Bad recruiters…..what about bad candidates?
Recently, we have been helping a client hire rookies, that is people without recruitment experience looking to break into the industry. Our client does not have too many hard and fast set criteria about someone’s background or education….but what they really want is for candidates to show the right behaviour. As such, our recruitment process has been designed to allow candidates to demonstrate their suitability…..or not ……
Generally, most of the candidates that come through our business don’t apply for a role. They come from being headhunted or a referral. As such, apart from the odd irrelevant CV that gets sent to me, I don’t see too many ‘applications’ these days.
So, help me out here recruiters…has the majority of the world just got completely lazy or clueless when it comes to applying for a job? I am not old enough to talk about ‘the old days’ when things were done properly…. and the problem is that ‘the kids just can’t be bothered these days’. But based on what I have seen coming through our business in the last few weeks I have been shocked, disappointed, amused and in one case absolutely astonished as to some people’s approach to applying for a job (see below).
Our process was very straightforward. There was no ten-page application form, no pre-application testing, and no X-factor style audience tape that needed to be submitted. We simply asked people to send a CV and answer one question. ”Why do you want to enter the recruitment industry?”. Then a telephone interview and if successful attend an assessment centre. Simple enough for anyone even half motivated.
How many applications answered the question do you think? How many did not have a CV attached? How many had spelling errors and grammatical mistakes? How may addressed their application “Dear Scott” (surely getting my name right is the first step!).
If you are working in a market that relies heavily on applications, this is probably not news to you.
I won’t make any damming over stereotyped comments about ‘Generation Y’, especially as a lot of these applications came from mature people. But at some point the art of applying for a job has disappeared. My theory is that it is simply far too easy for people to apply for a job these days. A click of a button on a job board and you have applied. Takes little thinking about and no effort. In fact, many of the candidates that we spoke to were not even aware that they had applied for the job ( sound familiar?). I appreciate that in a candidate short market recruiters need to make it as easy as possible for people to apply….but is the awesome software available through job boards and websites really the right answer when it promotes lazy applications?
It wasn’t all bad. Some people took a lot of effort over their application. They called to introduce themselves. They answered the question as requested. Their CV was well presented. And when we called they knew who we were or had a voicemail and called back (how many people have ridiculous voicemails, or none at all).
There is of course, always the one application that is so ridiculous it is funny. Like this person for example, who had a different idea of how to apply for a job (name of the recruiter has been changed but everything is the same……honestly!!!)
To be completely frank with you Gertrude i already have two offers on the table from other recruitment firms, I’m just curious to see what else is out there for me, but i honestly don’t have time to attend a group screening filled with applicants who won’t make a difference nor add value to your company, some of which I’m sure you will hire just to realise were a waste of time due to your lack of ability to know when you have a wolf knocking on your door ready to go out and make money for you. so you weigh up what you would like to do, do you want to waste my time following protocol and make me attend a group session, just to have the loudest guy stand out who you will deem to be the fittest applicant when in reality the loudest guy in the room is usually the weakest link, then proving running group interviews doesn’t always allow the best applicants to shine due to the nature of the process, or are we going to skip the formalities, bring me in for an interview and allow me to explain to you exactly why and how ill bring value to your company. Because I’m ready to get down to work and don’t have a whole lot of time to sit in a room with people who can’t and won’t ever do what I do, I talk the talk but I also walk the walk. Your call
He called back two days later begging for an interview…..
Know someone looking for a recruitment job. Check out our Refer a Recruiter section on this blog and bag yourself a couple of movie tickets….
Luke “my name is not Scott’ Collard