As my friend Laurie Ruettimann pointed out last week, recruiting is easy and can be done by basically anyone, so just go hire some soldier to do it. Laurie might not be that all far from the truth. Recruiting isn’t brain surgery, it’s a process. A process that is hated by the majority of human resource professionals around the world, which is why it is a $9 Billion dollar industry. Not a hard skill, but many times, a really hard job to be successful at. Old school recruiters like to believe recruiting is an Art form. It’s not. New school recruiters like to believe you can just source everyone you need off the internets. You can’t.
Recruiting is all about activity. It’s a sales cycle. The more contacts (phone calls, emails, handshakes, etc.) you make, the more candidates you will find. The more candidates you find and get interested in your jobs. The more jobs you will fill. Not hard, right? The problem is, ‘most’ recruiters look to do things that allows them not to make contacts! They will buy every kind of technology imaginable to get people to call them. They’ll do just about anything, besides picking up the phone and making that one call.
Want to be successful at Recruiting? Find people who are willing to make 100 calls per day and who love your company. Go ahead, go find those people! It might be a soldier, it might be your neighbor, it might a former crackhead, who knows! The fact is, most people do not want to do this, even when you hire them and pay them to do just this!
So being a successful recruiter is basically easy. You must find the sweet spot in the amount of activity you need to do each week that will get you the amount of contacts you need to get enough people for the jobs you want to fill. Once you find that level, you need to maintain that level forever. Easy. I’m not kidding. You don’t need fancy branding, and big ATS Systems and a bunch of processes. You need people who will bang your internal resume database and job boards constantly, and faster than your competition. That really isn’t that hard to do, because most shops don’t even do the basics well!
Now for the Advance Class participants:
Want to be Ridiculously Successful at Recruiting?
Do that which is written above and add just one thing. Maintain a relationship with your companies Alumni. There is this funny thing about human nature. When we leave some place, we always want to know what’s going on back there! If we move to a new city, we love updates from our old city. When we run into past coworkers at the mall, we love updates on who is still there and who is running different departments, who got fired, who got promoted. If we know this about human nature, why aren’t we giving it to our Alumni?
It doesn’t have to be constant, but is has to be consistent.
Do a quarterly Alumni update via email to everyone who has every worked for you. Even the crappy ones who you are glad they are gone ! Give them some juicy details about promotions. Let them know some new things you’re working on. Let them know what jobs you’re trying to fill, and how they can refer people. Do this every quarter for 2 years. Want to be class valedictorian? On a monthly basis call a handful of alumni and just have chat, build some relationships, check on where are they now. As them if you mind if you share their story in the next Alumni News going out next quarter. If you commit to do this for 24 months, you will start to see positions fill themselves.
This is advance course stuff, because 99% of companies aren’t doing this with their recruiting!
Human nature being what it is, I’ll tell you why recruiting isn’t done well. Because in most companies it is a reactionary task not a strategic tactic. What comes 1st? HR understanding their strategic potential or organizational leadership understanding HR strategic potential? Perhaps we should be posting on leadership blogs rather than on our closed loop HR forums.