What sours the recruitment industry’s perception?

As a previous candidate and a present recruiter, I feel qualified in saying, not everyone has had the most favourable experience with recruiters and the subsequent processes.

Keeping the application process seamless and supportive is essential to maintain talent and keep clients happy.

This is easier said than done, of course, candidates are people after all, and from time to time we all have unexpected personal issues that prevent us from progressing.

This is where many recruiters get it wrong.

Perhaps I’m biased as at HR Heads, we’re specifically recruiting for Human Resources, where a human and understanding approach is central to our activity and taking time to fully comprehend a candidate’s situation is vital.

Being compassionate about a person’s apprehensions allows for stronger relationships to form.

Candidates aren’t commodities they’re people who need support transitioning into that next step in their career.

Understanding their pain points and being able to adjust their criteria allows for far more accurate sourcing than just noting down that they’re withdrawing from a position.

Recently, I’ve had numerous incidents where a candidate wished to withdraw, I took some time, understood their circumstances, and really understood their requirements going forward.

The term ‘ghosting’ is often thrown around when asking candidates about their experience with other recruiters.

If a candidate doesn’t work out either withdrawing or they’re simply not the right fit, communication is king.

Leaving a candidate out to dry is the worst thing a recruiter could do in terms of reputation and general responsibility.

The fear of the unknown is particularly anxiety-inducing and should be avoided at all costs.

The role of a recruiter is better outlined as a professional plate spinner and forgetting a call is human nature.

Be human.

Reach out to that candidate you forgot to call last week and pick up the phone, start with an apology be open about how busy it is, it was an honest mistake and then build up that rapport for further progression.

The main route however I see some recruiters take is to have something slip their mind, they briefly remember and then think it’s too late to respond. It’s irrelevant, reach out, one person to another, and build up that honesty and trust.

The issues of ghosting and candidate withdrawal can be solved with the same fix.

Being human.

Pushing past that wall of recruitment vs candidate vs hiring manager and instead bridging those gaps with understanding and competency.

By injecting the recruitment world with some vital sensitivity and leniency, the industry would get the reputation of supportive one, which at its heart is what it should strive to be.