It seems there is a lack of trust going on in the recruiting world these days. One of the familiar refrains I hear from candidates as I talk with them is along the lines of, “I was working with so and so and they never got back to me,” or “They didn’t do what they said they were going to do.” It’s hard to find a person that hasn’t been turned off by a recruiter. So where has all the trust gone?
Recruiting is a people business. We have all heard the golden rule: Treat others the way you want to be treated. One of the things I learned early on is that there is a better version of this. Treat others the way THEY want to be treated. How does that apply to recruitment? It has to be about the candidate and not the recruiter.
You have to know the people you are working with. They need to trust you. They want to trust you. Trust is something that people give rather freely but will take it way just as quickly. Once it’s gone, good luck ever getting it back. Candidates want to know that you are listening to their cares and concerns and that the recruiter has their best interests in mind. Sometimes the job you are talking to them about is not the right fit for them, and that’s ok. Sometimes it takes a good deal of time to get the right fit.
Recently I had great experience with a candidate that I have been working with for years. There just didn’t seem to be the right fit for her. We stayed in touch and worked to help each other out on various projects as friends in the industry. A few months ago the right fit finally came along. We were able to make it a great situation for her. She likely would not have accepted the position if we had not built a relationship of trust.
Doing the right thing for the candidate is always the right thing to do, even if it doesn’t benefit the recruiter financially. That is how we will get trust back into the recruitment process. That trust building starts with the first time you pick up the phone to call them. Treat the candidate with respect. Be a resource for them in THEIR careers goals and pursuits. Find out about their interests and what is really important for THEM. If you are sincere and genuine you will gain their trust and will be a much more effective recruiter. You have to be honest with them and they will be honest in return
Are there times that no matter what you do the candidate wont trust you or be honest with you? Of course there is. But the principle holds true and if they are not honest with you, move on. You will usually find that most of the time they are honest and when recruiters are honest in return, the trust will return.