Question: I often use email and LinkedIn to communicate with candidates. Can I count these exchanges as recruit presentations in my metrics? -Jill, Las Vegas, NV.
In short, no. And I will tell you why I do not measure email and LinkedIn responses as activities.
This is where recruiters get hung up when introducing metrics to their firms. But Mike, "people tell me in an email that they are not interested. Can I count that?" I say no. One, I tried it. When I gave my entire office permission to count email exchanges as presentations, a conversation with either a hiring manager or an employee, my office became a library. You could have held a professional golf putting tournament in the middle of my office because it was so quiet.
Electronic Recruit Presentations (RPs) and Marketing Presentations (MPs) Diminish Relationship Building Opportunities
When you count those responses, you will have fewer verbal conversations, and you are not building relationships with your prospects. I am not coaching you to stop using text, email, LinkedIn, or any technology for that matter. I want everyone hyper-focused on taking an email exchange and turning it into a verbal dialogue.
When you get that candidate on the phone, you count that as the first presentation. Because, even if they say no, we all know that when we get people in a conversation, additional information comes out, and a relationship builds. You can go deeper with questions like:
- If you could hand carve the next step in your career, what does that look like?
- What are the things lacking in your current assignment that you wish were not lacking?
- What are the things you are thrilled about when you wake up in the morning that you love about your current job, your current career?
We do not get to ask those questions in a tidy email or text exchange.
My goal with our clients, my goal with my recruiters, was always to use technology, kind of like a fishing lure, to get them to bite so that we could get them on the phone to begin to develop a relationship, whether they were interested or not.
Electronic RPs and MPs Do Not Save Time in the Long Run
Now, somebody might email you back and say, I am fine. Do not bother calling me. Okay, maybe you saved some time there. I would not posit that you did not. I do not know how many conversations I have had with candidates over the years that, on our initial call, they said, "look, do not even waste your time." Maybe 45 minutes later, I had them sending me a resume, going on an interview, and ultimately placing them. It is all about to ability to ask great questions and listen. You want to use technology to put you in that position. I do not ever want to qualify, in or out, using technology.
Here is the other benefit of why I want to get both hiring managers and candidates on the phone. Once you become adept at this, they are going to drop names. I will always ask a hiring manager, "who else in your organization might need some help either now or in the future?" If I am talking to a VP of Marketing, maybe I can get some names and data on the VP of Sales and vice versa. There is just so much information we get as recruiters when we are on the phone that would never happen in email, so I do not count that towards the core metrics we use.
Electronic RPs and MPs Can Be Predictive of Pipeline Activity
You can add these activities to your metrics. Occasionally, we would take a sample. If we are sending out 100 emails, we are getting 15 responses. Those 15 responses lead to 5 conversations, and those 5 conversations lead to this. You just need samples of that type of data to continue with predictive metrics.