Three Bad Recruitment Practices That Contribute To Recruiter Overload

By Posted in - Recruiting on February 11th, 2015 2 Comments

One of the most common complaints that I hear from recruiters is that they do not have enough resources or time to do their job the way they would like. This overload leads to a number of other problems such as a bad candidate experiences, higher than desired turnover rates, higher costs to fill, and longer time to fill metrics. However, recruiter overload is in some ways a direct result of the recruiters following some bad recruitment practices.

Here are three common recruitment practices that should be avoided:

Bad Recruitment Practice #1: Failure to engage or nurture past candidate relationships

Most ATS platforms provides some capabilities to maintain visibility and communication with past candidates. Newer social media technologies are now available that go well beyond these capabilities and provide the capabilities to actually engage and nurture past candidates. However, these capabilities may not be used by recruiters based on the perception they do not have the time. What is overlooked is that devoting modest time and resource to this effort now would result in huge sourcing efficiencies and time savings downstream.

Rationalization for bad practice – Candidates don’t want to stay engaged with one company. They will just move on to the next opportunity. Engaging them would be a waste of time.

Reality – Candidates will focus on and actively pursue employers that are seen as having a distinctive and valued employer brand. This brand is based both on the candidate experience and the treatment of employees. The candidate experience provides a good indicator of how you will be treated as an employee. An excellent candidate experience will result in easier sourcing.

Bad Recruitment Practice #2: Unreasonable job requirements resulting in overly narrow candidate pools

Recruiters and hiring managers often post job requirements that are overly restrictive in the hopes of finding candidates that are perfect for the role and would require no training, coaching, or further development. As an example, a hiring manager may look for an IT professional that has extensive experience in all the technologies being used in the company, even if some of those technologies may be arcane or relatively scarce. The result is that few if any candidates will possess all the requirements and recruiters will spend more time than is necessary to find candidates for the position.

Rationalization for bad practice – We do not have the time to train or develop new hires. We need to find candidates that are ready on day one to perform at a superior level. We have to be highly selective and find the perfect candidate no matter how long it takes.

Reality – Realistically, all candidates should have an onboarding development plan. Just as a professional sports team recruits good athletes and then develops them for key positions, organizations should recruit candidates that possess many of the desired qualifications and the ability to learn and develop new skills. A strategy of finding and developing “good athletes” will reduce hiring costs and time to fill metrics.

Bad Recruitment Practice #3: Valuing efficiency more than quality

Recruiter overload results in a higher sense of priority for investing in efficiency gains and time savings, and comparatively less priority on spending the time or money to ensure a quality hire. For this reason, most recruiters will make investing in an applicant tracking system (ATS) their highest priority. Unfortunately, they often feel that this investment is the only one needed. The truth is ATS platforms provide very limited support in evaluating candidates accurately and predicting likely success on the job. They provide huge process efficiencies but limited support for even basic selection tools such as conducting effective, professional interviews. Poor hiring quality results in unnecessary replacement hiring which increases recruiter overload.

Rationalization for bad practice – An ATS meets all my recruitment needs. We cannot afford additional investments in our selection practices.

Reality –Most organizations hiring practices need substantial improvements and experience a higher than desired rate of bad or mediocre hires. Bad hires require more costly training, have lower productivity, require more costly time from managers and teammates, and often result in replacement costs. The ROI for investing in improving quality of hire is huge.

Contact OMNIview to find out more about how to improve your recruitment and selection processes and implement a longer term strategy for reducing recruiter overload.

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