4 Ways to Promote Better Recruiter/Hiring Manager Relationships

Posted by Mark Jackson on Thu, Jun, 16, 2016 @ 10:06 AM

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A Bersin report found that “developing strong relationships with hiring managers is the top driver of talent acquisition performance.” In fact, it was found to be four times more influential than any other factor studied. 

Yet many employers are clearly failing at managing the recruiter/hiring manager relationship. From the same report: 80% of recruiters believe they have a good understanding of the jobs they’re recruiting for, but 61% of hiring managers disagree. 

Given the tremendous gap in their opinions, it’s no wonder managing the relationships between these two groups is one of our “4 Keys Steps to Successful Talent Acquisition.”

The recruiter/hiring manager relationship is critically important for two reasons: 

  1. The recruiter needs to understand the skills and qualifications the hiring manager is seeking for given job roles or the wrong candidates can be delivered, which results in bad hires or delays in hiring.
  1. The recruiter and hiring manager need to work together to avoid time-costing bottlenecks that slow the hiring process. Bottlenecks frustrate candidates and increase time to hire. 

So, how can you promote quality relationships between your recruiters and hiring managers? 

  1. Encourage frequent, effective communication at every step of the process. At many organizations, this isn’t happening—which isn’t surprising, considering the statistics above from the Bersin report. “The lack of communication between recruiters and hiring managers is the biggest challenge we have in the industry—period,” Steve Lowisz, CEO of recruiting and recruitment research firm Qualigence International, told SHRM.  

  1. Take steps to build trust and agreement. Have recruiters and hiring managers meet face to face in an effort to establish themselves as partners working together toward a singular goal: making quality hires in an efficient manner. As part of this, recruiters and hiring managers should agree upon written expectations for the relationship and how they’re going to work together. Doing so will help them stay on the same page, especially since both will have documentation to refer to.             
  1. Have them hold process improvement meetings. Recruiters and hiring managers should hold occasional meetings to evaluate how they can work together more efficiently and more effectively. For example, they can examine if the recruiters have been sending along the right quantities and types of candidates to the hiring manager for interviews.                                                                                                               
  1. Use modern talent acquisition software. Software will help recruiters and hiring managers stay organized by consolidating candidate and job information, and will prevent communication breakdowns by using notifications and auto-alerts throughout the process. In fact, recruiters and hiring managers won’t even have to log in to the software to be alerted of an update—smart emails will keep everyone on the same page. So, for example, both recruiters and hiring managers will be aware if changes are made to a job description. Plus, there will be no more giant piles of paper to sift through, which will save time, eliminate frustration and reduce cost. 

Your talent acquisition efforts have a tremendous impact on the future of your company. Don’t let poor or mediocre recruiter/hiring manager relationships spoil that future. 

For more on managing the recruiter/hiring manager relationship, and to learn other important steps for improving your hiring, read our new article -

4 Key Steps to Successful  Talent Acquisition

Tags: recruiter, hiring manager, talent acquisition