There are two professions that dominate LinkedIn: Sales and Recruiting. How is one to handle the massive influx of invites, and what can you get out of it?
As a member of the staffing and recruiting industry, I see LinkedIn as a network of peers. For those who work in ancillary industries, I can think of three major reasons why it’s a good idea to accept invites from recruiters on LinkedIn.
Note: This is from my general experience. Your personal experience may vary, and as always – proceed with caution as not all invites have good intentions. Use your best judgment. However, as an active LinkedIn user for many years, I can speak to the incredible environment and opportunity created by LinkedIn. Let’s get started.
You grow your own network and become visible to more people.
By the nature of their profession, recruiters are typically very well connected. They leverage their countless happy hours, morning meetings, and conference calls by bridging your networks. You are inherently limited in your ability to network yourself, and you never know when you’ll get a LinkedIn InMail with a job opportunity. It never hurts to keep your options open. You don’t have to reach out, and it may be weeks, months, or years until you officially connect in person or over the phone.
You can build a relationship with them so they know what you are looking for and can help you find the next role.
So you’re looking for a new job? There are many reasons to reach out and take that first step to connect with a recruiter. If you wait until you’ job hunting, you’ll likely be at a disadvantage. The best option is to start a relationship early on. This will indicate that you’re already committed to a company. More importantly, don’t let the fact that you’re currently employed detract from the possibility of future opportunities. Reaching out today is better than reaching out in six months when you’ve already decided to leave, or worse – you’ve been laid off.
It will help you stay up-to-date with new roles in your particular industry.
Career paths change over time. Job titles change. Job requirements are modified to include new technologies and tools. One of the best ways to ensure career insulation is to constantly be aware of how your industry – including your company and competitors – is evolving in terms of how they view your job and what’s required or expected in new hires. Even veteran or senior roles may require new methodologies that, regardless how accepted it is within current applicants, will ensure that you stand out if you identify it as a key marker on your own resume.
Now, this is not to say that every recruiter has your best interests in mind. Rarely will you have that perfect connection that occurs when someone reaches out right as you’re exiting your current contract or employer relationship. You will surely begin to receive more messages, and when it turns to spam, LinkedIn helps you flag those individuals who take advantage.
The best thing to do is to connect with a recruiter that is aligned with your location and industry. Use this as an opportunity to grow your network. The right recruiters can be very useful for your career.
Are you sleeping on these valuable recruitment metrics? Check out these three underrated recruitment metrics and why they can help your agency.
Every recruitment agency has a hidden hub of valuable information with the power to transform its business—recruitment data. However, for a variety of excuses—competing priorities, a lack of reporting capabilities, or the reporting intimidation factor—many agencies don’t harness this data. Specifically, many useful and valuable metrics go completely unreported.
What do recruitment agencies track? Gross margin and customer satisfaction—recruitment pros rank these two metrics as the most important indicators of business health and performance, respectively. But there’s a lot of other great metrics that can be important indicators of your business’ performance, profitability, and future. Here are three metrics you may not be tracking but should.
If you read anything about the recruitment industry, you’ve probably read your fair share about the candidate experience. It feels like it’s all anyone can talk about, so surely recruitment agencies are measuring candidate satisfaction, right? After all, how can you accurately gauge the quality of your candidate experience if you’re not doing anything to measure it?
As you have probably predicted by its inclusion on this blog, a large percentage of recruitment agencies are not measuring candidate satisfaction. A whopping 2 out of 5 recruitment pros say don’t measure it on a regular basis, according to a survey of over 1400 recruitment professionals.
And that’s perhaps the reason for this disconnect. Ninety-three percent of recruitment professionals say the candidate experience they provide is good or excellent, while candidates often tell a very different story. For example, only 47 percent of candidates say they felt communication was consistent throughout their hiring process, according to a recent study by CareerBuilder.
Candidate satisfaction isn’t just about measuring the results, however. You can use your data to proactively make changes to your process and ensure a higher rate of satisfied candidates.
Time-to-fill (the number of days a job is available and unfilled) is a super useful metric for measuring the speed and efficiency of your marketing strategy and long-term growth. A poor time-to-fill rate could suggest potentially serious operational efficiencies that could be costing your agency money.
Besides being an indicator of performance, time-to-fill is useful in other ways. It can help you set accurate expectations with a client when setting a time-frame for a placement. Clients cite poor communication as one of their biggest pet peeves, so providing them with an accurate placement prediction can go a long way into being transparent and reliable in the eyes of your clients. You may also want to use-time-to-fill to inform your budget planning and resource allocation.
Yet despite its usefulness, recruitment professionals report little use of the metric. If you want a leg up on the competition, start tracking it now!
This last one is a cheat: recruitment ratios refer not to a single metric, but a whole category of metrics. Ratios are a way of tracking two data sets in relation to one another. For example, the ratio of interviews to placements.
This is critical for recruitment agencies because a candidate placement is the result of a long chain of actions. If any link in the chain is weak, it severely impacts the result. Ratios allow you to analyze every stage of the process to determine any potential inefficiencies.
The five metrics below all represent a fundamental stage in an eventual candidate placement. Track the relationship between each of the metrics to discover if there’s an unusual drop-off between any two stages.
- Client Submission Count
- Internal Submission Count
- Job Count
- Interview Count
- Placement Count
Does cold emailing help people find jobs and get hired?
The opportunity is there, as is cold calling. My post is going to revolve around a behavior and not the part it plays in a job search strategy. This is critical.
To execute a successful cold email campaign, you need to find potential candidates that may already be looking for work and can meet you halfway. After that, your only goal is that they don’t delete the email and immediately dismiss you.
Before I give you the golden email template, consider the following:
What is your target? This can relate to the type of positions you staff for, which types of employers, the industry, and of course location. This will set the stage for where you can find prospective candidates and an idea of how to reach out. You can find current industry professionals online or at in-person events for little to no cost.
How are candidates marketing themselves? Look for candidates that have an up-to-date resume with a full work history that features bullet points explaining the powerful contributions provided to past employers. You never know when they were last denied a raise and may be looking for a new opportunity.
How are candidates networking? The best source of new hires is an employee referral – when a current employee of the organization recommends someone else they know. This is a common best practice for recruiters and hiring managers. Everyone has a network, even the freshly-minted college grads of 2018: their parents, family friends, parents of friends, siblings. If they were close to any professors, they’re a terrific resource.
Armed with this information, how can you find professionals looking for new opportunities?
Email your database asking for referrals. This needs to be informed by the first item in the previous list: Target. Most people aren’t open to moving around for a job, and more importantly, most recruiters and hiring managers are suspicious of someone who says they will. We’ve all been burned by someone who says they’ll move, swears it up and down, but when push comes to shove, they back out.
Identify your network drivers. Ideally, you already have existing relationships with professionals at the company for which you’re staffing, or within the industry at least. Or if not, you know someone who has worked there in the past. How can you find a shortlist of second-degree connections to reach out to? LinkedIn all the way.
Network like it’s your job. We’ve all been at conference happy hours or Chamber mixers and you find those recruiters or sales professionals hunting for leads. It’s a major turn-off, and everyone except them knows it. Relationships start with mutual interests and casual conversation. Be upfront but not overtly so. Your job as a networker isn’t to meet everyone, it’s to be able to introduce someone new to those who can help them meet their unmet needs.
Building a strong baseline as exemplified above may take many weeks, months, or years to accrue. However, if you aren’t committed to being a valuable resource to others, keeping an ear to your industry, and promoting career growth with your friends and family, how do you expect to succeed as a recruiter? These are the fundamentals, and mastering them will lead to many moments when you get to grow your network. In our case, you don’t need to be the loudest recruiter, you just have to listen.
Eventually, you’ll want to know how happy someone is with their current employer, which perks could lead them to consider new job offers, etc. But first you need to focus on the long haul. Don’t scare them away – give them the opportunity to share what’s going on in their life before you talk about yours.
You can even introduce yourself with a cold email. Try the following on for size and comment how it worked for you.
“Hi [name], I see you’ve been at [organization] for a while now. Can you spend about 10 minutes of your time helping me understand what it’s like at [organization]? I want to know what the culture there is like. If you prefer, I’d be happy to buy you a coffee or three after hours. I believe [coffee shop] is near your office, right?
And for those of you who try this, you maybe see that a surprising number of people are indeed open to the request.
Let’s face it, the staffing industry has a negative reputation. Over the years so many organizations have used ineffective tactics to find talent. Whether they’ve bought candidate contact information, scraped emails from websites or cold called off lists of phone numbers, most people have stories about annoying recruiters offering positions that less than desirable for a number of reasons. Because of this, many view recruiters in a bad light. So how do we overcome that negativity? Of course, you have to use sound strategies for sourcing candidates so that your companies brand doesn’t become tainted. But there are a lot of other ways you can brand your company and it’s employees to seem less threatening to candidates.
One effective method is to change the language you use when asking candidates to “apply” when arriving on a landing page. By offering a career consultation or a guide to learning more about staffing and other contract work you can eliminate some of the anxiety around applying. If you go this route, you’ll want to make sure that your recruiters are providing a more consultative & nurturing approach to hiring candidates that apply in this way. You don’t want people to think they’re downloading a guide or being provided a free career consultation only to receive a hard sell on a job they don’t want.
Branding Recruiter Job Titles
That brings me to the next method for lowering the pressure on candidates. The term recruiter has its own negative connotations. That’s why many staffing firms have shifted from naming their sales staff “recruiters” and branding their recruitment employees with a more holistic job title. Below are some recommendations for recruiter job titles with less pressure attached to them:
- Career Consultant
- Career Advisor
- Assignment Coordinator
- Placement Coordinator
- Career Development Strategist
- Personnel Agent
- Personnel Officer
- Human Resources Officer
- Employment Consultant
- Labor Force Advisor
- Personnel Agent
- Personnel Management Specialist
- Placement Consultant
- Candidate Attraction Specialist
- Talent Officer
- Talent Coordinator
- Workforce Specialist
- Talent Selection Agent
- Sourcing Consultant
- Talent Consultant
- Sourcing Specialist
- Sourcing Advisor
- Talent Acquisition Consultant
If you’re not prepared or willing to make that extreme of a shift these job titles offer a little less edge while staying true to traditional job titles for staffing professionals:
- Staff Placement Officer
- Staffing Consultant
- Staffing Advisor
- Recruitment Professional
We’re all familiar with those modifiers for elite recruiters that may or may not help them in their efforts. These include such terms as “Senior”, “Executive”, “National”, “International”, and “Global”. While these terms can make the individual seem more accomplished, they often do nothing to persuade candidates to work with them. They achieve those titles by being good at their job. They’re not good at their job because of the titles. That being said, combining these grandiose modifiers with less aggressive job titles can provide a sense of accomplishment to the recruiter while keeping the vibe less “Boiler Room”.
Implementing New Branding
You might be wondering where these job titles can be most effectively utilized. Other than the obvious places that this will be noticed, like Linkedin and Indeed where recruiters are actively contacting candidates, you probably have recruiter profiles on your website (psst if you don’t, you should). Here you can brand your recruiters as experts and consultants who are going to advise candidates on their best opportunities. This approach can help brands with negative reputations return from the dark side of staffing and become a shining beacon in the darkness, an example for others to aspire to.
When making changes like these it’s best to A/B test so you can view the efficacy of your efforts. You find that the old way of doing things works better in your vertical. Or you may find that by simply changing the way that you brand the application process and your recruiters’ job titles you can improve the image of your brand and place more candidates, thus increasing ROI on your marketing efforts. If you’re interested in learning more about A/B testing and brand building consultation services give us a shout.