Talent Perspectives

Getting the Most Return From the Recruiting Process

Ross Statham, Editor, Talent Perspectives

August 2, 2019


I'm writing this article for the hiring managers out there-- the folks that need to bring talented people to their organization, and who have decided to engage the services of an search firm to help them find the right person(s) to fill important roles on their team. (The opinions expressed are based upon many years experience in finding talent for our own team as well as helping our clients-including the Fortune 50- find talent for their teams.)

These are the areas our team has identified as the best ways to streamline and boost your recruiting process:

  • Engage a reputable company. Look for a recruiting vendor with a stellar reputation for transparency as well as track record of filling similar roles to yours. (There's nothing wrong with checking company references, or in asking to speak with a member of the firm's leadership team.)

  • How deep is their candidate reach? Do they have people in their own database that they already know and are working with?

  • Make sure that you feel comfortable working with the recruiter at the other end of the line. What's their experience like in your industry? (If they don't understand your industry, you will have to teach them how to do their jobs.  Don't go there.)

  • How well do they listen? Do they ask helpful, penetrating questions? Are they really hearing your answers?

  • A good recruiter is going to need some of your time to not only understand your requirements, but to ask you some follow on questions about working conditions, what's behind the job posting you have and the kind of things you're particularly looking for. Any recruiter worth their salt will be able to ask you these questions early on in your relationship but as you come to work with them on future openings, you'll find they'll know you and your needs better and better. But do allow them to ask, as it will help ensure they're not only matching candidates to requirements, but helping find candidates who will fit in well with your team and your culture.

  • The best advice I can give you comes from one of our most experienced recruiters here on our team, who tells his clients that they need to see him in military terms as their sharpshooter, and the client becomes his "spotter." As their sharpshooter, he sets up the shots based on what the client tells him. As he sends them candidates, it's his clients' job to tell him if the candidates he is sending are the kind that they want to be seeing. Where his shots falling short? The more communications you provide a top-notch recruiter early on will hugely shorten your hiring cycle!

  • How well do they screen and brief candidates prior to an interview?

  • Debrief your recruiter after candidate interviews. Let them know how the candidate scored. Let the recruiter know how they scored, too.

  • Recognize that this is a very competitive job market, and that you need to move QUICKLY on the best talent. Nothing makes us cringe more than people dragging their feet and watching the best talent slip away- and we see it occur far too often.

  • Your recruiter can be a great asset to help get the candidate interested in joining your team, rather than someone else's team. They can also help you keep the candidates compensation requirements within bounds, and they can communicate back to you things the candidate may not have felt comfortable telling you.

  • Don't go dark. If things are not going well, the candidate isn't working out, you changed your mind, or your company has cut its budget, tell your recruiter- even if it's only a brief email. If they're a good recruiter, let them know you hope to work with them in the future. This professional courtesy will be greatly appreciated.

         If they do particularly well, tell your friends and colleagues.


If you found this article to be helpful or if you have a comment, please let me know- and share it with others. All the best!......Ross Statham, Editor


Talent Perspectives: Insights for Busy Professions is a series of brief articles that help build winning teams, provide insight on talent and provide organizational development ideas.  The opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and are (C) Dogwood Services Inc.


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