arrived here with a strong background in recruiting and she knows her stuff. Her run-ins with rogue recruiters may become legendary and we will eat it up - it's the stuff a great blog is made of.
IQ Interactive is a digital marketing agency with their hands dipped deeply in the online waters. She joined the company in time to participate in exponential growth - business was coming in hand over fist and her background was the perfect fit. The company has tripled in size and Ms. Kellams has used her search experience to keep it all in-house, having not outsourced any of the recruitment function.
"Being on the other side now, I see what the challenges really are," Ragan shares what she finds most interesting about her transition from third-party recruiter to in-house, "I have moved to the dark side," with a sneer. "Some TPRs curse HR." True, I've done it and so has Ragan, she readily admits, "As a TPR, you only see what your clients allow you to see. Needs really do change that quickly." Her advertising background has helped her play the right cards, "Advertising and marketing are so client-driven, so things can change on a dime. Example: we are going crazy trying to find the perfect fit - and the client casually says, 'Oh we don't need that anymore.' "
Her crisis of conscience, as she calls it, drove her to move away from commission-based recruiting, "It was all very cut-throat, get-the-deal-done kind of thing. It was not really my personality. And I love recruiting..., it is like a scavenger hunt. something that I am very passionate about. And now, hiring is the thing I love the most about my job." What are some "should not's" for a Third Party Recruiter? "There is a very fine line between being assertive and being aggressive. Once you (TPR) cross that line, it is pretty much over. There are so many recruiters out there vying for the work. My advice: be very careful of how you speak to a potential client. It turns me off if someone tries to tell me how to recruit - make sure you know who you are talking to. And I know what it is like to have to eat your words..."
As you can imagine, Ragan is strongly opinionated. While at Talent Zoo, her blog in tow, she earned the moniker, Revolutionary Recruiting Chick. "I was kind of brash, I still am. And I would call people out in my blog. I was very annoying but I was successful for my clients." She refers to doing your recruiter due diligence as Professional Stalking. "I was literally taught to stalk clients, everything short of sitting outside their offices waiting. But now, from this side, I see that the client probably had a reason for not returning calls or emails." Establishing those parameters prior to the commencement of a search is imperative, does the client want an email or prefer a call? Would they like a voicemail or not? "We are all so connected now. You just need to know your client's preferences."
Ragan believes in a future that will defy the old school tactics of recruiting. Her recruiting tech includes blogs, facebook, and twitter. "My philosophy is that proper talent acquisition is not just about getting hires on the bus." The engagement and connection has to be real. "Hard copy resumes will be gone five years from now, a thing of the past. I would much rather read their blogs or see what conferences they have attended. Resumes are such fluff, anyway. I want to know more, I want to dig deeper. And the line between life and work is beginning to blur. An intersection of where we are socially."
Ragan's combined experience of being both a TPR and in-house have brought her a greater appreciation of this job we all know and love. "We are all in this together. Getting the right people is really important. This is such a great industry with great growth..." It is just around the corner...
"And time for reflection with colleagues is for me a lifesaver; it is not just a nice thing to do if you have the time. It is the only way you can survive." ~Margaret J. Wheatley