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Why Recruiters Make It Tough to Get A Job

by Joseph Murphy

John Sullivan wrote an interesting article on why it is tough to get a job for ERE. He presents issues of candidate flow and recruiter behaviors, and supports many of his assertions with data from various surveys.

He pulled together some of the interesting facts about recruiter behavior. For additional detail, readers can go to the Candidate Experience Award and down load the 2012 white paper. While there, consider participating in the 2013 survey process.

John reinforces the fact that the vast majority of recruiter effort is candidate rejection. So it begs the question? What is your rejection process? (Here is a string of articles and video interviews on improving your rejection process.) The Candidate Experience Award winners have exceptional communication methods built into their process. In fact, one brand conscious organization knows that each candidate may already be, or could be a customer. They have a Brand Manifesto which mandates each candidate be personally dispositioned. Think about that level of commitment to your candidate experience.

While not a element of this particular company's employment application process, many companies are adding a layer of candidate evaluation that requires more effort than submitting a resume. Treating candidates as decision makers and providing an interactive, educational and evaluation-based application reduces resume spam, gathers more useful information and supports better hiring outcomes. Better data = Better decisions for both the candidate and the recruiter. Well designed pre-employment assessment does just that.

Evidence-based hiring methods often document that previous experience is not the best predictor of success on the job. As such, the six second ‘wonder-look’ may indeed be placing emphasis on the wrong data. This is reinforced by John's point that between 30 and 50 percent of hiring decisions are determined a failure. What other business process is allowed to operate with such a high level of staffing waste and rework?

John suggests it is time for a more scientific approach, and offers the candidate a few suggestions. There are sound alternatives for recruiters as well. Perhaps it is time for a shift from the hope-filled key word search to the research-filled capabilities evaluation. Companies that use HR analytics and evidence-based management for staffing process improvement achieve higher success rates. Learn more about this discipline here.