No, I Don’t Get People Jobs – I’m a Recruiter.

People are constantly asking me to “get them a job”.  Just yesterday I got a text from someone who heard I was recruiting for openings in Chicago.  It literally read “Sh!t! Get me a job!” (stay classy, ex-husband).


But wait, you say.  You’re a recruiter.  Your whole professional existence revolves around getting people jobs… right?


Not exactly.  A very smart boss once put it to me this way.  “I know you care a lot about getting people jobs.  That’s admirable.  But the reality is you’re the recruiter.  You facilitate the introduction.  The hiring manager gives someone a job”.


Wait… really?


Yes.  So if I’m not getting people jobs… just what exactly DO I do all day?


Read the hiring manager’s mind.  We all know that job descriptions have little, if anything, to do with what the job actually entails.  I have to get inside the head a bit of the person who actually does the job giving – what problem are they trying to solve?  What skills and abilities does a candidate need to possess to adequately solve that problem?


Find people.  We call that sourcing.  Some recruiters still do the old post and pray, some tweet, some inmail, some search resume databases, some even actually pick up the phone. 


Probe and influence.  Ok, I’ve got the people.  Now I have to read their minds.  What would make them consider an opportunity with my company?   Where’s their salary threshold? Do they have what it takes to be successful in this circus? At the same time, I have to influence my hiring managers to give my (qualified) people an interview.


Close, close, close.  Move the hiring manager towards an offer.  Close them high.  Move the candidate towards offer acceptance and resignation of their current job.  Close them low.  Meet in the middle and make everyone happy.  Then make sure the candidate not only shows up on day 1 but that his new boss has arranged for a desk for him to sit at.


At the end of the day, I don’t “get” anyone a job.  I set the stage for job getting.  I bring the players together, ideally for the end result of an accepted job offer.  Candidate, you still have to interview for it and Hiring Manager, you still have to make it worthwhile.  But if you’re expecting your recruiter to wrap up a job like a birthday gift and hand it to you, forget about it.

Views: 20470

Comment by Tami Brittain on October 5, 2011 at 10:51am
@John... or a caseworker at the local unemployment office. :/
Comment by Betsy Park on October 5, 2011 at 11:08am
Love it!! So often I have wanted to tell people "I am not a Social Service nor are you entitled to anything", or "I'm sorry, did you want your money back?" to a candidate... This has never happened, but only in my dreams....
Comment by Julie Calli on October 5, 2011 at 11:14am

Great post! I think anyone in this industry can relate. I shared this on my Facebook as well. Perhaps a few of my friends will read it and take the hint to not bring their resume to my kids birthday party as if I am going to give them a job as a party favor.

Comment by Darryl Dioso on October 5, 2011 at 11:43am
Great post. Funny thing is that the candidates that typically don't understand and ask (tell?) you to get them a job are the ones that are almost un-placeable.
Comment by Dana Leavy on October 5, 2011 at 12:22pm
Amy this is awesome - totally on par with what I've experienced.  "Get me a job!", but I like how you clarify the difference between a recruiter's job, and the hiring manager's.  And of course, the job seeker themselves has to take accountability for getting themselves a job by doing everything they can to best position themselves!  Cheers!
Comment by Amy Ala Miller on October 5, 2011 at 12:26pm
Thanks everybody for the awesome comments!  Glad it's not just me. :)  I have both A. received resumes at birthday parties (seriously???) and B. been a counselor at my state unemployment office... STILL not my job to "get you a job".  My job was to make you as employable as possible and send you out into the big bad world where companies "discriminate" against the unemployed.  I'm sure there's a future blog in that somewhere...  :)
Comment by Bill Schultz on October 5, 2011 at 12:54pm
I feel the same way.  The funny thing is I do tell people that I probably can't find them a job, but I'd be happy to spend 15 minutes (always give a time limit) to review their resume and give them some job search pointers.  Some do take me up in it but a lot of them never call.  Like someone said, they are looking for the plug and play job.
Comment by PJ Cunningham on October 5, 2011 at 1:02pm
Thanks for the entertainment this morning - yes I agree with the Read Hiring Managers Mind  - and yes a former boyfriend texted me for help to find a new job.
Comment by Lynne A. Friedlander on October 5, 2011 at 1:24pm

You nailed it! It can be frustrating to "explain" what we do on a daily basis.....I get calls ALL day long with people saying, "you get people jobs, right?"

Comment by Pamela Witzig on October 5, 2011 at 6:10pm
That has always annoyed me too. It is so common to hear that as soon as I'm introduced. And active candidates often have that mindset. What I do is make every effort to turn up the person my client wants to hire. They are paying me. Now if the candidate wants to cut a five figure check, I'll see what I can do.


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