Recruitment Dead? I’m sick of hearing about it…

Before I start this week’s blog – I want to address something Luke touched on in his post from last week…

‘I was at the RCSA ball last week. It was a good night – a few too many speeches and not enough dance floor action for my liking, but a fun night anyway…’

Hmmm… there were a few hundred others there as well… and I think that we (who were there), would agree that Luke had plenty of ‘dance floor action.’  And there is video evidence… Please let me know by comment below if you wish to see Luke’s dance moves on You Tube™.

dodo1Anyway, on to this week’s topic… If we – and by we I mean the recruitment industry – don’t change the way we recruit… we will go the way of the dinosaur… or dodo… or dvd….

Quite simply, active candidates should no longer be your focus. And never was this made more apparent to me than a lesson I learned just a couple of weeks ago…

As word filtered out about the collapse of Boston Kennedy our office went into overdrive. We reached out to everyone we knew – and those we didn’t – endeavouring to meet with them. I conversation with someone I had previously placed into the business went like this…

‘Hi Doug,’ obviously Doug isn’t her real name… in fact Doug isn’t even a girls’ name… note to self – next time if you’re going to use a girl as an example, use a girls’ name… anyway, work with me on this… ‘Craig Watson here. Sorry to hear about the unfortunate news this morning, but I want to work with you quickly to find you a new home.’

‘Oh hi Craig,’ Doug replied, in the flat disbelieving tone you can associate with someone who has just lost their job unexpectedly. ‘You guys don’t waste any time do you? I’ve already had three rec2recs on the phone and another four competitors call me. It’s like there’s blood in the water and every shark can smell it from miles away…’

I decided to ignore the sharks comment. I mean, who in their right mind would associate a recruiter with a cold blooded, water born creature that feeds opportunistically off prey in a vulnerable position? No-one… right??

But sticking with the water theme she was right to one extent. All Rec-to-Recs and a legion of BK competitors decided to fish from the same pond at the same time…

dodo2I’m not saying we should ignore the pool of active candidates in the market – far from it. But to focus solely, or even to invest the majority of your time in the active pool is a recipe for absolute disaster.

It’s not brain surgery… your clients can find their own staff from the active candidate pool. They can easily throw an ad on a job board. It doesn’t even have to be a good ad. If someone is active in the market they will respond…

What all recruiters need to understand is that the market we are playing in is not going to change anytime soon. To survive, add value and prosper – we need to give our clients a service they cannot provide themselves.

So let me ask you 3 questions:

  1. How well do you know your space?
  2. How deep is your network (candidates and clients)?
  3. How engaged is your network?

If your answers aren’t:

  1. Better than any of my competitors.
  2. Deeper than Loch Ness.
  3. More engaged than a Big Brother audience.

Then I’m afraid you won’t cut it… and that is the new recruitment reality…

Oh, don’t forget – I am very interested in whether I should You Tube ™ the Dancing Luke clip. He says if I get fifteen, or more comments I’m good to go…

Craig Watson


8 thoughts on “Recruitment Dead? I’m sick of hearing about it…

  1. jacobstenmadsen on Reply

    Apart from a post where half ought to be left out as nothing but empty twaddle, my problem with this is that to come out with figure of 74 % of candidates being passive are absolute nonsense. Anyone who have a little bit of insight and knowledge of what goes on in market generally of which the largest data holder and those with insight being Linkedin will know that within the 74 % (to go with this unquantified number, because who truly knows what it is) there are nuances as to how enticed these candidates could be to new opportunities were they presented to candidate. Facts are that with approx 65% of the entire UK workforce (Reed survey/estimate) wanting to leave and find another employer that many many more people than what is thought have a desire for a new job/role why the 74% simply does not hold. Anyone given the right opportunity will be open to a dialogue about a move, that is certain.

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