Dr. John Sullivan

Dr. John Sullivan

A while ago, HR thought leader Dr. John Sullivan published a list of the dumbest things recruiters do, asking readers to choose their top five from a list of thirty.  (Here are the results of that survey.)

Those lacking a sense of humor may find Sullivan’s “linguistic frame” a bit harsh. Corporate recruiters may do dumb things, but many of them are managing a stunning number of requisitions (250+) with limited tools and support.

With that disclaimer, we at Intellerati thought the list-making was a valid exercise aimed at improving recruiting for one and all.  As we sifted through Sullivan’s initial list of 30, five “dumb things” stood out as being particularly relevant to candidate sourcing efforts focused on the front end of the recruiting process. Below is our Top 5 gleaned from Dr. Sullivan’s original list.

Intellerati Top 5: The Dumbest Things Recruiters Do

    1. Using “active” approaches to recruit “passive” candidates. Most who apply for jobs are active candidates however, many recruiters make the mistake of using the same active approaches to find the currently employed who are not looking for a job.
    2. Mistaking software as systems or solutions. Software is a tool that supports or automates processes, but by itself it accomplishes little. Great efforts require that tools be wrapped in well-designed processes and procedures, which combined make up a system or solution.
    3. Assuming that recruiting tools work. It’s a mistake to use the approaches that “everyone else is using,” good recruiters assess on their own what tools work and what tools don’t work.
    4. Dropping rejected candidates. It’s a major mistake to discard the resumes of top candidates who were not hired, rather than shopping them to other hiring managers or revisiting them later.
    5. Dropping the overqualified. Prematurely dropping candidates who are overqualified can cause you to lose some superior talent.

To learn about another thought leader in executive search, check out our post Internet Sourcing Guru Shally Steckerl.  


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