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How To Be a Great Recruiter - It's Easier Than You Think!

Jul 30, 2008
What do Great Recruiters do to make them so 'Great'? I'll start with my definition of 'Great' as it relates to recruiting. Great Recruiters, in my opinion, always: 1. Make placements efficiently and quickly using sound, proven, ethical methods. 2. Manage their time by focusing first on the activities that propel the candidate toward the job offer/acceptance.

Great Recruiters thoroughly understand every step of the placement process and how to skillfully execute each step. They understand their "Headhunter power" and use it seemingly effortlessly to guide every participant's (client's and candidate's) actions toward the placement.

If they use the assistance of others to make a placement faster, Great Recruiters (GR) train their assistants to perform those tasks exactly like the Headhunter themselves would. How do GR make placements whenever they want? They certainly don't leave anything to chance.

#1. GRs take complete Job Orders, every time. They don't assume they know what the hiring manager wants, even if they've made multiple placements with that client.

They make it their goal to understand exactly what the client requires to hire a candidate and differentiate those qualities from what they prefer to have in the desired candidate.

If a client has too many 'requirements', Great Recruiters start a discussion and create added value as they offer advice as a Consultant. GRs establish trust and credibility with insightful, superior questions. They step up as the expert when it comes to recruiting. They are after win-win results.

Their marketing plan is simple. They know how to get a search quickly. They graciously back away from searches they know they don't really want and focus on clients they like and who will 'work well' with the GR. They don't wear themselves out with unproductive activity. If a client doesn't want to pay their fee after the GR explains their value, they move on to a client who depends on that value.

A cooperative client is one who:

1. Takes the GRs phone calls every time because the GR does not waste their client's time.

2. Will re-arrange their schedule if needed to fit in an exceptional candidate.

3. Trusts and relies on the GRs advice and makes job offers quickly, if the situation calls for action. (GRs create a sense of urgency so the need for action is always there!)

When GRs search for candidates, they typically go directly to their contacts who know what's going on in the industry. If the GR is relatively new, they may use a resume to jump start their search.

My success mantra is: Since the best people are generally employed at what they do best and not looking for a job, I must go to them and present them with an exceptional opportunity.

Grs use, 'third party refferals'. Grs don't care if their candidate even has a resume. (Shocking, I know.)

While much of the recruiting world is enthralled with resumes and acts like they cannot make a move without one, GRs send great candidates out on interviews!

As an Expert Consultant, GRs frame the exact information their clients needs to know to hire an ideal candidate during the presentation call. (They also make sure relevant facts are Always True!) No resume is needed for two people to talk. If the 'magic' exists, a resume can be produced; and more often than not, it's not needed.

A candidate must qualify and must have sound motivation for accepting an offer from a new employer before they are considered a viable candidate.

In my own experience, I always call candidates who are doing the job in question already for a competitor. I don't bother with job boards. I usually find a great candidate within 13 - 20 phone calls. I schedule the in-depth, qualifying interview with myself, then repeat the process until I have two or three candidates.

A client who is willing to pay a substantial fee deserves a focused effort. GRs present a candidate within 72 hours of taking the Job Order. At the least they let their client know what is happening and provide a realistic time frame to expect their next employee to come in for a visit. (Some positions do take weeks or possibly months, but that is another topic.)

Grs never send out the unqualified, under-qualified, or a plain poor match. Nothing disappoints a client more than ignoring their needs. The art of Recruiting lies with the ability to firmly control each phase of the placement process. It is done with kindness, listening, and questions.

Grs aren't afraid to 'take away' an opportunity from an uncooperative candidate. They are direct. "There's stiff competition for this position, John. While you have an impressive background, I feel you may not be ready to make this move. I'll give you a call when an assignment develops that incorporates your background and maybe the timing will be right for you then." If the candidate starts to fight for the position, re-qualify, and discuss any hidden issues, not previously voiced.

If a client starts to drag their feet about making an offer, GRs bring up the subject and reserve the option of 'taking the candidate away' by sending that talented candidate to another, perhaps more appreciative, client. Grs let their client know what's happening and if the client wants a great candidate they need to get serious and make an offer.

The goal is to make placements. By being honest and fair to everyone involved with the process GRs keep the egos and feelings of those they relate to on an even keel. GRs get their fees because they keep sending great candidates on interviews for positions they are well qualifed to perform.

Grs mean business and they communicate that message with their authority, demeanor, enthusiasm, recruiter skills, and expertise. Grs have fun. Grs take things in stride, keep the tone light but focused, forgive and forget mistakes others (and themselves) may make in the process. And Grs use the excitement and high energy that surrounds the placement process to make more things happen.

Sending your client a very qualified, motivated, personable candidate within 72 hours of the Job Order does more for a GRs credibility than anything else. It also makes Great Recruiters very wealthy.

We train Great Recruiters. The first step: Get training in your profession.
About the Author
Kimberly Schenk has over 25 years experience in business. For 17 of those years she has been an Executive Recruiter and Trainer. She shares her production secrets with Recruiters in her eBook,
Top Recruiter Secrets
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