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Five Steps to Successful Headhunting

Views 2 Views    Comments 0 Comments    Share Share    Posted 20-11-2009  
In a candidate short market, talented individuals (the very people you need for your clients vacancies) tend to be sitting tight and very content in their jobs.

More and more employers are recognizing the need to look after the people they want to keep in their business with plenty of perks, tie-ins and generous pay checks.

As a recruiter, I have shunned the persistent calls from job boards peddling their resume databases. I understand that they have the largest number of resumes anywhere on the web, but that does not convince me that it contains hot, quality candidates for my clients needs.

If you want to be sure of getting quality candidates that are right for your client, the best way is to headhunt.

Effective headhunting is a careful blend of art and science and the ability to transplant a happy employee from one firm and into another, whilst making sure the move is beneficial for your client, for you and most importantly, for the career progression of the individual concerned.

Five points every recruiter should adopt to achieve effective headhunting results:

1. Identify your candidates: Make use of publications relevant to your clients` markets, immerse yourself in them and get familiar with the `people moves` section. These sections are a great way to identify and exploit potential opportunities. ABC Corp announces a new Divisional Director, give it two or three weeks, then get in there and start to approach their people. Not everyone will be comfortable with the new Director and will appreciate learning of a chance to move.

2. Name gathering: Be creative when gathering names. "I had arranged to call your Sales Manager and I`m rather embarrassed to say that I`ve forgotten the name...I`ll recognize it as soon as you tell me it". Using statements like the one just mentioned is a great way to get potential candidate names from target companies and get past the gate keeper.

3. Overcoming obstacles: Are you regularly challenged when requesting to speak with a potential candidate? Overcome the hurdle before it is put in front of you. Wherever possible, try to use a name that you do know and throw some weight behind it, "Good morning Helen, I was speaking with John Doe your Operations Director on another matter last week, he suggested I get in touch with Steve, your Sales Manager, could you connect me please".

4. Identifying the desire to change: Too many headhunters waste their time chasing people that are never going to change their job, no matter what you or your client can offer. There are five motivations behind job change. Attitude, Career, Environment, Dedication, Finance. Benchmark your candidates` current offering against each of these five motivations and see how they compare against the industry. If they are worse off than the industry as a whole, then your candidate is ripe for a move.

5. Manage the resignation: After the hard work of researching a candidate, thoroughly screening them, getting them in front of the client and securing an offer, can you afford to see it all fall apart at the resignation stage? No! Managing the resignation is the most important part of this process as you can be assured the current employer will counter offer. Reinforcement of the reasons why the candidate has gone through this process will assist in ensuring they do actually start with your client.

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