Recruiter vs. Hiring Manager: Where Does the Buck Stop?

Who’s to blame for bad hires?

Finding rockstars is a real challenge.

And the cost of failing is high. Research conducted by Brandon Hall Group for Glassdoor found that the cost for each new hire ranges from $750 (entry level) to as much as $3,800 (executive level) — and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

The same research shows that a whopping 95% of companies admit to recruiting the wrong people each year. That’s an embarrassing number and there’s plenty of finger-pointing behind it.

So the big question is: Who should take responsibility for a hire gone wrong?

The Problem with Hiring Managers

Hiring managers often have too much on their plate.

Out of 500 US-based managers surveyed by West Monroe, 36% spent around 3–4 hours PER DAY on admin tasks (e.g., replying to emails, submitting expense claims and all that other exhilarating stuff).

But overworked managers who are often in a rush to fill vacant positions, end up making plenty of mistakes. Even if we give them every benefit of the doubt and assume they have a stellar job description and ad, they’re bound to drop the ball at the most crucial of times: the interview.

The Brandon Hall Group also surveyed several different companies and found that 69% pointed to a flawed interview process as the biggest hurdle to making a quality hire.

Say it with us now: Evaluation needs to happen during the interview (not on the job!).

Whether you’re using external recruitment partners or other departments within the company to help find and hire future rockstars, there are a few important things to keep in mind so no gets the rep for “weakest link”.

  1. Make sure managers know what questions to ask in order to lead a productive interview
  2. Clarify the job requirements among the entire hiring team (both internal and external)
  3. Give your recruiter a realistic timeline when sourcing candidates who absolutely must tick all the boxes for ideal skills and traits
  4. Don’t expect the recruiter to deliver everything themselves

And don’t forget that some of your best recruiters are your current employees! Keep your people involved in the TA strategy and you’ll be surprised at the awesome talent you turn up.

The Problem with Recruiters

Recruiters get a bad rap.

But as with candidates, you can’t afford to paint them all with the same brush. More often than not, it’s the one bad-seed recruiter who cares more about closing the deal than finding the right fit that ends up giving all recruiters a bad name.

Drue De Angelis is Founder and Managing Partner of executive search company The De Angelis Group. He cops up to some of the biggest problems with recruiters.

1. Covering Up Red Flags

Some (ethically questionable) recruiters will edit resumes if they think little details will flunk an applicant.

2. Going for Whoever’s Available

Instead of making an effort to find the best people for a position, some talent scouts pick the low hanging fruit when searching online. Qualifications are thrown out the window.

3. Forcing a Decision

It may sound a little extreme, but some headhunters want to make a placement so bad they pressure both applicants and hiring managers to make short-term decisions that can cause long-term damage.

In a perfect world, hiring managers could rely on recruiters to do the right thing, even when no one’s looking. But there’s no such thing as a perfect world. In the real world, we’re all overworked and under pressure. But does that mean we have to cut corners where it matters most?

What if we all took more responsibility?

Can you imagine how much better we’d feel (not to mention how much money we’d save!) by fixing the problems on both sides of hiring equation?

Sometimes the issue isn’t a horrible manager or a reckless recruiter — but a simple miscommunication among team members. At the end of the day, hiring is always going to be easier when everyone’s on the same page. You’re building a team together, you might as well be on the same side.

Breezy helps hiring teams get clear on all candidates, interviews and hiring hiccups (BEFORE it’s too late). You can create tasks for members of your team and use simple @ mentions to tag each other on important action items.

Next time you’re looking for that super special star performer, why not drop the blame game and find a better way to work together?

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