6a010536babee3970c01156f3f23d2970b Are you manufacturing your own recruiting office level or desk level recession?  Not sure?  Let me ask you a few quick questions.  These are along the lines of“you know if you’re a red neck if….”

You know if you are manufacturing your own recession if:

• Your activity is dropping because “why bother calling anyone–no one is hiring!”
• You have begun more aggressively using job boards since there is “so much good talent on the street”.
• You haven’t yet done your 2009 recruiting firm business plan because “why bother!”
• You have scrapped any plans on hiring because “companies are not hiring”.
• You have stopped or are planning on halting your investment in training and attending recruiting seminars to “save” some money.

OK, you get the point; I could keep going with at least a dozen more points.  This is my third recession and I see very similar patterns from both the marketplace, from recruiting firm owners in general and from my clients.  Most tend to unconsciously do the opposite of what they SHOULD be doing to make it through the next twelve to eighteen months if history is any guide.

1) If you are not taking your key recruiting numbers, i.e. call count, marketing and recruiting presentation count, Job Orders, first time interviews, etc at least weekly start today!

When you do not measure these highly predictive numbers you get fewer of them, PERIOD! It is insane that recruiting firm owners I am speaking with regularly talk about people making 30 or 40 calls a day and simultaneously are wondering why they are struggling.  That is the first thing I fix.  Measure numbers at least weekly and set and maintain standards on presentation, job order and first interview activity.2) Job Boards should produce NO MORE than one in five candidates for first time interviews.  Probably even fewer.  Justifying your fee in this marketplace puts more pressure on us to uncover the talent they can not get on their own.  In good times we can get away with this a bit because internal HR is less budget sensitive and is more overwhelmed.  In a down turn, they have fewer open requisitions to work and they will dig deeper on the boards.  What do you think goes on in their minds when they consistently get the same candidates from you as they get from the boards?

Watch for part 2 in the next few days.  Let us know what you think by putting your opinion below!