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Let me caveat this post with this: I have never been a recruiter. I don’t think I ever will be a recruiter. Most of what I’m saying below is based on my assumptions of what you do, could do or should do. Now, having said that, here’s why I think that every recruiter needs JibberJobber personally and as a tool in your trade.
When I was looking for a job I had contacted 29 recruiters. And I’m sure I was a pest. My skills were too general, and I didn’t find a recruiter that had any job opportunities that matched my skill level. I listed each recruiter in my cool spreadsheet and tried to keep tabs about once every two weeks. There was either no response or “I don’t have anything yet – check back later.” It was very discouraging and I felt that all of the recruiters were letting me down.
I really didn’t understand how you work, what your role was, and what my role was. And no one really explained it to me (seriously, a ten-minute talk on “how things work” would have been so helpful – perhaps at your company you can call it “the talk” and clue the candidates in).
This is where JibberJobber comes in. When you explain to me that you have opportunities, and you are trying to find the right candidate for current opportunities, I begin to undersand that I have a lot of work to do also. I need to understand that you aren’t going to list my target companies for me, and that you aren’t going to manage my network for me, and that you can’t sit with me for 3 hours and put together my elevator pitch and answer all of myinterview questions for me. I realize that some of you do this with some of your candidates but really, the ultimate burden of getting a job falls on me – and you need to let me know this (because I assumed you were going to be my silver bullet).
Tell me to sign up for JibberJobber – and manage all of this on my own. I will appreciate the fact that you gave me something of value – a tool that I didn’t know about before. I can get rid of my spiral notebook, my dozens of 3×5 cards, the sticky notes, my convoluted Excel spreadsheet. You may not have an opportunity for me but at least now I understand what your role is, and what my role is. And for that I’ll be forever grateful.
So please, Mr. or Ms. Recruiter, do me a favor and tell me about the tools and processes. Teach me. Shoot, if you want a cheat sheet go to Harry Joiner’s MarketingHeadhunter.com site and steal his stuff (you’ll have to send him an e-mail to get the 28 tips – but isn’t it cool that he’s educating his candidates?). If you want another idea on how to add value and educate me go check out Carl Chapman’s blog. He is an executive recruiter that speaks to me – here is a wrap-up of his 10 ways to make rectuiters love you series (here it is on PDF).
Educate me. Give me something of value. And I’ll be indebted to you.
Now, on a personal level. Did you know that Keith Ferrazzi (the Never Eat Alone guy) calls you a power connector? “Headhunter” is one of the few professions that he names as power connector. That means that you know a lot of people, and are very well connected. He says that the rest of us need to develop relationships with you.
But what happens to all of your connections when you transition? Because you aren’t immune to the turnover cycles, bad bosses, changes in economy, etc. All the stuff that plagues us can bite you too. So what happens to all of those connections you’ve been developing?
Well, the truth is, you still own the relationships. Maybe not the business relationships – but you own the personal relationships. Is all of the important data on each of your personal relationships sitting in your employers ATS (that’s Application Tracking System for us non-recruiters)? When you leave (on happy or not-happy terms) do you think they are going to let you download your relationship information to take with you? Not likely.
I am a firm believer in tracking your personal relationships. This is your career – you need to treat it seriously. I’m not suggesting that you steal employer data. Or that you breach confidentiality or trust. But if you have a personal relationship with someone then you should manage that on a personal level.
In my humble opinion you should have your own personal ATS. Let’s just call it JibberJobber. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t sign up for JibberJobber and use it to manage your personal career information.
So there you go – that’s why I think every recruiter needs JibberJobber:
- To recommend it to your candidates, and
- To use personally.
Have I crossed a line? Do you agree or disagree?