Recruiting - don't forget to actually "recruit"

We see it every day as we work with our clients. They embrace the need for a true talent management system. They see the value in an ATS and recruiting system that will give them all the data they would ever need about a candidate. Over time, however, the word “recruit” has became synonymous with “assess,” “track,” or “evaluate.” More time has been focused on collecting data, assessing the candidates, matching skills to needs (all very important tasks, mind you), but less time has been spent on actually recruiting these talented individuals. The task of selling these candidates on the company has often times fallen through the cracks.

In my role at Collaborative Solutions, I’m involved in the recruiting process with virtually every candidate – more often than not from start to finish. While others at Collaborative can drill down on each candidate’s skill set and value prop to our firm, I find myself in a selling mode during these conversations and meetings. I find it’s incredibly important to sell our candidates on how we’re different from other firms. In the Workday space, which is our fastest growing practice, candidates have options other than Collaborative. But do other organizations share the same passion? Do they really care about their employees’ well being and development? Do they have a consultant base that’s fanatical about absorbing Workday knowledge and sharing it with the ecosystem (and believe me – with updates every 3 – 4 months, Workday consulting is a constant quest for knowledge!)?

I personally recall the summer of 1997 while working for a “Big-4” (or was it Big-8 or Big-6 at the time?) consultancy. Yes, they had sent me a fruit basket upon signing, but there was very little passion through the recruiting process. In hindsight, the recruiting process mirrored my experience as an employee: Do your job, do it right, and maybe, just maybe you get another fruit basket or, if you’re lucky a dinner at Morton’s. I remember being a bit disenchanted, sitting in my hotel room and viewing the PeopleSoft website (admittedly, through a very slow dial-up). PeopleSoft was promoting their “we wear a lot of hats” theme where all the employees wore the hats made famous by Dr. Suess in the “Cat in the Hat” (which by the way is still an awesome book to read at night with my kids). The PeopleSoft culture virtually poured out of my computer screen. During the recruiting process, all my conversations with their employees illustrated their passion. If not for their collective ability to sell me on their vision, I may not have made the move.

Whether it’s your website, your Facebook fan page, your Twitterific posts, or your new marketing campaign, it’s crucial that you never forget to sell your company to your candidates. But be careful, you can’t fake passion. If you’re hiring smart people, they’ll see right through it.

TAGS: recruiting, Talent Management, Workday