I was a "Head-hunter" (on contingency basis) for over 11yrs and have been on the "other side of the desk" for over 5yrs. Having worked on both sides, I can understand the frustrations both agency recruiters and corporate recruiters feel when dealing with each other.
Ironically, some of the frustrations are similiar such as response time, communication, content of requested information, etc. We both have the same complaints in many cases, the difference is from which side it comes and who has it first. Either way, it can develop into a real quagmire of frustrating issues that eventually get resolved either by Agency pouching from their client (because they decided that it was more valuable taking out of them than working with them), or Corporate Recruiters black-listing the agency (usually done discretely by consistantly telling them that they don't have any job orders to give them until they fade away...and probably end up pouching from them anyway).
Just as a gentle reminder, Corporate Recruiters have more than just sourcing, qualifying and placing the candidate. We also have to deal with Compliance issues (internal/external), Corporate Initiatives (e.g. Diversity), Constant Meetings with Stakeholders, Training, Posting jobs and documentation on ATS', "special projects"--lovely term for "more work, more hours, zero reward", etc. , etc, ETC!
Because we (Corporate Recruiters) are over-worked beyond belief (especially with downsizing recruitment depts to bare bone), this creates a need for what I call, "Recruitment PARTNERS", not "Vendors".
So as my Post Title suggestions, I'd like to let all the Agency Recruiters know a particular area that can "set-you-apart" from "Head-hunters".
The primary value is information. Since our days are spent (including but not limited to) handling 100+emails, managing the recruitment process, creating and explaining endless spreadsheets for each of our 40+Hiring Managers, the last thing we want to have to do is spend hours qualifying ONE candidate for ONE position (of +40 positions we have to fill YESTERDAY)...especially when the candidate comes from an Agency!
"Head-hunters" to me is defined as a recruiter that sends a SANITIZED CV with little to no extra information other than the typical 4-5 bullets such as availability to interview, salary expectations, etc. and doesn’t do any more work except when requested (piece-mealed!).
What a “Recruitment Partner” will do is send their INTERVIEW NOTES TO THE CORPORATE RECRUITER! When you’ve invested the time to FULLY INTERVIEW YOUR (I REPEAT, YOUR) candidate, AND SENDS THOSE INTERVIEW NOTES to the Corporate Recruiter, it saves us:
2) Gives us a wealth of information to process in little to no time, and
3) We can then make an informed decision (collectively with the Hiring Manager or with the Recruitment Partner themselves) as to which direction we want to go in with THEIR candidate.
Notice I mention that the candidate is the Recruitment Partner’s candidate? Because the Candidate is YOUR ASSET, not the Corporate Recruiters. And some of you have experienced “Credit-Junkie” Corporate Recruiters but regardless if they want to take an ego trip and claim the candidate as their own, at the end of the day, it shouldn’t matter to you because it all comes out in the open. Did you forget that the candidate knows who placed them?? So don’t get caught-up in that mess. It’s a waste of time. Your stock will go up in the eyes of the Hiring Manager/Stakeholders no matter how political the Corporate Recruiter gets.
You see, the value of information is priceless to a Corporate Recruiter. The more you can do for us, the less we have to do, and the less we have to do, the more valuable you become, and the more valuable you become, the more we want to use you. So just because you work on a contingency basis, or you fear loss, the worst you can do is give limited information. You limit your ability to make a placement and build your relationship when you work with limitations. Don't worry about the limitations the Corporate Recruiter places on you (e.g. gate-keeper to Hiring Manager), go with blind faith and SET EXPECTATIONS UP FRONT with them! AND REMIND THEM WHEN THEY DON'T MEET YOUR EXPECATION...gently (as you are probably aware that Corporate Recruiters can sometimes have "attitudes" with "HEAD-HUNTERS"). Its up to your savy ways to find a way to connect with your client.
I suggest that the main reason why Recruiters don’t divulge Candidates' contact information up front, and hold information back is due to trust. My suggestion to you is:
IF YOU DON’T TRUST YOUR CLIENT ENOUGH TO DIVULGE ALL THE INFORMATION UP FRONT, THEN YOU HAVE A TRUST ISSUE. AND IF YOU HAVE A TRUST ISSUE, WHY DO YOU EVEN WANT TO ENGAGE IN A BUSINESS RELATIONSHIP WITH THEM? THE SAME PHILOSOPHY APPLIES IN PERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS APPLIES IN BUSINESS RELATIONSHIPS. ESTABLISH TRUST FIRST, BUILD ON IT WITH SOME AMOUNT OF BLIND FAITH, AND GO FROM THERE. I can certainly assure you that if a Corporate Recruiter doesn’t trust an Agency Recruiter, believe me, you are of no value to them nor yourself. And at the cost of contingency, what dice do you want to roll?
I ALWAYS initiate contact with a hiring manager first, and the higher level the better when making an initial cold call, with end result being either working directly with hiring manager or being referred to HR.
I get the biggest kick out of recruiters. We scream to the heavens about "getting to the hiring manager", go around the internal recruiter, throw fits about putting our candidates in the ATS and generally want to put our template over the way our clients want to do business.
The only time i hear recruiters scream louder is when we identify a candidate, interview them, give them the company name, submit them AND THEN, they go around us and call the internal recruiter or the hiring manager themselves.. Oh my God, we have lost control of the candidate. We pick up the phone , call them and tell them in no uncertain terms that they have just done a big no no, don't do that you will knock yourself out of consideration if you go around our process, bug the internal recruiter or horror upon horrors you called the hiring manager or tried to connect with him/her on linkedin. WHAT ARE you thinking about. That's our job. Don't do that! Then we fall all over ourselves apologizing to the internal or the hiring manager for the big faux pas our candidate just committed.
Then we do the same thing ourselves and draw ourselves up in righteous wrath, bitch about the process , denigrate the internal recruiter then scream like a stuck duck when we hear the same speech from the internal recruiter we just gave the candidate who went around us. Internal recruiter is ow apologizing to their hiring managers about the recruiter who just went around them causing a call to HR to tell that recruiter not to call them.
Each client is different. In some cases internals are fine with a recruiter being recommended by one of their hiring managers who has been contacted. Some hiring managers think their internal recruiters are goofy and reach out to recruiters direct. Some clients have a structured process that works for them and they want it that way. We talk about researching companies blah, blah and blah. How about researching the process they use, like and expect of us then play by what works for the client.
Where in any sales training did somebody say, " The way to become a valued source is to piss off everybody except the top guy in the company, ignore what they want and how they want it and above all let them all know that you know how to do their job better than they do."
Trust me when i tell you there are hiring managers who would rather take gas than talk to a recruiter or the hundreds of candidates who are being coached to call the hiring manager of a company to try and get an interview. That is why they have HR and internal recruiters. If their process is a mess how about making an attempt to help fix it if we are so damn smart. If we can't move on. Nothing, in my opinion is gained by identifying ourselves as one of those asinine, ego maniac, recruiters who demand respect and attention when they refuse to give the same.
Just to quantify my previous comments on this subject I have just had an email from a candidate who has been contacted directly by my client a major set top box manufacturer in the UK 3 weeks after me sending their resume. I have not had any feedback from this internal recruiter so far.
It is a good job I have good candidates who respect what I do for them.
Now where are those 5 pages of the NDA/Terms of business that they made me sign to protect themselves? i think I will be reading them this morning to check my position.
I repeat CORPORATE recruiters would steal from their own grandma...