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Beyond Recruiter Excellence – Part 1: Professional Add-ons

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The definition of good recruiting is to be able to successfully fill requisitions or job orders in a cost effective and timely manner. This measure of excellence is really not based on the years of experience of the recruiter, although that sometimes helps, but rather some intelligence-based gene that makes it effortless. The recruiters who wake up in the morning and are in top notch recruiting mode before that first cup of coffee will hit their desk in stride and have the inertia to keep going in spite of obstacles. Experience gives them the added ability to leap obstacles without thinking. So what more can you ask? Perhaps a lot.

Just getting-by with simple accomplishment of goals defines average. Exceeding goals is excellence. To go beyond excellence requires that an individual not only possesses the skills to perform single-channel tasks well, but also has the knowledge to make a meaningful contribution to others which carries them outside of the profession. We already know the complexities involved in sourcing and recruiting, so what makes a recruiter extraordinary? What knowledge makes a recruiter an open source of information to non-recruiters while at the same time creating a well rounded recruiter? Here are some of the defining moments in expanded professionalism.

Compensation and Benefits – Going beyond the scripted presentation to candidates for employment, the extraordinary recruiter actually understands the details of comp and benefits. This is not to say that the recruiter must possess the knowledge necessary to benchmark a job or conduct a salary survey, but she has to understand that these things exist and why. Simple acceptance of the nature and basic theory of compensation is sufficient to be excellent, but understanding well enough to prevent problems before they happen goes far beyond excellence. Inadvertently creating a salary compression issue can plague the company for years and adversely impact the new employee’s career progression. Leaving this problem for others to solve shows either a lack of participation as a corporate citizen or the lack of the ability to go beyond excellence.

Workforce Planning – Digging through job specs with regard to how the job fits into the organization and how it impacts others in the company goes beyond excellence. This falls squarely into the area of “This ain’t my job,” but this knowledge provides greater insight into making midcourse corrections in a recruiting campaign that has stalled. Knowing what to tweak and how can immediately solve problems that would be borderline insurmountable if subjected to the bureaucracy of committeeism and administrivia. Even if solutions are beyond the control and range of the recruiter’s influence, advising managers and clients on the best alternative solutions can expedite results.

Employee/Labor Relations – Determining the best skill match and best fit for the organization only represents doing an excellent job. The recruiter knows the candidate for employment better than almost anyone else in the organization, so any shadows of doubt or hints of future employee relations problems can be nipped in the bud. Preventive problem solving begins with building an honest relationship based on mutual goals followed by providing the best candidate experience possible. Now comes the hard part: Transition from candidate to employee is not without its pitfalls. Most companies compartmentalize the onboarding process so that it would be easy for the recruiter to simply toss the newbie over the transom for someone else to handle. Actually continuing the dialog beyond Day One is going the extra mile toward the goal of going beyond excellence. Excellence+ requires eye contact and congratulatory handshakes post-hire.

Organizational Development and Training – The recruiter does not have to be the expert on how to build the organization or train its teams, but every recruiter is by definition a trainer. The excellent recruiter does not have to bother with these non-recruiting concepts in order to do the job, but the recruiter who coaches a candidate on the location of political minefields and career obstacles gives them a better chance to succeed…and that’s training. Whipping an interview panel into shape by coordinating what will be asked and how is not in a recruiter’s job description, but it is also training and who is better qualified to give ad hoc instruction on such matters. This provides a level of service that enhances the experience of the candidate in the process as well as making the organization more efficient.

Just as software add-ons often provide additional functional aspects not designed into the original product, professional add-ons to the recruiter’s expertise can provide a higher functioning recruiter. Meeting objectives is a minimal requirement. Exceeding objectives reaches the level of excellence. Going beyond is a personal choice to be more than simply excellent.

Beyond Recruiting Excellence

 

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