That noisy thing on your desk. It’s the Phone.. Pick it up!

I read “Recruiter Daily” well, daily, always enjoying the gems Jo Knox brings us.

Today I say a post called

Poor response rates turning off top candidates

Robert Godden was responsible for the piece. I don’t know Robert, but I’d like to thank him for getting my mind working again. Robert experimented on job ads which had directed people to call someone specifically. Here are some direct takeaways from this article (for those who don’t want to click on the link.

If the best candidate for a job generally calls to ask about it, recruiters are missing out on the cream of the crop by failing to be available or respond to messages

There were some scary and damming numbers in regards to calls being returned by Recruiters.

This really doesn’t surprise me. Recruiters operate in the NOW. We’ve all been there, spend a few hours in meeting, get back to your desk, the flashing light on your phone is going nuts, your email is full and before your bum makes an inprint on your chair.. the phone rings.

I want to add some advice in here, of a lesson I learned a long time ago.

When I was a young Recruiter, constant messages got out of hand for me. We had run a huge campaign for a new contract my organisation had won. It was amazing the applications we were receiving. We’d stirred up that much interest, that after a 1-2 hour block of interviews I would return to my desk, via the receptionists desk and picking up a 2 inch thick pile of “message slips” (yes pre email!).

This made me sick with stress, never seeing the bottom of the pile, annoying people everywhere. When I’d call back the call backs, I’d miss the new calls coming through. etc etc etc. We actually had to hire telemarketers to call people back for us. It was huge.

But I learned that I was really bad at calling people back. I’d make time in my diary for it, but the deal of the moment kept getting in the way. I’d feel I was way to busy to take the call, when it came in, kept up at my “crucial” bit of work with the intention of calling back straight away. I rarely did, well that day anyway. I was very down on myself.

I thought about it over one weekend, and decided to change tack. I’d take every call when I was at my desk. Return every call as soon as I sat at my desk and see if I missed out on doing any work. I made the calls my priority.

Funnily enough… it worked. I got through everything. Taking those calls would normally take less than a minute. Returning the calls, also took no time, the timeliest part of it was the notion of “sigh” I have so much to do.. where do I start?” with that I wouldn’t normally start anywhere. I took the plunge, bit the bullet, add whatever other cliche you want here.

Bottom line, TAKE THE CALLS. Don’t screen, it’s rude and you probably won’t get to call them back and you’ll look bad. If you miss a call, don’t wait 5 days to call them back, do it NOW! rub that off your to-do list ASAP! I agree with the start of Roberts post, the majority of the good candidates want to talk to you before sending a resume, hiring the best should be your main KPI. Great Recruiters have the best candidates, Great Recruiters work with their candidates, Great Recruiters are timely and responsive to clients and candidates (good, bad and indifferent!).

Great Recruiters think the phone is the number one Recruitment tool.

Great Recruiters talk to people

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Posted on February 2, 2010, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Thanks for quoting my research!
    The article you refer to has polarised recruiters into those that agree that there's a problem, and those who think everything is just fine.
    I know which group I'd hire from

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