Who Has The World's Best Recruiting Job?

When I had to hire a recruiter (I've hired a few of them over the years, they know all the tricks so it's kind of hard), I'd always throw this question in there:

If you had to recruit for the same role for the rest of your career, what would that role be and why?

It's a stupid question, but I got some interesting answers. You should try it - it actually works for almost any kind of job with a little find & replace action.  I've never been asked this myself, so I haven't had to really give my job seeker answer of "whatever was the most mission critical position in the company." Boom. But I have given it some thought.

One Req for the Rest of Your Life

When former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue announced his retirement, the NFL simultaneously included in its press release on the news that it was giving the search for his replacement to Korn/Ferry. I remember reading it back when I was recruiting corporate execs for a company your kids talk about and coincidentally the worldwide leader in sports. That was the easiest job in the world, really - imagine a job where literally every call to a candidate gets returned and there's absolutely no such thing as a candidate who won't at least listen to your pitch. But even then, I remember thinking: "Wow. Some recruiter gets to open a req for NFL commissioner."

By the way, this is my attempt at a topical article. Stay tuned for next week's installment: "What If Perry Mason Was A Headhunter?" followed by "Golden Girls: 5 Lessons for HR." Actually, that last one might do really, really good traffic on the #SHRM hashtag. I was going to write about USC's coaching switch, but that was conducted by an internal search committee - it probably took so long because that's what happens when hiring managers have to recruit for themselves.

But it reminded me that there are some recruiting gigs that are actually pretty gravy. No STEM jobs or visa sponsorships. 7 figure comp ranges. No really clearly defined requirements or qualifications - use your gut. Think about it: you get 30% of a 1 percenter's annual salary to fill a job that our current president has been subtly lobbying to get in line, leveraging a little executive power to maybe get put in their succession planning strategy. You don't have to source. It's obviously (and exponentially) an eminently more desirable gig than being the leader of the free world. That's the kind of recruiting gig I want (hint, hint blue chip brands hiring for C level execs...)

Of course, it got filled with an internal candidate, but most requisitions ultimately are, statistically speaking.

I'd still go with in house over agency (where my peeps at?) any day of the week (apologies to Greg Savage). But in this case, agency wins - although I did interview with KFI for the same group a while back, and then withdrew after the senior executive I interviewed with "resigned" the next day. Which is really always a good sign for a position they'd been trying to fill for months. In social media. Go figure. But I digress. Like always.

This isn't really a blog post as a really long question: what's your dream recruiting gig? And if you say you have it, I'm not buying it unless you're the head of recruiting for Google or the guy who runs employer branding for Hooters. But if you can make a case for it beyond scoring brownie points, I'll believe you.  

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Comment by Keith D. Halperin on December 6, 2013 at 2:15pm

Thanks, Matt.

"What If Perry Mason Was A Headhunter?" followed by "Golden Girls: 5 Lessons for HR."

How coolly retro! I'm all:

"Everything I Know in Recruiting I Learned from 'The Walking Dead'" and "Hiring Secrets of 'The Blacklist'".

But seriously, I could not recruit for one kind of position indefinitely. I'd get bored.



Comment by Matt Charney on December 6, 2013 at 5:19pm

Keith: Great point, and yeah, retro is cool - I'm the hipster of content marketing, pretty much. I agree with you, but 91% of recruiters only work on specialized positions (rinse and repeat recruiting), so ultimately most must do this, whether or not the titles, skill set and level might vary a little req to req. Thanks for the comment as always! 

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on December 6, 2013 at 7:34pm

not sure I would want to recruit a specific PROFILE, for ever and ever, but hey this is MY dream job so leave me alone. :) It would definitely be internal recruiting for a non-profit I really and truly believe in. I support World Concern and Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, so one of those I could definitely get behind. Problem with non-profits is they typically don't pay that well (I'm talking about MY salary here) and, well... sigh. I'll just stay put.

Also - the problem with those rockstar jobs that EVERYONE should want? Yeah... your hiring manager is only going to want the two or three guys who would turn up their noses at the job - even if it is NFL commish. Just sayin.

Comment by Amber on December 7, 2013 at 12:07am

As self employed, this is close enough to perfect for me! I like having different clients to work with. If I had only one type of role I had to recruit for, it would probably be sales, because there;s a pretty wide variety of types of sales in all industries. And there are usually people with good personalities to spend your time talking to. That can sometimes be a challenge when placing engineers ;)

Comment by Daren J. Mongello on December 9, 2013 at 1:15pm

I had a contract where it was Java Engineers all the time. After 3 months....I hated it. I agree with Amber on sales. Sales people will engage you and there will always be a need for sales people and the job description never really changes.....like tech roles. That said....I am still looking for the SI Swimsuit recruiter's role to open up. That exists, right? 

Comment by Derdiver on December 9, 2013 at 2:36pm

I feel that recruiting models for Victoria's Secret would be a job that would hold my attention for a great deal of time. 

Comment by Keith D. Halperin on December 9, 2013 at 4:46pm

Thanks, Matt.

@ Derdriver: I wouldn't be surprised if the allure of that wears off more quickly than you'd expect. However, wouldn't it be nice to see if it does?

Comment by Derdiver on December 10, 2013 at 9:07am

@keith I am willing to throw my hat in to the ring to find out!

Comment by Matt Charney on December 10, 2013 at 9:11am

Thanks everyone for your comments...Derek/Keith, that's not a recruiting job, that's casting. And I think after reading this string, I might just call it a day when it comes to this corporate hiring and go get me a couch. Beats cold calling.

Comment by Keith D. Halperin on December 10, 2013 at 1:18pm

@ Derdriver, @ Matt: Is a requirement that applicants have wings a relevant requirement of the job, or would it be discriminatory? 



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