The Evolution of The Recruiter

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If one wanted to witness the evolution of recruiting, all one would have to do is review job descriptions of the past and analyze what parts could be automated and consider what tasks could be added. I was curious so, I did a Google search for recruiter jobs and restricted the results to the year – 2010. I found a classic Monster job description of a Recruiter role and made an analysis. 

I thought the following job duties from the 2010 Recruiter job description could be automated in part or in whole. 

  • Builds applicant sources by researching and contacting community services, colleges, employment agencies, recruiters, media, and internet sites; providing organization information, opportunities, and benefits; making presentations; maintaining rapport.
  • Determine applicant requirements by studying job description and job qualifications.
  • Attracts applicants by placing job advertisements; contacting recruiters, using newsgroups and job sites.
  • Arranges management interviews by coordinating schedules
  • Pre-Screening  applicants on consistent set of qualifications [ie. Chatbots, of course]
  • Comparing qualifications to job requirements [ie. Resume ranking in ATS]

And I would also add to this list of duties that could be automated with the following:

  • Offer Creation  
  • Resume Parsing
  • De-duping Databases
  • ATS Updating
  • Personality and Skills assessments

Some of the duties I thought were out of the purview of the modern recruiter and more likely to be handled by a recruiter coordinator; such as:

  • Arranges travel, lodging, and meals; escorting applicant to interviews; arranging community tours.
  • Manages new employee relocation by determining new employee requirements; negotiating with movers; arranging temporary housing; providing community introductions.

The remainder of the job duties I thought were still in play with today’s recruiter. 

  • Establishes recruiting requirements by studying organization plans and objectives; meeting with managers to discuss needs.
  • Determines applicant qualifications by interviewing applicants; analyzing responses; verifying references
  • Evaluates applicants by discussing job requirements and applicant qualifications with managers; interviewing applicants on consistent set of qualifications.
  • Improves organization attractiveness by recommending new policies and practices; monitoring job offers and compensation practices; emphasizing benefits and perks.
  • Updates job knowledge by participating in educational opportunities; reading professional publications; maintaining personal networks; participating in professional organizations.
  • Avoids legal challenges by understanding current legislation; enforcing regulations with managers; recommending new procedures; conducting training. [i.e. Not asking illegal interview questions; adhering to fair hiring practices]
  • I do not know of any recruiters that managed an intern program.  I would think such would be a duty of a manager. 

When it came to the Recruiter skills and qualifications, all of the items cited were very much in play today: “Phone Skills, Recruiting, Interviewing Skills, People Skills, Supports Diversity, Employment Law, Results Driven, Professionalism, Organization, Project Management and Judgment.”

However, I would not cease the job description after mentioning the requirements from 2010 as so much more is, or should be required of recruiters, in 2019 and beyond. Most notably, the following should be considered:

  • Recruiters are relationship managers, negotiating with hiring managers over candidate requirements and what the talent supply allows. Moreover, persuading candidates to consider opportunities when they are already gainfully employed and/or when they are unfamiliar with the company the recruiter represents. Ultimately, Recruiters are “Closers” being adept at managing a shifting landscape driven by economic realities, company mandates and expectations from all concerns that may or may not be realistic. 
  • Recruiters are brand agents, monitoring what is said about the employer they represent and responding to feedback online and during the interview process. They are also careful to represent themselves as company advocates, showcasing their involvement in company events and community involvement on their social media; for potential candidates to find. 
  • Recruiters have an instinctive eye for talent that can read between the lines of a resume and make reasonable assumptions of cultural fit and unique opportunities for placing someone who might be open to changing careers by utilizing their skillsets in a new industry. 
  • Recruiters are also optimal at time management, being able to discern from hiring manager responses, which jobs should take priority in their efforts. If they can reasonably detect that a requisition is not a hot priority, then they can allocate more efforts in things life community building and developing a referral pipeline from candidates they have interviewed in the past.

All to say, a recruiter in 2019 has somewhat of an advantage over those recruiters based in 2010; based in part on the technology at their disposal. The technology does not remove the human element needed to perform such tasks as candidate engagement, relationship management and exercising judgement. It does however, free up the recruiter’s time to do more of it and thus, make more hires quickly and more efficiently.