A Recruiter’s Worst Nightmare

I was traveling last month visiting clients in Detroit and overheard a few people at the hotel talking about an article in the Wall Street Journal. Anytime I hear a conversation that has anything to do with people looking for a job, my ears always perk up. After all… once a recruiter always a recruiter. I reached over and picked up the Journal to see what the buzz was about. I saw the article on the first page, “The Unemployed Worker’s New Friend: Outsourcers.”

My first thought, it may be a candidate’s new friend, but a recruiter’s worst nightmare. The article described candidates’ experiences using outsourcing services to blanket their resumes all over job board cyberspace by leveraging keyword recognition. If a keyword match was found, these services would send off a resume and a cover letter in response using the candidate’s own email address, so that the application appears to be from the candidate. In one case, more than 10,000 different job applications were made for a single candidate. In one example, an outsourcing agency submitted a sales director to any job with the word “sales” or “retail” in the job description. Quite unsurprising, it ended up that he was overqualified for most of the jobs including one as a receptionist for a hair salon.

The stories continued, but, in the end, workers said that they are using these services because they feel it gets them in front of a recruiter. After all, aside from paying a fee from $40-$500 per month, they don’t have to do anything to have their resumes submitted to you 10,000 times. These services seem to be going strong and generate a lot of revenue from candidates looking to automate the job application process. This leaves me with a bad feeling and raises some interesting questions– How DOES a staffing agency manage the tremendous volume from these outsourcing agencies? If you get 200 responses, do you review all 200 to find that 1 perfect candidate? What is the right sourcing strategy that will make the most of a recruiter’s time? Do you hire somebody to screen these people, or consider an outsourced solution?

Now is the time of year where job board and other sourcing alternatives contracts are ready to renew and clients find themselves asking if they need these services or how they can make better use of them. Along those lines, how do you measure the impact of a solution to assess its value? I often get clients asking about sourcing strategies and if they should utilize a sourcing or resource team. My answer is always the same– it depends. Each business is different because of company culture, clients and competition. Even though the end result may be the same, the way in which you get there is not cookie cutter. There is no magic formula. Certainly you can embark on a new adventure and try something new, but how are you planning on evaluating if it works and how are you going to integrate it into your current process so that it has the greatest chance of success? How do you know that you are choosing the best option for your business and not just a good option? This can make all the difference.

As a former Bullhorn user, I am the first one to admit that I bleed Bullhorn and LOVE the software. While Bullhorn can make the world of sales and recruiting amazingly more efficient, it can only get you part of the way there. If your internal processes aren’t aligned, there is only so much software can do. Over the past few years here at Bullhorn, my role has been to help clients integrate their processes within the Bullhorn system, as well to help them start from scratch and reinvent more efficient ways of running their businesses. Our Bullhorn Professional Services team has consolidated the experiences from these engagements and started a new division that is solely focused on refining and improving client process and workflow. We want to help clients to address those questions listed above and make the best choices. This new division is Strategic Consulting. We provide 5 types of consulting offerings that can provide you a deep dive into the people, process and technology of your recruiting and sales processes.

As you start to think about your sourcing strategy and how you manage candidates, we recognize that it is the right combination of technology and process that can make the difference to your business. To get more information on Bullhorn Strategic Consulting Services, feel free to reach out to myself directly at mrosen@bullhorn.com. To view the original WSJ article, go here.

This Bullhorn Blog post was written by Melissa Rosen. 

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