This book provides a holistic approach and insights to recruiting fundamentals. It is a body of knowledge on recruitment to prepare the recruiter for the rigors at work. This body of knowledge is applicable across industries. It is also applicable across corporates and agencies. The principles discussed hold good for recruitment of any velocity, volume, and complexity.

Is this book limited to the Indian audience? The stages of the recruitment cycle, the Applicant Tracking System, social media sites like LinkedIn, and other automation tools are universal. The human aspirations are universal. The case studies are from India. I believe that these case studies would be variations of challenges which fellow recruiters would face in their own countries. While the case studies may have a local flavor, the lion’s share of the book is largely universal and would benefit the global community.

Recruitment has been happening from time immemorial. We can safely assume that recruitment before the year 2000 was unaided by technology. After the year 2000, there has been a gradual adoption of job boards, Applicant Tracking Systems and social media sites. AI and Analytics have also been thrown into the mix. Technology may come and technology may go, but the dear old recruitment life cycle remains the same. The recruiter needs to be equipped with the necessary knowledge, skills, and attributes to execute each phase of the recruitment cycle.

This book drives home the importance of recruiting with rigor.

The nuts and bolts of recruitment and talent acquisition

This book adopts a candidate-centric recruitment approach.

In day to day usage, recruitment and talent acquisition are synonymous. However, recruitment and talent acquisition are different.

Recruitment is reactive. Recruitment is the process of identifying, attracting, and onboarding an applicant for a specific position to meet a need.

Talent acquisition is a proactive approach. The emerging business needs of organizations drive talent acquisition. It is critical to nurture a relevant pool of applicants to meet these needs. Engaging this talent pool and creating a keen sense of interest in the opportunities and the organization’s brand is necessary. It is an opportunity to forge relationships.

Recruitment is tactical. Talent acquisition is strategic.

The recruiter is the person who drives the recruitment and talent acquisition activities.

In part 1 of the book, the focus is on tactical aspects. It discusses the recruitment life cycle in detail. This part throws light on the recruiter’s knowledge, skills, and attributes to execute each stage of the recruitment life cycle.

In part 2 of the book, the focus is on the strategic aspects. It discusses strategies to acquire talent, with an emphasis on social media and LinkedIn.

The importance of relationships and culture

What you sow is what you reap. It is the vision and values of the organization that drive the culture. The most visible level of culture is behavior. The book recommends an induction and training program for a recruiter to convert desirable behavior into habits. The training program lays the ideal foundation for a predictable performance of the recruiting organization.

Culture drives communication and vice versa. Clear communication is a critical cultural attribute. Communication is not complete until the loop is closed. There is a dedicated section to drive home the importance of task management and closing the loop.

The recruiter can ill afford to go through the motions at work. The recruiter derives his strength from empathy and emotional intelligence.

Relationships are crucial to succeed in recruitment. The capability to build relationships is analogous to the core abdominal muscles of the body. The stronger they are, the better they support the spine and back. Empathy manifests itself in minute actions. “A Day in the Life of a Recruiter” illustrates the importance of relationships.

The gifts of modern technology: Job boards, social media, and Applicant Tracking Systems

There are specific chapters devoted to the features of job boards, social media, and Applicant Tracking Systems. A detailed comparison between social media and job boards appears as a separate chapter.

One of the objectives of implementing Applicant Tracking Systems is to get insights into the hiring organizations’ activities. Effectively configuring an Applicant Tracking System enables all possible metrics. Recommendations to re-engineer a recruiting organization appear as detailed conversations in the chapter on cost of recruitment.

Future of recruitment

The chapter transcending technological trends: staying tuned to change addresses the fundamentals required to leverage existing technological advancements as well as bracing oneself for the future.

Last but not the least

A recruiter and a recruiting organization are only as good as the support extended by the hiring organization and financial sponsor. The last chapter details the support that needs to be extended to the recruiter to succeed in the job.

To summarize, the book helps the recruiter to:

• provide a reality connect to execute every phase of the recruiting cycle
• recognize the interdependence of each of these phases
• appreciate the price of non-conformance with fundamentals
• realize strategic intent as a complement to transactional savviness
• understand the knowledge, skills and attributes required to address each phase of the recruitment cycle, discover the gaps and arrive at an action plan

The book helps the recruitment organization to:

• configure an enduring and endearing organization, irrespective of industry, size, volume, velocity, and complexity
• arrive at a holistic social media implementation plan
• configure an Applicant Tracking System for their needs
• arrive at standard operating procedures that are all-encompassing
• recognize the discipline of data and drive home a culture of competence

One of my all-time favorite sequences from the movie “Saving Private Ryan” is when the dying Tom Hanks whispers into the ears of Matt Damon, “James, earn this, earn it.” The recruiter needs to earn respect from stakeholders by delighting them with exceptional service. In doing so, the recruiter would enable “Respect for Recruitment.”

“This book is for the recruiter, by a recruiter who cares!”

Written by Raghunath Ramaswamy
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