When you take recruitment and look at it through a microscope, what you actually find is a very noble and altruistic profession, whereby a successful placement for you means somebody in a job they love and a person earning a living.
They may have been out of work for a while, struggling financially, or looking for a break to get them into an industry they have a real passion for.
And you are the person that made that happen. So, this begs the question: when a recruiter makes a call to a prospect [prospective client], why are they faced with such hostility and disdain? Why is the phrase “Are you a recruiter?” spewed so venomously back at them like a sip of spoiled milk?
Recruiters are often made to feel like criminals at the very mention of their profession. Something just doesn’t add up.
When I call a prospect, it means hours of work have selected them as the right company for my candidate, who has gone through a series of in-depth assessments and a CV analysis. The lucky company should be jumping for joy that I’ve saved them days of work searching for the perfect person to fill their vacancy.
What I face instead is the result of a legacy left by recruiters who don’t value candidates the same way I and many others value them, but recruiters who deal with those looking for work like they are dispensable commodities for their own gain.
No wonder we have the dreaded gatekeepers with their bad attitudes and their PSLs [preferred supplier lists]. They’re only trying to protect their company’s time and money from being wasted. Endless calls offering barely suitable candidates for a 20% fee are bound to take their toll eventually.
So how do we change this? It all starts with examining the process. What is employment? Since it’s a place where you spend the majority of your waking life, it may as well be suited to your individual strengths and interests.
Just as the client has paper qualifications that they require from candidates, the candidate also requires a certain level of life satisfaction. Where we decide to place candidates could have the power to drastically alter their lives and levels of happiness, especially if they stay in that role for a while.
It’s proven that when people are happier at work, they perform better. Better performing employees mean higher profit margins, and in turn, repeat business for the recruiter.
It’s a positive cycle, and one that I think will transform our collective reputation for the better. Meeting candidates in person, asking probing questions and exploring their life ambitions are a few techniques we can all use to deliver impeccable pairings between companies and candidates.
The truth is, reversing negative associations of the industry will have positive effects on all of us, paving the road to a better future for everyone involved.