I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard the recruiting industry horror stories. Client organizations introduced to countless, inappropriate and unqualified job candidates, and well qualified job-seeking professionals treated like livestock at an auction. High Volume, Transactional recruiting — or as I like to call it “Dart Board Recruiting” — provides only a bucket of potential candidates, and no real value.
The Nightmare Hiring Scenario
Take for example the startup software firm “XYZ” (yes, names will be disguised to protect the innocent!). XYZ had hired a search firm ‘known’ for its ability to quickly scale up, rapid growth technology startups. Sounds good, right?
Well what XYZ found, was that while turning on the proverbial faucet of candidates can feel good when you’re short staffed and quickly closing in on a release date deadline promised to your second stage capital investors…that faucet can also feel like waterboarding when you realize that you’re spending more time playing musical chairs than your daughter’s kindergarten class.
Imagine this scenario:
Recruiter: Hey Joe, I’ve got 7 great candidates for you.
Joe: Holy Cow! It’s only been 3 days. I need bodies. Are they good?
Recruiter: Technically proficient. Absolutely.
Joe: Great, I need to see them. Send me all the information to evaluate. I’m sure at least three of them will fit in great.
[ 6 weeks later ]
Joe: Hey Recruiter…I really thought new hire 1 and new hire 3 were going to work out perfectly. I mean, they clearly knew the platform and language we’re based on. But I had more internal conflicts in the last month than we’ve had since startup.
Recruiter: Don’t worry at all, Joe. Sometimes there’s just a personality conflict. You know these techies. I’ve been in conversation with some very qualified applicants in the last week that may just be perfect for you.
Joe: Thank goodness. We’ve got deadlines to hit.
[ 6 weeks later ]
Recruiter: Hey Joe, how’s new hire 4 and new hire 5 doing?
Joe: I was kind of afraid to call you. New hire 4 is working out great, but new hire 5 just isn’t performing. Didn’t you say he had experience in double-helix nanogram UX design? (I made that term up because I specialize in humans, not ones and zeros).
Recruiter: Well, yes. His resume clearly stated double-helix nanogram UX design. I tell you what I’ll do…
And the wheels on the bus go round and round, round and round, round and round.
Time for a New Perspective
The problem in this scenario was that the recruiter practiced what we call transactional recruiting. Throw a bunch of candidates at an opening, quick, and hope something sticks….just like darts towards a dart board.
At first, the client company believed this to be of value, because their most pressing and urgent need was simply to ‘fill the chair’. Sure, they had other requirements and wants regarding a new employee, but the anxiety Joe felt because that chair was empty forced simply filling the position, to the top of his mental priority.
Speed and quantity are great traits, if you care about short term goals only. But when you’re adding a critical piece to your business and your team, we believe that there’s a better, more balanced approach….focused building for the future.
We believe that the best approach to filling a client need lies in a sincere desire to see things from the perspective of both the client, AND the candidate. By taking the time to understand not only our client’s’ technical need, but also their culture, their vision and their guiding principles, Bell Falls consultants are able to see things from the client point of view. We’re able to anticipate candidate worthiness, and think long term, as if we were a true partner in our clients’ growth.
And by taking the time to understand prospect candidates, at a level deeper than just technical experience bullet points on a resume, we’re able to match their outlook, characteristics and goals with those needs and principles shared by the employer.
Recruiting with Empathy
The ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Taking the time to ‘walk in another person’s shoes’. That is empathy. Taking the time to understand the perspectives of both employer and candidate, that is recruiting with empathy, and that is the Bell Falls way.
Partnership should mean, well…Partnership
If there’s one cliché that is overused and under-delivered in business, it’s “partnership”. I can’t tell you how many people have wanted to “partner” with me over the years, only to find out that their definition of partnering went something like this:
“Let’s engage each other in a new business relationship. It’ll seem super-mutually-beneficial, until you realize that my intent is not to see things from your perspective, or to be empathetic to the vision you have…but rather, it’s to start billing you, and move on to sell another “partnership.”
Now, does everyone that wants to partner have these intentions? Certainly Not. Am I exaggerating just a bit? Of course. But haven’t you been in a situation where a partnership sure seemed one sided? Haven’t you been in a supposed partnership where you felt the other partner had no real empathy for your situation, your goals, your guiding principles or your needs?
The foundation of the Bell Falls way is built around turning the ‘partnership’ cliché, into a tangible and palpable reality.
XYZ software may not have received 7 prospect candidates in the first week. They may not have received the short term (and temporary) buzz, from the ‘shaken-not-stirred’ candidate cocktail.
But I can tell you this: Just as the sommelier takes the time to present the vintage that best suits the wine connoisseur, the right recruiting firm takes the time to be empathetic and yet efficient. They engage in a process that balances speed to fulfillment, with the empathy required to do things right the first time.
By engaging the right agency, XYZ would have received candidates much more vetted to their technical and cultural needs, and they would have saved time, money and aggravation in the long run.