SmartRecruiters Blog

5 Ways HR Can Work With Recruiters

As the competition for top talent increases throughout the job market, companies must be sure that they are creating the best recruiting process and the best candidate experience. Nothing is better than having a seamless, smooth recruiting experience for your current and perspective employees. But how does that happen? We’ve discussed “Why HR Should Collaborate With Recruiters” and in the second part of this series we are going to tangibly delve into the top five ways to make that collaboration happen.

1. Develop The Relationship

Before any relationship can be made stronger it must first exist – it’s important to have a recruiter on staff. Some companies are smaller and can fold those responsibilities into the Generalist/Coordinator role, however most companies are bigger than that and need to invest in a Corporate Recruiter position. Corporate Recruiters are more engaged and aligned with the organizational culture which allows them to focus on the quality of the candidates versus quantity.

The Recruiter and HR team should meet formally within the office to work on recruiting and staffing plans AND there should be some informal interaction – such as coffee? I can tell you, everyone likes to be taken out for lunch, dinner or just coffee – it’s a great way to engage your team and strengthen relationships.

2. Define Who Does What

In a team dynamic, it’s important to clearly define the roles of each team member. Same rules apply with Job Recruiters and HR. You don’t want the HR generalist doing the recruiter’s duties and vice versa – not that they can’t cover for each other from time to time – but assigning duties drives consistency and a better overall experience.

For instance, who does the initial screenings? Who recommends the candidate to the hiring manager? When and who does the salary negotiations? And what about the face to face interviews – who conducts those? What recruiting software will you use? (That could be a great collaborative effort by the way – the recruiter and the HR representative should both interview the candidate, possibly even as a panel interviews.) These things need to addressed and assigned so there are no redundancies, confusion and unprofessionalism.


3. Create Recruitment Strategies Together

Now that you and the recruiter have a good working relationship and you’ve designed the workflow process – (applicant trajectory) – now you have to create the most effective strategies for recruiting – talent acquisition – staffing – whatever you prefer to call it. Here are your options:

Social Media RecruitingLinkedInTwitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest; all social networks with hundreds of millions of users in which you can use to engage and reach a new talent community.

Job Boards – Maybe you prefer a more traditional approach to recruitment marketing. Posting jobs to Indeed, Monster, Careerbuilder, and the tons of niche job sites can get the right eyeballs on your job openings.

Fairs – Jobs fairs, career fairs and college fairs; sometimes the older methods work just as well as some of the newer methods.

Database Search – when you want to hunt for new talent, the data base search is a good way to get a list of qualified names.

3rd Party Recruiters – Do you need them? At what terms? If so, discuss how you are going to manage recruitment agencies.

Hybrids – Try mixing it up a bit or as we like to say “The Remix.” Change it up a bit; mix and match strategies – you never know who you will find searching for a good place to land. By mixing any of the above options, strategically you are creating a company culture that makes you a desirable employer.

4. Share Analytics (Data!)

Analytics, that’s data. Yeah data may not sound sexy but we need it; it tells us what we need to know (if it is presented in a comprehendible form and we take the time to listen to it). This just makes sense, in order for your recruiting process to work; you have to know what doesn’t work. You have to ask questions. You have to ask the hiring manager, “Are you seeing the type of talent you need to see? Or are there adjustments that need to be made? Should I open more recruitment marketing channels?” You have to use performance evaluations to see if the candidate is performing well, and if they quit you need to conduct exit interviews to determine if there was something that you could have done to retain that employee.

Some companies send recruitment surveys out to candidates during and after the recruiting process – so there’s that option. A good recruiting software will already give you a lot of data about where the good candidates are coming from. You need data to support your recruiting process and show areas of improvement and effectiveness.


5. Respect 

In speaking with some recruiters, I’ve learned that sometimes what tends to happen when a company brings a recruiter on board is that person becomes the “dumping ground.” They get all the grunt work passed down to them, things that were not part of their essential job duties – they become the assistant’s assistant. Not cool. The recruiter should be viewed a part of the HR team that handles certain aspects of the recruiting process and not the low person on the totem pole.

The HR manager needs to make it clear to all department leaders and staff members that the recruiter is part of human resources and will manage the daily functions of the recruiting process. The HR manager should also make sure the recruiter has all the resources they need to succeed, such as user access with the appropriate administrative rights and privileges into the applicant tracking system and other networks.


Ultimately, recruiters and human resources professionals are on the same page and want the same things. So it’s vital to communicate and work together to ensure the company’s talent is inspired, engaged and happy. Satisfying those internal customers (hiring managers, directors, supervisors) and external customers (candidates) is an extremely important task that requires some team work.

cost of work


Chris Fields is an HR professional and leadership guy who blogs and dispenses great (not just good) advice at Cost of Work.   Image Credit Ely Tran.


Chris Fields

Chris Fields is an HR professional and leadership guy who blogs and dispenses great (not just good) advice at Cost of Work & ResumeCrusade.