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What Recruiters Can Learn from Salespeople 

Most recruiters tend to have one very common problem – they perceive the recruitment process to be a task that entails browsing through an almost endless sea of resumes and not much more. That’s not recruitment. If we really had to compare recruitment to another primary process within an organisation, it would be sales. Recruitment and sales have more in common than you can think. In sales, you sell the product to the customer. In recruitment, you sell the organisation and a job to the candidate. So, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that recruiters need to start employing a sales strategy if they really want those positions to fill up with the right people. Here are a few examples of the tactics and habits that recruiters can adopt from their colleagues at sales. The pitch Successful salespeople know how to pitch a product. They know the product better than anybody else and they know how to highlight its best features. Because of the knowledge they possess, their strategy often involves positioning the customer as the protagonist in their own story. The narrative revolves around how the product makes the protagonist successful. This is exactly what recruiters need to start doing. They should communicate to the candidate how a job at their firm can change the candidate’s life or make it better. They should communicate it in an effective way as well, just like how a salesperson does it. Empathy Effective salespeople also know how to place themselves in the customer’s shoes. They can see the world through the customer’s eyes and leverage that perspective to tap into the customer’s wants and needs. That’s why salespeople have that unique ability to connect with people. Recruiters need to execute the same strategy. They need to start listening to their candidates; find out what it is that drives them or what they’re looking for in a job. Of course, being empathetic won’t fill up the position, but, it will let you know if a particular employee isn’t fit for it. That, in itself, is half the job done. Time Good salespeople don’t waste time. They are highly organised individuals who know how to prioritise. An effective salesperson will never be found waiting or hanging on a deal. They either close or walk away to find a better one. They know when something isn’t working out. Recruiters can take notes here. They need to be sure of themselves and be willing to say no to clients/candidates whenever necessary. They need to learn how to prioritise as well and not waste time on jobs or candidates that simply aren’t worth the effort.  


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