Smart Resourcing prompts reflection on topics raised


I just wanted to put on the record my appreciation of Recruiter’s recent Smart Resourcing 2010 conference on 22 September in London, which prompted me to reflect on one or two of the topics under debate.

Without a doubt, high on the agenda of most HR directors today are the issues of talent management and employee engagement. I believe that they are intrinsically linked and that the recruiter has an important role to play in both areas.
I would argue that the most important role of the recruiter is not only to attract and onboard suitable candidates but also to ensure the retention and development of that candidate for as long a period of time as possible in order to ensure that the return on investment far outweighs the cost per hire (the recruitment and orientation of that individual).

The increasingly intuitive skill of the recruiter is not necessarily to simply find the right technical skills, but to actually focus on making sure that the successful hire is correctly positioned both within the job band and the culture of the organisation.
I believe that the fundamental role of a recruiter is to match the candidate’s personality with the culture and values of the company and also to position the candidate in the correct quartile of the job band.

The latter is critical in order to allow the candidate to not only add value, but also to grow into the role for which they were recruited.
However, the former issue of personality is also critical to allow the candidate opportunities to develop through the company and to remain engaged.

Too often we find clients opting for the easier, short-term option which is to hire, as a matter of expediency, over-qualified candidates who can do the job immediately but who, in six months time, will be causing management headaches and banging their head against a ceiling of frustration and suppression.

As Dr Robert Holden famously professes, success and happiness are linked but usually in the wrong way. Happiness leads to success and, in my opinion, the majority of happiness comes from being around like-minded individuals who are driven by similar values, ambitions and desires. Getting the cultural match wrong is not a solution or an answer.

Equally, placing over-qualified people in the organisation is also a dangerous exercise. Recruiters across the spectrum should never compromise on the relationship match.

In a candidate-short market, the skill set or experience should be the variable to flex a little in order to find the right match. People can learn the skills but it is much harder (impossible in some cases!) to change people.

Might I suggest that the recruiter’s role finishes when there is a positive result in the employee engagement survey?

Matthew Chester, director, Digby Morgan

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