Memo to Recruiters: Don’t Want To Be Replaced By A Robot? Stop Recruiting Like One

Like you I have seen the many articles the past months with statistics that say that X percent of the workforce is one day going to be replaced by a robot. Some of this has leaked into the recruiter and HR field too. “This tool” or this “HR tech software” is going to replace most departments.

Doomsday is around the corner, “they” all say.

I have the perfect anecdote to being replaced by a robot:

Stop recruiting like one.

Stop sending out hundreds of messages, spam, knowing that even with a pathetic reply rate you are going to get a few candidates.

START sending targeted, informed messages that show you have done a little research on the candidate.

Stop treating candidates like you have an endless supply of them, that they are a means to an end.

START creating long term, meaningful relationships with them.

Stop being one of the many, many nameless recruiters targeting a candidate, industry, or location.

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START creating a brand for yourself so when a potential candidate researches you they will want to email, call you back.

And the big one: START attending events and meet, shake hands, and *gasp* talk with people.

A few specific items to consider that I briefly covered in my SourceCon webinar this month, “Sourcing Technical Candidates When You’re Not in Silicon Valley”:

  • If you are recruiting in a niche that has low unemployment, add your name, email, and title to your job descriptions. Be accessible.
  • Find user groups, associations, and professional groups in your niche and volunteer to speak on career, networking, and job search topics. Be a resource.
  • In your email about the “hot job” you are recruiting for and why they are the “rockstar” you have been looking for, include an industry article or blog post they have interest in … provide information.
  • Oh … and don’t use “hot job” or “rockstar” in your email. You’re a professional. Act like one.

You want to have a higher reply rate to your email, more calls returned, and ultimately hire more people, right?

Stop acting like a robot and START acting like a human.

One more action item: check out my SourceCon presentation in Anaheim this fall, “A Blueprint to Build and Maintain a Successful Recruiter Brand.” I’ll walk you through how I created and have grown one of the most recognized recruiter brands in the industry. 

Paul DeBettignies, better known online as Minnesota Headhunter, is a Minnesota Recruiter, Evangelist, and Advisor, who builds teams with startups and tech companies, and creates recruiting strategies for Fortune 500 clients. He’s also the author of Minnesota Headhunter, the longest running regional recruiter blog.

Paul is a frequent local and national speaker, trainer and subject matter expert on recruiter, HR, career, networking and social media topics. Activities include presentations at Twin Cities Startup Week, Google for Entrepreneurs, Michigan Recruiters Conference, MN HR Tech Expo, Social Media Breakfast, University of Minnesota, Target, CHS, MinneBar and ERE and interviews with NPR, WCCO AM (CBS) Radio & TV, KARE TV (NBC), MSP Business Journal, Minneapolis StarTribune and

Paul is involved in the Minneapolis and St Paul technology, marketing, and social media communities as a sponsor, volunteer, and mentor and is the founder of Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp.