If you read articles and blogs about recruitment, listen to some of the experts and thought leaders, and those that would like to think they are (including me!), you will understand that the way recruitment agencies work should be changing.
These experts tell us that it’s all about being able to do what companies and their internal recruitment teams cannot do for themselves…essentially find, attract and secure the types of people that generally won’t visit job boards and respond to adverts. And that’s all about using whatever new technologies are increasing available to us, and shifting our mindset to approach things in a different way…..social media, talent communities, EVP etc.
It all makes complete sense to me (hence why you are reading this blog!). And if you look at the cheers and hoorah that follows a Greg Savage conference, then most people seem to agree….this is the future and if you don’t get on board you are going to be left behind.
So if that is the case, why are the vast majority of agencies still doing things pretty much the same as they ever have. And why are they looking for the same things in a recruiter…the same skills and profile that they were looking for five / ten years ago?
How come when I meet with agencies very few of them talk about their recruiters needing to be digitally savvy? Why do a lot of them think a talent community equals their database? Why do they still pump out the same old boring adverts? Why does everyone who joins them as a recruiter need to be a sales-gun first, second and third….and if they have some cool sourcing skills then that’s also nice.
There is a massive disconnect between all the noise out there, all the expert opinions, all the “here here”…. and what is it actually happening.
Why is that?
Maybe recruitment is just too stuck in its ways. Maybe the folk sitting at the top of the tree are too far removed from the day to day to see the relevance of this crazy new world.……. better just to make sales calls. Maybe it’s just all too hard. Maybe they have been away from the trenches too much – when you look at the digital footprint of some of the leaders of some of the supposedly top agencies it is embarrassing. The answer is that they probably still make enough money not to really care.
In an industry that is suffering from it’s own talent shortage, has an issue retaining experienced operators, is very competitive and sometimes struggles to make itself relevant and respected, you would have thought that more agencies would be really embracing this stuff…..you would have thought anyway!
And the craziest thing about it……those agencies that have really embraced this brave new world…..who are thinking outside of the box and trying different things ….. guess what…..they are generally the ones doing very well …. and much better than some of those more traditional brands.