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Let’s all do the “Recruitment Robot”?

by MAX JONES / Friday 7th October 2016

Dancing Robot

For those of you out there who are familiar with the 6ft 8 ex-England centre forward, Peter Crouch, “the robot” & therefore the title of this blog today will stir up some unfavourable memories for you. For that, I am sorry. For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure of watching Peter Crouch (a man whose physic screams out everything but world class footballer) celebrate a goal by doing what can only be described as a feeble attempt at some sort of “robot”, you won’t have known, but you will appreciate that football & robotics do not go hand in hand…

Another area where the influence of robots are becoming increasing stronger & up for debate is in the world of recruitment.

Technological growth, the rise of social media & the emergence of functions like LiveChat are influencing the way recruitment professionals work & see their role in the recruitment process. There is a concern that the rise of technology & the automation functions that are available nowadays will dehumanise the recruitment process & essentially make the role of the 360 recruiter, redundant. This concern is misplaced.

Rather than viewing the rise of technology as a rise in replacement, we should really view the growth as a chance for top quality agencies to align themselves with the changing landscape of the market. If you think about what candidates & clients actually value in the recruitment process, it is that human touch. Therefore we should view technology as making that personal relationship between recruiters & clients/candidates that much smoother, slicker & more effective. Great agencies bring personalization, empathy & respect to every process, every relationship & every placement – technology does, & will continue, to sit nicely beside this.

Robotics are a recruiter’s friend & a footballer’s enemy!
What the surge in technology has magnified however, is how important the human influence is in the recruitment process. So let’s explore two themes that will help humanize the process of recruiting, regardless of technology!

The importance of personalized communication
I’m sure we’ve all got the odd InMail from a recruiter in our time. You know the classic “Hi **insert name here**, I’ve been having a good look at your profile & have an amazing opportunity I wanted to talk to you about” etc…

How did you feel when you got that? Respected? Valued? Special? Loved? 1 of 100 they blanket emailed? Now I don’t want this to turn into another one of those “recruiter bashing” blogs you see out there but I want to highlight the importance of understand the prospect before you even open up a conversation.

And while it may seem hard to add some personalized touches to your “reach outs”, funnily enough once you get into the habit of making it a must it’s incredibly easy. For example some quick & easy ways to do this would be to:

  • Find a mutual connection & leverage that
  • Find an interesting similarity
  • Give them a genuine compliment &/or praise
  • Google the prospect & if any articles or content comes up, add that in too

One of my personal favourites when approaching experienced recruiters who I feel might want to start their own businesses, is to use geographical examples to leverage the support you could offer them. For example if I were to approach a construction branch manager in Manchester I would leverage the fact that over the past 3 months we’ve support 3 recruiters from the same market around Manchester & therefore really understand what it takes to support recruiters coming out of the environment. Using genuine examples of companies SSG have supported in the sector/location in the past really does help when approaching new prospects about your opportunity. The same can be applied for any agency.  

Make the application process focused & real
For example, let’s say we approached someone on LinkedIn about an opportunity to work for themselves. & let’s say the quality of the message meant that we got a response & they were interested. Great! What now?

Once a prospect shows interest you need an individualised plan of action to walk them through the process there after. For example, you should understand the candidate & then send over links to website pages on your site they might find useful, videos of previous relationships you’ve had in the same market, & some more information about the role they are interested in!

I know it sounds simplistic & I am sure you achievers out there are already utilising these techniques & more, but it’s such an important thing to remember in an environment where there are so many new technologies out there that the personal touch of recruitment (the thing that makes you as good as you are!) might have a tendency to get lost! 

As ever I would really value any input from you guys reading this today – how have you found the last 24 months & the rise of technology? Has it increased or hindered your processes? Have you felt any impact whatsoever?