When I first interviewed at Indotronix, a company that has been a long-time player in the contingent staffing industry for a Marketing position, my future boss said, ‘The most valuable resource of a staffing company is the recruiter! Now – to a newbie to the staffing industry like myself – that did not really make a whole lot of sense but fast forward to today, ‘Boss, you could not have been more right!’ J A future post on ‘why that is so’ is already in the works…
That by extension implies that if the recruiting team is shaky, that staffing company is not going to survive in the insanely competitive staff augmentation space. So, what makes for a’ rock star’ recruiter?? The obvious answer is, ‘Outstanding communication skills’. But, what transforms that good communicator or maybe even just an average communicator into an awesome recruiter?
- Fire in the belly: Yes that is numero uno in a field that can get to you when you have to make hundreds of phone calls to total strangers, many of whom can be downright rude before the placements start flowing in. As I write this, I am reminded one of our star recruiters. He and I joined at the same time so the camaraderie of two new starts exists between us. He fresh out of college and clueless on where to begin but oh, so eager to make a mark which he did real quick but the hunger has not waned. It has graduated to address tougher and high-billing requisitions!
- Metrics-driven: In today’s SLA driven environment where an increasing number of Fortune 1000 companies are moving to a vendor neutral MSP (Managed Service Provider) model, ‘metrics’ has taken on a new meaning. While submission ratios have always been important that era of ‘knowing the hiring manager’ is increasingly becoming passé. Staffing companies are judged purely on metrics and that focus on quality has to come from the recruiter level.
- Domain knowledge: Be it Information technology or Engineering or Professional services or what have you…a basic liking and knowledge for the domain is a prerequisite. One of the main reasons why Indotronix, a technology services firm clocks in impressive placement numbers is because a majority of our recruiters have a technical academic background.
- Maintains relationships: An individual, who naturally enjoys networking and keeping in touch with candidates even when no active requirement exists, is the one who is going to make lasting and loyal relationships. It is the same talent pool that all vendors approach when a requisition comes out. So the candidate is going to go with the recruiter who approaches him first and with whom he feels most comfortable.
- Negotiation/ Influencing skills: Getting the candidate to agree to a certain rate and being able to make him see that the job is indeed the right fit for him, is no easy task. Especially true in the field of Information Technology where demand is incredibly high!
- Good listener: Yes, please! A candidate will want to work with us only if he gets the feeling that his concerns are being addressed and his professional goals are being achieved.
- Thick skinned: Let’s accept it – we may catch a candidate in a very grumpy moment (to put it mildly!). The ability to shrug it off, not take it personally and move on to the next candidate is imperative in this dynamic industry.
With that, I sign off on this post – good luck nurturing the next rock star Recruiter.Cheers! 🙂