Difficult requisitions are part of every recruiter’s work. Recruiters may often receive requisitions for highly skilled professionals in specific fields who will work for a comparatively low salary – and it’s not uncommon for the company to need the position filled as soon as possible. As ERE.net points out, this is rarely a realistic request, and recruiters often have to sacrifice quality or speed or increase the low salary to get results. Those who promise they can provide exactly what the company needs within these strict parameters may indeed succeed – but if they do not, the failure to satisfy very high expectations at all times can tarnish reputations. Here are some ways to handle a very difficult requisition professionally:
Collaborate – Don’t Argue – with the Hiring Manager
Some requisitions will be difficult to fill to the exact specifications the hiring manager supplies. For example, finding a candidate with several years of sales experience who can also code competently may take quite some time, or might require offering a higher salary to get the right person. Recruiters with experience in the field will often be able to determine just how difficult a request might be to fill immediately on receiving it.
Recruiters who get long-shot requests should not stay quiet, and neither should they argue the requisition is impossible. Instead, recruiters need to approach hiring managers in a collaborative role, offering their expertise to help find a solution to the problem rather than promising the moon. Taking a strategic perspective on what the business needs can allow recruiters to make recommendations that will fill the needs the requisition represents, whether that means altering the timeline or budget or looking for a different type of candidate entirely. For instance, it may be more realistic to hire a contractor to work part time if the requisition is for someone with special skills that are currently only relevant to one project at the company.
Source “Purple Squirrels” Continuously
Recruiters should work to assemble a talent pipeline full of as many “purple squirrels” as they can find. These “purple squirrels” are candidates who match job requirements perfectly in every way, from skills to goals, according to Human Capital Online. While recruiters can’t fill a pipeline with people who are perfect for a job that doesn’t exist yet, they can certainly build relationships with prospects who are a good fit for the company in important ways – and who have skills the company repeatedly needs. Recruiters who understand the needs of their company should always have one eye on their talent pipelines with the intention of filling them with people who would thrive at the workplace, and who have the skills hiring managers want.
“Hiring a purple squirrel can be a challenging process which demands significant extra input from the hiring manager,” recruitment consultant David Dumeresque told Human Capital Online, “but those prepared to put in the groundwork, be adaptable and innovative, will reap the benefits.”
Using a relationship-focused applicant tracking system can help recruiters contact and cultivate relationships with these people, meaning they’ll be at the ready when the next requisition comes in.
Don’t Forget to Look Within
The two strategies above are smart and effective, but they aren’t the only ones. Recruiters should never neglect to look within their own companies to see whether someone who performs highly in his or her current role could potentially fill this one. Particularly for jobs that require an extremely specific skill set, companies may already have someone near-perfect for the post. It’s easy to forget a hire made two years ago who is thriving and is also fluent in Mandarin when that’s exactly what the company needs, for example, but recruiters should keep track of skills like this for themselves. That way, if a niche talent is needed, recruiters can see whether someone internal has it before sourcing outside the firm.
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