What has fast food got in common with the recruitment industry?
The recruitment industry is saturated. And with the huge rise in competition has come the race to deliver candidates faster and cheaper.
Even firms specialising in quick-fire placements are under pressure to deliver shortlists faster to compete. It's hit the search firms too. But whilst competition is obviously healthy, it should never come at the expense of good recruitment.
Some companies have bought-into the transactional approach – in fact, if you’re working in an environment where there’s high staff turnover, it’s needed. But while rapid churn creates new job opportunities and revenue for recruiters, it’s often businesses and their long-term staff that suffer.
So, what’s wrong with fast recruitment?
For one thing, you’ve got more chance of getting your placement wrong.
The beauty of the executive search process is its value – not just in the form of market research and talent benchmarking but also in that an experienced consultant can prise the best candidates from their nests, build their trust quickly and help them over the finishing line into a role.
Every touch point is an opportunity to assess the candidate’s suitability for the role and the company culture. So the more touch points the better.
Fast-tracking recruitment is functional, never savoured and rarely ‘feel good'.
If a company wants to recruit fast are they panic buying? Or is the sign-off process dragged out or last minute? Even worse, do they even trust their recruitment partners to give them an early heads-up?
As I said earlier, sometimes fast is good – especially when recruiter fees are bypassed. But if the placement doesn’t work out, the process has to start all over again and then you’ve wasted time and money.
The fast food industry doesn't supply nutritious food and I’m not convinced fast recruitment is nourishing businesses so they can be successful.
So what’s the alternative to chicken nuggets?
Well it’s certainly not fine dining.
Fine dining is for celebrations but it’s too superficial. And while the ingredients may be good, you wouldn’t want to eat that way everyday. You may well find this style in companies that hide behind fancy reports.
Nor is it slow cooking because if the process takes too long it’s hard to maintain momentum and keep candidates interested and motivated.
The best alternative is nutritious and satisfying, where candidates are well-sourced, carefully prepared and prepped, and thoughtfully served. It's not pretentious or cheap and cheerless, it's good, wholesome and real.
Good recruitment is having the ability to source, engage and hire the vital ingredients - the people who will sustain the business and the leaders who will inspire, nurture, and feed the company with vision, expertise, and goodness.