If you poll line managers and ask them about hiring, they invariably say that it is one of the most important things they do in their job. But, in turn, if you ask them what they think of the hiring process, they invariably say they hate it. They think it’s too bureaucratic and, as a result, they devote relatively little time to it. If you’re unsure as a recruiter what they really think…just ask them! And in case you really don’t know why they hate it, here are the top ten reasons I’ve identified after talking to hundreds of hiring managers. The Top 10 Reasons Why Managers Hate Recruiting
- Multiple requisition approvals. Managers hate the delay and the multiple approvals required in order to get a simple requisition completed. They don’t understand why once their budget is approved they need to get additional signatures.
- The long delay between need and hire. With the time to fill a job often averaging over 60 days, managers get frustrated. They don’t understand why it takes so long to get candidates, why so much paperwork is involved, and why there are so many delays in getting offer letters prepared. They are often reluctant to set aside time for interviews because of these delays and the related frustration they cause.
- “Ugly” candidates/Too many resumes. Managers hate getting stacks of resumes that contain totally unqualified candidates. They expect resume screeners to be more precise and to better understand the job requirements. They are also frustrated when recruiters don’t properly prepare candidates before the interview so that the candidates have a clear understanding of the duties and responsibilities of the open position.
- No short and easy training is available. Most managers don’t know how to sell candidates or even how to interview well. They also frequently don’t know how to effectively use the Internet for recruiting. They don’t have time for all day seminars and they find a most HR training boring. They would prefer short and simple training that’s available from their laptops.
- Interviews are so “unnatural.” Managers often feel uncomfortable in structured interviews. The formality of an interview makes both the manager and the candidates nervous. They would much prefer more freedom and the ability to ask more direct technical questions. They would prefer more of a professional conversation than an interrogation.
- Fear of lawsuits. HR has so intimidated managers that they are reluctant to use any creativity in the hiring process for fear of being sued. Managers would prefer more realistic assessments of the risks involved, rather than being brow beaten with “you’ll get sued,” especially when, in fact, lawsuits are rare at their firm.
- No sales tools or competitive benchmarking. Managers who do hiring infrequently are seldom aware of how to sell candidates on their firm. Managers would like information on what candidates expect and what it takes to get them to say “yes.” This includes information about typical offers that the candidates likely have from competitor firms.
- Documentation is a pain. After the interviews are over and the hiring is finished, managers hate filling out forms and having to document the hiring and interview process. They are not convinced of the value of writing all this down and in keeping files when they have better things to do. They’ve never seen a case where the documentation really mattered, and they find that HR generalists who participate in interviews often do a poor job of documentation themselves.
- What works and best practices. Managers are often in the dark about what works and what best practices other successful managers are using for hiring within the firm. They would like to know what tools and strategies the most effective hiring managers use within the firm. That would also like to know what isn’t working and what tools the competitors are using.
- No control over offers and salary. Managers often feel like they lose top candidates because the offers “approved by HR” are not competitive. They dislike the secrecy that seems to emanate from the compensation team and they wonder why salary surveys, which seem antiquated to them, are still used for the basis of most offers. This is especially true when these low-ball offers often cause them (in the manager’s opinion) to lose top candidates! Managers want more control and better data on what it takes to close the top candidates.
Conclusion It’s true that many of the issues that manager’s face with recruiting and hiring are outside the control of most individual recruiters. Still, it’s important to understand their issues and why the process frustrates them. Recruiters and HR need to work with managers to streamline the process so that managers make recruiting and retention their number one and number two priorities. If recruiters and HR continue to turn a blind eye, they will continue to suffer from the poor image that managers have for the recruiting process that they “own.”