6 Skills Recruiters Need to Master for The Future of Work

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Talented job recruiters are more in demand today than ever before, with a LinkedIn report showing a 63 percent increase in recruiter positions—a trend the professional networking site says they believe will continue in the years to come.

Companies are recognizing the value of recruiters who can help bring top talent on board. But as anyone who has ever worked in the field knows, that’s not as simple as snapping your fingers and making it so. Even as recruiters gain more value within their organizations, the very nature of their job is changing.

Which means that those who want to continue growing within the industry need to be willing to develop the skills now required to recruit successfully.

1. Use of technology

Long gone are the days of stacks of paper resumes piled upon a recruiter’s desk, with nearly 100 percent of Fortune 500 companies relying on Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to help manage their recruiting needs. Most recruiters are using some sort of software to enhance their searches these days, but too many are still failing to embrace the full capabilities those software options have to offer.

A recent survey by Spark Hire found that hiring professionals are proving resistant to the technological changes occurring within the industry. But when those recruiting professionals were asked by LinkedIn about the best ways to improve recruiter performance, the number one answer was investing in better tools and technology.

That same survey found video interviews to be among the most impactful tech tools in hiring.

So recruiters know the industry is changing and that the tech coming out of it is going to completely elevate the way they do their jobs. But human nature being what it is, a fear of change may be contributing to the reluctance some recruiters are experiencing in fully embracing the tech that’s available.

It’s time to get over that. The most successful recruiters in 2020 are going to be the ones willing to take advantage of every possible tool available to them, and many of them will use easy AI-integrations to upgrade their existing systems.

2. Reaching out

While it is absolutely possible to find some amazing candidates in your applicant pool, research has found that when companies pursue and hire passive candidates, those employees are 120% more likely to make a positive impact on your corporation.

Passive job hiring is the way of the future, but reaching out to candidates who haven’t first expressed an interest in working with you requires confidence and strong communication abilities. Yes, these are skills that the most successful recruiters have likely already developed. But there is also a certain finesse involved in pursuing job candidates who haven’t already pursued you.

Not to mention the skill (and technology) involved in identifying those candidates most worth pursuing to begin with.

3. Data analytics

With the rise of ATS systems, today’s applicant information available to hiring professionals at the click of a button is truly unprecedented. But talent acquisition research out of Deloitte found a staggeringly high 83% of companies surveyed lack in their ability to understand and utilize that data.

Meanwhile, Spark Hire reported that 24 percent of recruiters are failing to track cost per hire, 18 percent don’t understand the return on investment of the tools they’re using, and 42 percent of companies are still using recruiting tools that have been shown to offer little value in the past.

No one expects recruiters to know how to compile the data themselves, but with applicant tracking systems making much of that data readily available, it’s time you learn how to understand the numbers you’re looking at. That data has value, particularly in how it can shape the way you do your job. So if you want to improve efficiency and recruitment success in 2020, it’s time to commit to an understanding of the metrics already at your fingertips.

If you want to know where to start, A Linkedin report lists the quality of hire as the most useful metric hiring professionals aren’t yet utilizing. But they predict that will be changing over the next few years, with more recruiters learning how to best apply these numbers to their hiring practices. So remaining ahead of the pack means embracing the value these numbers can provide to your recruitment efforts today.

4. Candidate management

A poor candidate experience is one of the top reasons an applicant might turn down a job offer, according to Glassdoor. And you, as the recruiter seeking to fill this role, set the tone of what that experience looks like.

You are the main line of communication applicants have. The person who sets the pace for the hiring process, and often conducts the initial interviews that solidify for the candidate what your corporate culture looks like.

You are both the first and last line of defense. Which means it’s important that you remain approachable, communicative, and friendly throughout the hiring process. Soft skills you’ll find you have more time to prioritize when you allow your recruiting software to take on some of the more tedious aspects of your job.

5. Social media management

Today’s job seekers are online. They are looking for openings on job boards, applying for positions through online application systems, gaining insight about corporate culture through social media profiles, and reviewing the merits of working for specific companies based on their online reputations.

If you’re not actively engaged in your company’s social media presence, you could be missing what your applicants are seeing.

Now, not all recruiters will be entrusted with managing those social media platforms themselves. Plenty of companies hire social media managers specifically to fill that role. But because your job is so closely entwined with what that person is putting out into the world, it makes sense to pay attention to what that is and to remain aware of what your applicants are learning about your company online. So forge a business relationship that allows you to be a part of helping to develop a social media strategy. Especially as it pertains to portraying the corporate culture, advertising job openings, and responding to negative reviews.

6. Creativity

In an industry that is ever-changing, a willingness to think outside the box is perhaps one of the most important skills a recruiter can develop. Your perfect candidate may not always be a cookie-cutter match for what you think you’re looking for. The right person for the job could be someone with slightly less experience, but a whole lot more heart.

Learn to look past job titles and to focus on transferable skills instead. Develop the flexibility to alter your hiring strategy when necessary, and to look beyond the traditional applicant pool when you aren’t finding the candidate of your dreams. Embrace the new tools at your disposal and find new and creative ways to use them every day.

One of the best things about this job is that if you’re doing it right, you’re probably always doing it a little differently from how you did it the day before. And it’s that willingness to change and evolve that will elevate the most successful recruiters in 2020.

Further Reading

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About the author

Leah Campbell
By Leah Campbell
Living in Alaska, Leah Campbell worked in human resources for years, earning her PHR (Professional in Human Resources) certification in 2013. That same year she transitioned into her full-time career as a freelance writer and editor, now combing her two passions for Censia.