Do Your Clients’ Recruiting Functions Need A Major Alignment?

Here’s a way you can help your clients fix their recruiting business: Offer them the opportunity to look closely at what’s not working. You can spot speed bumps early, stop them from becoming major roadblocks, and use this to provide a needed value-added service that will keep your business growing in a tough economy. It starts with asking yourself – and your clients – if all your hiring systems are really in alignment. Does everything you do make sense, and do all your actions mesh smoothly like a well-oiled set of gears? Or do your systems grind and grate on one another – preventing you from hiring the best person possible? Make believe you’re describing your business like a sick car by discussing a checklist of what’s wrong. If your clients have any of the following ten symptoms, it’s time for at least a tune-up – which you offer to do. If they have more than five, they need to think seriously about a major alignment. Just providing this value-added service will demonstrate that you’re a different type of recruiter. If you’re an internal recruiter, think about being the catalyst for change. This will ensure your survival no matter what happens. Here’s the checklist of symptoms:

  1. Recruiters complain that line managers don’t give them enough information to complete an assignment.
  2. Managers complain that recruiters are too slow, or don’t know the job well enough.
  3. Your clients (existing and new) say it’s too hard to find top candidates for their open positions.
  4. Your client is not an employer of choice.
  5. Problems with candidates accepting offers and then reneging, or…
  6. Too many complaints from candidate’s and hiring managers that the compensation budget isn’t big enough.
  7. The equity carrot is long gone, and it’s tougher to close not only the top candidates, but the average ones, too.
  8. Many of the candidates hired aren’t motivated to do the work that’s expected of them.
  9. Hiring managers and/or recruiters don’t know how to interview or assess competency.
  10. Turnover is too high, or motivation is too low – job fit is definitely a problem.

Once you have this information, you have to provide a solution. Here’s what you need to do to help your clients re-align their hiring systems toward achieving one major goal – giving recruiters and line managers all the tools they need to hire top talent every time.

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  1. Clearly define the job. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, you’ll never find the best person to fill it. Ask, “What does the person need to do to be successful?” Job descriptions need to define these desired results – not just list skills, attributes, or behaviors. A useful job description must list the top 6-8 deliverables. This provides the framework for a well-aligned hiring process. Start asking these questions on every search.
  2. Sourcing programs have to attract people inspired by the work that needs to get done. Unfortunately, most ads rarely consider this. They’re built on attracting people looking for a job – and these are usually different people. Volunteer to help your clients write ads for positions that they’re NOT going to use you on. To insure a motivated team, you need to source them based on the opportunity to grow, learn, do, and become something better once on the job. Ads need to be written to inspire top people to respond.
  3. Interviews need to be multi-dimensional. Train your clients on good interviewing techniques. A well-aligned interview must accomplish a number of objectives, specifically:
    • determine if the candidate can do the work
    • overcome the candidate’s tendency to be a little nervous
    • overcome interviewer biases and prejudices
    • get the candidate excited about the job
    • be easy to use
    • integrate the assessment with the recruiting and closing process

This type of interview is based on the premise that past performance, not past behavior, is the best predictor of future performance. A track record of delivering comparable results is a great indicator of future success. needs of the job, and to the ad. Using just four questions, the performance-based interviewing process gets at the trend of personal accomplishments, the trend of team accomplishments, examples of comparable accomplishments, and job-related problem solving. Using this is a great way to accurately determine competency, and to demonstrate to your clients. It will get you more business. Get lots of examples of comparable work. The negotiating and closing process must also be a part of the alignment. You need to first, create an opportunity gap. Second, never make an offer until you’re sure it will be accepted. The opportunity gap represents what the person taking the job will learn, do and become during the first year. It’s created by asking the candidate to describe accomplishments comparable to those specified in the performance profile. If the candidate needs to grow and stretch to achieve them, you’ve just created the gap. Once you’ve created the gap, you’re ready to test the offer. Ask the candidate if she would be interested in considering an offer. Test each component. Wait until the person agrees to all of the terms before making it official. When done properly, the candidate will take the job immediately upon receiving the official offer letter. When you create a career opportunity this way, the offer becomes secondary, and closing is easy and natural. It’s all in the alignment! <*SPONSORMESSAGE*>

Lou Adler is the CEO and founder of The Adler Group – a training and search firm helping companies implement Performance-based Hiring℠. Adler is the author of the Amazon top-10 best-seller, Hire With Your Head (John Wiley & Sons, 3rd Edition, 2007). His most recent book has just been published, The Essential Guide for Hiring & Getting Hired (Workbench, 2013). He is also the author of the award-winning Nightingale-Conant audio program, Talent Rules! Using Performance-based Hiring to Build Great Teams (2007).


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