The recruitment and search industry has been radically changed over the last decade by the rapid growth of the digital era and the provision of easier access routes to potential talented employees for prospective employers. Employers have increasingly started to advertise positions at all levels directly using a combination of job sites , social media, online recruitment advertising companies , on line trawls of linkedin and their own websites. The new digital age has changed some things, but traditional analogue skills are still essentially needed to make the process work as has always been the case historically. As ever,the importance of sorting the wheat from the chaff is paramount as employing the wrong person can be very expensive and could send a company or one of its divisions in completely the wrong business direction. Having spent over 30 years in the recruitment and search arena, I have worked on numerous assignments and many of these ,alarmingly ,were undertaken to correct previous bad hiring decisions.
Whilst employers now find it easier to get to potential employees on line, they are still making bad hiring decisions due to either straight forward recruiting inexperience or a pure lack of knowledge of the true track record of these potential employees.
Job seekers fall into a number of different categories, but the most significant differentiation is between those looking directly for a new position and those that may be open to the right opportunity , if presented to them, but aren’t necessarily looking to make a move.
The former category will be much easier to attract and will make quite different future career decisions to those who are not necessarily looking to change. They are in most cases looking to get back to work quickly and can lead to bad decisions being made on both sides of the fence. These jobseekers are more likely to make multiple and often badly thought out applications due to their need to keep their personal cash flow positive. They often overlook simple things like their location and the pure practicality and cost of getting to work as an example.
The latter category usually both need and welcome third party input all the way through what can often be a significant and potentially life changing career move. They are generally very bad at negotiating on their own behalf and only ever meet people from their potential new employers in a pressurised and time restricted environment. From my own experience, they want to be helped and advised at every stage of the recruitment process. I used to spend nearly 2 days of every week working with candidates and helping them to make these important career decisions. Many went on to have highly successful careers and ultimately become long term clients of my business.
I have been called on regularly recently to help with both shortlisting and interviewing to provide the analogue skills missing in a digital approach. Whilst companies are reluctant to pay traditional recruitment fees, they can see the value of bringing in outside experience on a daily basis as required. The companies that I have engaged with have found the skills and methodology that has been developed and honed over 3 decades helpful to them whilst trying to avoid making costly and business harming bad decisions.
Alastair Ames ran a successful and highly service focussed recruitment and search and selection business, Alastair Ames Associates, for 32 years. The business was established in times when high levels of customer service , advice and delivery of a successful solution were both expected and consequently delivered. Advice and business assistance were provided across clients businesses in addition to the provision of recruitment solutions. With the recruitment industry moving rapidly away from pure consultancy a decision was made to move into more general consultancy in early 2018.