Recruiter Potluck

Do you work in an office setting with others? You probably have had a Potluck, where your co-workers would bring different food items for everyone to eat. Some are good at making desserts, others a main dish, and still others preferred to bring the plates, cups, napkins, and drinks. Everyone is good at something and that is what they chose to share with everyone else.

Recruiting can be the same way. I learned how to be a Recruiter by the “Potluck Method”. When I started, I worked a full desk. Not only did I have to find the candidates, but I had to find the jobs to place them at. I worked around 8-12 other Recruiters who were also working a full desk. Some of the recruiters were new and some had been in the industry for over 20+ years. I started to identify the better Recruiters from the average Recruiters. What made them stand out? What were they good at? What was Recruiter 1 better at and what was Recruiter 2 better at?

Recruiter 1 was very good at getting to know her candidates. What made them tick, what were they really looking for in a new position? She was a great listener and knew how to ask the right questions. How did she do that? She had a knack for making them feel at ease and at home – but how?

Recruiter 2 on the other hand was good at interview prep. When his candidate received an interview, they were prepped and ready to win the interview to get the job. He spent a lot of time walking them through expectations and the overall interview process. But what did he say? What was he really sharing with them?

Recruiter 3 was incredible at cold calling and getting new business. It seemed like every call she made she was picking up new business with a new company. She always knew what to say.

Finding out who is best at different aspects of your role and learning from them is critical. Personally, I stand up and go sit at the person’s desk, sometimes for just 10 minutes and sometimes for an hour however, I would listen intently on what they said and how they said it. What are they doing, and how are they doing it? Most Recruiters are really good at 1 or 2 things and if you can learn from the best and successfully adopt these traits you will be a great Recruiter.

My point is not everyone is an expert at everything. As a Recruiter, I look at my desk and my work and constantly look to learn from those around me. Maybe I have gotten into a rut and my interviews have not been getting hired. Then go back to the basics – learn from your peers. How are they doing interview prep? Recruiting has evolved and has changed; we need to evolve with it. But don’t forget the basics. Pick what you can from the experts/co-workers and make it your own.

The 3 Things Candidates Want…

On Monday, I went to Ohio Recruiters Association, 2014 Fall workshop, in Columbus, Ohio attended by about 120 employment specialists.   They had many interesting topics and sessions planned for the day, which included “Earning your MBA (Major Bank Account) in Recruiting”, “Recruiting Passive A-Players Your Clients Want to Hire”, and “Revolutionary Sourcing”  .    One of the main speakers, was Jordan Rayboy.   Jordan has been recruiting since 2000 and is one of the top producing Recruiters, in the Country.  I really enjoyed Jordan’s presentations and recruiting knowledge because it just made sense.   How he conducts his business and how he recruits is very similar to my approach, he is a partner with the Client and the Candidate.

One of the topics and points Jordan mentioned were the 3 things candidates want.   This was an excellent reminder, to all recruiters.   Find out what the candidates are wanting and present this to the company, along with their resume/profile.  In my opinion, if you understand these basic three things then you understand the candidate and what they are truly looking for.  The three things are:

  1. Compensation$$
  2. What is their motivation for change
  3. What do they want, to be their next steps, in their careers. (What are their Hot Buttons)

Everyone is different and every company/position is different, as recruiter’s we need to understand who is the right fit – the best fit for each position.

 

Recruiters: What is your First Impression, to Job Seekers?

Do you know what your first impression is on others?   When speaking with Job Seekers what impression do you leave?  

I believe first impressions are one of the keys to recruiting success.   Everyone we talk to has a problem that they want us to solve.      

If you are talking to a Job Seeker, for the first time, what is the impression you want to leave with them?    Are they applying to your job advert?   Were they referred to you from a friend?  Are they calling you back?    Why are they calling you and how can you help them out?   How can they help you?  Are you listening to their problem?   All Job Seekers are not the same – do not treat them that way.   You have to listen to what they are actually saying.  Why are they looking for a new job?  How can you help them?  When I am talking to a new Job Seeker, I want them to know that I am their partner and ally, their Trusted Advisor.   True, they may not be a fit for the job I am recruiting for but I want to give them some kind of advice or direction, to help them in their job search.   

Too many recruiters treat the job seekers like a herd of cattle.    Take the extra time (just a couple of minutes) and spend it talking with them.    A majority of my candidates are from referrals.   They reach out to me directly through LinkedIn, Twitter and Social Media.   I can’t help all of them find jobs – not even close – but what I can give them is some advice and hopefully Hope, in their job search.

Let them know up front, what to expect from you and as a new Job Seeker, what you expect from them.    Keep them in the loop the entire process.  Don’t be afraid to give them the bad news as well as the good.  Make them feel at ease while working with you and make sure they feel that they are an intimate part of this process.   The new Job Seeker should be involved throughout so they can start feeling comfortable with how you recruit.   As stated above, be their true Consultant and Trusted Advisor.  This is your one chance to put yourself in that category with them, versus just another staffing firm.

Think back, on your last Job Seeker.   What was your first impression, on them?  Can you do better?

The Many Hats of a Successful Recruiter…

A Successful Recruiter needs to wear many hats.   Recruiters do not just go out source/find new talent and move on.   Recruiters need to wear many different hats and do many different jobs to be successful.   Here is my list in Alphabetical order.

A Successful Recruiter is also a:

  1. Business Partner
  2. Closer
  3. Collections Agent
  4. Cyber Sleuth
  5. Friend
  6. Good Listener
  7. Interview Coach
  8. Job Coach
  9. Life Coach
  10. Negotiator
  11. Salesperson
  12. Sourcer

What other hats do you think a Successful Recruiter wears?

 

 

Star Trek taught me how to be a better Recruiter…

SpockTraits you can learn from Star Trek that can help you become a better recruiter and “Live Long and Prosper”:

  1. James T. Kirk – Go with your gut.   Use your experiences and gut feelings.  
  2. Spock – Make the Logical Decision.   Most of the time the logical decision is the right decision.
  3. Dr. McCoy (Bones) – I’m a Recruiter not a miracle worker.
  4. Montgomery Scott (Scotty) – Know how the Recruiting engine works and how all of its components run together.
  5. Nyota Uhura – Speak many languages.   Not all positions/industries are the same.
  6. The Enterprise – It is the main structure behind us.   Use and take advantage of all of your available resources.

Can you think of any others?

 

 

 

Recruiting Scrum

Do you have a lot of Meetings?   How often do you meet?  I think that sometimes we meet too often and lose productivity and sight of our goals.    At the same time, it is also important to meet and know what the Recruiting team is doing and working on.

Do you have a virtual or in-house Recruiting team?    Do you meet and review daily?    I recommend implementing a Daily Recruiting Scrum.   Scrum is not just an IT Term – it is an approach ( A Methodology) that can be used in other industries and jobs.

What is a Daily Recruiting Scrum?   It is a Meeting that starts, on time daily (the earlier the better) with all members of the Team.   Each person will discuss two things:   What they did yesterday and what their plans are for today.   It is a brief 1-2 minute sentence from each member.   That’s it.   Basic and effective.

This way everyone knows what each other is doing and what they did yesterday.   It holds everyone accountable for what they said they are going to be working on.   It is the place to ask for help if you need any.   Try it and see what happens.

Has the Hiring Process Gotten Out of Hand?

I certainly think so. 

Having hired over 13,000 people in the past 10 years, I will tell you that the current requirements to hire a new employee have become daunting.  I am beginning to think that a large portion of the unemployment rate is self inflicted.  Each year, we are finding more ways to screen out candidates instead of finding ways to include or grow good talent.  Here is listing of just a few of the hiring requirements that our members have had to comply with in order to be considered for employment.

  • – Resume submittal into an applicant tracking system
  • – Telephone interview
  • – Hiring Assessment (Six assessments is the highest number that I have heard of thus far.)
  • – IQ test (Yes, you read correctly.)
  • – Personal interviews (11 are the highest so far)
  • – Group interview (the largest panel has been 12 members)
  • – Requirement to submit a 5 minute, self-developed video of why you are qualified for the position.
  • – 15 minute stand-up presentation including a PowerPoint presentation.
  • – Submittal of a marketing or territory sales plan
  • – Submittal of your latest W-2
  • – Confidentially agreement and non-compete agreement
  • – Filling out an Application for Employment
  • – Drug and background check
  • – I-9 identification including 2 pieces of government issued ID or passport.

At any point in the hiring process, someone involved in the evaluation can say “no”.  “No” is a safe answer.  There is little risk in saying “no”.  Saying “yes” commits you to the decision and to the success of the candidate.  I’ll take the risk.  Making a new hire successful is a responsibility that I accept.

Let’s trim down the list and say “yes” more often. 

What do you think?

Ken Lazar

Recruiters: Stop Emailing and Pick up the Phone…

Why are you emailing the Client or Jobseeker every little question?  stop-sign2 I was talking with another recruiter about an open req. and their response was…I emailed them.  My thought was….Why?

I find that too many Recruiters are hiding behind the computer.    Do not be afraid to hear No or an answer you do not want to hear.   Picking up the phone builds the relationship between you and the Client and you and the Job Seeker.  Email can be a useful tool and complimentary tool but I believe your main source of communication should be the phone. 

My challenge to you:  Use the phone for everything for a month, change your habits and see how many more relationships and placements you can make.   Stop hiding and let your voice be heard.

Recruiters: New Boolean Sourcing Tool – Recruitin

I was recently told about a new tool – Recruitin.    I was told it let you X-ray LinkedIn, by creating the boolean for you, so I figured I would give it a try, last week.

First, make sure your web browser will allow pop-ups.  You will need this turned on to get the results.   After you are on the site, Recruitin, you just fill out the following tabs: 

  1. Country you want to Search.  Use the pull down menu to select the country.
  2. Job Title.  Enter in the job title you are looking for.  (also click the box for similar job titles.  This way if you are searching for a Project Manager you will also pull up PM and so on.)
  3. Fill out and list the location and key words. (Use a comma to separate the words.  For example:  Columbus, Ohio, OH, Engineer, PLC, automation, solidworks)
  4. Exclude words.   Do you have any words you do not want to search for, if so list them here, also separate by using a comma.   If you do not have any words to exclude you leave it blank.
  5. Degree.   Use the pull down menu to select a specific degree or leave it blank.
  6. Finally click the button – Find your people.

You will now notice a Boolean String at the top of the page.   This is an X-ray string that is using Google to X-ray and deep dive into LinkedIn.    You can either save the string or click on “open in Google”.  If you click on open in Google, a new window will pop up with your results.  You do not need to be connected to the people on LinkedIn to see the full names.    It doesn’t matter if you are a first connection, second connection, or connected at all.

I also suggest you save your strings, if you wish to reuse them.   You will see your saved strings on the right hand side of the screen.

Try it and play around with it.    Recruitin has its own user guide here, if you need more help.  I think it works pretty good.   If you do not like writing your own strings and need some help – this could be a useful tool for you to use.

 

 

Recruiters: Don’t Get Mad. Get Better…

Have you ever had a candidate that you thought was a slam dunk.   There was no way this candidate was not going to get the job.   Then the phone rings and the client says they have chosen another candidate.  Huh?  What just happened?    How did this Happen?   This is not a time to get mad – use it to get better.

Look back into the 30 steps in the placement process.    Did you skip a step?    Most of the time, when a placement doesn’t happen you can trace it back to something that you, the Recruiter, missed or skipped. 

Look back and think.   How was your presentation?   Was it complete or did you just send a weak description because you were sure you had it in the bag?   Did you receive the up-front contract with the client company?    What about your interview briefing and debriefing?   Were you pre-closing?   What could you have done better as a recruiter?

In this business we hear a lot of No’s.    You can not get too upset when you hear a No – you have to strive to better your craft and reduce the percentages of No’s that you hear.

RPO: Vendor or Partner?

RPO:  Do you want a VENDOR or a PARTNER?

There is so much movement in the RPO space and some of you may be saying.. RP WHAT? Recruitment Process Outsourcing has been around for a few decades, but recently what was once a controversial concept seems to have beaten the perception held by skeptics that thought that “outsourcing” was a bad thing, or that it would just go away.

Several Higher profile acquisitions are beginning to make RPO a way of doing business that is not only effective but also competitive. IBM and SAP have acquired companies to serve as their RPO arm, but just remember bigger is not always better.

When you hire an RPO firm, they need to be a fit for YOUR culture. Often the first experience any new hire will have with your brand and hiring experience will be in the hands of the RPO firm you partner with.  So ask yourselves, do you want a VENDOR or a PARTNER?

 

First off you have to decide WHY RPO?

I have a hint, its not always cheaper… but it should always be more effective.

When thinking about the cost of hire often times RPO services are not always cheaper… where you get your money’s worth is in reducing the time vacancies are open, because the cost of vacancy can cripple you, and it’s a silent bill that accrues interest and fees at an alarming rate.  You need to increase deficiencies and remove barriers, while increasing candidate experience and brand awareness where

 

What are some of the benefits of working with an RPO?

  1. Specialize in the process of hiring
  2. Strong efficiencies based on bulk process
  3. Reporting, Data, and Analytics
  4. Stabilized costs

What can be some of the areas that could be an issue?

  1. Getting both sides to agree on how to best represent the culture, while adhering to process
  2. Change isn’t easy but it is necessary, if you don’t have a willingness to change, it won’t be any better
  3. The RPO firm only worries if it is able to hit SLAs and KPIs and think that is enough. You need them to explain the data, be proactive and forecast not just react
  4. Lack of flexibility / one size fits all approach. The process will work, but there will always be nuances that need tweaks to make it your own
  5. Duplicate Efforts, internal partners don’t adhere to process and continue to duplicate efforts.

How do I know if I have the right Partner?

  1. SPEND TIME at the delivery center
  2. Be open to the expertise they have to offer, but really involve ALL key stakeholders in decisions around process and change
  3. Give it a chance to work
  4. Check References
  5. Remember a partnership takes two … both sides have to work at the relationship
  6. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

6 Steps on How to Train a NEW Recruiter…

To be a successful recruiter, you need to possess certain traits.   These are not learned they are part of who you are.    However when you do hire a new recruiter (Newbie), you cannot throw everything at them at once.   Here is a the step-by-step approach that I like to use.

  • Step 1:  Start with a job description and how to dissect it.  Next, teach the Newbie how to navigate the job boards.   You want them to be able to demonstrate they can find and deliver matching resumes to job descriptions.   They need to master this first.  It is important to know how to dissect both a resume and job description to find a match.
  • Step 2:  Searching LinkedIn and social media.   Now that your Newbie knows job boards, it is time to master the next step.   Can they find and source candidates using social media?   Get them set up on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and any other social media sites that may be useful to their sourcing.
  • Step 3:  Create a culture of learning.   There are many free webinars out there, about recruiting.   Go to YouTube and watch “how to” videos.     It is time to start learning more advanced sourcing (Boolean Strings and so on).   These first three steps are about sourcing and how to find the candidates that are active on the boards and the ones that may be passive.
  • Step 4:  Time to start talking to the candidates.   Now that your Newbies are delivering matching candidates (at least on paper), it is time to pre-screen.    Initiate conversations with candidates, verify they are interested and go over the basics.    If they are a fit, let the candidate know a Sr. Recruiter will contact them to go over the job requirements and their background in more detail.    (Let the Newbie sit and listen to your conversation with them).
  • Step 5:  Your Newbie should now also be sitting and listening to you while you talk to the client and candidate.   They need to be learning and listening to the interview prep, briefing and all 30 steps of the placement process.   All of these steps will probably take at least up to 6 months if not longer to learn…training is an investment and a marathon – not a sprint.    
  • Step 6:  Finally, when pre-screenings are accurate, Newbies are ready to be fully engaged.   Start them with a job or two as a full-cycle recruiter and see how they do.   You will need to sit and listen and be available for questions.

The goal of this six step method is to get the Newbie to be an expert, one step at a time before they move on, to the next.   

What are your thoughts?

30 Steps in the Placement Process

I received this list over 10 years ago and just refound it.   I love the fact that it says “Placement Process” and not recruiting process.    We are in this business to make placements!  

30 steps in the Placement Process

  1. Take a COMPLETE job order
  2. Make a Recruiting Plan
  3. File Search
  4. Name Gathering
  5. Candidate Contact
  6. Candidate Profile
  7. Presentation of Candidate to Employer
  8. Set-up First Interview
  9. Confirm Appointment with Candidate and Employer (Prep Employer)
  10. Debrief Candidate
  11. Debrief Employer
  12. Set Second Interview
  13. Reference Check
  14. Second Interview, Prep Candidate (Trial Closing)
  15. Second Interview, Prep Employer (Trial Closing)
  16. Confirm Second Interview with Employer and Candidate
  17. Debrief Candidate (Closing)
  18. Debrief Employer (Closing)
  19. Closing/Negotiating
  20. Offer/Acceptance/Start Date
  21. Resignation Debrief
  22. CELEBRATE!!
  23. Billing Prep
  24. Fill out Billing Information
  25. Stay in Touch with Candidate
  26. Confirm that the Candidate has Started
  27. Stay in Touch with Candidate and Employer
  28. Get the Check

What would you add or delete from the list?

 

 

8 Phrases that Describe a Successful Recruiter…

A Good Recruiter is:

  1. Having relationships with a side of good timing.
  2. A partner/advisor.  
  3. A candidate and client ally.
  4. A person you need most when you least expect it.
  5. An interview coach/job coach.
  6. A salesman and negotiator.
  7. A cyber sleuth.
  8. A networking expert.

What would you add or delete from this list?

 

See also my post on top traits of a successful recruiter.

Networking: Enough to go Around…

People always ask me, why I network and share my ideas?  Why would I help a competitor or another recruiter gain expertise and knowledge?  Simple, there is enough to go around, try to build good karma.

As you know, Recruiters don’t always have the best name/reputation in the business.  There are “used car salesman” recruiters that give honest recruiters a bad name and a bad rap.  But if I do the little things, with my fellow recruiters and my candidates, I am changing that view, one conversation at a time.

I try to keep in contact with old candidates.   I network with them.    I communicate and partner with them.    I may not have the right job for them today but you never know what will be open tomorrow.  Staying in contact with candidates also helps me get candidate referrals.   Good candidates always seem to know other good candidates.  

If I am unable to help a candidate today and they need a job – ASAP, I refer them to other recruiters.  You never know who may be able to help them.  Networking and sharing candidates, ideas, procedures with other recruiters,  will make me a better recruiter and a better person.   And it helps the candidate who needs that job. 

Networking and sharing helps me identify the candidates and recruiters, who I want to partner with.  Are there Recruiters who help me and give me new ideas?  Of course there is.  Are there Recruiters who do not share?  Yep, there are those also. The ones that share and network, I feel will also be successful.

In short – there are a lot of good people out there and enough knowledge and networking to go around.  Try it and pay it forward.