Why Talent Hoarding Is Bad for Business


You’ve probably encountered this scenario before: Your company hires a great new employee who quickly meets and exceeds all expectations. This employee is the definition of a rock star: They work well with everyone in the department, get things done, and think creatively.

All seems to be going swimmingly — but then, having reached their full potential within that department, the employee starts to look elsewhere for new opportunities. Eventually, they secure a position with another company, and your rock star leaves. Upon looking into the employee’s departure, you discover why they felt the need to search for opportunities outside your organization: The employee’s manager had selfishly stifled the employee’s growth in order to keep that A player on their team.

When an individual manager purposely keeps top talent on their team for longer than is good for the company or the employee, it’s called “talent hoarding.” It’s a real problem, and it occurs more than it should. Not only does talent hoarding damage the individual employee’s career, but it also reflects poorly on the company’s culture. It contributes to increased turnover, and it may even harm the organization’s employer brand.

Talent Hoarding Hurts Employees

Talent hoarding holds back an employee, closing the doors to opportunities and limiting their career growth. You know it’s happening when it’s easier for top talent to find a job outside of your company than within it.

Part of what makes talent hoarding so pernicious is that managers might not even realize they are doing it. The manager may believe they are trying to retain a high-performing employee when really they are driving that employee away.

You might think people leave companies because they’re unhappy or don’t like where they’re working, but according to information compiled by RolePoint, 93 percent of people actually leave companies to change roles. Another way of putting it: Top employees leave your organization because they don’t see the opportunities they want within your company.

It may sometimes be the case that those opportunities simply do not exist within your organization. Often, however, you can attribute these departures to managers hoarding their talent and hiding the opportunities that are available outside their departments.

The Consequences of a Hoarding Culture

On the surface, talent hoarding might not seem like a big deal, but when managers fall into the mindset of “don’t touch my talent,” they’re actually creating a culture in which your best employees feel like they have no other option but to leave.

Replacing talent — especially good talent — is expensive. It’s hard to nail down a specific price tag, but consider this: A Sasha Corporation survey determined that replacing an $8-per-hour employee costs, on average, almost $9,500. The cost can be much greater for employees earning higher salaries.

For more expert HR insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

How to Build an Open Culture

Rather than hoarding talent, leaders should be encouraging employees to grow. Help your employees develop the skills today that will prepare them for success in their next roles. There are several steps you can take to do that:

1. Engage Your Stakeholders

Talk to employees, managers, and supervisors across the company about the dangers of talent hoarding. When you involve all the relevant stakeholders in discussions around talent hoarding, you create a corporate initiative for change. Furthermore, when you open up a conversation about this malicious practice, you send a clear message to managers that your company does not support this behavior.

2. Incentivize Referrals for Open Positions

Consider adopting incentives to encourage referrals across departments. If a manager’s performance is reliant on key performance indicators tied only to the results delivered by their team, that manager is incentivized to hoard talent. However, if managers are rewarded for referrals and talent development, they will have incentive to act as team players. Advocate for and encourage internal mobility, and your organization will retain more talent.

3. Break Down Silos

Make it known that the company is behind this employee development initiative, and put in place policies that support cross-department participation. This gives employees an official avenue through which to explore new career opportunities.

Additionally, you may want to implement a system for tracking workforce development activities. This will allow you to ensure that development is taking place, and it can also help you identify employees who are ready for a change.

4. Monitor Employees’ Career Moves

Pay close attention to the changes employees are making, how they are making them, and when they are making them. By analyzing these factors, you can get a good sense of the indicators that tell you when employees will want to make a career move. With this information in hand, you can find the opportunity a person wants within the organization before they go looking for it elsewhere.

The best way to avoid the cost of losing top talent is to be honest about the nature of careers. Employees — especially the best ones — do not want to stay stagnant. Rather than seeing mobility as a threat, use it as an opportunity. If your company enables employees to grow, you will have an edge over your competitors in the talent market.

Linda Ginac is the chairman, president, and CEO of TalentGuard.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
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The Truth Doesn’t Have to Hurt: How to Give Constructive Interview Feedback to Sales Candidates


Constructive criticism makes us stronger, and many professionals believe it is the challenging points in their careers that push them to reach their greatest successes. As Henry Ford famously said, “Failure is the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”

More and more professionals are adopting a Ford-style mindset — and they’re even applying it to the job search. As a 2017 LinkedIn report noted, feedback on interview performance is one of the top three things candidates want from the interview process. When candidates receive prompt feedback — either negative or positive — they’re more likely to recommend an employer to other candidates, according to a recent survey by Measureology.

But even if candidates want constructive criticism, negative feedback is challenging to give, especially to candidates who aren’t receiving a job offer. It’s important to remember, however, that sales candidates are resilient. They’re always on the lookout for new ways to improve as professionals.

You have a chance to help sales candidates grow — while boosting your employer brand — by carefully offering specific and strategic feedback during the recruiting process. Here are a few tips to help you do it right:

1. Develop a Formula and Stick With It

Sales candidates who aren’t moving forward in the hiring process deserve the same level of feedback as those advancing. By developing a specific formula based on position requirements and qualifications, you give each candidate the information they need to move forward in their careers with intention.

Start by developing a scorecard or structured worksheet to keep your feedback direct and organized. Use a five-point scale to help candidates see where they excelled and what areas need work. SHRM suggests you include factors such as educational background, work experience, technical qualifications, and soft skills on your scorecard.

Offering feedback based only on a candidate’s specific scoring gives you crucial guidance to stay on topic. As candidates ask questions, you’ll also have a direct reference for how they performed, where they can improve, and how they can move forward.

However, worksheets will only take you so far. Be sure to deliver your feedback within a few days of the interview so your memory is still sharp. Communicating while conversations are fresh in your mind improves the quality of your feedback and shows respect for busy sales candidates’ time.

2. Keep Feedback Directly Related to the Job and Qualifications

Delivering negative feedback isn’t only intimidating because it is uncomfortable. When presented the wrong way, your well-intended comments can lead to a lawsuit if candidates perceive your feedback as biased or discriminatory.

For example, stating you were looking for someone with more energy is a personal remark, but a more experienced candidate could interpret this comment as meaning, “We’re looking for someone younger.” As a result, you’re vulnerable to a lawsuit based on an accusation of ageism.

That’s why it is important to focus honestly and constructively on facts directly related to the role. Again, the scorecard will be valuable here. Go over the scorecard with the candidate to show them in concrete terms how they measured up.

Go one step further and make a copy of the scorecard to give to the candidate. Include with that copy notes and resources related to the areas they need to improve. For example, if the candidate didn’t score well on the technical skills portion, share courses or even job shadowing opportunities to help them develop the specific skills they are lacking.

For more expert recruiting advice, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

3. Don’t Just Focus on the Negative

Constructive criticism is important, and it should be the main focus of your discussions as you help sales candidates move through their job searches. If the majority of your feedback is positive, it can seem disingenuous, or it can divert a candidate’s focus away from how they can improve to secure a sales role in the future.

However, that doesn’t mean all your feedback should be on the negative side. Positive comments can help a candidate muster the determination to move forward. Ideally, each discussion should begin with positive notes. Outlining what the candidate did right shows your appreciation for their skills and the time they offered you.

After starting on a positive note, move on to constructive notes for improvement. Wrapping up with criticism sends sales reps off with your tips for improvement at the top of their minds. Attempting to end on a note of flattery, however, takes away the power of your constructive comments.

4. Avoid Comparisons Between Candidates

As you know, sales candidates are highly competitive. They’re already aware of the tough competition they face. Heightening this awareness by discussing the traits or skills of successful candidates can cause sales reps to negatively self-analyze. These feelings of negativity may then be projected onto you and the company.

Instead, keep the feedback personalized to your candidate. Comparisons should only be made between their qualifications and the role’s requirements. Discuss what traits they need to strengthen to be successful in the future.

For example, say the candidate scored a 3/5 on personal communication skills. Instead of comparing the candidate to other candidates who scored higher, share what you liked about the candidate’s communication skills and what they can improve to become an even stronger sales candidate.

Finally, once you’ve offered your constructive feedback, encourage candidates to apply again. You may even want to suggest better-fitting roles within the company which they might want to consider instead. The goal, ultimately, is to show candidates you are really invested in their success. Not only does this help the candidates improve, but it also raises your profile in the eyes of top-tier talent.

Karyn Mullins is president of MedReps.com. Connect with Karyn on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics – check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.

The Best Online Sources for Remote Team Members


In need of a marketing expert to build your brand? Looking for a copywriter to create content for your website? Wish you had someone on your team who could build you a brand new website?

Regardless of what you need, there are remote workers all over the world who could get the task done for you. But is hiring a remote employee the right move for your business?

The answer to that question depends on a number of factors. Before you make your decision, however, you should consider all the benefits a remote staff can bring to your operation.

What’s the Benefit of Hiring Remote Workers?

Here are just a few of the ways hiring remote workers can help your business:

1. You Can Save Money

Many remote workers are freelancers and independent contractors. Unlike with full-time employees, you don’t need to give these workers benefits. That means no health insurance costs, no vacation days, no paid sick days, and no 401(k) contributions.

Even if you hire a remote worker for a full-time position, you can still save money. You won’t have to provide that worker with an office, so you save on overhead like rent, utilities, and office supplies.

2. Remote Workers Are Less Stressed

Eighty-two percent of remote workers report being less stressed than on-site employees, and less stress usually means more productivity. When workers are happier, they perform better. The more at ease your workforce is, the more likely you are to get quality product out of them.

3. Most Companies Are Already Hiring Remotely

According to IWG, 70 percent of people around the world work remotely at least once a week. People want flexibility, and working remotely allows for exactly that. The companies that don’t offer remote work are finding it harder and harder to attract and retain talent in this climate.

The Best Places to Look for Remote Workers

So, where exactly can you find remote employees? Here are some of my favorite digital sources of experienced, reliable, remote team members.

(Before I get started, I’d be remiss not to mention this very website, Recruiter.com. What makes Recruiter.com unique is that it brings together a massive network of recruiters to help organizations find the employees they’re looking for — including, of course, remote talent.)

1. WeWorkRemotely

With more than 2.5 million visitors each month, WeWorkRemotely is one of the largest remote work sites out there. In addition to a large pool of candidates, WeWorkRemotely also offers a variety of useful resources to help employers hire and lead remote teams and stay abreast of trends in remote work.

2. Remote OK

While Remote OK largely focuses on tech jobs, there are plenty of qualified non-tech workers on the site as well. More than 1 million workers use this site, giving employers access to a huge selection of candidates.

3. Jobspresso

Jobspresso hosts thousands of resumes from designers, web developers, sales pros, content writers, project managers, and more — all looking for remote work opportunities.

4. Upwork

Upwork is a platform on which you can hire freelancers to do short-term projects, one-off tasks, or full-time jobs. Companies can create job postings that freelancers can apply to, or they can browse freelancer profiles and invite only the candidates they like to apply.

For more expert recruiting insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

Other Sites for Remote Workers

The job portals discussed above are some of the biggest and best sites for remote talent, but they aren’t the only ones. Here are a few additional options if you’d like to broaden your search:

  1. Working Nomads is a curated site for digital jobs in marketing, social media, development, management, system administration, design, and other categories.
  2. While Idealist is not dedicated exclusively to remote work, it is designed specifically for nonprofits and community organizations. Companies in these fields would be wise to leverage the site to find mission-minded remote employees.
  3. FlexJobs advertises remote, part-time, and freelance work opportunities in more than 100 industries.
  4. AngelList is a social network geared toward startups, and it attracts many talented professionals who are interested in remote work.
  5. Hubstaff Talent is a no-cost option for companies looking to hire remote workers for everything from entry-level positions to C-suite consulting.
  6. Virtual Vocations focuses on remote jobs in a vast array of fields, such as graphic design, consulting, software development, HR, and healthcare.

Tips for Hiring Remote Workers

So you’re ready to hire a remote worker — here are a few tips and tricks to help you find the perfect person for the job:

1. Know Where to Find the Best Candidates

You can post remote jobs on any job board, but the big job sites like Indeed, CareerBuilder, and SimplyHired aren’t geared toward remote work. Instead, you are better off focusing on job boards that cater specifically to remote workers, like the options outlined above.

2. Offer Candidates a Paid Trial Project

Before assigning a massive project to a brand new hire, start with something small. Assign candidates a task or two and pay them for these small deliverables. If they complete the tasks properly, you can confidently bring the candidate on as a remote worker for future projects.

3. Hire Remote Workers on a Probationary Period

Not everyone can handle working remotely. Before you hire someone for a long-term project or full-time gig, put them on a probationary period. During this period, you can assess the one quality all remote workers need to have: the ability to communicate.

Working remotely requires excellent communication to counter any potential disconnects that can arise between colleagues who are not in the same physical location. Make sure your new hire is easy to reach and able to communicate well via phone, email, chat, and whatever other channels you use. If you contact the worker and have to wait days for a response, they probably aren’t the right person for the job.

In addition, the probationary period is perfect for determining whether a person is a problem-solver. A successful remote worker should be able to work largely on their own and with less oversight than an in-office worker. If someone has to ask constant questions or wait for instructions every step of the way, they may not be a good fit for a remote role.

4. Review the Candidate’s Remote Work Qualifications and History

Everyone thinks that working from home is a dream — and for many, it is. But again, not everyone can handle it.

Do a detailed review of the candidate’s qualifications, paying particular attention to any remote work they’ve done in the past. The longer they’ve been doing remote work, the better they may be.

If the platform you use to source candidates shows ratings and reviews from previous employers, check them out. On Upwork, for instance, you will be able to see information about candidates’ previous projects. A history of long projects with high ratings shows that a candidate can excel with very little supervision.

Remote work is quickly becoming the norm, and companies that don’t embrace it are likely to be left behind. If you’re ready to hire your next — or first! — remote team member, start with the websites listed above. With so much talent to choose from, it shouldn’t be too hard to find a remote worker who can take your business to the next level.

Brett Helling is the head of Ridester.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics – check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.

Recruiting Gen. Z, a Pragmatic, Dynamic, and Digital-First Generation


Born between 1997 and 2001, the oldest members of Generation Z are now starting to enter the job market. The largest-ever generation in the US, Gen. Z constitutes roughly 5 percent of the nation’s workforce, and that number will rapidly rise in the coming years.

While there are many similarities between Gen. Z-ers and their predecessors, there are also key differences recruiters and employers must be aware of as they begin hiring and managing this latest wave of workers:

The Realistic Generation

While millennials grew up largely during an economic surge, many Gen. Z-ers have vivid memories of watching their parents struggle to stay afloat during the Great Recession and its slow recovery. Such a formative experience may help explain why, in contrast to millennial optimism, Gen. Z-ers tend to take a far more pragmatic view of the economy and their place within it.

Gen. Z is ready for the changing nature of modern work. Nearly half of Gen. Z-ers working today are freelancers, which suggests the flexible gig economy — and the technology enabling it — feels natural and normal to these workers.

Think Digital First

Gen. Z is the first generation of true digital natives and the first set of job seekers to have grown up fully immersed in the world of smartphones, mainstream artificial intelligence (AI) applications, virtual assistants, and bots. Much of their downtime is spent on social media, streaming videos, and online gaming.

recruitment process targeted toward this generation needs to take into account Gen. Z’s preferences for constant connection, mobile tech, social media, and remote work. Because so much of their world is instant, digital, and seamless, Gen. Z-ers expect the exact same experience when it comes to job searches and the hiring process. Here are some suggestions for creating a recruiting process that meets — and exceeds — Gen. Z’s technologically enhanced expectations:

  1. Ensure your careers page is mobile-friendly and make your content pop for young people with short attention spans. Quick, fun recruitment videos that offer Gen. Z job seekers a glimpse into your lively work culture can go a long way.
  2. Establish a presence on Instagram and Snapchat; Gen. Z-ers are more likely to be found on these social media platforms than on LinkedIn or Facebook.
  3. Gen. Z-ers prioritize speed and convenience in their online activities. Consider employing AI-empowered recruitment tools to enable more effective and authentic communications with Gen. Z candidates. All communication — including the presentation of a job offer — needs to happen at digital speed.
  4. As with candidates of any age, Gen. Z-ers will look to learn more about your company by turning to online resources. Be sure to actively manage your brand on sites that are popular with Generation Z. Review and respond to requests for information in a timely manner. Remember: Gen. Z expects things to happen fast, and they want to get instant feedback.
  5. As a means of enticing more Gen. Z job candidates, offer perks and benefits that align with their interests and habits. For example, alternative payment methods — like pay cards that allow employees to transfer money to others instantly and monitor account balances through their phones — might speak to the lifestyle of the average Gen. Z-er.
For more expert recruiting insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

Offer Work Fluidity and Strong Team Structure

With so many choosing to become freelancers in the growing gig economy, Gen. Z clearly views employment differently from prior generations. Job fluidity is vital to these emerging workers, even in the context of the traditional workplace: According to one survey, 75 percent of Gen. Z-ers are interested in working in a variety of different roles within a company.

This desire for fluidity must be balanced with a holistic approach to team management and employee development, two things Gen. Z-ers value greatly. Tips for managers of Gen. Z workers include:

  1. Make your teams more dynamic by offering career mosaics with lateral and vertical movement. Mentorship and shadowing programs can also have a powerful impact on Gen. Z workers.
  2. Offer innovative on-demand learning and development opportunities. Provide training in small, digestible units and activities delivered in a convenient and accessible manner.
  3. Enable remote work and supply the tools and tech Gen. Z workers need to support their autonomy.

Effectively Recruiting a New Generation

Today’s is a tight labor market characterized by historically low unemployment levels. To attract and retain Gen. Z talent under these conditions, organizations must approach the recruiting process on Gen. Z’s terms.

As companies set their sights on the newest and youngest crop of hopefuls arriving on the job market, they’ll need to ensure they are not just attracting this talent, but also giving Gen. Z-ers a reason to stay. To build workplace environments that give these up-and-coming workers what they want, organizations need the capability to measure and understand how key factors are impacting employee engagement, performance, and voluntary turnover. This will allow business leaders to identify any changes that need to be made to bring Gen. Z-ers through the door and keep them around for the long haul.

Dr. Susan Hanold is a vice president in ADP’s Strategic Advisory Services group.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics – check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.

‘I Don’t Want an Okay Candidate’: Stark HR’s Cristine Sauter Shares Her Secrets for Consistently Making Placements


Cristine Sauter didn’t mean to become a recruiter. Not at first, anyway. In fact, she kind of stumbled her way into the HR field.

“I was an administrative assistant at a consulting company and business was booming,” Sauter recalls. “One day, the HR manager asked me if I could help her sort some resumes, which I happily did. The next day, she asked me if I could help her with scheduling interviews. A few days later, I was asked to conduct assessments and do some interviews. Before I knew it, I was participating in recruiting fairs. One day, without even realizing it, I was an HR person.”

Employers should be thankful Sauter’s career led her down this road. As a member of the team at HR outsourcing firm Stark HR, Sauter provides clients with an HR team that can work in their favor, no matter where in the world they operate. While Stark HR offers everything from compensation and talent management to compliance, Sauter is in charge of the firm’s Human Capital Division, which means she specializes in recruiting, training and development, and outplacement.

Meanwhile, as a recruiter on the Recruiter.com Job Market Platform, Sauter consistently puts great candidates in great roles. It’s clear Sauter is a natural when it comes to making connections between top talent and the innovative companies that need their skills.

Focusing on What She Loves


Cristine Sauter

Sauter has a passion for placements. “I love recruiting,” she says. “I love the thrill. I even love getting a ‘no’ because it pushes me to become better. Most of all, however, I love getting a ‘yes.’ My favorite four words are, ‘Congratulations, you are hired!’ To hear that and experience the candidate’s happiness is really something that makes my day.”

While placing candidates may be the most exciting — and lucrative — part of the gig, it is not the only part. As Sauter notes, “When you are trying to do recruiting all by yourself, you have to split that time between recruiting and finding positions to fill.”

“One can only work so many hours per day,” Sauter says, which is why she decided to join the Recruiter.com Job Market Platform in the first place. Recruiter.com takes the work of finding positions and clients off of Sauter’s plate so she can focus on the part of recruiting she loves most.

“I don’t have to worry about chasing new clients,” Sauter says. “They are there. This allows me to do what I do best, which is find the right candidate and close the deal.”

Sauter’s Three-Part Formula for Success

Sauter’s passion for placements is a major driver of her success on the Recruiter.com Job Market Platform, but she also has her unique career experience to thank. Sauter spent roughly a decade working on what she calls “the other side of the recruiting business”: outplacement.

“[I was] dealing with mergers and acquisitions and plant closings, and I had to find positions for those we were firing — which we did with an 85 percent success rate,” Sauter says. “After almost 600 outplacements, we developed an expertise in understanding what the candidate has to offer, which helps us a lot in interviews.”

Sauter recalls how this background “came very in handy” during a recent project: “We had to hire a full manufacturing plant in 90 days — 120 employees to be recruited and trained within that period of time. We achieved that in 60 days. Today, we close most of our openings within two weeks’ time.”

For more expert recruiting insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

While other recruiters may not be able to copy Sauter’s career trajectory, they can follow her three-part formula for consistent recruiting success:

  1. Become an Expert: “You need to understand what the client really wants and needs. Ask your client directly and read the job description carefully. See what that position really does. Watch videos, read similar job ads, and check out how competitors advertise that same kind of position (you will often find different titles used for the same jobs).”
  2. Be Flexible: “I work on the candidate’s availability, meaning that if they are only available before 8 a.m. or after 6 p.m., I make sure I adjust my agenda accordingly.”
  3. Have High Standards: “I don’t want an ‘okay’ candidate. I don’t mind if I can only send one resume to the client, but I make sure it is the best candidate for that position. Whenever I start reading resumes or sit down for an interview, I have a clear vision of what to expect from the candidate, and I don’t settle for less.”

As a final bit of advice, Sauter stresses that success in recruiting depends in large part on marketing yourself well.

“A happy hiring manager is likely to hire your services again,” she says. “A happy candidate can take your name to other companies. They may even become a client! Your reputation can help you land more positions and find more candidates. So, stay focused on both sides. Treat hiring managers and candidates with the same attention and respect. It will pay off!”

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics – check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.

Confessions of a Corporate Talent Acquisition Leader: Are You Still Beholden to an Old-School Model of TA?


Your internal recruitment function is a driving force of your organization’s success. It’s how you acquire quality talent that contributes to the growth and innovation that keep you ahead of the game.

But consider this: Workers are leaving their jobs at the highest rate since 2001. This statistic needs to be at the top of every talent acquisition leader’s mind. If you have not assessed your internal recruitment function in some time, now is your chance to change that.

The Reality Is the Talent Acquisition Model Needs to Evolve

Talent acquisition is so much more than pitching resumes to a hiring manager. Depending on the type and level of position you’re looking to fill, agencies can do the exact same thing— and they can do it better and faster than an internal function.

To deliver real value to the organization, your talent acquisition function needs:

1. Technology

Technology is advancing all around, changing the shape of recruiting as we know it. We’re starting to see readily accessible repositories of job seekers that reduce the need for a middleman to evaluate candidates’ skills. Artificial intelligence (AI) products that can conduct interviews and evaluate a candidate’s performance are already on the market today; other AIs can even conduct a candidate search for the company. The need for administrators of this process will eclipse the need for full life cycle recruiters for certain roles. If your vice president of talent acquisition is not exploring these options with HR and the business, then they are still operating according to an old-school model of talent acquisition.

2. Business Acumen

A deep and thorough understanding of the business is imperative for talent acquisition leaders today. How well do you know the landscape, competition, results, and drivers of the functions you serve? A one-size-fits-all process and workflow simply won’t get the right talent in the door.

For more expert talent acquisition insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

Engagement is the foundation for trust, and trust leads to innovation. Trust is earned. It does not come through a name or a title. If talent acquisition is not trusted, then innovation and momentum are stymied. Building a recruitment function for sales is quite different from building one for operations. It will look and feel different, and the competencies required of your internal recruitment team will also differ.

We always hear about leadership competencies that are universal to an organization, but you have to consider how do those competencies translate to the specific contexts of marketing, tech support, operations, etc. Again, in practice, those competencies will look and feel different. It is important to ascertain what works for each area in order to attract and hire the right talent for that area. If the recruitment process is siloed to business lines and not functional areas, you are operating with an old-school model.

3. Training

Recruiters also need training — not only on how to use tools, but also on how to practice the craft. Recruiting is one of the most complex areas within the greater HR organization. Recruiting is an art and a science; it needs to be developed and tested. You need stamina to review thousands of resumes; you need the ability to discern the right talent on paper and the right cultural and functional fits during interviews.

Of course, while recruiting all starts with talent acquisition, the responsibility for making a hire branches out to all the players who serve as part of the recruiting team for a given role. Therefore, even hiring managers and team members who hop on an interview panel every once in a while need to be trained.

Whatever training you offer, it needs to be consistent and compliant. It needs to be engaging and fun. It needs to provide value. You need a talent acquisition team that is well versed in the delivery. Rushing through this process doesn’t help. When done right, however, training creates intense momentum that will carry your team through the sourcing, interviewing, and hiring of quality talent.

4. Assessment

Finally, ask yourself: How are you assessing the productivity of the talent acquisition function? In today’s day and age, you should be using data to drive the human experience and guide the implementation of workflows and processes that get the results the company is looking for.

Many current human capital management systems come with dashboards and data analysis capacities built right in, so there is little excuse for not leveraging data. Talent acquisition departments have to bring data analysts into the fold who can understand the technology and derive analytics that provide value. The data should drive decisions in a meaningful way and become the science behind the recruitment method and delivery.

In the fourth quarter of 2019, it’s time to review your talent acquisition function. That’s the only way you’ll be prepared to address the talent challenges of 2020 and beyond. Build a forward-thinking talent acquisition function that is proactive and become a trusted advisor to the company.

Laureen Kautt is a global talent acquisition executive and the founder and principal coach of Volitionary Movement, LLC. “Confessions of a Corporate Talent Acquisition Leader” is her recurring column on Recruiter Today.

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13 Go-To Hacks for When You Need a Boost of Creativity


Article by YEC

Creativity inspires us. It gives us purpose and direction, providing a way to pursue goals and establish dreams.

However, creativity does not always come naturally, particularly during moments of stress. Sometimes, even the most creative minds need a little help to get that spark back.

Boosting your creativity can be a simple matter of taking a step back and discovering what works best to motivate you. For more insight, we asked members of the Young Entrepreneur Council about their go-to hacks when they need a boost of creativity. Here is what they said:

1. Learn a New Skill

When you need a boost of creativity, usually your unconscious is having difficulty surfacing to your consciousness. To circumvent this, learn a new skill.

For example, if you’re struggling with writer’s block and you normally write technical pieces, take a quick course on how to write comedy. It frees up your ability to think and changes your perspective enough that you can tap into creativity.

 – Klyn Elsbury, Shark School

2. Go on Social Media

If I need a boost of creativity, I like to go on social media to take my mind off of anything technical. Immersing myself in something completely different gets the wheels in my head turning and encourages me to think differently. It’s important not to focus on one thing for too long, and social media helps me do just that.

– Jared Atchison, WPForms

3. Write Things Down

When I need a boost of creativity, I like to brainstorm by writing things down. I write down anything that comes to mind — thoughts, feelings, ideas, concepts, and so on — without giving it much thought.

Afterward, I read my list. I always find that at least one of my random thoughts can inspire some creativity.

– Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

4. Go for a Walk

It’s incredibly simple, but don’t let that put you off. Studies have shown that walking increases creativity.

Every time I catch myself in a slump, I take a 20-30 minute walk near the office without trying to force anything to happen. As you walk, you’ll slowly ponder on the problem you’re trying to solve, and you are likely to come up with a unique angle as you do. Worst case, you come back to work refreshed.

– Karl Kangur, Above House

5. Research Other Brands

One of the best ways to find inspiration and trigger creativity is by researching other brands. Avoid competitors and, instead, look at what companies in similar industries are doing with their customer service, marketing, and design. Browse their websites, social media profiles, and customer reviews to see what they’re doing differently. This knowledge can help you ideate new ways to improve your business, too.

– Firas KittanehAmerisleep

6. Have Dinner With a Diverse Group of Smart People

By bringing people from different backgrounds together to break bread, you will spark amazing conversations. When business leaders, engaged citizens, sharp engineers, scientists, artists, social entrepreneurs, and others come together for innovative exchange and big thinking, you will definitely receive a personal boost from these creative conversations.

– Eric MathewsStart Co.

7. Play Video Games

I like playing video games because it diverts my mind to a different way of thinking, which allows me to come back later and do something more creative. It’s stimulating for me and provides the outlet I’m looking for to give my brain a break.

– Angela RuthCalendar

8. Listen to a Podcast

There are thousands of podcasts to choose from that cover all different topics and use different approaches to connect with listeners. I like to listen to storytelling podcasts that have nothing to do with work when I need to unwind. It refreshes my mind and activates other parts of my brain. Listening to something completely different from what I’m working on sparks my creativity.

– Chris ChristoffMonsterInsights

9. Listen to Music

Whether listening to it or playing it myself, music is my go-to hack when I need a boost of creativity. It’s hard to focus your thoughts sometimes when you have so many things on your mind. When I listen to music, I can just relax and focus on the song. That’s when the ideas come more easily.

– John TurnerSeedProd, LLC

10. Play With Your Kids

Kids have a never-ending supply of creativity. I’m constantly inspired by the way my almost-2-year-old makes everything fun. He finds ways to use and play with things I would have never considered. When I need a creative boost, I play with him (blocks, painting, reading, etc.), ask him questions, and draw inspiration from his endless fascination with the world.

– Brittany HodakKeynote Speaker

11. Take a Power Nap

A short nap can reset your brain and get you in the right frame of mind for creating. I usually take a 20-minute nap if I’m feeling creatively bankrupt.

At first, you’ll find it difficult to nap when thinking about a project, but a short nap helps fuel creativity more than staring blankly at your screen ever could.

– Blair Williams, MemberPress

12. Try Sensory Deprivation

Improving your focus through sensory deprivation can be a great boost for creativity. While going for a walk is a simple way to do this, a lot of entrepreneurs and professionals go so far as to use sensory deprivation services like Urban Float.

Whatever you do, when you get rid of the overstimulation of the environment around you, it becomes easier to achieve clarity and creativity.

– Andy KaruzaFenSens

13. Write a Top 10 List

When I need a boost of creativity, I develop a top-10 list on the topic. The first seven ideas are usually fairly easy to come by. It’s ideas 8-10 where I slow down and really have to think. The boost of creativity kicks in after all the easy ideas are out of the way, and then you’re stacking on good ideas or something completely outside the box.

– Richard Fong, Bliss Drive

A version of this article originally appeared on SUCCESS.com.

Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization composed of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics – check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.

Your Conversational Recruiting Strategy Can’t Succeed Without a Strong Knowledge Management Foundation


In a recent article here on Recruiter Today, Justin Moodley of LASANAN shared his advice to new recruiters: “The talent acquisition professionals who spend more time [engaging with] their candidate pools tend to have a better sense of how their candidates could fit in and excel at our organizations.” In contrast, Moodley explains, more mechanical, hands-off recruiting processes typically bring in poorly matched employees.

Though he doesn’t use the exact term, Moodley is recommending that recruiters adopt a conversational recruiting approach. In this article, I’d like to dig a bit deeper into what conversational recruiting actually entails. I’ll also explain why I believe knowledge management lies at the foundation of a successful conversational recruiting initiative.

What Is Conversational Recruiting?

As the name suggests, conversational recruiting is the process of attracting, engaging, and qualifying recruits by actually conversing with them. This conversation can — and should — take place on a variety of channels:

  1. Social media can be used to attract candidates via content, and recruiters can then engage with them in comments and direct messages.
  2. Text messages can be sent to individuals actively looking for open positions.
  3. Chatbots can be used on your careers site and your social media channels to provide automated responses to frequently asked questions and to point candidates toward applications and other resources.
  4. Video and audio calls can help answer candidates’ more in-depth, individualized questions and allow for increased engagement throughout the recruiting process.

There are two things to note here. First, the conversation doesn’t necessarily need to involve an actual human on your end. Yes, for more intensive and personalized engagements, you’ll want to engage with candidates on a one-on-one basis. In certain cases, however, it’ll be more practical (and acceptable) to enable automated communications via chatbots and other such technology.

Still, these automated communications should have a human feel to them. For example, check out how Marriott uses a chatbot on Facebook to engage potential employees:




While the “person” on the company’s end of the conversation is clearly a machine, this fact hardly takes away from the overall value of the engagement. The candidate now knows more about Marriott’s open positions, and the company knows there’s a potential hire looking for a job.

The second thing to note is your conversations with potential hires should be ongoing, from your first engagement to the moment they come aboard. This doesn’t mean you have to be in constant contact with candidates, but you do need to ensure the conversation always moves your relationship forward in some way.

Take the Marriott example from above. If the candidate comes back at a later date and reengages the chatbot, they don’t want to start from scratch. Rather, they will likely be asking for further information about the positions available or if any new jobs have been posted since their last check-in. Regardless of their current question, they’ll expect the chatbot to remember the information they exchanged during their previous conversation.


In the example above, a second conversation regarding available careers at Marriott was started on the company’s website. When asked about available jobs in New York, the chatbot remembered that the applicant was originally interested in marketing.

The example above also shows the importance of being able to have a conversation that can cross channels. Additionally, Marriott may use the information gleaned about this potential employee to send them push notifications or automated emails when new marketing positions in New York become available.

The ultimate goal of conversational recruiting is to engage with potential hires to the point that, by the time the right candidate gets to the interview stage, it’s merely a formality. Since you’ll have already learned everything you need to know to make a hiring decision, said decision will be much easier for your team to make.

For more expert recruiting advice, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

The Role of Knowledge Management in Conversational Recruiting

Conversational recruiting is all about getting the right information to the right candidate at the right time (and in the right place). It should be clear, then, that proper knowledge management is vital to the success of your conversational recruiting efforts in a few ways.

Let’s break this idea down a bit further:

Deliver Information in Real Time

When engaging with candidates, it’s essential that you’re able to provide the information they’re looking for pretty much on the fly. Without a knowledge management system backing your conversational recruiting efforts, there’s just no way this can happen. However, a strong knowledge base that recruiters can access readily allows you to quickly deliver the information your candidates need to consider engaging further with your organization.

If you’ve set up a chatbot, it will also rely on your knowledge management processes to deliver the right information to candidates. The more comprehensive and structured your knowledge base and content, the better your chatbot will be at pointing candidates in the right direction.

Collect Information in Real Time

The other side of conversational recruiting is collecting information on potential new hires. Systematic knowledge management ensures your team is able not only to take in as much information as possible, but also to use this information to further your recruiting efforts.

In terms of the the actual intake of information, a solid knowledge management plan ensures that any info provided by candidates gets captured and piped into your centralized database. Moreover, knowledge management ensures said data remains current at all times, and that outdated or duplicate information is marked as such (and stored or disposed of as needed). This, in turn, allows your team to keep the conversation going with individual candidates with little to no friction between engagements.

Going back to Marriott’s example, the company’s chatbot will likely continue providing New York-specific information unless the candidate mentions they’re also looking elsewhere. If they do provide additional information, the chatbot will take this data into consideration for future engagements.

Since your team will always know where they last left off with a given candidate, both parties can pick the conversation right back up the next time they engage with one another.

Engage the Right Candidates at Optimal Moments

The more your candidates know about your company — and the more you learn about each candidate — the easier it will be to find that perfect match. Conversational recruiting backed by solid knowledge management allows for this exchange of information to take place over time. As we’ve discussed, your relationships with potential new hires can begin growing from the very first touchpoint.

Knowledge management also strengthens your conversational recruiting efforts in that it allows you to identify the optimal manner in which to engage with candidates throughout the hiring process. For example, for a given candidate, you can learn their preferred communication platform, the type of information they find most valuable in their job search, and the best time to reach out to them to engage in real-time conversation. This allows you to proactively reach out to candidates at optimal moments in their job searches, providing value and getting them more engaged with your organization at each touchpoint.

Think about it like this: If the Marriott candidate doesn’t typically check their email inbox for job notifications, it wouldn’t make sense for the company to try to engage them on this channel. If, in this example, Marriott’s chatbot isn’t configured to proactively send job postings to such individuals, both parties will likely miss out on a ton of major opportunities.

Every recruiter and job seeker has a “right place, right time” story of some kind. Conversational recruiting — when backed by a true understanding of your potential hires — can allow you to learn when and where that time and place are for each candidate.

Engaging with candidates via authentic, informative conversation is an effective way to find the exact hires you’re looking for. But, to get these conversations started and keep them moving in the right direction, your efforts need to be built on a solid foundation of knowledge management.

With knowledge at the helm of your recruiting efforts, you’ll have a much clearer idea of what you’re looking for in an ideal employee, where and how to find top-quality candidates, and how to best engage with these candidates once you uncover them. In turn, you can spend more time engaging and onboarding the best-fit candidate for every position you have.

Emil Hajric is the founder and CEO of Helpjuice and the author of Knowledge Management: A Theoretical and Practical Guide for Knowledge Management in Your Organization.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
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When Pay Is Transparent, Employees and Employers Win


Life may not be fair, but employee compensation should be — and employees need to be confident it is. If not, you can expect increased turnover and a breakdown of trust between your employees and the company.

The old approach to compensation, with closed-door negotiations and MI6-level secrecy, is hardly fair. This is important, because unfairness at work drives employees away. In fact, in a 2017 survery of tech workers from the Kapor Center for Social Impact, 37 percent of respondents said unfairness or mistreatment was a key reason why they had left a job in the last three years. Even if they stay, employees who feel the company is acting unfairly will stop trusting the organization. When that trust disappears, so does motivation. That leads to lower performance and a disconnect from your company’s mission.

Basing pay only on performance — not on bargaining moxie or tenure — and making salary information transparent removes bias and assures employees they’re being compensated fairly.

A Growing Movement

Anecdotal evidence from companies that have already adopted transparent salaries shows the policy makes employees more satisfied and productive; on the flip side, companies such as Uber, BBC, and Google have come under fire due to perceived gender pay gaps.

In recent times, legislation requiring pay transparency has been gaining steam around the world. Because it may soon become a requirement, it’s worth adopting transparency ahead of the game and on your own terms. This, among other reasons, is why we’ve made salaries and output levels transparent at Chewse. Even I, as the company leader, am not immune: My output level is set by the board, and my full compensation (including equity ownership) is accessible to everyone.

Building a Fairer Compensation Model

A transparent salary structure involves two main components. First, salaries must be based on a formula that judges performance. At Chewse, we look at output levels and rank them from A through G. Next, salaries must be open, with everyone able to see everyone else’s compensation — including executive leaders’.

With a compensation formula based on performance, you reward employees for their ability to produce results. Nothing else matters. This levels the playing field for women and people of color, who can be at a disadvantage during salary negotiations. Performance-based pay also ties everyone’s salary to the fairest criterion possible — output — while giving employees a clear road map for advancement.

When everyone is privy to everyone else’s compensation level, managers and leaders are held more accountable. Leaders simply cannot make exceptions in an open salary system. This level of transparency also fosters an open environment where employees can candidly talk with their managers about how their output levels align with their perceptions of the value they add.

For more expert HR insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

How to Transition to Open Salaries

When we instituted transparent salaries at Chewse, I was terrified to share the spreadsheet containing everyone’s compensation. Even though people were nervous about the move, some never even looked at the spreadsheet after I sent it! They said it was nice just knowing it existed, proving that trust is really the crux of the matter.

Opening up your compensation numbers will be a stressful and bumpy ride, more so for established companies than startups, but the growing pains are worth it. Being intentional about building an open salary system will set the stage for future success. Here’s how you pull it off:

1. Get Leadership Buy-In

Unless leaders fully support the move, it’s never going to work. Commitment to the principle of transparency is a must. The transition requires a lot of upfront work and can cause a bit of chaos, but let’s be clear: The investment may not be easy in the short term, but it’s well worth it in the long term.

2. Know the Market

Invest in a market compensation survey tool such as PayScale or Radford. These aren’t cheap, but they give you a sense of what fair market-level compensation looks like by location, role, and title. If your company is large enough, you probably have these tools already anyway.

3. Create a Performance-Based Compensation Formula

Your leveling system should comprise a set of rules and conditions that define what it means to be at certain levels, as well as guidelines for how to advance. To keep the process fair, leave tenure and negotiation ability out of the equation. Train leaders, managers, and employees on what those output levels mean and why they’re valuable.

4. Adjust Your Hiring Process

Communicate salary information up front — we include it in job ads — and make it clear before and during interviews that salaries are not negotiable because of your commitment to transparent and equitable pay.

During the hiring process, provide a range of output levels linked to their resulting salaries to show potential employees the available advancement opportunities and earn their support for the system.

5. Make Space for Regular Performance Reviews

Regular discussions about compensation and performance ensure that no one — not even the shyest or newest worker — will get passed over for raises and advancement. At Chewse, we have conversations about compensation at minimum every 90 days.

6. Roll Out a Communications Plan Early On

Give employees notice that their salaries will be based on performance and will be transparent and open. Along with this advance notice, create space for employees to express fears about what this might mean for their jobs, the company culture, or any other concerns that might arise.

Changing your pay structure to be fair and transparent is not an easy task, but it is absolutely worthwhile. It allows you to steer employees to success rather than leaving them guessing about their performance. Most importantly, open salaries ensure you’re paying people fairly on the basis of what matters most: the actual work they do.

Tracy Lawrence is the founder and CEO of Chewse.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics – check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.
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How to Start a Mentorship Program That Actually Delivers Results


Keeping your team engaged and thriving has never been more important than it is in today’s hypercompetitive business world. Enter workplace mentorship programs: Done right, they can bolster everything from employee retention to productivity.

Mentors and Mentees Both Benefit 

For the Mentee:

According to executive leadership consultant Natasha Sistrunk Robinson, having an experienced colleague take you under their wing can help you clarify your long-term career goals. Along the way, you’ll also hone valuable professional skills you can take with you as you progress through your career. Connecting with a mentor who works within your organization is particularly powerful because they can share their own experiences with the company, giving you further insight into the organization’s culture and operations.

Robinson also encourages professionals to embrace the emotional benefits of a mentor-mentee relationship.

“Many employees feel like they can’t be vulnerable or share their whole selves at work,” she says. But opening yourself up to support and guidance from an experienced colleague can boost both confidence and performance.

For the Mentor

Professionals who mentor others are often more satisfied in their careers and more committed to their organizations. Studies also suggest mentors may even see a boost in their own job performance.

According to Robinson, strong mentor-mentee relationships should be mutually beneficial. Imparting your wisdom to a mentee helps them succeed, and the mere act of offering your expertise puts you in a position to examine and improve your own performance, making you a better leader in the process.

How to Start a Mentorship Program in Your Office

According to a study from Olivet Nazarene University, 61 percent of mentor-mentee relationships develop naturally. However, a solid mentorship program can help cultivate more — and more powerful — mentor-mentee relationships. Here’s some advice on getting a mentorship program up and running in your workplace:

1. Check in With HR

You may need to get the okay before launching an internal mentorship program. If HR gives its stamp of approval, consider suggesting that mentorship become part of performance evaluations. Not only will this allow the mentorship program to slot easily into existing leadership development frameworks, but it will also give managers an opportunity to readily take on more of a mentor role with their direct reports.

For more expert HR insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:

2. Survey Interested Participants

You may want to cultivate support for the mentorship program among your colleagues/team members before bringing your proposal to HR. The more buy-in you have, the easier it will be to get the program approved.

Beyond getting your colleagues’ support, you’ll also want to find out what, exactly, people are looking for in a mentorship. No two mentor-mentee relationships are the same. Some employees want mentors to help them grow in their current position, while others may be seeking big-picture career guidance. In other words, you won’t know what your people’s expectations are until you ask.

Robinson suggests distributing an initial survey to explain why you feel a mentorship program would be valuable to your organization and to solicit input from potential participants. Ask employees what they need in order to make the program beneficial. What kinds of relationships are they seeking, and how would they like to connect with mentors?

“From there, take that information to your leadership team,” Robinson says. “You might say, ‘This is what we were thinking of doing, but after looking at these surveys, this is what people really need right now.’”

3. Determine the Best Way to Pair Participants

Instead of blindly pairing people off, let that initial survey guide you. For example, if some employees say they’d like a mentor to help them grow in their current role, pair them with mentors who are on the same wavelength rather than mentors who will push them to pursue new roles.

Robinson notes that mentor-mentee relationships can also develop organically through shared interests. Something as simple as a company golf outing, for example, can create a perfect environment in which mentors and mentees can let their guards down and connect with one another. According to research from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, high-quality mentoring relationships are built on trust and mutual growth. Encouraging natural connections between mentors and mentees can set the right foundation for the relationships to thrive.

4. Prep Your Mentors

Just as mentees turn to mentors for guidance in their careers, mentors need some support if they are to be the best mentors they can be. You can offer that support by periodically running in-house workshops led by local mentorship experts. Some key subjects you may want to cover in these workshops include: active listening skills, processes and procedures for providing constructive criticism, and strategies for setting goals and tracking progress.

Preparing your mentors also requires some active listening on your part. Hold regular meetings where mentors can share pain points and areas of concern. Based on your mentors’ feedback, you can tailor your support systems to ensure they have the resources they need to succeed.

5. Evaluate Success

Periodically revisit that initial survey you conducted when kicking off the program to ensure the mentorship program is on track to meet employees’ expectations.

“Evaluate things at the end of the year to see if you [have] accomplished those goals and how [you can] tweak the program to make it better,” Robinson says.

A mentorship program is an investment in the future of your workforce. Figure out what your team needs, then create opportunities for relationships to take shape naturally. With the right supports in place, both mentors and mentees should see their job satisfaction and performance improve.

Marianne Hayes is a longtime freelance writer and content marketing specialist.

Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We’re SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics – check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.