Archive for April, 2013

April 15, 2013

A Disturbing Trend in Recruitment

There are so many exciting innovations and best practices in recruitment these days that are helping to evolve our function to the next level. New recruitment sourcing tools and technologies are being launched every day that promise to make the attraction of talent easier for an organization. Organizations are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on sourcing campaigns to develop stronger talent sourcing channels portraying themselves as a top employer. But when did recruitment become primarily just about sourcing talent? What happened to the days when recruiters were the critical interviewers and assessors of talent for an organization?

I started my career in the mid 1990’s with one of the leading global management consulting firms where I learned the value of recruitment. This organization knew talent was the key to their organizational success and invested heavily in recruitment. Recruitment wasn’t simply a function of Human Resources but was an organizational priority with every manager and leader across the business playing a key role in the recruitment process. Every individual within the organization who interviewed candidates had to successfully complete an intense 2 day behavioural interviewing training session – and on average only 75% of participants “passed” the training session including recruiters. If you didn’t successfully complete the training session you weren’t allowed to interview candidates – until you successfully completed the training. It was as intense a training session as I have ever participated in and at the time I didn’t fully comprehend the significance of the initiative.

Looking back at the behavioural interview training it taught me the key to interviewing – don’t simply take the candidate’s initial response to an interview question as sufficient for what your organization is looking for. Skilled interviewers continue to need to probe their candidates to uncover, identify and validate the needed behaviours for them to be successful in the role.

I work with a number of organizations of all sizes across many industries who ask my organization to do Recruitment Capability Assessments™ to provide a fresh set of eyes on their recruitment approach and practices. Over the past few years I have noticed a disturbing trend primarily within large organizations – Recruiters are no longer interviewing candidates. Recruiters seem to spend more of their time screening candidates, not interviewing and providing their business leaders with a deep assessment of the candidates.

I am not pointing the finger at the Recruiters for this – my finger is firmly pointed at the organizations they recruit for who are paying their Recruiters to be process managers of too many requisitions. Many of the Recruiters at the organizations we work with these days are recruiting for 50+ open requisitions at one time which isn’t effective. These Recruiters simply don’t have the time to provide more than a basic assessment of the candidates to their Hiring Managers and often don’t even meet the candidates in-person. They simply screen and pass the candidates over to the Hiring Managers to provide an in-depth assessment of the candidates.

A good sign over the past year is that organizations are starting to redevelop their recruitment strategies in partnership with Firms such as The Talent Company. They are looking for an expert review and assessment of their organization’s Recruitment practices including the strategy, processes, policies, programs, tools, technology, and Recruitment talent. As part of this review and assessment we have found a large gap in the organizations ability to properly assess their candidates going through the process. In addressing this gap, we are working with our clients to re-engineer their recruitment process, address the heavy open requisition load on their Recruiters and train their Recruiters, Hiring Managers and HR professionals on effectively interviewing and assessing talent. It’s getting back to “Old School” recruitment and making a positive impact to this disturbing trend.


Simon Parkin is the Practice Leader for Human Resources and Talent Solutions at The Talent Company –

Simon is recognized as a global thought leader in the acquisition and management of talent and has successfully transformed the HR and Talent functions for organizations of all sizes. Simon works closely with clients to build, develop and innovate their Recruitment, Talent and HR functions. He is a former global leader of HR, Recruitment and Talent for a Fortune 100 company. Simon is a featured speaker at a number of HR and Recruitment conferences across North America and an author of many acclaimed articles on innovative Recruitment, Talent and HR trends and best practices. Simon’s full profile can be found at

Simon can be reached at


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