Confessions of a Failed Recruiter 

A job recruiter’s role is to find the best talent to fill their company’s open positions. It’s a position that requires a keen eye for identifying top talent quickly, an ability to sell the company’s vision, and a knack for navigating the complicated and often-changing hiring landscape.

However, even the best recruiters can stumble and fall short, leaving a trail of missteps and regret in their wake. From overlooking promising candidates to not optimizing their performance based on data, this blog shares the confessions that a failed recruiter may advise others of. 

5 secrets from a failed recruiter

Below, we’ve outlined five common confessions you might hear from a so-called failed recruiter along with actionable steps you can take to combat these tendencies.

Secret #1: I used bland branding every time I advertised a role.

When it comes to recruiting, some recruiters use the same basic job descriptions every time they advertise a role. At the very most, they may even use artificial intelligence (AI) to generate job descriptions enhanced for SEO, but let’s be honest — they probably didn’t edit the descriptions after. 

This is a huge no go for hiring, as generic job descriptions don’t do recruiters any justice. What separates great job descriptions from the rest is what they say about the company, so job recruiters need to make sure that brand is clear in the summary portion of the description. While it’s very common to use job description templates or use AI to jumpstart the writing process, there are only so many ways you can frame a job description to convey specific duties of the roles along with hints of the workplace culture. Job descriptions are sometimes the first interactions that candidates have with a company, so recruiters aren’t doing their employers any favors by keeping their openings so robotic. 

Secret #2: I played favorites with the candidates. 

Some people tend to rely on their gut when it comes to big decisions — and that includes the people they add to their team. Sometimes, they can even make decisions in spite of what they saw on paper, like if the candidate was a rockstar but they expressed interest in a movie fandom that the recruiter felt differently about. 

Only listening to instincts in the hiring process allows unconscious biases that job recruiters aren’t even aware of to dominate my hiring decisions. For instance, maybe a recruiter tends to be more forgiving to applicants who they subconsciously favored, glossing over red flags on their applications to move things along. Hiring this way does not create a diverse or inclusive work environment, since the same types of people are the ones who are continually added to the team. Recruiters need to combine what they’re feeling about a candidate with the qualifications on their resumes, as relying too heavily on either one can lead to bad hiring decisions.

Secret #3: I didn’t take notes during interviews.

No one is really a multitasker — it’s very difficult to listen to a conversation, thoughtfully engage the speaker, scan a list of questions, and take notes effectively all at the same time. But that’s why some people aren’t cut out for recruiting. If a recruiter can’t take notes during their interviews, it can lead to a significant lack of accurate information and ultimately unfair evaluations later in the hiring process. 

Capturing insights in real time is so, so important in the hiring process. Some people remember names while others remember faces — but you won’t remember anything if you don’t try. While interviews should feel like a natural conversation from the applicant’s end, failure to document findings can lead any recruiter to forget key details or easily confuse one candidate for another.

Secret #4: I never tracked hiring metrics.

Five years ago, recruiters primarily needed to post their open roles on generalized job boards like Indeed and wait for the applications to start rolling in. But times have changed considerably since then, creating the need to follow recruiting best practices just to remain competitive in hiring.

Hiring has changed so much and in order to move in this competitive market, job recruiters need to look at data in order to create strategies that attract and retain the talent they need. Available HR data can help organizations follow recruiting best practices like optimal applicant review times, overall time to hire, and more to identify bottlenecks in the hiring process and measure process compliance.

Secret #5: I’m super disorganized.

Organization is not everyone’s strong suite, and when they’re in a recruiting position, this can spell disaster. Between keeping track of interviews, candidate communications, new applications, and everything in between, there’s ample room for crucial tasks to slip through the cracks.  And that’s bad news for employers everywhere, as 33% of candidates who admitted to ghosting in the past said they did so because the company seemed disorganized.

With applicant tracking systems (ATS) like Hireology, however, these issues are a pain point of the past. Everything that job recruiters need to quickly open jobs, review applicants, conduct interviews, and more is all in one centralized location so recruiters can easily keep track of candidate interactions. The best ATSs allow for transparency and insight into individual rooftop operations for decentralized businesses. 

Do any of these secrets sound like they could be from your team?

If any of these issues sound familiar, it might not be that you have a horde of failed recruiters on your hands — they might just need better technology to perform better. To see how your team can hire better talent faster with Hireology, schedule a demo today!



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