Who are recruiters and where they “produce” candidates

The more successful and fast growing a company is, the more new employees have got to be hunted by its manager (or owner). It goes without saying, this brings a lot of headache since this task is always urgent. Let’s not forget: this is also a “pleasant hassle”, because new vacancies indicate the company’s growth, lead to rotation of staff, and newcomers who are sure to bring fresh ideas.

So, you are a manager who needs a person for a “hot” project. You have already posted the text of the vacancy on the company’s website, reviewed hundreds of applications, spent half of your day googling information about recruitment agencies and now your head is a “mixture” of candidates, competencies, social packages and special requests of the head of the department. Don’t panic! Sip some coffee, breathe out and think: how do I find a candidate?


So who are the recruiters? Let’s talk “about it”

We are absolutely sure that after a short independent search you tend to think that the selection of candidates for a vacant position should be delegated to the pros and right now you are trying to understand who the recruiters are, what they do and how to choose the best ones.

The answers to these questions are simple. Let’s just say: a recruiter is someone who is looking for the right people and therefore its main function is to fill positions as quickly and efficiently as possible. Thus, you can (and should) tell the “searcher” everything (well, you can skip your bank account details, of course). The more honest the conversation, the more relevant people you will get. Do you need workaholics to work non-stop in a particular project? Communicate your needs avoiding cliches like: “burning eyes” and “love for the company”. A fare pay is what you’ve got to be prepared for offering someone a dusty job. If you are honest – the recruiter will not make a mistake and will be able to avoid candidates who, for example, want to build a career, but are not eager to put their best foot forward at work.

In order to perform its main function, the recruiter must have certain skills and competencies. The main ones are:

  • use sourcing and recruitment techniques;
  • be able to use recruitment technologies, which, by the way, are constantly changing;
  • be punctual and determined;
  • be able to negotiate and communicate;
  • be able to assess the needs of the customer;
  • be attentive to details, select candidates carefully and be able to get on well and establish a rapport with potential employees.

It requires experience, constant training and mastering the world’s best methods of recruitment. In other words – if you are looking for a recruitment agency, pay attention to their experience, knowledge of the market and its opportunities. Moreover, do not hesitate to ask when to expect the first candidates. If the recruiter estimates first relevant candidatures within a week, but does not fulfill the obligation, “round off” without a doubt and look for pros.

“I break seven bricks with my right foot”

In order to get an impression of the agency, you can ask – what questions do recruiters ask candidates? If the answer is the standard “Who do you see yourself in the company in 5 years?” – look for other options. For example: once the head of one of the print media kept a candidate waiting in the room for two hours (he trusted only his own intuition and “hunted” for staff on his own). He then asked that candidate to fill out a questionnaire. One of the questions was: “What are your strengths?”. The candidate replied: “I can break seven bricks with my right foot!” – “And what about the weaknesses?”. -“I can’t do it with my left one!” – She replied.

The girl realized that the work, just like the theater, begins with a “cloakroom” and she would meet neither respect nor new creative approaches in this publication. She was right. You’ve got to pay attention to questions, professional recruiters ask only professional ones.

One of the methods of professional recruiters is a competency interview. The candidate is asked about his past experience. For example: “What projects have you worked on as a project manager for the last five years?”. “What size were the companies you ran?”, “How many articles do you write per month?”, What are the topics? ”. “What industries did you work with?” The answers to these questions cannot be “bad” or “good”, “right” or “wrong”. They either meet the needs of the company or not. The candidate talks about his experience, the recruiter compares the answers with the customer’s requirements. If a candidate for the position of CEO of a large company (400 people) has experience only in small organizations (up to 50 people), he is definitely not suitable (because the processes in large and small companies are completely different). If the candidate for a position of project manager has worked in the field of automotive, security and medicine (and has excellent results), but has no e-commerce experience, that is crucial for the customer, the candidate is not invited to further stages.

Can you play the violin?

The best way to understand the essence and meaning of recruitment is to “bust” the most common myths and stereotypes that swirl in public opinion. One of the most important: many people think that in order to become, for example, an IT recruiter (where, as many believe, only someone lazy does not make money), it is enough to take a good Facebook photo and text a couple of candidates about the “dream job”. Unfortunately, the principle “Can you play the violin? I haven’t tried it, maybe I can”, doesn’t work here. The job of a recruiter requires efforts, time, stress resistance (because customers and candidates reject you all the time) and professionalism.

Where is the “candidate factory”?

Another myth is “special candidate database”. Customers often think that because a recruitment agency charges customers, it “takes” candidates not from the labor market, but from “special lists” or even “candidate factories.” But no. Secrets of professional recruitment are persistent search for candidates, assessment of their competencies and the ability to meet the customer needs.

However, each seasoned recruiter indeed has his or her candidate database. Recruiters never rely on it alone. They know: every database tends to become outdated. Good professionals “grow”, get promoted, and if they do not, they look for companies where they can succeed.

An excellent candidate. Wrap up two!

There are other stereotypes that, we are convinced, will never occur in the minds of our customers, but some topics like : “everyone can be a recruiter”, “recruiters overestimate the cost of their services” and “you’ve got to pay in advance.” – often “glimpse” on forums and in private discussions.

First of all, the services of the agency are paid only for the work performed, the customer pays for the search of the candidate only after he or she joins the company, in other words, you do not need to pay in advance.

Secondly, those who say that a recruiter’s life is cheesy and great talents are always one phone call away, do not have a slightest comprehension of this profession. Professional recruiters will tell you about the so-called “first candidate issue”. The agency works on a request, finds a candidate for the position and submits it to the customer. An experienced manager who already has experience working with recruiters understands that this is the best candidate and takes the candidate to the next stages of the hiring process. Less experienced managers sometimes think: “Oh, the candidate is really good, but, apparently, there are plenty of them. So can I get more, and then I’ll choose?” This happens quite often with “sprouting” companies, recruiters are aware of this phenomenon and try to submit at least two candidates (even when the candidates are not the same in terms of requirements) so that the customer can compare and choose.

The myth of “big money and little effort” is also not worth a damn. Every professional recruiter knows that in order to close, for example, a vacancy in IT, the list of candidates must include on average from 200 to 400 people. These are the candidates that match the experience and competencies criteria. The recruiter selects only the most interested in a position. There are usually 15-30 candidates out of two hundred, depending on the vacancy. You need to talk to them, clarify whether they really have the right experience, what projects they had a chance to apply their skills and competencies at. About ten candidates make it to the finals. But even at this stage “surprises” are possible, and a good recruiter is always ready for them. Someone says the offer is not good enough. Someone does not like the schedule, some long for a remote position. There can be many rocks under the water. We at “AboutHR” submit 3-6 candidates on average to fill a position in IT. In order to do it we put our best foot forward to “shovel” a mountain of information, look through a pile of CVs, and communicate with each candidate. This is an extremely energy-consuming job.

This search is called a “candidate pool”. For example, it took us 440 resumes to skim 39 interested candidates. Then we had 10 who refused, another batch turned out to be “too expensive”, the rest were not proficient enough in English or did not have experience with the right stack of technologies or simply accepted other job offers. As a result, the recruiter submitted three candidates to the customer.

Cutting the budget on recruiting can be quite an experiment: find a freelancer, hire him for half price and… get a bunch of offers that are simply unrealistic to “rake”. Of course, you can do that, but we do not recommend.

“Buy cheap, pay dear”

Another myth: recruiters look for specialists who work “for a penny.” It stems from the first years of sprouting recruitment agencies and was explained by the desire to “recoup” the money spent on recruitment. And although there are still customers who want to get “Mercedes” at the price of a bicycle, so to speak, this myth is a bygone. Experienced managers know that specialists selected by a good recruitment agency cost more. Yes, you will have to pay the agency, but on the other hand the agency will get everything done as quick and efficiently as possible. The customer will save time and resources and, as a cherry on top, will receive a three-month warranty.

There is another feature of the modern labor market that should be taken into account by recruiters and business owners when looking for staff: “expensive” professionals (in other words – real pros) change jobs not because they tend to jump on big money, but because they want to take part in an interesting project, master a new technology or be a part of an outstanding team. This indicates the “maturation” of society, the good level of Ukrainian specialists (especially in creative industries, IT, etc.). The level of wages is market-oriented anyways.

… At the end of our coffee break we are positive, this story will come in handy for you to find the right people who are able to apply all their magic and feat to bring talented professionals and your business together.

The good news is there are good recruiters out there and they never disappoint.