The #futureofwork is flexible - this we know. What about the future of recruitment?

I’ve written about the future of recruitment before. But this post isn’t about AI and robots and digital technology. It’s about how the recruitment industry - a professional service industry - works with it’s clients.

I believe the traditional recruitment model needs a shake up.

Recruitment shouldn’t be a high risk transaction.

It shouldn’t be characterised by poor client (and candidate) service.

It shouldn’t be a numbers game.

Recruitment is about people. Which means it’s about communication, relationships and connection.

Like anything to do with people, recruitment is complex. It’s unpredictable and it's time consuming. It can easily go pear-shaped. So, some organisations engage external support to assist with recruitment.

Enter the dreaded recruiter.

A little dramatic? Maybe. 

An honest assessment of how most people feel about recruiters? Yes - people love to hate us.

A prediction of why the traditional business model needs a shake up? Definitely.

Let’s get back to the organisation that needs support. They engage a recruitment consultant to manage the process for them. Are all recruiters consultants? I'll leave that with you to ponder.

Consultants are ‘experts’ in their field. They solve problems and add value. 

Consultants provide a professional service to their clients. In the recruitment world, the fee for this professional service is a percentage of the successful candidates’ salary. Usually a big percentage.

There are various forces at play which dictate recruitment fee structures and large organisations can usually negotiate a more effective fees based on volume of role the recruitment business fills for them.

But what about smaller organisations - SMEs with less roles to fill? 

What about not for profit organisations which simply can’t afford big placement fees - but absolutely need to attract the best people to enable them to grow and reach their mission?

These are the businesses I love working with. SMEs and not for profits. 

I love the energy, passion and purpose. These things are contagious - and they go a long way to attract excellent people to join these organisations.

Where does the traditional recruitment model leave these organisations? Most likely unable to afford external support.

Unable to engage support for the crucial, complex and time-consuming process which will bring the best people on board to share in the energy and passion - and drive the purpose.

During my 14 years working in an industry people ‘love to hate’ (often for very good reason!), I’ve worked with clients of all sizes and across most sectors. I’ve worked with large complex public sector organisations, global corporates and professional services firms, fast-paced retailers and media businesses, educational institutions, tech businesses, creative agencies, health businesses, membership organisations and my favourite (shh don’t tell anyone) - not for profit organisations.

Right now, all of my clients are SMEs and not for profits. 

I love working with hiring managers to solve a problem for them - and equally with people and culture teams to support them with specialist recruitment, especially when they have so many competing priorities in their remit.

Aside from the nature of my clients and my personal experience working in the industry for which I recruit, the other thing that makes Heart Recruitment distinctive is the flexible service offering.

Based on many years of experience and really listening to what clients need, I have designed a service offering that is flexible around the needs of the client.

A flexible recruitment offering? Yes, really.

Heart Recruitment's offering includes the traditional end-to-end recruitment service as well as flexible ‘unbundled’ options ie support for only select parts of the recruitment process.

This offering means that I can work collaboratively with hiring managers, people and culture teams AND internal recruiters, helping to solve a business problem, adding value and saving busy people precious time.

Since the launch of this service offering, 70% of my clients have opted for flexible options.

Just this month I supported a small, high-impact nfp with recruitment for a role pivotal to their next stage of growth - in a completely flexible, bespoke way. They couldn’t pay a traditional recruitment fee - even a reduced one - but they got the support they needed.

What does the future of recruitment look like?

I think the future of recruitment is flexible, collaborative, transparent, service focused and people focused.

Yes, technology will be an enabler, but it won’t replace human connection. And recruiters will need to add more value through flexible services that help their clients solve problems.