4 Ways RPO Enhances the Recruiter/Hiring Manager Relationship

Bersin by Deloitte recently published an excellent study: “High-Impact Talent Acquisition Revealed: Key Findings and Maturity Model.” Talent acquisition is now a CEO-level concern and it’s been well documented that high-impact talent acquisition can significantly improve business outcomes. The Talent Acquisition Maturity Model gives valuable insight into the journey companies often make towards achieving this goal.

We were especially intrigued by Bersin’s list of the top 12 performance drivers for high-impact talent acquisition. At the top of the list was “Hiring Manager Relationships.”

There’s no surprise that disconnects can exist between recruiters and hiring managers. In fact, 80 percent of recruiters believe they have a good understanding of the jobs they’re recruiting for, yet 61 percent of hiring managers disagree with this.

Not only is the hiring manager/recruiter relationship the top driver of high performing talent acquisition; Bersin found that the relationship between the hiring manager and the recruiter is four times more important than any other performance driver. Given how important it is, what steps should companies take to improve the hiring manager/recruiter relationship?

Since effective RPO partnerships are grounded in hiring manager/recruiter relationships, RPO solutions can help companies master this top-ranking performance driver. There are 4 ways RPO solutions enhance the hiring manager/recruiter dynamic:

1. Expectations: Internal recruiters and hiring managers usually have a common goal: to fill a position quickly and with high quality talent. Progress towards this goal can unfortunately veer off track. Internal recruiters – especially in middle market sized companies – are often stretched too thin, and ineffective communication (from both parties) is also fairly common.

Expectations can also be misaligned. 54% of recruiters complain that hiring managers expect them to fill difficult positions more quickly than is feasible. 42% of hiring managers wish recruiters had better talent pools for faster results.

In an RPO relationship, the recruiter’s performance is on the line and they are accountable for producing towards stated goals. Not only is there a high degree of accountability; recruiters are skilled in communicating and clarifying expectations with hiring managers. An RPO solution also usually involves tiered account management, providing even more levels of communication to ensure that hiring manager expectations are being met. Open and frequent communication, honesty, transparency, and decisiveness are all hallmarks of an effective recruiter/hiring manager relationship and in an RPO solution, clarifying and living up to expectations is paramount to a sustainable partnership.

2. Opportunity Profile/Clarity: If you’ve spent enough time in talent acquisition, you have certainly encountered the hiring manager who wasn’t quite sure what they were looking for but “they would know it when they saw it.” This is practically an impossible situation for internal recruiters. Without a clear ideal candidate profile, a recruiter wastes valuable time recruiting from the wrong resources and presenting the wrong people. Not only is this frustrating; it also negatively impacts the candidate experience.

77% of hiring managers feel a recruiter’s screening is inadequate, while 51% of recruiters feel hiring managers can do a better job communicating what they are seeking in a candidate. RPO recruiters can help bridge this gap. RPO solutions include careful determination of ideal candidate profiles for each role being filled. RPO recruiters are skilled at helping a hiring manager determine exactly what they’re seeking, which enhances communication and commitment between the hiring manager and the recruiter. Clarity on the ideal candidate profile allows the RPO recruiter to develop a potent sourcing and recruitment plan and agreement on the process paves the way for results.

3. Communication: Regular and consistent communication is cornerstone to the recruiter/hiring manager relationship. As a recruiter starts presenting candidates, the hiring manager has to provide effective feedback so the recruiter can adjust their tactics to produce better results. The average resume, once submitted to an organization, spends 37% of the hiring process in the hiring manager’s hands.

RPO recruiters are required to stay in close contact with their hiring managers through regularly scheduled calls or meetings. They must address issues immediately. They must look for opportunities to improve communication and relationships. Sometimes availability of talent, budget, or staff changes alter a hiring manager’s requirements and in these instances, fast communication with a recruiter is critical. The more frequently an RPO recruiter is talking with a hiring manager throughout a search, the better the search outcomes will be.

RPO recruiters are also usually specialized in their markets, which builds credibility and makes them trusted advisors to hiring managers. RPO recruiters keep the relationship moving forward with open and honest discussions that save time and improve results.

4. Offer Acceptance Success: The recruiter has screened hundreds of resumes, the hiring manager has interviewed a multitude of candidates, and they finally reach the offer stage on a potential hire. Then, the hire falls apart, most often due to a recruiter’s poor closing skills or due to poor communication between the recruiter – hiring manager – candidate. The offer acceptance stage can be a delicate step in the hiring process.

RPO recruiters are skilled in pre-closing candidates towards a successful offer acceptance. Since they help clients make hundreds of hires, they are well versed in offer negotiation, uncovering potential hesitations, and working with candidates towards the best outcomes. RPO recruiters have also built trust with hiring managers over time, giving managers confidence and reassurance that the offer acceptance stage is “in good hands.”

Even the best internal recruiters are faced with competing priorities, internal dynamics, and limited resources. When a company outsources their recruitment and hiring to an RPO provider, they receive dedicated, expert recruiters who can eliminate process bottlenecks to produce results and build relationships, the #1 driver of high-impact talent acquisition.

Advanced RPO is dedicated to making hiring a strategic advantage for the best middle market companies in the U.S. To learn more about RPO and how it can help you achieve success, contact Tim Oyer, Vice President, at toyer@advancedrpo.com.

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