Recruiters are People Too

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not a personLast week I was walking through the offices of one of my best clients.  Waving, saying hello, shaking hands and just checking in with the Managers, the leadership and my consultants.  I love doing that. It’s a positive way to end the week, find out about new opportunities and overall just take it light and easy.

One of the Managers called me over. He smiled, we chatted and then he caught me a bit off guard. “It looks like I’m going to need your help again.” (Sigh) “You’re a necessary evil, but necessary nonetheless.”

Um… Ouch. I’m evil?!  Since when?

Is it because I didn’t go to church?  Could he suddenly see through the mask of working Mom and professional to the true, scary, evil me?  The one with green skin and purple spots?  I smiled and assured him I would be happy to help.  We sat down and discussed the positions he would be hiring for that month.

When I was driving back home that afternoon, rather than feeling satisfied and pleased that I had some new exclusive roles to fill, I was a bit bummed and maybe even a little disgruntled. After all, I had been working with this Manager for a few years and I know that my people have had a great effect on his projects, deadlines and overall success.  So why is it that a Recruiter is considered a necessary evil rather than just a professional with an expert skill set?

  1. WeMake it Look Easy

That’s right kids; our jobs are difficult, frustrating and almost entirely done in a time crunch against extensive competition.  But our clients think it’s easy. They think they can recruit just as effectively, if only they had the time.  And it isn’t so.  Recruiting is a true skill set.  Sure some things you pick up in training, but many others are endowed talents…talents that landed you in this industry and talents that have kept you here.  And the truth is, there is very little you can do to change a Manager’s mind.  Making your job look as difficult as it is won’t give them confidence in you and telling them how hard it is just sounds whiny.  So, you know, suck it up and keep on trucking.

  1. Theyare Clueless

Ironically, those same clients that don’t expect you to just match keywords in a job description to a resume, think that’s actually all we do.  They know that after they’ve had 50 interviews with likely candidates that they’ll find the right person.  But 50 interviews? 50 qualified resumes? Really?  One of the biggest parts of our job is separating the junk from the jewels before the interview.  Not everyone can do that.  And frankly, if the Managers could, they would, whether or not they had all the time in the world.

  1. Theythink we’re “Rich”

Okay, so maybe they don’t think every Recruiter they talk to is rich, but they seem to assume that all of our profits go straight into our pocket.  Or that we are grossly overpaid for what we do.  Sure we can find the impossible find, but is it really worth what we charge? And the answer is yes.  Wait a minute, it’s YES.  Especially in 2013 and beyond. The market is thinner, tighter and far more competitive and a professional Recruiter finds you the right person, gift wraps them and delivers them to your door.  We’re good. That’s why you come to us. Evil though we may be…

By Christine Santacroce