5 Things New Recruiters Should Know

5 Things New Recruiters Should Know

The role of a Recruiter changes daily due to the evolving workforce. We adapt by creating new tools, discarding old procedures, and contemplate how to find that ideal candidate who will impact our business. I recently refined my HR view to primarily focus on the recruiting role. These are five things that I’ve found I should know to be a successful recruiter.

5 Things New Recruiters Should Know


#1 – Know Your Product

5 Things Every Recruiter Should KnowRecruiters should know their products. There are no ifs, ands, etc. It is fact – successful recruiters know the products they sell. And, every recruiter has the exact same product! What is that product that is the same for every recruiter? The answer goes beyond the goods and/or services provided by the organization/business – however, that is a component. The answer – the product – is the business itself.

A recruiter sells the business to potential candidates just as a salesperson sales a product. Take a highly specialized role that needs a specific and in-demand type of candidate. What if the ideal candidate must choose between your company and another – same job but different companies.

Knowing your business – your product – might help you seal the deal.

#2 – Know Your Candidate

Recruiters should know their candidates. Prepare to justify why we recommend candidate X over candidate Y. Always study the tools at our disposal and maximize their benefit. We should ask open questions instead of closed ones.  We should actively listen. We should, to some extent, play the role of Sherlock Holmes as we uncover hidden discrepancies or validate experience and education.

#3 – Know to Document

This rule might apply – or should apply – to any profession. For Recruiters and HR, it is not an added bonus; instead, it is a vital necessity. We should document….document…and document again. Consistent documentation provides you with two important tools.

Those two tools are:

  1. Consistency – If you document your process (interviews, calls, etc.) and do so consistently, you show a history of action that has become your process. In turn, your process has been the same for all candidates regardless of age, sex, national origin, or any other class protected under Title VII.
  2. Record for Recollection – I call my notes my Records of Recollection. Why? Well, imagine how many people we interview in a day, week, month. Have you ever had someone ask: Do you remember So-and-so? Look back in your files and see. Maybe you do remember, but maybe you don’t.


#4 – Know You Will Fail (and that it’s okay)

Recruiters will fail at finding that ideal candidate. We will place the wrong candidate into the wrong position. It is inevitable. So, let’s accept it. Our failure is inevitable. WE have FAILED.  I have (or will) FAIL. We are ALL FAILURES….and it’s a good thing!!!!

Is it out of your system yet? Failure accepted?

Knowing we will fail and embracing that fact helps remove the dread of the eventuality. Once we’ve accepted it, we can review what went wrong. We can take what we learned and be better. If we never fail – we never learn.


#5 – Know Yourself

What do you need to know to succeed in your role as a Recruiter?5 Things New Recruiters Should Know That is a powerful question for anyone – just substitute your own job title. Know your strengths as well as your weaknesses. Focus on your strengths and strengthen your weaknesses. Know that YOU have something to learn from others – just as they have something to learn from YOU.

Recruiters have a POWERFUL role within the organization. We have the potential to hire the next Steve Jobs, Oprah Winfrey, LeBron James, or Warren Buffet. (Someone at some point hired them.) Know that you can make a difference.  Someone recently told me, “Thank you for hiring me back in 2007.”

Think of the power you hold when looking at your next resume. Think of the impact you can make – and make it!

What suggestions do you have about things a recruiter must know?


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