Tech Recruitment Mistakes - I can do all this myself
When you have an open position it’s easy to think, I can do this all by myself as people often think it should on paper be easy enough task. I’ll get some candidates in, interview them, make an offer to the best one, agree on the deal and then voila, done! In some rare cases, this is possible however, more times than not, it’s not. What you have to remember is that you are dealing with people- who can consistently change their minds and when you are the only person involved in the process you can often see the whole process through rose-tinted glasses thinking nothing could go wrong. If you have more than one position open then this get's a lot more complex.
Typically most tech leaders who think it’s possible to do it all themselves end up spending time writing the job specification then they post an advertisement wait for the applications to start coming in and hope for the perfect match.
They then start to review all the applications, then have to call each one to pre-screen them to see if they could be a potential fit. Then in most cases for tech job they would then conduct a test which they have to spend time sourcing or create one themselves. If all this goes well then make the offer to the candidate directly and try to negotiate the deal. Once this is complete then they have to draw up the contract send it out then stay in touch with the person up till the start date and also plan the on-boarding. When you look at it like that you soon realise that’s a lot of work for one person to do let alone run a team or business as well. Recruiting is a team sport and you have to pull on all the resources possible to help get the job done.
Why it's a mistake;
In reality, recruitment is a very time-consuming piece of work. The reason I see this is a mistake for tech or business leaders is that recruitment should be 10% / 20% of your job. If you allocate all your time to recruitment you will have no time to complete other important tasks in the business. When dealing directly with candidates you might not be able to uncover concerns as candidates often feel awkward voicing them directly without having a 3rd party to discuss their thoughts & feelings as they worry it will impact their chances of getting a job. If anything negative comes up, they will not feel so comfortable about opening up. If they also have other options on the go, likely, they will not inform you so you will be unaware of what competition you have. When tech leaders try to do all the recruitment themselves, it leads to them spending far too much time trying to manage all the processes. This leaves them to quickly burn out and to lose the enthusiasm & personal touch to their recruitment. You will not be able to uncover any hidden objections and the ability to know what is happening behind the scenes, which in the end, can lose their ability to negotiate effectively or close the deal.
My honest advice here is to partner with an amazing recruitment business or talent acquisition partner you can trust. If you don't know one, speak to your network - ask around for recommendations or if selecting a recruitment agency do your research as it can be a bit of a minefield. A good indication is to look at the specific recruiter's references which should be pretty visible on their LinkedIn profile or website. Recruitment should be 10 / 20% of your time but for an agency or talent acquisition partner it’s 100% of theirs - so make full use of it and pick one that gives you results, as it will take so much of the core time out of recruitment you don’t really have time for and more time into your business. Ultimately what you are paying a recruitment agency or talent partner for is taking all this unnecessary time out of your day and to ensure the search & selection is done more effectively.
It's worth bearing in mind when agreeing on terms of business and to be sure you are getting the best service possible you will have to look at it from their perspective. Recruiters will tend to work a lot harder for you if they are working exclusively as it’s a better deal for them and they can feel confident they would not be wasting their time or having to compete with too many variables. When you think of it, exclusivity doesn't cost you anything. Try exchanging exclusivity for the price but not too low that the recruiter will feel it’s not worth it. Typically in tech recruitment, the market average is a success-based model at 25% of the first year's earnings.
By Paul Turner - Director / Co-Founder - DigiTech Search