Ask Barb: Job Order to Fill Ratio Averages

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Sep 26, 2012

Dear Barb:

Since you speak at so many events, I would love to know if the job order to fill ratio has dramatically increased. We are only filling one out of every fourteen job orders that are written. This number has increased over the past three years. My team is telling me that our numbers are average for today’s market. I’d love to hear what you have to say.

Carrie B. Baltimore, MD

Dear Carrie:

This number varies greatly from niche to niche, but your job order to fill ratio seems extremely high. I would not worry about the one client who hired from your firm, but what about the other thirteen who did not receive positive results – will they call you with their next job order?

You need to review the quality of the job orders being written. In the past few years, many job orders should never have been written and especially not worked. The following suggestions will help you decrease this ratio:

  • Obtain a specific target date to fill (not ASAP, yesterday, or immediately)
  • Identify the problem that exists as a result of this opening
  • Request three to four interview times when you write your job order
  • Email a copy of the order to everyone involved in the hiring process to make sure they are all on the same page (over 50% of the time, our clients make changes).
  • Obtain the name of an alternate person who can confirm your interview times in case your hiring authority is not available
  • Provide a list of expectations to your client, so they know what to expect from you and what you expect from them
  • Call every Friday afternoon to provide an update and make necessary changes

If you implement any of these, your job order to fill ratio will dramatically increase and you will be pleased to have your clients judge you on results. The national average for job order to fills is currently six to one!

Barbara J. Bruno, CPC, CTS

Would you like to Ask Barb a question? Email her at Each month in The Fordyce Letter print edition, Barbara Bruno answers questions from individuals in the Recruiting Profession. We will bring you some of these Q&A responses from Barb each week on

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