The Role of a Recruiter
What does a recruiter do? It’s more than simply finding talent and filling a position. So much goes into that process.
Whether the recruiter works internally or is hired as a service provider, the recruiter must, above all, understand the needs of his or her client. An open position does not mean anyone (or anything) can fill it. It takes precision, experience and the ideal offer.
A recruiter often works from a pool of candidates who likely already have a job. The candidate has to be persuaded, oftentimes, to leave that job in favor of another one that offers more pay and/or benefits, a greater quality of life, the opportunity to advance or the ability to work with an exciting company. Statistics show most people stay in a job less than five years. That leaves plenty of wiggle room for recruiters to do their thing.
The more aligned the recruiter is with the culture of their client’s company, the more effectively they can find that perfect fit. They know the skills that are needed to fulfill the job requirement as well as they understand the type of person who will fit the culture. You need both for a successful placement.
Can Recruiters Be Replaced?
AI is making many people nervous. As great as AI is in the advancement of our society, the jury is still out as to whether this is a good thing or not. If AI can do what humans do, what does that mean for the future of the workplace? Will our jobs be outsourced to robots and computers?
If you ask anyone in any industry how they feel about the potential for AI to replace them, you’ll likely hear a list of reasons why their job could never be effectively executed by a computer. No one wants to believe they are “replaceable.” The truth is, AI has already made a dent. From manufacturing to shipping, product development to distribution and marketing to finance, AI is everywhere. People are having to rethink what value they bring to the marketplace.
What about recruiting? Can AI sort through candidates, use algorithms to choose the best candidate for a particular job and negotiate the offer? Let’s take a deeper dive.
Chatbots are replacing tier 1 and tier 2 support in many customer service departments. They may not be able to answer complex questions, but they are effectively assisting customers with more basic and regular issues, such as payments, company information, routing calls, finding specific products, etc. The best customer service strategy includes a hybrid approach – using chatbots for those simpler inquiries and enabling a human representative to step in when needed.
Chatbots may have replaced some traditional human support agents, but they have also helped consumers get their answers faster and with less friction. Because of the hybrid approach, bots can provide quick resolution while customer service representatives can focus on more meaningful interactions. It’s a win-win for the customer and the company.
Recruiting can and likely will do the same. A chatbot may be able to help candidates complete questionnaires and resumes, assist with scheduling appointments and interviews, and follow up with them automatically. A human recruiter is of value to establish the relationship with the candidate and the hiring manager, mediate between the two during offer negotiations, and keep in touch with both parties to ensure all is well. Working in tandem, the entire job placement process is streamlined while still being personal.
Automation has become the way of life for all of us. There are countless automated technologies we use every day that have replaced manual devices and many of those technologies are centralized into a single smartphone. With automation, we can multitask like never before, find information with the touch of a button and do just about everything else imaginable.
How can automation benefit the recruiter? Automation can replace keyword searches and disqualify resumes that are obviously not a fit. Automation can speed skill set matches, as well as years of experience, education and location requirements. It can save the recruiter significant time in taking care of these basics so the recruiter has all of the facts they need to perform their job better, faster and with greater accuracy.
Even with all of the benefits of automation, the recruiter still plays a critical role. A job seeker is making a big decision about their future. That process will never be 100 percent automated because too much is at stake. Both the job seeker and the hiring manager need to meet. They need to communicate, get to know each other a bit and ensure it’s a right fit. The negotiation process can be tricky as well. While candidates want a great offer that could likely be delivered via a bot or through automated means, they likely want more. They want human interaction – to know they are wanted, that they could work for and with certain people, that they have a voice.
AI and automation have their place, no doubt. They have changed our way of life for the better in most situations. Yet, we still want the human touch. We need each other. Only humans can understand relationships. Only humans can convey compassion, empathy and real emotion. These are traits we all need from each other to feel human.
Recruiters provide that care. They establish relationships with their clients as well as the job seeker, at least the good ones do. They know about the job seeker’s family, what goals they have, what their past experiences bring to the job – not in terms of a resume, but what personal value they bring to the table.
Equally, they have likely worked with the client company before and know the hiring managers. They understand that sometimes the job requirements listed don’t mention certain personal attributes that will be needed. They know how the team works together and what they expect from a new team member, beyond what’s on paper.
The best recruiters are able to marry the two perfectly. When a client discusses an open position, they can dig deeper and take what they know to identify the ideal candidates that fit the role in every way. No AI technology can do that.
Working in Harmony
Just as customer service organizations have figured out how to leverage the benefits of AI and automation with the humanness of humans, recruiters can do the same. They can embrace the value AI brings in scrubbing and sorting candidates and assisting in the placement process, while taking care of the relationship side of the business.
It’s that relationship aspect that will win and retain clients. If AI could do all of the work of the human recruiter, there would be little to separate the providers of such services. The human recruiter will be the differentiator. The personal attention they offer and the relationships they establish will be what makes them stand out. Being able to offer the technology with the personal is the key to success.