Frankly Speaking

Communication in Recruitment – Don’t burn your bridges

Posted by Amanda Franks on 4 February 2013 | 1 Comments

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The phone rings. A client is very unhappy that a candidate booked in for a 10.30am interview has not turned up. Well what can I say? It drives me insane and is the hardest part of a recruitment consultant’s role. Our product is an unreliable commodity but is there any excuse for not making a brief phone call to cancel the interview?

Fast forward a month and the candidate that failed to show up for their interview is on the phone looking for work. They have moved on and don’t even remember what agency it was that they were working with a month earlier. So now they really want to be put forward for this new role. Guess what? We made a note of their “no show” at interview and are not prepared to represent them again.

The morale of this story is that a little bit of communication goes a long way. We know situations change and that often when we go away and think about things we change our minds but common courtesy means that you would let someone know. Now controversially it does tend to be the younger generation that behaves in this manner more often, however we have had senior executives that appear to vanish in a puff of smoke! As an agency we work as hard on keeping our clients happy as we do our candidates. Bad communication ends relationships. Let down three or four agencies in the town and you will find yourself limited as to career opportunities. In comparison to a professional candidate with no negative agency history we are going to choose them to represent us with our clients. Not the unreliable person that damaged our relationship with a hard earned client.  

But it’s not just candidates that could do with recognising the importance of communication in recruitment. Often we find ourselves with frustrated candidates because we aren’t supplied with feedback after an interview or CV submission.

We are lucky in that we tend to work with clients that understand what our expectations are when we submit candidates to a business. Working closely with a candidate ensuring they are briefed, prepared, well presented and ready for an interview is a big job and one we at Frankly Recruitment take seriously. On arrival at interview, full of nerves our candidate gives a top class interview and leaves feeling positive that they made a good impression. They call us and say have we heard anything? No, but we are chasing. Three emails and 4 attempted phone calls later we get a one line response from the client saying the role is now filled.

This lack of feedback and communication leaves an impression. That candidate who was full of hope and told all their friends and family about this wonderful business they were hoping to work for is now let down and they will share this information. Suddenly the client has a reputation for lacking in professionalism, why would you want to work there!? Furthermore, the agency that sent them on interview is clearly a waste of time as they weren’t able to give answers.

People have two needs, to be seen and to be heard. Communication is vital in the recruitment process. Whether a candidate is representing themselves or a recruiting manager is representing their business, if communication is done properly it leaves a lasting impression. Had the candidate who failed to show up for their interview made a brief phone call to the consultant cancelling the interview they would have been submitted for the next opportunity without question. Had the client who interviewed the candidate fed back the reasons for the rejection in a constructive and swift manner the candidate would have been left with a professional image of that business and something to move forward with.

Communication is so easy. We do it all the time. How we communicate shows the world who we are. I wonder if people realise the implications of not recognising the importance. This is just two examples in one industry of what happens when poor communication is present. Think on, and make that short conversation or you may burn bridges you want to cross in the future.

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  • No excuse for not turning up without phoning and emailing ahead, especially in the tech world we live in where everything is possible from the basic of smart phones.... Who'd want to employ someone with that kind of attitude.

    Nice post.

    Posted by Darren Blackstock, 05/02/2013 5:20pm (4 years ago)

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