Recruitment At Its Finest: 10 Things To Do When You Want to Secure The Perfect Candidate

I wasn’t expecting to craft this blog entry until after my first official day at my new job, however, I felt so compelled to highlight an immensely positive experience in how I was approached and recruited for the job that I had just had to put fingers to keyboard and type away.n711862655_545365_8523-300×225.jpg

About three months ago a lady by the name of Natasha Avery contacted me via LinkedIn and as a friend or colleague would do, diplomatically presented a job opening for a VP of digital marketing position. She went into detail about what the position entailed without wasting my time while being very sensitive toward my current job situation (which at the time, I was working for hi5, a social networking company), she underscored that she was in search of the perfect candidate, whether it was me or someone I could recommend from my network. She did her due diligence - she knew all about my background, work experience, my personal blog and even Girls in Tech. I was very impressed.

After our initial “meet and greet” conversation, Natasha followed up with a very gracious email and that was followed by our second phone call. During the second call, she provided more detailed insights to the VP digital marketing position available - the responsibilities, day-to-day tasks, the clientele that I’d be working with and most importantly, more color into the company culture and overall brand. Again, very impressed by Natasha’s comprehensive knowledge about the position and information about each and every client that I would potentially represent, along with certain campaigns and milestones that the team had produced for their clients to-date.

Later the next week Natasha sent me another follow-up email to see if the position still piqued my interest (even though, at this point, I was still really happy with my position at hi5, I said yes). After hearing this, she set out to make sure that she scheduled in a meeting between myself and the President of the Digital division during a trip to Austin for SxSW. Not only did we end up meeting, they invited me to an exclusive “Digerati” dinner with some top-notch tech players, brand marketers and entrepreneurs. I had a total blast, and that event showed me that this company definitely has “personality,” likes to have fun and thrives on a work-life balance.

After a week or two of silence, i.e. mulling things over (because I was still happy at my job at hi5), Natasha contacted me again and asked me if I wanted to meet with two representatives of the Digital group that were in town from Seattle and Los Angeles and the GM, who had just recently relocated to San Francisco. I agreed to a meeting. Even though she is located in Seattle, Natasha, made sure that there was a folder waiting for me at the front desk with all of the necessary information about the company and the position in a very welcoming and friendly format. The meeting that was initially going to last about one hour, ended up lasting over three hours (because the conversations were so enjoyable). You guessed it - I was once again, totally impressed.

As I started weighing my options, Natasha mentioned that she was going to be flying into San Francisco that week and asked if we could meet up in person. Wondering who this mysterious, yet amazing recruiter was, I of course, agreed to a meeting. When I arrived at the restaurant, we greeted as if we were long lost friends. She had an extremely friendly demeanor (as most people from Seattle do). We sat down, grabbed a drink and actually began chatting mostly about our personal lives, laughing, telling jokes - up until the end of our second hour, in which she handed me an offer letter.

In my 10 years as a marketing professional, I have never been approached, recruited or contacted in such a diplomatic manner. Natasha is one of the reasons why I decided to accept the position at this company and one reason that we will continue to be personal friends.

Things that recruiters should learn from Natasha are:

1. Don’t waste people’s time, do your DUE DILIGENCE

2. Build RELATIONSHIPS

3. Use SOCIAL NETWORKING tools (i.e. LinkedIn, Facebook) to find the perfect candidate to fill your position

4. Be PATIENT. You’re not going to find the perfect candidate over night

5. It’s all in the DETAILS. Investing time in your candidates (communication, email, collateral materials) provides a very welcoming environment and will most likely lead to success for a recruiter

6. Go ABOVE and BEYOND. Finding the perfect candidate is not easy. If you make an effort, like flying in from another city to meet your candidate and hand them an offer letter, that is impressive and will leave a lasting impact on your candidate

7. NEGOTIATE. Allow room for negotiation. The candidate you’re looking for, will negotiate

8. NEVER GET A SECOND CHANCE TO MAKE A FIRST IMPRESSION. Recruiters are essentially an extension of a company’s brand. Impressing future candidates is important

9. No BS. Recruiters are infamous for holding tons of meetings with candidates that result in little or no traction from the employers that they are representing. Be forthright, honest and upfront with candidates

10. GET WHAT YOU WANT. If you find the perfect candidate, do what it takes to get them in the door!

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