Behind enemy lines

Behind enemy lines

As far as we’re concerned, we’re bored to death of the “war” of passive-aggression between Human Resources and third party recruiting. It’s dragged on for years now; no one ever seems to win and quite frankly, it’s boring.

It might be a whole new year, but scan the industry and you’ll still find furious agency recruiters telling HR to get out of the way, while adamant HR professionals demand respect and attention to process. It’s almost like two youngsters have been fighting over the same toy for the past twenty years. So we’ve decided to take a stand. We’re standing up and declaring the whole messy thing over. Ceasefire. Time out. Whatever you want to call it, outside talent professionals and HR departments cannot keep this up.

By and large, recruiters are bound to know more about market conditions, salary benchmarking and the current status of the top 1% of performers in the talent pool; while HR will always know more about performance planning, strategy and road mapping. Incidentally, those various bits of information would be hugely helpful to the other party, but we’re too busy hoarding and pulling punches to bother trying to work together. In a 2017 business world dominated by consumer/candidate data, creative marketing and employee engagement, it seems absurd that we’re still not on the same side. Here’s why we’re actually a match made in heaven:

The reality

We often get so caught up in the importance of what we’re doing or striving for that we forget the realities of our situation. Let’s be really honest with ourselves for just a moment; talent professionals are constantly fighting against that slimy “wolf of wall street” stereotype while HR managers fight equally hard against misplaced stereotypes of an old, tired and worn out sliver of any company’s workforce. There are unfortunately negative connotations affecting both of us. We’re fighting the same battle here.

We’re fighting the same battle here.Click To Tweet

The bigger reality

If we all put the egos aside, for just a moment, we’d realize that HR professionals have an incredible world of insights that are fundamentally important to an organization’s growth strategy. They are the keys to the kingdom of the culture within the walls of those organizations, so whether businesses grow with a bunch of engaged employees, or whether they’re running after high attrition rates makes all the difference when it comes to success stories.

The equally big reality

Agency recruiters might not be sitting in on your every strategy meeting, but they are also responsible for the culture HR wants to create. Believe it or not, in the depths of this candidate-driven market that will undoubtedly continue for years to come, they can be the first conduit to any candidate’s cultural immersion. The sooner HR and recruiters start working together, the sooner we all start creating cultures we can actually be proud of, as opposed to just installing ping pong tables in the corners of our offices and hoping that counts as a “cool culture.”

HR and recruiters need to work together, so we can create cultures we can be proud of.Click To Tweet

Big data is a reality

The emergence of big data and people analytics is changing the way we recruit and the types of people we have access to. HR and recruiters both sit on huge piles on information that neither seem willing to share. Knowledge IS power, and it’s about time we started embracing some of that power. The most glittering success stories we’ve ever been a part of are when HR and recruitment agencies unequivocally share their data and create something magical from it. It’s only then we get two sides of the story.

Friendship is the only reality that matters

HR and agency recruitment need to work as friend not foe. A hiring manager uttering the words “we’ll need to involve HR on this search” can strike fear into the bravest of outside recruitment professionals. Similarly, a lunch meeting with an agency account manager is enough to make a Head of HR run for the hills. All that’s happening in those scenarios is an invariable slowing down of the entire recruitment process and candidate experience that then naturally turns to dust.  Newsflash agencies: HR can always make our lives easier; speeding things up and getting things approved and signed off on much faster than you complaining to the Director of     (insert department)    that your brother’s fiancé’s father used to play golf with.

It is long past time that agencies and HR departments crawled out from behind enemy lines and started playing nice in what has historically been “no-mans-land.”

It's time agencies & HR departments crawled out from behind enemy lines & started playing nice.Click To Tweet

 

 

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