Recruiting 101: Three Perspectives in Talent Acquisition

During a recent phone screen with a prospective candidate, we were discussing potential career paths when this individual stated how much she would love to have my job. She went on to state how rewarding and easy the job must be. Further, she stated that the recruiting process seems no more complicated than a client needing a new employee, a candidate needing a new job and a recruiter needing to bring the two parties together and voila done deal, no muss no fuss. After we hung up, I laughed and thought to myself I guess that is one perspective. As the day wore on and I thought back to that conversation I began to consider the importance of the various perspectives of those individual stakeholders in the recruiting process; the client, the candidate and the recruiter. As I thought about the many things that make my job as a recruiter both effortless and maddening, I began to clarify, in my own mind, what these perspectives should be in a perfect world.

The Client

Before the recruiting process even begins, the ideal client has spent a sufficient amount of time doing their due diligence about why to use a recruiter. As a result, they recognize the advantages of utilizing the various platforms and extensive networks recruiters have worked hard to cultivate. In the current business climate where nearly 73% of employers report having a difficult time finding skilled candidates, this is a remedy that cannot be overlooked. The ideal client also understands that working with a recruiter is about relationship building. The more familiar the client and recruiter become with each other, the easier it will be for both to facilitate a smoother overall transaction and ultimately a more seamless transition for the new hire into the client’s workplace. Additionally, the informed client realizes that a recruiter can ease their burden in matters of salary assignment for different job classifications and of course in the everchanging area of EEOC regulations. In short, the ideal client can hire a recruiter and still remain personally invested in the process by taking a proactive approach in providing credible job descriptions, reducing the response time in candidate evaluations, and maintaining open lines of communication with their recruiter.

The Candidate

While it is up to the recruiter to provide the candidate with a positive recruiting experience, the candidate can enhance their own experience by taking a few simple steps in the process. The candidate would be wise to have an updated resume at their disposal. Often, the potential candidate is eliminated from further consideration because they do not have a resume readily available and don’t want to be bothered to update it in time for a phone screen. Another step that I would heartily recommend, especially for passive candidates, is to always accept the invitation for a phone screen with the recruiter that has reached out. Much the same as it is between the client and recruiter, the candidate and recruiter are building a relationship for either current or future reference. Another consideration that might not seem worth mentioning, but at times challenges candidates, is the matter of interview attire. Recently I had a client report that a candidate showed up for an interview dressed in a Yoga outfit. I always recommend to my clients to dress professionally for their interview; what they actually choose to wear could play a role in their recruitment outcome. So, in a perfect world, the candidate understands the role he/she must play in their own recruiting process in order to make it a successful endeavor.

The Recruiter

Although accomplished recruiters understand they are employed by the client, they also realize the need to play an intermediary role between both the client and the candidate. The recruiter never closes the lines of communication with either client or candidate. Throughout the process they are building relationships with both parties. They work to assist clients with issues pertaining to EEOC, market and industry knowledge as it relates to salary structure and negotiation, interview scheduling and progress checks both before and after the hire, etc. Similarly, the recruiter works with candidates on an array of tasks including, resumes, cover letters, interview readiness, salary negotiation, first day follow-up, etc. The consummate recruiter recognizes the need to wear many different hats in order to positively impact the recruiting experience for both the client and the candidate understanding, of course, that the deal can only come full circle as long as the other stakeholders fulfill their roles in the process, as well.

The Final Product

The client, the candidate and the recruiter all play crucial roles in talent acquisition and work to make the process beneficial for all. However, to an outsider looking into the world of talent acquisition, it can seem relatively easy, but behind the scenes, that is not the case. All three parties work together to create a cohesive collaboration that, in an ideal world, would result in long-term employment and a great relationship between the individuals.

Pam Martin serves as Lever1’s director of recruitment services. Her strengths include relationship building among clients and candidates alike in order to optimize the recruiting match. She is active in a variety of key networking organizations including the Association for Corporate Group of Kansas City, Financial Executives Networking Group (FENG), and the Corporate Growth Group.