Welcome to The Fordyce Letter:

The Fordyce Letter

Straight Talk for the Recruiting Profession


Business

Business, The Business of Recruiting

The Value of a Retained Search Begins With the Job Description



Quality value

A while back, I read a post on ERE.net on writing a great job description. ERE’s site is geared toward corporate recruiters, many of whom are young and inexperienced, with little or no agency experience. The article made me think about the overall problem with job descriptions and how they’re typically handled in both the agency and corporate world.

In the agency world, the client provides the job description. But who actually writes it? Is it the hiring manager, HR, internal recruiter, or some combination of these three? Whose thoughts were used in writing the document? Is a guideline being followed? How do they even know that what they’re looking for is what they need to be looking for, or if the candidate they’re looking to hire will even have interest in working for them?

In the end, are agency recruiters really just order fillers or takers?

Ask Barb, For Managers

My Team Isn’t Producing. What Do I Do?



Ask Barb

Dear Barb:

I’m frustrated by the results this year. I know my sales team could produce more. How do you light a fire under people without having them walk out the door? They are never on the phone and seem to think sending emails and texting is just as effective. They also spend way too much time on social media sites, job boards, and searching our database rather than calling possible candidates to place.

I’m at my wits ends and really don’t know how to motivate my current team. There are times when I think I should fire everyone because I could make more money just producing by myself. How do you motivate your team?

Walter M.
Detroit, MI
For Managers, Motivation

With A Performance Contract They Fire Themselves



Results-free

Results-freeFor managers, there is one thing worse than hiring the wrong person and that is to keep that individual employed with their agency long after the collective experience dictates they should be terminated. Yet, in almost every case, managers will admit they have difficulty with making termination decisions.

From my many years of experience in working with managers in hundreds of staffing firms on both a national and international basis, I have concluded that the primary reasons for this apparent lack of decisive action include one or more of the following:

Business, Business Development

The Flexible Workforce: A Trend You Can Build On



Working women concept art

The head of human resources prefaces a workforce strategy presentation by saying her program idea will lead to more focused work performed by employees; raise employee job satisfaction and retention; boost company morale and loyalty; reduce employee stress and sick days; keep business going during major weather events – and save the organization money in the process. Is there really such a silver bullet?

In terms of company profitability and employee satisfaction, absolutely.

Flexible staffing, which gives employees more control over when, where and how long they work through options like flextime, compressed work weeks, telecommuting and job sharing, is all it’s cracked up to be. It is a crucial workforce strategy when it comes to retaining mid- to executive-level professionals.

As you have likely seen and heard, flexible work options are gaining traction and acceptance in many industries, at all levels and careers.

When we think of part-time work, which in the professional world can take on many meanings (job sharing, project-based or highly specialized work), we too often equate it with working a shift at a factory or fast-food restaurant. Because historically, that is what a part-time position was. But we have evolved past that – so very far past.

For Managers

A Recruiter Job Posting Like No Other



tim sackett project

Okay, I’m adding a recruiter to my team. At hru-tech.com we do mostly engineering and IT contract recruiting, some direct placement recruiting and some project RPO work for clients around the country.

I would put my team up against anyone. They’re that good, and most are home grown! That’s right, the majority of our staff came in entry level and we smacked off that new car smell as fast as bag of Taco Bell that’s been sitting in your back seat for three weeks in the summer.

I started looking around and getting the word out a couple days ago. You would think it would be easy. I don’t really ask for a lot, but I sure know it when I ‘hear’ it! Recruiting is a pretty good gig. It’s transferable. I’ve worked in five different states, four different industries, and my recruiting skills I can take with me anywhere. It’s the one thing I can guarantee you, if you come work for me. You’ll always be able to find a job and make money. Every economy needs good recruiters.

Business, Technology

Old Technology Is Costing You Real Money In Lost Productivity



Cloud-Computing

There’s a word in the recruiting and staffing industry that nobody likes. No one wants to think about it, no one likes to talk about it, and no one really knows a good way to deal with it: downtime.

Agency downtime is one of the biggest money-wasters in an organization; it’s those few seconds or minutes lost between tasks — the time it takes your computer to boot when the system crashes, and the time spent running the same candidate search week after week. It might not sound like much, but seconds turn into minutes, which turn into hours that can quickly add up, especially across larger organizations where it’s a pervasive problem instead of being limited to just one area or division of the company.

Ask Barb, For Managers

Managers Must Teach Fishing



Ask Barb

Dear Barb:

I’m managing a team of five recruiters, but I’m still responsible for my own production. Most of my day is spent answering questions, making matches and hand-holding my recruiters. I can’t stop helping them because without my help we would not hit goals.

My owner only cares that goals are reached, but I don’t know how much longer I can carry the office or work the hours I’m working. I like the override I’m getting paid, but I could actually make more money if I only focused on my production.

Should I walk away from being a manager?

Joe D.
Topeka, KS
Business, For Managers, Viewpoint

Don’t Just Promote Your Top Biller



headphone recruiter-free-stockimages

OK, it’s time to promote. Naturally any company’s preference would be and usually is to promote from within. However, when it comes to the world of recruiting, all bets are off the table.

Recruiting is an animal unique unto itself. It is sales, business development, and sourcing all in one. No other sales-related job has such a unique structure, and requires so many different segments of the sales process to come together in order to be successful. I’ve worked with many recruiters and salespeople over the years, and have seen some great recruiters go on to become great managers and leaders in the industry. Yet at the same time, I’ve also seen some great recruiters who can’t manage their way out of a paper bag.

Business

Here’s How to Tell If Hiring Makes Financial Sense



Hiring - freedigital

Hiring - freedigitalFor a moment let’s ignore all the human and emotional aspects of hiring employees and take a close look at the numbers. In other words, why does it make financial sense to hire when: it is so difficult to train; hiring creates a huge distraction to personal production, and; knowing most of those we hire will fail?

For this article I am going to utilize my internal ratios that I have tracked over the last eight years and more than $8 million in gross revenue. To be clear, these ratios include the time as a rookie office when I opened with three green recruiters. And obviously my numbers have been significantly influenced by the great recession. I am confident that my ratios will naturally improve as I accumulate more experience in this industry and time during strong markets.

Business, For Managers

What to Measure to Recruit More Efficiently



Arrowchart-free

Arrowchart-freeConventional wisdom: You can’t manage what you don’t measure.

More than just a business world cliché, there’s plenty of evidence that measured performance does lead to a more effective organization in areas as diverse as sales, manufacturing, professional services, and recruiting.

Many organizations use metrics to understand how their sourcing and recruiting processes are working, and where there is room for improvement. But are sourcing professionals and recruiting managers measuring the right things?