our blog gets recruiters thinking

Do you manage/run a recruitment firm or division?  Are you planning on growing in 2013? What are your strategic plans? Here’s some food for thought.

It’s that time of year when we all get giddy about Xmas (well I do), who’s going to win Strictly Come Dancing (again, me) and the new year (I love a fresh start). I’ve been to a few events recently (HRTechEurope, UK Recruiter End of Year Conference and Tru) and have taken away some great notions on how the tech/social world will affect the recruitment industry.


Bring your own device - are you really geared up for this or are you simply looking at it as a means to save money on kit? (See previous blogs on BYOD).  Everyone’s talking BYOD, but many IT departments are using it as an excuse to BYOB (bottle) – BYOD is a strategic consideration, not an economic one. What’s your strategy for BYOD?

Social Media

It’s here to stay so how you use it is critical. Letting your staff loose on it is not a strategy. Your clients have as much access to candidate and competitor data as you do (and your candidates have this access too!). How are you going to be more competitive, bearing in mind your competitors now include your clients and candidates.

I met a client yesterday who feels that until now he’s been on the fence about social media, and now he sees his competitors using it to give them an advantage.  Thus, he wants a strategy – he wants to know what he should be using it for, how to protect his business, pipeline and brand. What’s your plan?

Do You Have the Right Marketing and IT Staff?

IT Managers and Marketing Execs are not necessarily going to be the strategic heads you need in your business to manage this new digital world. Just because your marketer is young, knows how to use a mouse and has a Facebook page does not mean that they are ready to devise your strategy. Equally, IT bods who are great at fixing are not always best placed to advise you on cloud, apps and other systems (which may make them redundant).

What plans have you got to 1. Understand it 2. Capitalise on it 3. Reduce the inevitable risk that digital brings?

Another question which I often ask clients bent on programming the hell out of their own systems “are you a software development company or a recruitment firm?” Think about whether now is the time to dump the constant, distracting fixing of stuff in favour of a new “set it and forget” system.  Few people in your organisation benefit from an over-engineered system.

Recruitment Marketing

Your workforce are now the marketing department (whether you like it or not). What plans have you made to capitalise on this?  Bear in mind the emergence of new apps/systems that will help you with this task – and I’m not talking about simply going crazy with job postings on multiple platforms.

Equally (if you are an agency) consider that your brand is just as important as the brand you are recruiting on behalf of. If your brand sucks online, you’ll attract less active candidates, the passive ones will totally ignore you (even if they know you exist) and you’ll have a tough time persuading cynical clients to work with you. After all, why do they need a recruiter when they have LinkedIn, right?


A vital part of any recruitment role. Some roles demand more time than others on sourcing. Some firms have sourcers to run this task in isolation. With the data you are surfing being accessible to everyone, what are you doing to skill-up your workforce and what apps/systems are you using to help you? It’s worth identifying what your average sourcing “spend” is – how long do your staff spend sourcing per week? What kinds of results are they getting? Are you adding this to your cost per hire?

I often hear that my clients can’t find the right talent (both internally and externally), but they are often using old methods to source candidates digitally – remember that only 21% of working professionals are job seekers, the rest haven’t considered optimising their profiles to be found by recruiters.

A Network or a Community?

When you gather data/create a group on LinkedIn/Facebook, what are you actually doing?  Creating a data dump or a database?  Please be realistic with yourself and your motives.  I hear terms like “talent pools” and “communities” and often people just mean “list of candidates.”

Going forward if you really want to harness the power of your data you need to work with it, talk to and with it, rather than just log it.  This takes time and effort – and overall you need a plan and a resource to make it work.

Lots of lovely tech coming your way…are you ready?

share Lisa Jones's blog

what do you think?