No, Recruiting Is Not Dead

by Sharlyn Lauby on February 26, 2009

I’m a little surprised at the lack of convo about recruiting right now.

While I’ve spent the majority of my career as a generalist, I’ve always realized that the recruiting function can make or break me.  Most of my career has been directed toward fixing HR departments.  And, in my experience, I’ve found there is a correlation between broken HR departments and broken recruiting functions.  Example – if the recruiting function isn’t working as it should, managers complain that HR isn’t (a) finding people fast enough or (b) sourcing qualified candidates.  Then they add, if HR would get their recruiting act together, the operation could deliver (a) good service and (b) on time.

Even though we’re currently experiencing job losses…there still needs to be conversation about recruiting.  I know, I know…your company isn’t hiring right now.  So what?  Just because you’re not hiring doesn’t mean that you should forget about the fact that, at some point, you will be hiring.

So just as your company is working hard right now to increase profits, the person responsible for recruiting should be:

  • Thinking about the next big thing your company is working on.
  • Assessing if your current employees are able to deliver that new product or service.
  • Determining the competencies your future employees need.
  • Building the structure to find those individuals

There are a lot of talented people in the job market right now…as you’re working through your plans for 2009…are you losing sight of your people strategy?

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David Porter February 26, 2009 at 4:21 pm

Right on Sharlyn! I am telling my clients that recruiting is more important now that ever. If they are hiring any position, they should expect a tidal wave of apps and have to be even more vigilent in sifting through to find the “right” person. Great stuff!

Ben Yoskovitz February 27, 2009 at 12:45 pm

You won’t get any argument from me. Recruiting is always important, even if you’re not actively hiring. Frankly, you should always be in hiring mode, no matter what — you never know when that A-player will show up.

Now is the time to figure out the longer term recruitment strategy for your organization. Otherwise you’ll be on the outside looking in when things DO pick up, and back to doing things the way you always have, which wasn’t necessarily effective.

Mary Lorenz February 27, 2009 at 5:42 pm

Ben hit the nail on the head – “you should always be in hiring mode, no matter what.” Isn’t that essentially why there’s so much conversation around social networking right now? Where do you think you’re going to find your next great talent. Thanks for this great post – and for reminding us that if we lose momentum now (trying as it might be to keep it going), it’s only going to be that much harder to get it back later on.

ATM Executive Research October 13, 2011 at 11:42 am

Recruiting is still more important now than ever before, especially in the current economic downturn as talent individuals are reluctant to move. Hiring for any role, you can expect a flood of CV’s from mediocre candidates.

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