Do you have a defined, strategic interview process or do you just bring Account Executive prospects in and “sell the heck” out of them? Do you call them in, tell them how much money they can make, ask a couple of brilliant questions like “Where do you see yourself in 3 years?” and make them an offer? Do you then wonder why people turn you down?
On the flip side, do you make someone attend 7 interviews, take 3 psychological profiles and then offer them a $1,000 draw and wonder why they said ‘no’?
Both of the above scenarios are extremes of course, but my experience with recruiting firm owners is that many have a number of the above traits in their process. Why? They run everything through their own individual filter. I propose we step back and look at everything through the filter of the employee prospect as well as through the perspective of what we need to make a good hiring decision.
Step 1, Make them work for the first interview!
Our firm has been successful attracting great talent off of the major job boards and through our local newspaper by making the candidate do a little work before arranging the interview. When a candidate replies to our ad with their resume, we reply back to those we are interested in with the following simple statement: “Your background looks very interesting. Please call me at the below number to discuss the opportunity in greater detail.”
First, if they don’t call, we don’t pursue. Period! Start chasing them now and you will be chasing them through the whole process!
Second, when they call and after we have thanked them for taking their time, we open with the question, “Before we discuss this in more detail, I am curious, what was in the ad that inspired you to forward your resume?” Why this question?
One, did they take 60 seconds to prepare for the call by re-reading the posting? If they do notremember and they could not invest 60 seconds in their OWN career, what will they do with someone else’s?
Two, it sets the agenda and keys you in on their interestsso you can highlight the appropriate parts of career opportunities in search along those lines.
Three, you get a strong sense of their phone presence. While some nervousness should be expected, how conversant are they? Do they naturally build rapport? Do the answers to your questions engage you or are working hard to get information out of them?
This call takes no more than 10 minutes most of the time and gives you a great snap shot of the persons career desires, their ability to converse on the phone and ability to communicate.