Dear Hiring Managers: Candidates Are a Priority, Too

As a company using a recruiter to fill a position, you probably want that recruiter’s full attention and dedication to the task. As a recruiter, I know you want us to find you a worker with X, Y, and Z qualifications and turn them over as quick as possible. However, whether you are working with a brand new recruiter or a seasoned professional, it is so important that we recruiters always maintain a relationship with the candidates we recruit.

Sometimes, recruiters that work both sides of the table can get so caught up in what their client wants, they neglect the wants and needs of their candidate. As a company that will be receiving this worker, this is NOT what you want to happen. I’m here to remind companies that your recruiter needs to build rapport with candidates and treat them as a high priority, too.

Building a relationship with a candidate will take a recruiter a little more time and effort, but it is a significant step in the recruitment process to successfully fill your job and satisfy the candidate.

I always search for the candidate’s LinkedIn page or resume and do a little research. This allows me to pre-screen the candidate, and I can usually tell from their past experiences if they might be a fit for your position.

Then I look to see if there are any common interests outside of work between the me and candidate. I look at the school they went to and ask about it, or ask if they are a fan of their hometown sports teams. I bring this up during the first initial call and chat about it before jumping into job details. This allows a connection to be made and establishes trust upfront. In the long run, they will trust the company I have put them in because they trust me.

Getting to know the candidate also allows them to discuss concerns and expectations that they have before I even tell them about the position. Having an understanding of their wants and needs is critical to determine if they are a good fit for your position, or if maybe they’d be a better fit elsewhere. When I know their concerns, there won’t be any surprises down the road when making an offer and putting them into your job. 

Not only will I know if the candidate is a good fit for the job, but knowing their likes and dislikes will help me to sell them the job. If they want flexibility for family and your job offers it, I’ll be sure to emphasize that perk of the job to them. It’s helpful knowing the candidate on a personal level first so that I can hit their “hot-button” issues when we jump into the job details. This is especially important for passive candidates that would do great in your position – I’ll have to sell them on these perks.

Building rapport with the candidates will show success through their satisfaction and job retention rates. It is also satisfying for you as their new employer to feel reassured in the hire, and knowing the recruiter took the time to make a good fit.

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