Do your Recruiters have a Code of Ethics? @ATAPglobal

Recruiters are…


The reputation of Recruiters has never been very good, to say the least. Most people don’t trust recruiters and they’re fairly good reasons for this. Recruiters have one job to do. That job is to find talent for your organization. That job is not to find the candidate a job.

It’s hard for candidates and even Recruiters themselves to understand this concept. It’s the recruiter’s job to look out for the best interest of the organizations they work for. The candidates, while valuable to the recruiters, are truly just a product of their labor that is being paid by organizations.

Therein lies a big problem.

It’s like when you buy a car. You hope the salesperson is going to give you a good, fair deal and not sell you a lemon of a car. Candidates hope a recruiter (corporate, staffing, RPO) is going to help find them their dream job, not pay you less than they should and offer you a job with a psycho hiring manager.

Some cars salesman lack ethics and they’ll overcharge you for a crappy car. Some Recruiters lack ethics and they’ll tell you stuff that just isn’t true.

This is why it’s super important for you and your Recruiting team to have and believe in a Code of Ethics for the Recruiting Profession, and I’m really excited that ATAP released the first ever Recruiter Code of Ethics for our membership last week! (Click on the link to check out the full version, but here’s a taste):

    I will maintain an active commitment to professional development and remain knowledgeable about current regulations, trends and tools relevant to the recruiting process so that I provide the highest quality of service possible to all parties involved in each engagement.
    I will serve as a strategic and vocal advocate for workforce diversity and inclusive work environments throughout each recruiting process.
    I will honor the trust placed in me when provided access to sensitive information including secure storage and ethical disclosure.
    I will treat all parties connected to a recruiting engagement with integrity and honesty by setting clear expectations, sharing information to which key stakeholders are rightfully entitled and revealing all conflicts of interest.
    I will proactively create, improve upon, and share resources, education, and learning opportunities with other practitioners.

Each and every single ATAP member is required by terms of membership to live and follow this Code of Ethics to maintain membership in ATAP. So, when you are working with or hiring an ATAP member, you know you are getting a Recruiter who has and follows a code. A code that promotes professional ethics in a profession that currently leaves it completely up to an individual to cross their fingers and hope you got a good one.

The Recruiting profession has never been hotter in terms of the position of importance we hold in helping our organizations to become successful. Now is the time to take this platform we’ve been given and show the world what Recruiters and Recruiting are all about. We are not used car salespersons. We are Talent Acquisition Professionals and we are the first line in our organizations in providing great talent.

So, tell me what you think. Did we get it right? Will you have your Recruiters follow this Code of Ethics? Hit me in the comments.


What the heck is ATAP?!? I get asked this question almost daily. ATAP stands for the Association of Talent Acquisition Professionals. Founded in 2016, ATAP’s mission is to develop a body of unified educational, ethical and measurement standards, advocate on issues that impact those in our profession, and build a global community of inspired and informed professionals. I’m a member! You should be one too – Join Here – use my code to get $5 off your first-year “ATAPDISCTS”! 

One thought on “Do your Recruiters have a Code of Ethics? @ATAPglobal

  1. Nice post. It is a good question, recruiters should possess some code of ethics while hiring candidates. Liked all the points. As a recruiter, one must be transparent and pay equal attention to every candidates and employee.

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