With the skills shortage that is projected to last for a number of years moving forward, I believe employers will need skilled recruiting resources more than ever before. Independent recruiters will need to work cooperatively to quickly source the best candidates for their clients, which means you’ll need to invest time building a strong recruiter network.
There is a growing trend (at least in our membership) of smaller offices and more single-person recruiting firms, many working from home, which removes the traditional “built-in” recruiter network of co-workers. Working alone or in a very small office requires you to reach out to external recruiting resources.
Here are five ways to build your recruiter network:
- Look for online recruiter communities in LinkedIn or other social media sites. Many recruiters are already active LinkedIn users. You can look for recruiting groups based on location or specialty, or start your own group that serves your specific needs.
- Organize an informal Meet-Up or Tweet-Up to meet recruiters in your community. LinkedIn and Twitter both offer mechanisms for creating and publicizing face-to-face events. It can be as simple as getting together for an informal breakfast meeting at the local coffee shop.
- Get active in your local / state / provincial / national recruiting association. Most associations are in constant need of volunteer support, and this can be a great way to meet other recruiters as well as taking advantage of professional development and educational opportunities.
- Attend face-to-face conferences and educational opportunities. Virtual “connections” can be handy, but there still is no real substitute for face-to-face networking. There are myriad opportunities for these kinds of events, which are sure ways to build lasting relationships for your recruiter network.
- Consider joining a formal recruiting network or other recruiting organization. These recruiting resources are often purpose-built for independent recruiters who share a common niche or geographic market. Many can provide infrastructure, business support and other recruiter resources which can create more time for you to spend on your core activities.
There are many other ways to build your recruiter network. It’s not important HOW you do it; what matters is that you have a trusted pool of reliable recruitment partners who can help you serve your clients quickly and effectively.