The Recruiter/Telephone Connection

What's the only activity you can actually control? Your phone time.

You can't force a hiring manager to give you a job order and you certainly can't force a candidate to go to a job interview.

But you CAN force yourself to pick up the phone more often. Simply put, the fastest and easiest way to make more placements is to make more calls.

That's not to say that skill, good judgment and quality work aren't important. They are. But no amount of brilliance can compensate for a silent desk.

A Tortoise or a Hare?
We know that more calls will result in increased activity, which in turn will translate into more placements. But will two recruiters who make the same number of calls get the same results? The answer is no, because of differences in desk specialty, job order difficulty and so forth.

Plus, some recruiters are simply more efficient than others and will get better results, even when they apply no more physical effort than the recruiter in the next cubicle. Whereas one recruiter may need to arrange eight interviews in order to make a placement, another may need only three.

There are no absolutes when it comes to how much effort you should put in, as long as you recognize that in general, the greater your output, the higher your billings. In terms of style, some recruiters are tortoises, others are hares. Some are flashy and ADD, while others are understated and sharply focused.

That being said, there are four basic quadrants that recruiters tend to fall into when it comes to the activity/result quotient. Which of these stereotypes best describes your recruiting persona?

High Activity
High Billing
Low Activity
High Billing
High Activity
Low Billing
Low Activity
Low Billing

1. High activity, high billing. You generate lots of calls, produce a consistent flow of activity, make a lot of placements, and rarely experience a slump.

2. High activity, low billing. You make lots of calls, write plenty of job orders and send out a slew of candidates, but you close very few deals.

3. Low activity, high billing. You're a sharpshooter who makes up for low activity by working more efficiently. You also experience peaks and valleys in your billing, due to a lack of consistent activity.

4. Low activity, low billing. You're just getting started in the business, and you're too reticent to push for results. Or you're in a slump.

Rookie recruiters are the ones who most often fit the high activity, low billing profile. That's because their competency hasn't yet caught up with their activity.

I saw an extreme example of this phenomenon a few years back, when my management team was considering firing a new recruiter for not making any placements after eight weeks on the job. Then we looked more carefully at his activity, and lo and behold, he had 56 sendouts.

The new recruiter might have been slow in figuring out how to make a placement, but he had no problem in generating activity. So we stuck with him, and sure enough, within two years he was out-billing every single recruiter in our 35-desk office.

Who knows? Maybe there's a recruiter out there who makes a ton of money just by sending e-mails. But that's about as likely as a politician who expects to get elected by simply issuing press releases.

In our business, direct contact -- with lots and lots of constituents -- is the only sure-fire way to win.

By Bill Radin
 BlackDog Recruiting Software Inc.
For more five star recruiting tips, click here.