Question of the day: Why is it important for recruiters to create 'to do' lists?

From today's RBC Daily and preview of this morning's #RBChat:

Why is it important for recruiters to create 'to do' lists?

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I'm all about the list.  I'm so off the charts ADD that without my list I'd be hopping around like a squirrel on crack.

But seriously, the lists help me focus.  They make me go back and make sure things haven't fallen through the cracks.  I can think of at least three candidates I saved just because I had made them a to-do list item that day.  And when something crosses my mind while I'm working on something else, I just add it to the list so I can do it later.

A great book is "The Checklist Manifesto" by Atul Gawande.  You might not think that recruiting doesn't lend itself to a checklist, but it does.  Once I started using my checklist, my productivity really started to take off.   It's only when I think I can deviate from the list that bad things happen.  For example, one thing on my checklist is to check the email address of the candidate.  If it is an unprofessional address, then try to get the candidate to change it or don't submit the candidate. When I violated my rule, the candidate did prove to me why I have that rule to begin with.  He was so unprofessional in the interview.  The list is your friend.

Anyway, lists are awesome.  Time to get back to mine.  :)

It keeps us focused. Clearly, more gets done with a list. Without it I find the marketing/new business calls I want to make on behalf of a particular candidate especially get postponed way down the line. Listing the three most important things to do each day and getting those done first makes the most productive days for me. Make that list at the end of each day for the next. Willy-nilly days definitely cost placements. On those days we are more reactive than proactive and can find little was accomplished in a workday's time.

To ensure they are serving the customer, rather then themselves. (EGO=Edge God Out)

I need a list because I've learned that, contrary to what I might think, I am NOT perfect!!  I've let things fall through the cracks, get sidetracked, and spent way too much time organizating paperclips (sort of in line with OCD tendencies.....), so a list is absolutely my best friend!!

I would be lost without my to do list because I have a terrible memory!  I update my jobs list each morning and keep it next to me at all times, so I can always see exactly where each job is at.  My colleagues laugh at how structured it is - I even colour code it for tasks that must be done today, tasks that can wait until tomorrow, and tasks that I can't complete as they are dependent on external factors (eg, waiting for the hiring manager to make their decision, etc). 

I think to do lists are vital for recruiters - after all, who hasn't forgotten to make that important call to a client, or send through a shortlist by 5pm, at least once in their career?  The fact is, as Melissa and Linda both said previously, things fall through the cracks.  It's easy to set up your day with big tasks (interviews, shortlisting for two hours, three hours of business development), but when you have what feels like a million smaller tasks to do across a variety of jobs - call this candidate, check if that report is back, notify that hiring manager - you need a list to remind you and keep you on track.

I need a list because frankly, I don't DO anything without a deadline... if there's no deadline, does it really need to be done at all? I also love sticky notes. I've even got the Color Note app for my phone, and SmartSearch has "virtual sticky notes" for people like me that need the to-do list in my face ;-)

Dam! It was on my list to respond to this.

Recruiters are jugglers and can get so distracted by the need to be available to clients and candidates. The to do list will bring 'em back into focus.

I very much agree with you.I think we are mulitasker.We will be talking on the phone to a client/candidate simultaneously on chat with candidate/client + working on a requirement.So if we don't have a TO DO last.We will get lost.......We need to have nos in front of us.That will actually drive us.

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