Staffing and Recruiting is not a Sales Job!

So with all the talk about staffing and recruiting and sales or not, I thought I would repost my original post on the subject. With a little twist.

I recently read an article were the writer was saying that recruiting/staffing are sales jobs. I absolutely disagree. There is a difference between having a sales component and being a sales job. In order for a job to be classified as sales, sales must make up at least 50% of the job. So with that in mind lets look at the main comments of a staffing professional.  For the purposes of this let’s look at the “Staffing Lifecycle (SLC). Below is the simplified SLC, I will put a red S next to the parts that have a sales component, then we will tally it up.

1. Your HR team (sometimes), say your development manager (or any HM), and you have gotten together and have determined there is a need for a new hire.

2. You all determine the level, salary, group, relo, visa, diversity, internal, Hiring Manager (HM), responsibilities, etc. You and the HM, write a Job Description (JD).

3. You and your HM discuss sourcing strategies, you make a Standard Level agreement (SLA), and introduce him to whatever process, method, or model your company uses for staffing.

4. You post the job, and begin sourcing. You may even source with your HM.

5. A: you screen sourced candidates. B: you share sourced candidates with HM for review and to decide who should be screened. (here you might get legal, relo etc. involved)

6. You contact and screen the candidates. S-needed to sell candidates on job

7. Those that pass the screen go to the HM for review. S-needed to sell HM on Candidate

8. A: Those that the HM likes are submitted for face-to-face interviews. B: Those the HM likes get tech screens set up. (here you might get legal, relo etc. involved)

9. Those that pass tech screen are submitted for face-to-face interviews.

10. Face-to-face interviews happen and hire or no hire decision is made, and offer/s created.

11. A: Candidates not to be hired are closed out and told thank you. B: (sometimes references are checked here) candidates selected for offers, are notified and offers are made. (Here you might get legal, relo etc. involved) S-To sell the offer

12. A: offer accepted, are noted in ATS, other groups needed to completed hire are notified, such as legal for visas, relo for relocation, etc. If not already done references are checked here and any background checks are initiated) and HM notified. B: offer declined, and annotated in ATS. 

So out of 12 steps in our simplified model only 3 have true sales components. That’s 25% so I reiterate Staffing/Recruiting is not a sales job, it has sales components like most jobs do.

Now as a side note there is one area with Sales and Staffing have a lot in common that being as technology grows so will ways to use technology to enhance what we can do, and make it easier and more efficient. However that still does not make staffing or recruiting a sales job as the same thing, as it relates to technology, can be said of just about every other job in the world. SO in the end staffing and recruiting are not sales jobs, they are just jobs that have a sales component, like just about every other job out there.

Views: 920

Comment by Keith D. Halperin on April 9, 2014 at 3:55pm

Thanks, Dean. There may be 3PRs who do have a sales job as opposed to a job w. sales components. (I don't.)

At any rate, this topic makes me wax nostalgic:

"Tastes great!"

"Less filling!"


Comment by Dean Da Costa on April 10, 2014 at 3:57am

Keith, LOL yeah I remember those lines, Miller I believe. I think people sometime do not understand the difference between component and primary function, and that is were the disconnect is with regards to Staffing and sales.

Comment by Keith D. Halperin on April 10, 2014 at 11:36am

Thanks, Dean. " not understand the difference between component and primary function..."

Difference between 'between component and primary function'?

Dean, you're talking to RECRUITERS here. Some days I'm lucky if I can distinguish between my left hand and my right!


Keith "Gotta Clean Up my Drool" Halperin

Comment by Dean Da Costa on April 10, 2014 at 1:27pm

So a component means it is part of a job, and not even the main part. For example it will typically make up 40 or less % of the job function. A primary function means it is over 50% of your job. It all comes down to what percentage of your job does the function in question make up. 40% or less it is a component, 41-50 it is a major part, 51+ it is the primary function and as such can easily be claimed as being the job itself. So if Sales was 51+% of the job then you could say that job is a sales job. However if it is less than 50% then sales is only a component of the job, and if that component is 41-50% then it is a major part, if it is 40-% then it is a component. In staffing case sales is a component only, as it is with almost any job that is not pure sales.

Comment by Keith D. Halperin on April 10, 2014 at 1:57pm

Thanks, Dean. Much appreciated.


Comment by Dean Da Costa on April 15, 2014 at 8:14pm

No problem Keith, it is an important distinction, without it every job out there could be sales.


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