Who hasn’t experienced a long and painful recruitment process, either as a candidate, hiring manager, or HR professional? With a constant demand for skilled professionals and intense competition in the mining industry, streamlining your recruitment process is essential.
If you get it right, your company’s brand looks good, candidates are happy, and the process is kept short and simple.
We interviewed a talent acquisition specialist with over 18 years of experience in Australian and international markets. Here we present five expert tips to make your recruitment process a success:
1. An in-depth client brief is key
As the client, you need to transfer the information about your company to whoever you’re partnering with for recruitment.
“You need to stand out. The only way to stand out is to sell your uniqueness to the market. And you can only do that if you sit down at the outset and fully brief the recruiter,” says Nathan de Jong, Delivery Manager, APAC at Globe 24-7.
“What can you offer that is different from the market? And how can you help candidates develop in a way that other businesses can’t?” explains Nathan.
It’s critical that you communicate the unique selling points to the person who’s going to market because they’re the one who’s selling the opportunity to your potential employees. If the recruiter representing your company doesn’t have these details, then your opportunity gets lost in a sea of others.
So, step one before you pick up the phone—get your brief sorted.
2. Establish a timetable, agree on milestones and resources, then follow it.
Before you begin, create a strategic and aligned work plan between all the stakeholders involved. Include the hiring manager, the final decision maker, the HR department, and the recruiter.
Timetables are tough because there are often so many stakeholders involved. It’s important to be realistic and a good recruiter will help you do that. That will help you manage expectations from the beginning—and you’ll make it a good experience for everyone involved.
Think for a moment about all the steps involved: A recruiter needs to advertise the role, get it out to their networks, and conduct a headhunting campaign by contacting passive talent, which can take many weeks for the right candidate.
From there, have discussions, shortlist candidates, discuss those candidates with the client, organise interviews, conduct reference checks, arrange medicals, receive the offer from the client, and get acceptance of the offer from the candidate.
Then, the candidate still needs to give notice to their current employer.
“A good recruiter will set that timeframe up for you so there’re no surprises,” explains Nathan. “And they can help you manage internal stakeholder expectations by helping you understand what the timeline will look like.”
3. Define who’s accountable for what tasks, complete them within set deadlines
Establish a timeline around how quickly you need the recruiter’s feedback. Set out a plan and clearly define what the process looks like. Within your internal team, is it one interview or two? And which stakeholders need to be involved?
Nathan explains that the process differs with every recruitment firm. “We have weekly catchup meetings with our clients, so they understand where we’re at with candidates and we feedback to them on what’s going on in the market.”
This open communication loop also means that the recruiter can discuss some of the ‘soft’ attributes like candidate personality, cultural fit, and other subjective factors that you can’t easily define on paper.
4. Once you’ve decided on a candidate, be efficient in the offer process
Consider defining the parameters of the offer at the beginning of the search to avoid a long-winded negotiation at the end. Potentially have things pre-approved. It’s important to quickly communicate with your recruiter because they manage the expectations of the candidate.
“Speed is the key here,” emphasises Nathan. “So have a strategy around it.”
“Candidates are receiving multiple offers in this environment. It’s important to be quick to keep them. At this stage, you really need to hustle.”
Even in the best ‘employer market’, a good candidate isn’t available forever. And it can damage your company’s brand if candidates become disengaged with a lengthy recruitment process.
5. 1-on-1 relationships get the best outcomes
It might seem like the more recruiters you have working on a search, the better that will be. More boots on the ground lead to better results, right?
“It’s actually the opposite,” says Nathan. “When you partner with multiple agencies, inevitably your ‘in-depth brief’ doesn’t get disseminated properly. You then have multiple agencies out in the market selling your business in a less ideal light.”
Many mining companies then find that the recruiters lose interest because it’s hard to attract talent without this in-depth knowledge. Your business starts to look unprofessional as the same candidates are contacted by multiple agencies about the same job.
In this situation, there are two issues that go on, but they often don’t get discussed openly:
- On the recruiter’s side, they won’t spend time on a proper market mapping search and headhunting process to reach passive talent as they can’t justify the time when competing against multiple agencies.
- On the client’s side, it becomes tedious because they have to manage communication from multiple agencies rather than just one.
“If you want a deep search to uncover the best talent, you really need to partner with your recruiter in a one-to-one relationship,” shares Nathan.
“A lot of agencies don’t even have the experience, market knowledge, or talent to conduct these searches–so choose wisely.”