Building Rapport between Recruiters and Hiring Managers

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Hiring manager and recruiter rapport

Five Tips for Building Rapport between Recruiters and Hiring Managers

High retention and satisfaction rates are a result of good hiring choices. You can improve those rates by improving processes between hiring managers and recruiters.

In smaller companies, HR may consist of one or two people who recruit, hire, onboard, manage benefits, and offboard.  The high touch atmosphere of a smaller company lends itself to strong, informed relationships and hiring decisions.

As a company grows, or with larger organizations, roles necessarily differentiate, leaving hiring managers and recruiting groups in different units, or even outsourced.  The gap between hiring needs and candidate pools becomes greater and leads to disconnect if the relationship between the two is not recognized or valued.

A cost-effective, efficient recruiting cycle with a reputation for good quality talent acquisition does not happen without work.  How can you build end-to-end success when you have an open position?

Communication is key

A culture of frequent and open communication means hiring needs are communicated, and appropriate feedback is given about candidate offerings.  Consider these common problems between recruiters and hiring staff, and how they might be resolved:

  1. Expectations: Operating within the organization, hiring staff have the responsibility to hear and identify the needs of their teams, and communicate those needs to a recruiter.  Hiring personnel develop language that describes the skills, experience, and other qualifications needed for each position.  Operating within and outside of the organization, recruiters use those descriptions, and their knowledge of the current workforce, to create potential talent opportunities for the organization.

It is the responsibility of the recruiter to inform and align hiring managers to current realities of the job market.  Within the last several years, the availability of talent has tightened, requiring recruiters to plumb new sources, consider new recruiting channels, and take more time to find appropriate candidates.  Education of hiring managers about current talent pools is essential.

  1. Mismatch on candidates: Hiring managers are frustrated when applicants forwarded by recruiters do not meet requirements of open positions. Finger-pointing is unhelpful and the real issue could be lack of understanding about the real needs of the position. Sometimes hiring staff forward a previously used job description to fill a newly created position.  Recruiters act on the old information, and compile a short list of individuals who do not fit the needs of the new position.  Frustration ensues and the time to fill increases.

Whether you are a recruiter, or hiring staff, it is your job to understand open job positions.  Highly successful recruiting teams work to understand the skills, experience, and education needed to fill a position as well as align with company culture. Hiring managers need patience, flexibility, and time to educate recruiters responsible for developing a suitable candidate pool.  Best practices involve the hiring manager and recruiter working together to develop a job description.

  1. Screening: Hiring managers may complain that recruiters do not perform enough screening, or screen for the wrong criteria. Video is a powerful tool for speeding the screening process and creating common understanding between hiring staff and recruiters. Although video interviewing has been around for some time, it is taking off in terms of saving hiring time and money.

Live or one-way videos offer employers and outside agencies the opportunity to make some of the same assessments they would if they met the candidate in person.  The cost of hiring is significantly reduced when video screening is in place.  Video allows hiring managers and recruiting staff to view candidate material together, making notes, refining a job description, and creating understanding about organizational talent needs.

  1. Time-to-fill: Companies moving quickly to market can find themselves falling behind when they cannot onboard the right talent fast enough to meet their roll-out schedule.  When time is tight, recruiters are pushed to fill seats by hiring managers who are under pressure. Initial product and launch planning meetings should be attended by hiring staff and recruiters.  When hiring managers and recruiters are aware of specialized or other staffing needs six to eight months (or more) ahead of an onboarding date, the chances of acquiring the right talent for the positions is significantly improved.

Yet, that kind of advance notice does not often happen.  Recruiters can buffer for hiring managers by engaging in strong source and social media networking.  By identifying existing talent pools, using personal outreach and referrals, and the deft management of social media, recruiters can create candidate audiences to tap when potential positions arise.

  1. Debrief: The opportunity for better service begins at the end.  After candidate hire, managers and recruiting staff should take the time to debrief. What worked?  What did not?  How could each party better serve the other in order to meet the needs of the organization?  Best practices result from trial and error and make use of the gold at the end of a hiring cycle.

Effective communication is the better part of any relationship.  With talent acquisition, technology is part of that conversation, serving to eliminate redundant tasks, manage details, source talent, and speed the recruiting cycle toward onboarding.

When you have questions about staffing, and other HR software capabilities, we can help.  Brightmove offers sophisticated, scalable solutions to help you hire and retain the talent your company needs to stay competitive.

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