Our guest blogger is Pam Robison of J. Gifford Inc. in Tulsa, Oklahoma. J. Gifford Inc. is a small, quality conscious firm providing highly individualized recruiting services to clients on a local, regional, national and international basis. The firm’s recruiting activities are focused on professional, technical and managerial placement, as well as contractor and international staffing for clients. Pam is a member of the NPAworldwide Board of Directors.
I’ve been in the recruiting industry for nearly 20 years now. I actually “stumbled” into this career after deciding to leave a large US-based manufacturer during a downtime in the industry. For 2 of my 17 years there, I was the human resource manager where one of my responsibilities was recruiting. Back in those days we would network as much as possible to gain referrals. We also placed ads in local papers and sat back waiting to receive resumes by mail. It wasn’t really much different when I began full-time recruiting in 2001, except technology had advanced to the point of website job postings and email. The advances in technology certainly helped reduce the lag time between the posting of a job and receiving responses from potential candidates.
What hasn’t changed in all these years is the importance of building and maintaining professional relationships. Whether recruiting in 1990 or 2020, people have personal agendas, desires, goals, families, etc. It’s so easy to be focused on identifying multiple candidates as fast as we can for our clients to consider, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the human aspect. As a recruiter, fostering professional relationships will prove to be a big part of our success throughout our careers. Building relationships is key in the long-term, but it does take focused effort. I enjoy growing professionally so I read blogs, attend workshops, listen to other recruiters who share their experiences, etc. There are a lot of resources available for learning how to effectively build relationships in recruiting. I’ll share a few solid and time-proven suggestions I’ve read recently:
- When a candidate is not a good fit for a particular position, it’s important to keep the relationship going, so that when opportunities arise in the future there is already a relationship in place.
- Listen. Personally, I would prefer to do business with someone who I know will listen and understand my needs. It is no different with anyone else.
- Be supportive and responsive throughout the process.
- Be as transparent as you can during the recruiting process.
There are so many aspects to effectively recruiting and we certainly can’t go into all of them here. One of the biggest things we as recruiters can do is put the human back in recruiting.