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The unkindest cut of all…is it deserved?

Many times when talent acquisition leaders ask us for assistance in coaching their recruiters, they say the awful “O” word—order taker.

They want help transitioning recruiters from order takers to business partners/trusted advisors, etc.

Have I found teams where recruiters are functioning as order takers? Yes.

Are hiring managers happy about that? No

Are recruiters happy about that? No.

So how did we get here?

Here is one way the cycle gets created and just keeps going round and round:

Poor business partner relationship between hiring manager and recruiter, so

Hiring manager does not see the recruiter as a partner, so

Recruiter does not get the information and support required from the hiring manager, so

Recruiting difficult to do well without critical information, so

Recruiting results disappointing, so

Hiring manager frustration grows, so

Recruiter tries harder to find great candidates, so

Because great candidates are not enough to repair relationships, the business relationship continues to decline so now return to the first line

And so it goes. 2nd verse, same as the first.

I would like to share one thing you can do to start breaking the cycle above. You’ll be amazed at how quickly it can happen. Of course it takes a little courage (an article about that is coming).

I’ve got a list of questions that will start to shatter any order-taker image that may be lingering. i’ve left it in word format so you can modify it. For example, I have these questions included in the form I use with hiring managers when starting a new search. You can download it here (no email required). Questions Order-Takers Don’t Ask


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