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High-volume recruiting is a tough game! As a recruiter, you need to move fast as good talent doesn’t stay on the market long. Reality often looks something like this: Your hiring team needed hires yesterday. You need to generate an intimidatingly large number of interviews to make all the hires required. And as if that’s not enough, if you’re learning how to recruit in an unfamiliar market / location, that adds yet another layer of complexity to the situation!
That’s exactly where I found myself at the start of 2019 when Greenhouse started recruiting for Customer Support Specialists in our new Denver office. I was faced with the task of hiring six specialists in a very short amount of time, and while I was familiar with the role, this was the first time that I - and Greenhouse as a whole - was venturing into the Denver talent market.
Successfully meeting this recruiting need meant doing things differently and getting creative. Here’s some tactics I used to get there.
- Asked the team for help!
One of the first things I did when beginning to tackle this large recruiting ask was to figure out how many phone screens I needed to generate to meet our hiring goals. Thanks to the reports we can run in Greenhouse, I used historical data from our past searches for Customer Support Specialists and was able to forecast how many phone interviews I needed to conduct as the first stage of the interview process to make those hires. That number ended up being over 200 screens. Obviously, that was too much for just me to handle in the waking hours I had, and on top of that, I was recruiting for multiple other roles. It would have taken me over 6 weeks to hit those metrics alone! So, I reached out to the hiring team for help. Together, we came up with a plan to get members of our Support team involved with conducting initial screens (with some interview training) and were able to cut down the amount of time it would take to hit that number by half. This also provided more bandwidth for me to focus my efforts on proactively reaching out to passive candidates.
- Used outside resources!
Conducting over 200 phone screens is a feat in itself. That also means that you have to generate enough top-of-funnel to create that many screens. Based on our analysis of historical data, having to hire six people meant we needed 900 applications! That was an immediate flag that we needed additional help, and fast. Intro our wonderful partnership with Planted. Planted is a recruitment platform that helps candidates get placed with top companies looking to grow their teams. Over the course of a quick call, Planted worked with us to identify our target candidate profile, highlighting skills and qualifications that were must-have’s and nice-to-have’s in our candidates. Within a few days, we were seeing high-quality candidates in our pipeline. My favorite aspect of this partnership was that I could provide feedback on any candidates that weren’t quite a match and our Customer Success Manager at Planted would use that information to better align with us. Also, because Planted integrates seamlessly with Greenhouse, partnering with them didn’t add any additional steps to my normal workflow. Through our partnership, we were able to exceed our hiring goals within a month!
- Adapted to the talent market!
When you’re starting to recruit in a new location, it’s important to learn as much as you can about the talent market there, especially how the best candidates are finding jobs. One of my biggest takeaways from this search is that what works for one location might not work for another. After asking current members of the Denver office and connecting with contacts in the talent acquisition space, we realized that were several popular job boards that we weren’t leveraging. It was eye-opening to hear how job boards that I didn’t know or weren’t high-quality sources for Greenhouse in other locations were some of the top places that candidates in Denver were using in their job search. Once we began focusing on these job boards, we used tracking links to measure the ROI of these sources based on candidate quantity and quality, another nifty Greenhouse report. Overall, we saw a significant increase in applications which led to quality initial screens and hires.
As a recruiter, opening a new role is always an exciting time for me. Opening a new role in a city that I hadn’t recruited for before only enhanced that feeling. It also meant that I needed to adapt the techniques I was most familiar with in order to be an effective partner for my hiring managers. What allowed me to be successful in meeting our hiring goals was remembering that recruiting is a full team effort, that there are outside resources available, and being flexible to a new talent market.