1 year in to the new Recruiting Staffing role and I have a great deal to be pleased about. I also have some personal reflections about how I can move the proverbial client satisfaction mountain to even new greater heights. Many times there are things to think on, how to maneuver, and how to find your way. Recently, I had opportunity to view my latest hiring manager surveys, and it caused me to reflect a bit - what is it that I can do to create "Raving Fans", in the staffing realm? What is it that I may be lacking that could really make the future even better?
One thing I had to learn the hard way is that no two staffing fills are exactly alike, trying approaches that worked in the past may not necessarily work for the future. 1 year in in the new staffing role, I have much to think on - I have come a long way, am company bonus eligible, and overall pleased with having navigated some thick and thin moments while still trying to deliver solid outcomes. There are moments for a staffing professional to take a step back, to ponder the meaning and overall affect of one's impact. It is with great pride that you strive to really move the direction to the desired outcomes. I can't say it has always been easy, but it leads me to reflect, how can I get to the next level?
I reviewed some recent comments and had to ponder what it was that was done well, and what it is that can get better? Self improvement as a recruiter is necessary if not mandatory to success. While the vast majority of client managers were "very satisfied" the recent commentary and ratings made me sit back and ponder my 4.4 out of 5 average and then I looked over the ones that were below what I had anticipated. It really made me sit back and wonder, why are some managers so amazingly pleased and then there is that 1 out of 15 who rates so low? What was the disconnect?
It may be the overall ability to create "manager control" - yes like "candidate control" this is about setting expectations for feedback, expectations for when they will see resumes, and fighting back against the "purple squirrel" syndrome. What are those tips and steps that might overcome these moments? I sit back tonight while satisfied seeing opportunity for movement forward. No one role - no one perception can have utter absolute perfection. But you can come honestly close. Here are some steps learned this past year as I approach my 1 year mark with my company:
1. Creating a valid picture for the hiring manager of your bandwidth and controlling the expectations are as vital as manna to the soul in the wilderness.
2. Internal Candidates - handle with care - they have many avenues to burn you if you don't control this vital area, find ways to give the hiring manager the expectation that you will handle each internal candidate, provide the internal candidate with effective timeline for their feedback, and most of all mitigate and minimize the tendency of individuals to talk about whom is looking at what option - stress confidentiality, and ownership of the process - give the internal candidate the keys to their career success and coach them while also coaching managers to avoid pitfalls, hurt feelings, and to have the charisma and energy to approach the internal candidate with kind words of career advancement.
3. Internal Staff Referrels - handle with care - treat these with the utmost respect, but remember to hold quality to a high standard. Approach the person whom referred the candidate and share with them feedback for the future, so you help that person navigate the waters of future success and stress the importance of "fit" while helping the individual receive their referrel bonus with pride. These future sources of success should be elevated to the standard they should have. And may even help the "purple squirrel" syndrome.
4. Set recurring check-in meetings that work for the hiring manager to "vent", let them share their needs, pain points, and what is going well with interviews and what not, let them feel a measure of control which will in turn help you with manager control.
5. Be transparent, yes in other words keep the lines of communication valiantly open. Nothing creates more trust then frequent updates. Although some managers may resist, or feel like they need to do it "their way", remember you have the power to set the tone, take the reigns and magnify your efforts to maximum results when you hold your manager accountable, go to their VP if needed and solicit the partnership of trust with sr leaders, nothing makes recruiting more wonderful when you have the executive support behind your ship's momentum.
6. Be the talent ambassador for a great candidate experience, while we can't please every hiring manager or can get extremely close, we can be perfect in our approach to how we treat candidates. Candidates value feedback, no matter what the outcome, strive to give timely updates. Of course tread carefully with the internal candidate and provide real time feedback at the opportune time. It may be beneficial for the internal candidate experience to set a timeline for feedback sharing pertinent background information about what is occurring in the business, and the manager's timeline. Solicit the manager to give direct internal feedback especially if it was the hiring manager whom recommended the internal candidate.
7. The most powerful focal points for outcomes are the valiant efforts of your own sourcing pipeline - nothing can trascend your own sourcing effort. Nothing directs and moves a search better than a recruiter proactively pipelining. The beauty of our core focal points are when we as recruiters take the bull by the proverbial horns and drive the search to our desired outcome. Nothing reduces time to fill, increases satisfaction, or makes a viable outcome then when the recruiter states for the record how big the pool is from their own sourcing and magic building perspective.
8. Get the manager to focus in on a timeline and hold them accountable to it. IF you are having trouble getting feedback, moving the ball or getting candidate flow be honest with the hiring manager that you may have to place their req on hold if they are slow on feedback, overly selective, or overly picky on the side of the tech skills. If the hiring manager needs motivation, only remind them of what not having this role could mean by reminding them of the justification of what they opened this role for. Anyone who wastes your time, goes to the bottom of the urgency chart, and it may require more intense layers of follow-up to get the job done.
9. No matter what steps you take realize that as a recruiter you must remind your partner hiring managers how critical it is that they provide you the info to do your job, many times you may have to share the external factors that may inhibit the talent finding machine: economic, candidate options, budget, OR barriers to success.
10. Ethics - nothing matters more than honesty - it is the most important singular element for success in staffing, being honest with the hiring entity, the support staff, etc. Always this will be paramount.
Now backtrack 10 years, it was July 19th - 2003, I had met an incredible woman who would become my wife, and whom has given me amazing moments. Starting a new job is like finding your way in those first 10 years of marriage, the 1 year anniversary at a new role is like finding your growth areas, and proceeding to conquer with grit and purpose.
10 years ago I never realized I would now have 3 children, a vital recruiting job, and a future that looks as bright as it does. With challenges in my own marriage, I see hope and opportunity to navigate better my life. With full purpose focusing in on one's powerful life choices are as vital to success as anything, laying a new foundation for success, refusing to be overcome by life circumstance, and being proactive to make great outcomes. These are lessons vital to career trajectory more than anything.
I am so blessed and love my wife Rebecca dearly, it causes me a staffing professional to think - what will it take after almost 95 hires to go the distance to the next 1000 hires?
It is incredible to think the amount of lives touched on any given day in staffing, and likewise vital to express core commitment in all that is undertaken.
So now at almost a year on the new job and 10 years in the homefront "job", I have been greatly blessed, but only wish to update and secure greater "survey" scores. With my candidate experience at 4.9 and manager surveys at 4.4 I am for the most part pleased with my current job and outcomes. But I am very much aware of the vital future focus that is needed to navigate a new recruiting and family world.
Circumnavigating life's challenges is always a wonderful blessing. I suppose challenging and revitalizing the focal point of success is a constant renewal of sorts. Vital to our staffing success is continuous Kaizen approaches. Let life push you forward and your career Karma begins to take flight. How blessed and how important is your focus on your own development and growth. Nothing can match recruiting matches and satisfied managers, sometimes though it may require some sacrifice of one's ego, but also a firm commitment of one's own faith in oneself to go the distance.
Thank goodness for staffing, one of the most challenging yet rewarding business functions. I am so grateful to be where I am, and to have what I have. I suppose being grateful is as vital to the staffing parrallel as any.
Thank Goodness - staffing on the hunt - and never looking back - now that is true staffing grit.
I'm thankful to be where I am. Only career revitalization can make the difference.
Disclaimer - This post is of my own creation - it does not reflect the views or opinions of ADP and it's subsidiaries, I alone am responsible for this post.