Recruiting Tips: How to Navigate the Three S’s

· by Taylor King

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Recruiting tips for navigating the three S’s.

As recruiters, we must stay on our toes—always. Expect the unexpected. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. This happens from start to finish of the recruiting process.

Recruiting Tip #1: How to navigate: The sorry resume.

Our time is valuable, and when job volume is high, there is not much availability for reviewing “sorry resumes.” Typically, resumes receive 10-15 seconds of an initial scan. If the pertinent information is not obvious and easily accessible, on to the next one. Unfortunate truth, but to be honest… no one has time (or patience) to review 183 pages worth of details.

Suggestions for candidates:

  • Capitalize your name and place in the header of the page.
  • Add your contact information.
  • Use correct punctuation.
  • Organize your work experience by most current position to least recent.
  • Summarize each position with minimal bullet points or within 5 sentences.
  • Only include relevant information (maybe don’t include your participation award for field day in 2nd grade?).
  • Include dates/location of employment and explain any gaps of time in your work history.

Your resume should reflect all the talent and skills you possess. These simple steps can make your resume stand out and cause less stress for the recruiter!

Recruiting Tip #2: How to navigate: The shady drug screen.

As recruiters, we each have pretty good intuition and can sense when things are a bit off. We deal with poor communication and mishaps regularly. Some things are unavoidable and out of our control… like “shady drug screens.” What do we do when a candidate acts suspicious before a drug screen? How do we prepare?

Suggestions for recruiters:

  • Stay aware. (Is your candidate showing signs of potentially failing a drug screen? Reiterate the type of drug screen they will be doing and that their offer is contingent on the results. Leave it at that.)
  • Don’t ask questions.
  • Let the drug screen speak for itself. (Candidate to recruiter: “Just so you know, I’m taking prescription drugs.” Recruiter to candidate: “Let me stop you right there. We’ll do the drug screen and wait for the results.”)
  • IF your worst nightmare comes true… communicate professionally and promptly with your candidate and client—in that order.

Recruiting Tip #3: How to navigate: The savage reference.

You recruited an awesome candidate. The candidate knows they’re good. You’re in the final stages of the recruiting process. Time to call the candidate’s references… and they’re completely savage. They had horrible things to say about your candidate. For instance, they would never rehire them. What do you do?

Suggestions for recruiters:

  • Repeat. Repeat. Reiterate the importance of providing solid references who will speak to the utmost positive attributes of your candidate.

Suggestions for candidates:

  • Only give contact information of references who know your work ethic and personality well (sorry—your grandma doesn’t count).
  • Avoid supervisors or co-workers who you did not get along with.
  • Follow up with them BEFORE the recruiter calls, to give them a heads up.

Each recruiter has different practices, and every candidate is unique, but I’ve found these few preventative steps to be very helpful for both parties!