As an agency recruiter, more than likely, you’re extremely busy and crunched for time. Not only are you juggling a multitude of clients and open job orders, but you’re also juggling an abundance of candidates and expectations. The clock is ticking; you’re manning calls from clients, candidates and a string of emails…not to mention your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts. You know there’s a candidate who got passed on yesterday afternoon and you owe them a call to let them know. But you have 35 things to do first and new business to attend. That candidate is in the past…or is he?
There are a couple of major reasons that we as recruiters don’t always get back to our candidates. Sometimes we simply haven’t heard back from a client yet. Other times we have heard, and the news isn’t good. And still other times, we’ve heard back and have simply moved on to another candidate or position. Here are some quick tips to making that phone call quickly and professionally.
You Haven’t Heard Back Yet
Make this call…it’s the easiest of the three! Simply taking the quick minute to call or email your candidate will take very little time and will reap great rewards. Believe me; many of your competitors haven’t gotten back to this candidate at one point or another. You’re going to stand out in a big and positive way simply by touching base. “Listen, I expected to have some positive feedback for you by now, but I haven’t heard back yet. Things may still be moving forward, but since we haven’t heard back, I’m looking around for some other opportunities”. It’s that easy.
You Don’t Know How to Break the Bad News
Contrary to popular opinion, recruiters aren’t all bad people. So sometimes when our candidate is turned down, we don’t know how to break the news. Even worse, sometimes the hiring manager tells us why and we don’t have the heart to tell the candidate that someone didn’t like them or their interview style. If your candidate missed an opportunity because of something small or repairable, they should be told. A simple phone call is in order. “Listen, I’m not sure where the client is coming from, but this is the feedback I received. Let’s figure out a way around it for the next opportunity.” This conversation is not always an easy one…but its part of the job and it’s what makes you a real professional who people want to work with.
You’ve Already Moved On
We’ve saved the best, or in this case, worst for last. This is a real pitfall for recruiters who are running around juggling a thousand different priorities at any given moment. But DO schedule some time at the end of the day to close the loop with any and all candidates. It should be a built-in, structured part of your day. Not getting back to your candidates is a sure fire (and fast) way to gain a reputation for being flighty, disorganized and unprofessional. In the end, you’ll save yourself a good deal of time (and make yourself some money) by making the call.
Every touch-point with your clients and candidates is a chance to differentiate yourself and your company. Even relaying bad news to candidates is a chance to build up your relationship. Recruiters must be the conduits of effective communication – deal makers and brokers of jobs and talent. As soon as you are being a roadblock to communication, it’s time to quickly pick up that phone and get back on track.