When you’re new to recruiting, the job may feel overwhelming. The position requires far more than just finding a potential candidate and submitting their materials to the hiring manager. If you’re looking to excel as a recruiter, keep these tips in mind:
- Know how to network: It may sound obvious, but many new recruiters overlook the importance of bolstering their network. You should be networking every day, and shouldn’t rely on only one method to do so. Call someone who has an interesting background, reach out on Twitter, or send a message on LinkedIn. Strike up a conversation at a cocktail party, and meet friends of friends. Even if you don’t have an opening that matches that person’s skills and needs at that time, it’s always good to have a lot of connections to work off of.
- Get a mentor: You can learn a lot just by watching a more veteran recruiter at work. Notice how they talk on the phone or leave voice mails, and find out what kinds of tricks they use to find the best candidates for an open position. It’s often good to have more than one mentor, as no two recruiters work in exactly the same way. If your company doesn’t set you up with a mentor when you come on board, do your own research in order to find someone you admire. Many people are more than happy to help coach new recruiters to success.
- You don’t just have to recruit within your area of expertise: Some recruiters think that they have to recruit people for jobs with which they are familiar. In reality, quite the opposite is true. Thanks to the Internet, you can do research about any field. Just because you know nothing about engineering, doesn’t mean you lack the tools to recruit for this kind of position. With a little understanding and an open mind, it’s possible to learn about any field. Ask plenty of questions. People who work in that field can often provide you with the insight you need to successfully recruit for that position.
- Get on the phone: Whether it’s out of laziness or fear, some recruiters try to do all of their recruiting strictly online. They rely heavily on social media and shy away from the phone. While this may work for some people, it makes it harder for a new recruiter to be successful right away. Social media is certainly a powerful tool for recruiters, but you can’t be afraid to pick up the phone and make a call. Talking to someone on the phone forges a more powerful connection than e-mail or social media alone. Though it may seem intimidating at first, eventually you’ll get more comfortable and will have no problem making a few calls.
Lastly, don’t forget to follow up. Far too many people have lost great prospects because they dropped the ball after making the initial contact. If you have to, keep a spreadsheet that reminds you when you need to follow up and with whom. This is a huge part of the job, and it’s one you have to master in order to be successful.
Are you new to recruiting? What have you learned about the field so far? If you’re a recruiting veteran, how did you get comfortable with your position?