Everyone likes to think of themselves as an innovative, modern recruitment partner.
But the basics don’t change that much, everyone has the same high level goal - match good candidates to good jobs.
However, the processes in recruitment are constantly updating, as tech evolves and recruiters and candidates alike are becoming more aware of their worth. Perhaps the most innovative thing a recruiter can do is show enough humility to acknowledge this.
That being said, there’s no denying how far we’ve come over the years. Here’s a little glimpse of how recruitment has changed.
Way back then...
Rewind a cool 25 years and it’s 1996 (sorry). Recruiters were typically found sitting behind a desk on a high street with job vacancies handwritten in the window. Fax machines were relevant. People came to see you if they wanted a job.
We didn’t have ATS systems or online job boards, and nobody batted an eyelid if a client gave a 3 line brief. You’d still spend hours registering candidates and filling in their paperwork.
Jump forward just a few more years, and on the coattails of our collective relief that the millennium bug didn’t end the world, this thing called the internet makes its way to offices (surely this will never take off).
But it did. And that meant only one thing - bigger reach. Ok, maybe two things - bigger reach and higher expectations.
With shiny, new online job boards came more applications. And generally speaking, the more applications, the higher chance one of them will have the right skills. You might have had 100 accountants reading your ad online and 60 might apply. For the recruiter, this meant access to swathes of qualified people, especially when compared to those who’d previously turned up at the office or responded to printed ads.
Things were pretty cut and dry at this point. If you didn’t have a CV that matched what the recruiter was looking for, you wouldn’t hear back and that was the end of the process. No real questions asked, maybe a few grumbles - but that’s just how it was.
Fast forward to today and things look pretty different. Technology is everywhere which has enabled transparency. Social media is a primary method of communication. People talk, other people listen, client and candidate expectations rise. This impacts company branding, with employers and recruiters alike being forced to do better. And that can only be a good thing.
We’re miles away from how things used to be and rightfully so. Today, people are no longer viewed as commodities to be pushed around from place to place. And they definitely aren’t expected to simply apply for your jobs regardless of how little effort you put into selling it. Weird, right?
Today, you need to know your market. You need to know relevant professionals and build real relationships with them. You need to understand your clients' business inside and out, so that you can go to your databases and social platforms to find the right people, then give them the type of information that instills confidence.
You’re still advertising and using job boards (after all, you still want that juicy reach) but now you need to use all the information gathered through building and nurturing those strong relationships to actually sell your position. To meet your ideal candidates’ elevated expectations.
Ultimately, you’re now headhunting people who are in high demand. It’s not a game of “sit and wait” - it’s “go out to the haystack, find that needle, and make your proposal irresistible”.
You’re approaching people who are happy and comfortable in other positions to convince them that the job you’re recruiting for is too good to pass up. You’re guiding them through the entire recruitment process, so they don’t forget this on the way. You’re investing in them and making the process a pleasure. If you're not doing that stuff, chances are, another recruiter is.
Our 4 key stages of modern recruiting:
Is there space in the future for recruiters? Always. Will the industry be taken over entirely by tech? No.
It’s going to be a very long time until AI can assess soft skills and build those genuine, personal relationships that the recruitment industry relies on. So, keep your process as human and simple as possible. Think about each step and what that entails. Invest in your people and invest in your tech.
That’s where we can help, idibu links to CRM and ATS systems, letting you post jobs in different places from a single client. While your success still relies on reach, being in many places at once, having a one-click function saves you a huge amount of time. And as this boosts your efficiency, you’ll be freed up to focus on your attraction, engagement, retention, and qualification.
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