It may seem self-serving to write an article about why a recruiting firm should be part of your staffing strategy. However, with the myriad of online career communities, I thought it would be prudent to raise a few issues about what separates professional recruiters from LinkedIn, for example.
LinkedIn is a powerful tool and one that is used by many savvy recruiters. In fact, staffing firms are a large component of LinkedIn's revenue stream. It is job boards that have leveled the playing field, in the sense that anyone now has access to an individual’s resume. But it stops there.
Recruiting People is Not the Same as Buying a Book
I like shopping online! There is actually a growing body of research that shows how shopping activates key areas of the brain that make us feel better. I like shopping online because I can do it at my leisure, compare products, check prices and of course there are no lines!
People don’t work that way. People behave much differently. They have opinions, personalities, demands and emotions. They also have options. If you are recruiting for a position with in-demand skills, these candidates are "shopping" you as much as you are "shopping" them. Unlike the book you buy online, they want to be wooed before committing to your shopping cart.
Candidates may look good on paper, but it is only with human interaction and professional judgment that turns a resume into a prospect and then into a valued employee. It is specifically these intangibles in the hiring process that make recruiters so invaluable.
Video Did Kill the Radio Star
It is true that many online services have forced some businesses under. I can only imagine that there was a moment in time when someone at Blockbuster raised their hand at a meeting and said, "hey, there is this new online video company called Netflix. You can do everything online." They probably got laughed out of the room. Why, because Blockbuster was entrenched in a culture that believed that people wanted to stop at the video store, hope that the movie they wanted was in and then drive back to the store to return it before they were charged a late fee. Today, ironically Blockbuster is gone and Netflix is flourishing.
But, Amazon certainly didn’t put retail stores out of business and online grocery shopping has still not caught on. Why, because some experiences require interaction and judgments and skills.
Smart companies recognize and utilize the recruiting tools available to them in the digital space. Yet, they are smart enough to realize that the cost of making a bad hire is enormous, much higher than the recruiting fees, and that professional recruiters bring a specific and necessary skill set to the process.
What’s In It For You?
Good recruiters help you understand and articulate the exact skill sets, both tangible and intangible, that you need. They know the competitive landscape and how difficult or easy it will be to fill the position.
A good recruiter can help you understand that while money isn’t always the deciding factor, it plays a significant role. They will help you understand what level talent you can expect to hire for the budget you have available. That prevents you from chasing down blind alleyways for great candidates you cannot afford.
Also and most importantly, not only does a recruiter manage the interview process and screen a candidate before they are presented, they also give you an inside glimpse into each person. Then, they help you position your organization in the best light to attract the best talent.
I know the goal of our recruiters here at Staffing Plus is to end each placement where both parties are happy and excited to be working together. We know that means a company will work with us again and that the person who was placed may be open to offering referrals. It’s just good business sense.
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