With all the focus on sourcing, the candidate experience, mobile access and employer branding, the hiring manager experience can be a low priority within organizations. Why is the hiring manager experience something that warrants attention and cultivating? Simply, the hiring manager plays a pivotal role in the talent acquisition process. The decision to hire usually rests with them, so ensuring they have all the needed information and technology-enabled tools at their disposal is a start in the right direction.
Is It Really Us vs. Them?
This question is a big part of the problem. Until everyone involved in the hiring process realizes all people are key players, there’s going to be an “us vs. them” attitude. Ensuring the hiring manager has access to necessary tools and information creates a consistently efficient process. Technology-enabled communication tools can create an atmosphere for valuable exchanges of dialogue and information that promote proactivity between recruiters and hiring managers, aligning both for greater efficiency.
Prepare On The Front-end
Being prepared ensures that both the hiring manager and candidate have a good experience during the hiring process. This is where good and timely listening skills come into play. Listen to the hiring manager, and step up to get the needed information to begin a strategy. It’s a waste of everyone’s time if information the hiring manager needs is provided after candidates are presented, or worse — after candidates have interviewed. Fine tuning the strategy on the front-end is a sound recruiting practice.
Some of the basic questions recruiters should ask the hiring manager upfront are:
- Do I have all the information about the job duties and what are the priority skills?
- Do you have specific qualifying questions you want me to ask?
- Within what timeframe are you looking to hire?
- Are there any knock-out questions you want me to ask the candidates?
- What qualities have you noticed as being essential to the success of this position?
- What traits did the last person in this role have that made him/her a good cultural fit for the position?
- Are there any past interviewees you want contacted?
- Are you open to paying relocation?
- Do you want the team members to meet the finalists?
For the recruiter, being the subject-matter expert on the practice of recruiting enables the fundamentals to support his/her success to kick into action. Keep in mind, the hiring manager is an expert in his/her field of work, and understands the team’s culture, as well. A good hiring manager will rely on the knowledgeable advice of the recruiter to help steer the process and keep it running efficiently. Have a plan-of-action in place and make recommendations so you both know how the course of events will progress, and develop a flexible mind-set to revisit the plan-of-action. This can, often times, help keep everything moving forward and help everyone involved to weather hiccups that may occur.
Keep Calm And Carry On
Not all positions are easy to fill; knowing this upfront helps the recruiter plan a solid strategy and reduce stress for everyone. If you’re an inexperienced recruiter, be sure to share your strategy with the hiring manager. They may have prior knowledge with filling the position and can share what has and hasn’t worked in the past. Incorporating keen listening skills and being flexible to accept this advice can create better efficiencies. Consider all courses of action and any direction provided by the hiring manager, then evaluate which are best.
Keep in mind, not all positions can be sourced using the same strategy. Some positions will be high touch and others a matter of using your pipeline to generate leads. Of course the more inclusive the strategy, the better chance recruiters have for sourcing and recruiting highly qualified candidates. Use technology to help with communications and networking, but remember, technology is there to streamline the process and not to eliminate the need for human intervention. Listening well and utilizing technology-enabled communications are basics needed by the talented recruiter.
Hiring is a team effort which requires exemplary communications between all the stakeholders involved. It really does take a village to hire.