sharing some initial quality time with a focus on factors which are unique to the position and the company, will pay tremendous dividends.
  • It is essential that the hiring authority is involved early and throughout the interview process. Regardless of company protocol, it should be most important to him/her.
  • Over-analysis (testing, psychological evaluations, scrutinizing resumes, etc.) too early in the process, and in some cases, prior to talking with a candidate, is unnecessary and can discourage recruits…maybe that next super-star.
  • The recruiter has completed candidate screening and evaluation, so arrange an initial meeting (in-person or remote) and if you choose to test, do so, later… if/when there is mutual interest.  This is very IMPORTANT. A candidate who has been recruited and has their curiosity stimulated, prefers this approach. Think about it; as a candidate, wouldn’t YOU prefer it this way?

Every company maintains a specific hiring regimen. The key: regardless of the process and number of steps, keep it moving. Lengthy gaps between interviews, lack of coordination along with limited and/or “fuzzy” communication can be frustrating and costly. You can always pass on a candidate at any time but losing top talent due to glitches in the process are not the outcome anybody wants. Hire, or no- hire, leaving a positive impression is a winning practice.

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