In more 10 years in the staffing industry in various operational, managerial, and corporate roles and in different countries, I have interviewed, coached, and trained hundreds of recruitment consultants from all over the world. Though local differences must be taken into consideration, the characteristics that make you a top performer in Salt Lake City also work in Singapore or in Paris. Based on what I saw, heard, and learned, here is my quintessential list of the 5+1 habits that make a top-performer in any economic cycle or market: keep reading…
I get that comment at least three or four times a day when I am making my business development calls. It is consistently one of the things someone in the corporate recruiting or talent acquisition group seems compelled to say. Why? What does it mean, really?
Perhaps they are trying to “identify” with my world. You know, let me know that “they’ve been there.” The positive side of this comment (and there often is a positive side!) is that the individual will go on to let me know that they truly appreciate the level of effort required to be successful as a professional recruiter. In this regard, the comment is and should be taken as one of respect for the value we had in the overall recruiting (or talent acquisition) equation.
And then there is the negative side to this comment. keep reading…
XpertTech has already grown about 400% in six months money-wise, and in terms of employee size, from 12 employees to 61 employees in six months. Now it’s hiring 30 people in 30 days in the San Francisco Bay area for a mobile phone application project. It’s looking for designers, coders, and others. Joe Budzienski, the company’s executive vice president, is telling candidates, “Whether you have just graduated college and have been developing in your dorm room between classes, or have worked as a senior engineer who realized app development was your true calling, we want to speak with you. The only thing we ask is you live, breathe, and eat APPS!”
“To be trusted with this project is an honor,” says Budzienski. “It’s a very very prominent company, global.” One job listing on LinkedIn suggests the client is a banking company, as do some other posts.
The 30-day hiring blitz started Monday, and XpertTech has hired 12 of the 30 already. keep reading…
If you haven’t seen it in the news lately, there has been an uproar over the practice of secret “no-recruit” agreements between major corporations. A significant number of notable firms including Google, Apple, Intel, and Pixar have been accused of restraining the movement of employees between firms. But don’t be misdirected by all of the legal issues.
The real damage that these agreements can have is on your firm’s business results, and at a large firm, these damages could reach hundreds of millions of dollars. If you work in HR or recruiting, you need to be able to advise senior managers of the unintended consequences related to these agreements. If you currently use no-recruit agreements or you are considering one, this article covers the numerous potential business problems and impacts associated with them.
Potential Problems and Issues Related to Using “No-recruit” Agreements
The 25 problems are broken into two categories, 1) ways that these agreements can hurt your firm and 2) reasons why the agreement may not even work. keep reading…
The holiday season is so very counterintuitive. Its many traditions demand that we rush around to get everything done in time, yet it also calls upon us to pause and reflect. Whenever I stop for a moment to examine the deeper meaning in our shared purpose as recruiters, I am humbled by the random acts of courage we witness every day in the candidates that we serve. The bravery may be stark and obvious as they endure the loss of a job, a home, or a loved one. Or it may be subtle and just as poignant as they suffer the slights and indignities that are simply part of being a job applicant today. The very act of becoming a candidate tests one’s mettle in profound ways. So, this holiday season let us remember the Hero’s Journey.
Within each of us, in the collective unconscious, there lies a hero — an archetype that Swiss Psychiatrist Carl Jung believed lies dormant until called to action. Studying world mythology, Joseph Campbell built upon Jung’s work, discovering that no matter what the myth, a hero’s journey remains the same. All heroes must leave what is familiar, venture forth, do battle, and then return, forever changed, with new talents and gifts to share. For those of us in talent acquisition, that means we deal with something far more important than recruiting metrics and candidate tracking systems: with each and every recruiting engagement, we bear witness to the hero’s journey.
Each senior executive, each technologist, each professional in some way is forever changed by his or her search for a new opportunity. If that involves unemployment, and even homelessness, the bravery and determination required of our hero is the stuff of which legends (and movies) are made. keep reading…
Corporations increasingly place a premium on hiring recruiters who have had 3rd party placement experience. And yet, a widening gap exists between internal vs external recruiting models…as if they could not co-exist, or prosper as partners and are fated to always compete.
This diverse and highly experienced virtual panel will debate the causes and solutions, the trends and gaps while opening the phone lines to the audience members. Register and join in the conversation.
For more podcasts, webinars, and articles on recruiting be sure to check out ERE.net!
Staffing agencies struggle to differentiate their brand message and uniqueness in a sea of competition. In my dealings with staffing agencies, their pitches all begin to sound the same, but they also recognize that the sheer volume of competitors makes it difficult to sound different, if they truly are. In most local markets there are a handful of solid players and a larger number of peripheral staffing firms that tend to create the “noise” (read: sales calls). Here are some thoughts on being a top staffing agency player in your market. keep reading…
In the space of 60 minutes (commercials included), Wendy Doulton dispenses such bits of advice to her six-figure job candidates as “You need to lose the cleavage,” and “You make me feel like taking a nap.”
Born in the U.S., educated in London, Doulton’s blunt, unvarnished advice is delivered, in a clipped British accent. “A résumé should be like a skirt,” she declares. “Long enough to cover the basics, short enough to keep them interested.” keep reading…
Despite a slow economy, recruiting has picked up over the past year. Talent is hard to find in some segments, and corporate leaders talk about bringing “agency skills” to their recruiting teams. What they mean is they’d like to add the executive recruiting skill set to their existing staff. So, they hire a recruiter with an agency background.
On its face, this would seem to make sense. But it rarely works. After a while, it becomes clear that things aren’t working out as planned. The new hire either does what the other staff are doing (abandoning their agency skill set), or they quietly leave.
It’s an old story: the agency recruiter comes into an established department overseen by HR, replete with processes, advertising budgets, and clear lines of authority. Internal company recruiters, especially those working for larger employers, are adept at marketing jobs designed around the company’s brand and managed through an ATS. There are teams, matrixed relationships, and lots of processes governing recruiters. The goal here is to create reliable, repeatable service levels.
Square Pegs in Round Holes
Agency recruiters find themselves wedged into an environment which is the exact opposite of the agency model — it relies on advertising, has much higher req loads, and is a place where process trumps results. They quickly realize they have to get with the program to fill so many requisitions. This is a situation where the agency skills are not much use. The agency recruiter who wants to stay in a corporate role learns they cannot afford to use agency skills unless they have a shorter requisition list, so they can work them intensely.
Recruiters who learned their trade at a company with a strong brand never really learned to recruit. The brand does the heavy lifting. The corporate recruiter runs a different game, emphasizing ads, job distribution, and SEO, instead of digging for candidates, because its the most efficient way to meet their needs. Anyone wanting to stay will do the same. So the agency skill set falls by the wayside.
Others take a different path. keep reading…
… the last two candidates you have sent me are terrible! The agreement you sent me prior to engaging in this search requires me to pay you 25% of the individual’s first-year salary if I hire one of your presented candidates. In my case, that would be in the neighborhood of $17,000, which is a good sum of money.
I am feeling a little confused at the moment, as I was under the impression that you are to provide me the top 1% of talent available in the field of which I am seeking talent. Or, at least that is what you told me in your initial presentation of why we should use you.
Instead I opened both of the resumes you have sent me this morning, only to find the first individual, who has already applied to this position no less than eight times and we have already rejected, and the second individual has changed jobs more times in the past fiv years than runway models change outfits; am I to think this individual will stay with us any amount of time to learn our business and be a strong contributor?
When I signed up for this “executive search/recruiting” service, I was under the impression that you were going to bring me the best of the best, a game changer or an “A” player who can bring significant value and contributions to my business unit. But all I see here are average professionals and not the caliber that warrants me paying you $17,000.
I know it’s your business on how you operate, but I feel as if I need to share some suggestions for you and for what I really need in a search partner… keep reading…
Politicians claim they never let a good crisis go to waste. Reacting to crises is how people take advantage of opportunities that might otherwise be overlooked. But, have you ever thought about how that applies to HR? Or, maybe you have not kept up with the trend to eliminate internal recruiters.
Professional recruiters are citing an increasing number of independent studies claiming there is no difference in employee quality between internal and external recruiters; so, they argue, why should organizations hire full-time internal recruiters when external ones deliver the same results … cheaper? If I were an executive looking for ways to reduce costs, that argument would resonate with me. keep reading…
This session will include ideas Frank borrowed and applied from other professions such as the medical profession, and the real estate industry. He will demonstrate how he converted a “real estate appraisal” was borrowed as the model for his “Search Reports” which cause clients to say “WOW” while demanding the CFO rush out an immediate payment.
Combined with new recruiting agreement language and proposals, the strategy presents a fresh approach will help participants differentiate themselves from run-of-the-mill contingency recruiters, while generating immediate ‘up-front’ cash flow in the form of non-refundable deposits.
For more podcasts, webinars, and articles on third party recruiting be sure to check out The Fordyce Letter!
I’m concerned that most corporate recruiters don’t understand what it really takes to recruit passive candidates. In three minutes, I think you’ll agree. If you’re looking for candidates where the demand for talent outstrips supply, the ability to recruit top passive candidates will now be more difficult than ever. Those people with good jobs will hang on even tighter, and recruiters will need to use every technique in the book to pry them loose.
In the first article in this series I defined six skills that a recruiter must possess in order to effectively recruit passive candidates. Collectively, they’re called the 6Cs. While all are important, some are more critical than others. Here are the results of a recent poll we took of corporate and third-party recruiters asking them to define the most important of the six skills. Here’s the link to the poll so you can participate yourself. You might want to do this before you read the rest of this article. This way your responses won’t be biased.
The top three vote getters in this poll were the need to articulate a Compelling message, the ability to quickly convert your job opening into a Career move, and the Conviction that you won’t give up despite candidate reluctance to move ahead. The least important — at least according to the poll participants — were the need to Control the conversation, the ability to develop deep Connections, and Closing the deal, without money being the primary driver. If you’re a third-party recruiter you know this is upside down. Controlling, Connecting, and Closing are the most important. Without these, Compelling messages, Career opportunities, and Conviction won’t get you any more hires.
I’ll give the corporate recruiters who took the poll a break here since I didn’t define the 6Cs other than using the description shown on the chart. So let me better define and demonstrate why Controlling, Connecting, and Closing are the most important.
Why Control is #1 on the 6Cs Hit Parade
When first approached by a recruiter, passive candidates make a quick decision to engage in a conversation based on a few core pieces of information. keep reading…
Recruitment 4.0: Crowdsourcing, Gamification, Recruitment as a Profit Center, … and the Death of Recruitment Agencies!
We’re only just digesting 3.0. But what direction are we heading in? Is it a coherent journey? Is there a clear destination/end goal?
- Recruitment transitions from being a “cost center” into a “profit center”’!
- The collapse and insolvency of many recruitment agencies.
- Job boards stuttering and collapsing … and repurposing themselves
- Companies hiring “through the sky” through external referrals and crowdsourcing
- Exclusive/VIP/premium paid in-community content and paid mobile apps
- Gamification shapes recruiting strategies and generates stickiness and virality
- Companies rated globally by crowd opinions
Before anyone screams “unrealistic” or “utter fantasy” or cries B.S., let’s be clear that Recruitment 4.0 moves into the territory of vision. This is some years off. But by calculated hypotheses it is clear there will be a 4.0 and that it is a natural progression of 3.0 and builds sensibly on its foundations.
Let’s recap the different versions of recruiting.
Recruitment 1.0 encompasses traditional recruiting over a huge timeline, including good old-fashioned fax machines, print advertising, (post, spray ,and pray), and Rolodexes moving into traditional ATSs. Recruiters more focused on processes than end results. The basic any-bum-on-any-seat philosophy.
Recruitment 2.0 saw the move onto online and using technology for recruitment purposes, including the advent of online job boards & online CV searches. While the technology moved forward, the traditional methodology of 1.0 was prevalent, including online post, spray, and pray candidate attraction (aka the recruitment lottery of let’s hope the right-ish person looks at the online advertisement, at the right time and feels willing to go to the effort to apply).
Both Recruitment 1.0 and 2.0 were/are fundamentally focused on the active job seekers, (applying to vacancies, on agency books, and those watching job boards like a possessed predator).
Recruitment 3.0 is a huge leap as it moves recruitment out of its comfort zone. The beating heart of 3.0 is the non-active/passive individual and a focus on “best talent” and building predictable talent pipelines. In addition, the philosophy of “everyone is a potential candidate so engage them” is central. 3.0 takes us into building engaged, two-way, free-conversation based, transparent communities. This is anchored by things like employment branding, marketing, and PR. 3.0 is not only concerned with building communities but mapping key competitors and seducing cream-of-the-crop talent with your brand and in-house opportunities.
What is Recruitment 4.0?
Recruitment 3.0 is all consumed and focused on building communities. 4.0 is all about the value of those communities, both real and perceived. keep reading…
A coalition of labor unions and immigrant workers organizations is pushing a bill in Massachusetts to overhaul the state’s staffing industry.
If it’s adopted — almost half the state Legislature is listed as sponsors — the bill would impose a number of administrative obligations on staffing firms, and potentially limit some fees while raising costs. It exempts most professional workers, but it would apply to a broad range of workers, including nurses, clerical, blue collar, and similar. Violators could be fined.
Proponents, who were contacted but didn’t respond are positioning the legislation as a “temp workers right to know bill,” highlighting provisions requiring staffing firms to inform employees for whom they’ll be working, how much they’ll be paid, where they’ll work, and what they’ll be doing.
While on its face benign, other provisions of the bill limit some fees and essentially end temp-to-hire conversion fees. It puts a damper on the practice of shopping good candidates, by prohibiting candidate referrals without job reqs. Out-of-state staffing firms could be closed out of placing workers in Massachusetts unless they had an in-state office.
“There is no such law currently existing in other states,” says Stephen Dwyer, general counsel for the American Staffing Association. “It is more sweeping and more harmful than any, bar none.” keep reading…
Do you know what an experienced recruiter “looks like”? If hiring a recruiter to build a talent strategy, would you know the interview questions to ask to determine if candidates can do the job like any top talent you’re in search of?
I pose this question because I see a multitude of job postings for “experienced” recruiters with five years of experience. To me, this is an oxymoron. I had extraordinary search training, broke the 100k barrier in my third year, had lots of clients, and I was just beginning to really know what I was doing in year six.
Each year I learned more and got better at my craft. Recruiting is highly complex, when done properly, and it concerns me that companies that wouldn’t consider hiring a sales rep with five years of experinece would hire a recruiter to build a talent process who only has five years of experience. There seems to be a considerable disconnect here and I’d like to try to get to the bottom of it.
Since this is my assertion, I posed this question to a number of recruiters I consider “experienced” to determine if I was barking up the right tree. One of them has six years, one has 10, and the rest have at 15-30 years in the industry. They do retained and contingent work. Here are the three responses I found most interesting and believe they say it all: keep reading…
Anna Jarvis was from my home state of West Virginia. She introduced the traditional Mother’s Day celebration in 1907. It became a national holiday only seven years later. You may think Anna was delighted with how quickly her idea spread throughout the world. Actually, she spent the rest of her life and all of her savings protesting how the true meaning of Mother’s Day had been lost. She believed printed cards and candy were insufficient to honor one’s mother. On one occasion, her protests landed her in jail for disturbing the peace. Imagine what her reaction might be to people who simply Tweet their moms on this special day. keep reading…
A new– and for now, free — toolset from Bullhorn is getting good marks from users who have been testing it for a few months, but what’s most impressive is that it can give recruiters an early heads-up about their connections who may be preparing to “go active.”
KC Carpenter, a healthcare recruiter and co-founder of K.A. Recruiting in Boston, says the still-in-beta Bullhorn Reach is “great. It’s a huge, huge time saver for us … What would take 10 times as long, we can do with one click.”
If automating postings to social networks and optimizing them for search engines was all the service did, “it would definitely be a site I would pay for,” he says. But Radar, the tool that tips you to the likelihood one of your connections may be starting an active job hunt, is something Carpenter sees a “great for business development.” keep reading…
As a recruiter (whether retained, contingent, corporate, executive search, or independent), there is “No Acceptable Excuse” for not following up or following through with a candidate.
By failing to do so, your actions are contributing to the further erosion of the reputation of our profession and are fueling the negative perceptions presently associated with recruiters.
As the years have rolled by I have become increasingly aware of how poorly internal recruiting functions perform when compared to recruitment process outsourcing organizations or agencies. These have to make a profit or go out of business. They have to operate efficiently and continue to innovate and stay ahead of the demands or questions that clients will have.
Internal functions don’t have to do any of these things. They are entrenched in almost all organizations, and because their function is perceived as incidental to overall organizational performance or success, not much in the way of efficiency is really expected or, unfortunately, rewarded. This means that few recruiting leaders have any incentive to improve their function. In fact, doing so may mean a smaller budget, less headcount, and even less status.
So this leads to the headline question: Do we need an internal function at all? Does it do something that an external provider cannot do? Can it do it at least as cheap or as fast? Can it provide a higher-caliber candidate?
Some thoughts: keep reading…