Recruiting is a hugely overlooked industry — an estimated $124 billion industry in the United States alone. And yet the people who form the front line of this business aren’t often recognized as the trained specialists they are. This is partially due to the fact that many successful recruiters (who are now the industry’s leaders) grew up in the business and learned on the job. Like many relatively young industries, an initial wave of pioneers become experts through an apprentice-like system. But today, it’s becoming increasingly clear that recruiting requires specialized skills and focused training.
Why is training so important in recruiting?
Today’s jobs are highly complex. In IT and Engineering, for example, training and skill sets are ever evolving. Programming languages change and update rapidly and subtle differences can even elude the employer hiring for a position. Even training on equipment in warehouses and manufacturing floors can require highly specific skill sets. A trained recruiter can flag these requirements in a job description and link that to the skills in a talent pool quickly and efficiently.
We also live in a time of work mobility. Not only is this increasing the volume today’s recruiters are dealing with, it also means that employers and employees are looking for a better match with each other immediately. No one has time for a ramp up that takes months or years. Training gives a team of recruiters the ability to achieve perfect matches more frequently more quickly.
And lastly, the technology for searching for the best candidates has outgrown intuition. Yes, technology has made sifting through information easier, but it has also dramatically increased the volume of information that needs to be sifted through. Training in the latest search techniques and technologies can mean the difference between hoping to find a needle in a haystack and reducing the haystack to a few pieces of straw. And, of course, the needle.
Formal training for recruiting is not just an internal concern for recruitment firms. It is a topic that concerns HR departments, companies hiring workers, and professionals seeking permanent and contingency work. It is an essential component to the new dynamic of matching expertise with job requirements in the 21st century.