5 Common Reasons Why Your Recruiting Isn’t Working and Why It’s Really NOT Your Fault

5 Common Reasons Why Your Recruiting Isn’t Working and Why It’s Really NOT Your Fault

The real reason why your recruiting isn’t working boils down to underlying HR and recruiting issues so deeply rooted in the process that you probably won’t be able to fix them on your own.

Running an internal recruiting function can be a really tough proposition. You know it isn’t in peak operating condition, but you may not know why your recruiting isn’t working or how to fix it. What’s worse is that you’re likely hearing a lot of noise from hiring managers and getting a lot of heat from your boss over individual hires and the process in general.

While there are some things you can do to smooth things out in the short term, the reality is that most of the reasons why your recruiting isn’t working may not even be your fault.

Let’s take a look at the 5 most common reasons why your recruiting isn’t working.

1. You’re doing too much with too little

Most medium-sized businesses are big enough to need full-time recruiters that spend all their time doing nothing but recruiting. Unfortunately, few of those same businesses prioritize to have those full-time recruiters dedicated. That means that recruiters often have to split their time between a many different duties that are completely unrelated to hiring.

What it really means is that recruiters are spread way too thin.

In fact, recruiters are often carrying so many duties that recruiting can become second banana to other tasks. When recruiters are over-tasked, things naturally fall through the cracks and your entire hiring process suffers, and it’s a major reason why your recruiting isn’t working.

2. Your recruitment marketing stinks

A lot of internal recruiting functions haven’t really embraced the idea that recruiting requires sales and marketing skills. We could talk all day about different ways to market your open positions (and we will in future articles), but there’s an underlying problem in recruitment marketing that we should tackle first.

One of the major reasons why your recruiting isn’t working is because of the way many recruiters and hiring managers write their job specifications. Hiring managers come in with a laundry list of very specific skills they need, and recruiters design these impossible to find roles with those exact specs.

And the search is on to find that one-in-a-million person that has those EXACT skills.

If recruiters worked a little more with hiring managers to more deeply understand the role and the skills needed, they would find that there is often a variety of skills that will meet the demand of the hiring manager without over-specifying the position and making the job impossible to fill.

But again, that goes back to the first point. Recruiters don’t really have enough time to work closely with hiring managers because they have too many duties.

3. You’re focused on tactics instead of strategy

It’s really easy to think of recruiting as a myopic, transactional activity. For many companies, recruiting is a reaction to the need to get a position filled, and nothing more. That’s not to say that tactics don’t have a place in recruiting, like when you’re considering exactly how you’re going to fill a role (employee referral, job boards, candidate outreach, etc.).

The problem is that tactics alone don’t add up to a good long-term hiring process and can often be a key reason why your recruiting isn’t working.

A strategic approach, on the other hand, allows you to continuously improve on the delivery, quality, and cost of your hiring while creating the most impactful and effective recruitment process possible.

While internal recruiters are spread too thin to do much about strategy, HR has a vested interest in nailing down a good recruiting strategy so they can take some of the pressure off of recruiters and improve the process as a whole.

4. Your tools are a roadblock

Although there are a lot of great recruiting tools out on the market, there are also some real duds. If your company bought a 3-year contract with one of the duds, then the tool you’re using is actually hurting your recruiting process and ultimately, your results.

This can be especially true with Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). A lot of ATSs actually screen out great talent or even prevent some of the best talent from applying for your open positions because they create such a painful application process. Poorly performing tools and doing too much with too little also leads into the fifth common reason why your recruiting isn’t working.

5. Your employment brand isn’t a priority

Companies should be guarding their employment brand against anything that could hurt it, but companies simply aren’t thinking strategically about their brand or it’s impact on hiring. If you think about it, the four reasons why your recruiting isn’t working above all impact your employment brand.

  • If you’re spread too thin, tasks and candidates fall through the cracks, you don’t keep candidates in the loop like you should, and you’re not really thinking about branding as you swiftly hammer out your recruiting duties so you can go back to other tasks.
  • If your recruitment marketing is less than stellar, then you’re not creating job descriptions that draw in the best candidates. In addition, over-specifying job skills and interviewing talent that doesn’t fit those impossible-to-fill positions leaves a bad taste in the mouth of candidates.
  • Focusing on tactics, instead of strategy, means that you’re never fully focused on your employment brand. When your employment brand isn’t a priority, you can’t attract the best talent.
  • If your application process is painful and you’re driving candidates away with poorly performing recruiting tools, then you’re doing irreparable harm to your employment brand.

There are many underlying HR and recruiting issues that can impact your recruiting process and be the real reason why your recruiting isn’t working.

It’s no secret that running an internal recruiting function can be really tough and difficult to fix, but hopefully the 5 common reasons why your recruiting isn’t working that we’ve outlined here will help you to start ironing out the process and making improvements.

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