The new 4 Rs that Recruiters should try and master in 2010

I’ve been reading some excellent forecasts for trends and developments in 2010 that certainly excite and encourage me to think that this could be a very interesting and challenging year. I’m too much of a social media and technology amateur though to try my own predictions!

I do know, however, that recruiters will need a whole different set of skills, goals and targets if they are to succeed and profit from all the predicted advancements and developments.

Building and maintaining communities will be the key as they will provide the framework for our success, and to achieve this you will need…


This year will be all about relationships, how we grow and develop them, how we manage them, monetize them, use them to deliver the best results for the clients, candidates, contacts and collaborators who make up our community.

I don’t think that this year’s top performing recruiters will be the classic ‘salesmen’ who pound the phones in search of leads and disgruntled candidates willing to jump ship, but the ones capable of growing two way collaborative relationships.

It won’t be all about the deal, but increasingly about how you engage, support, share information and add value at all stages of the recruitment process. You will need credibility with and access to the best talent and the hiring manager offering the best employee propositions.

To do this, though, it helps if you’ve got a positive…


There are way too many information channels out there in cyberspace to enable the ‘cowboy’ recruiter to hide. If there is one change I can see to the way that social media is used in business, it will be the peeling away of the sheen of peace and love and an increasing tendency to tell it like it is.

Candidates and clients will expect a service and level of care that meets demanding expectations.

From LinkedIn groups and recommendations to Twitter threads and lists, I can see a lot of information around performance and delivery being shared…and please recruiters, let’s all do away with these mutual back scratching love fest LinkedIn recommendations, and let’s try to have a proper, quantifiable referral based on project/outcome delivery.

And if you want to be on the lists or in the groups of recruiters that clients and candidates recommend then it will help if you’ve got…


It really is time more recruiters started to ‘put yourself in their shoes’ and try and understand a) what it’s like to be a jobseeker in the worst recession for over 70 years where new permanent openings are scarce and people are being encouraged to be proactive (yep, that means keeping on our cases recruiters) and re-invent, and b) what it’s like to be a hiring manager in a company that’s struggling to keep afloat, asking a lot of their staff (from productivity to wage/benefits restraint)on a tight budget who needs our support and market knowledge in the recruitment process and not just a bunch of CVs and some sales patter. Believe me, this is not a square peg/round hole market!

The recruiters with the strongest communities and networks will be those who respect those communities and networks, who treat them honestly and to successfully do that you need a healthy dose of…


Tell it like it is not how you would like it to be. Beware false prophets (they’ll be more about them in a future blogpost!)…talk to, and listen to, the people who are currently active in your market, not business commentators and managers desperate to promote an air of optimism.

Improve your knowledge of the markets that you operate in, take time to find out about your candidates, clients and collaborators – what challenges they face, what they are doing to overcome them, what their motivators are and what they don’t like – and share this information.

If you do, you’ll be able to develop great…


3 thoughts on “The new 4 Rs that Recruiters should try and master in 2010

  1. Don’t forget ‘riting’ Mervyn 🙂 Job boards work but the quality of content from recruiters is by and large poor. I picked up a writing yesterday because the recruiter’s copy was so bad that it failed to get response. And it was for a household name client! They basically just cut and pasted the job description. it didn’t tell a story or paint a picture of the role or the organisation. It was just a series of turgid bullet points with no context.

    I recently wrote a blog about how to write better copy in 2010 on Along with the Rs you mention above, i think that the quality of writing (if that’s how recruiters source their candidates) will also be key this year to anyone who is serious about really selling candidates into their next new role.

  2. Excellent post Mervyn.

    One thing I am finding very frustrating at the moment is the lack of respect by some employers when it comes to dealing with applicants.

    We have one client who is happy to give us plenty of jobs to work on and then never comes back on CV’s. Worse still, they arrange initial telephone interviews and then “forget” to call.

    Our quandry at the moment is how much of our time we can give to this client – applicants are getting increasingly frustrated at lack of feedback, resulting in some withdrawing their application or worse blaming us for not working on their behalf.

    I think I have a topic for MY next post LOL

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