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  • Colin Estrem

Rolling the Dice with your Team... and your Profits

This topic always fascinates me... Are you Gambling with your business trying to make your own key hires in today's market? From the perspective of a recruiter, I can honestly say that a recruiter is NOT necessary for every hire. I see great companies making solid hires all the time on their own. However, in general, these positions are layup roles where there is a healthy talent pool and the position requirements are basic. Most key positions these days are specific and should not be gambled with. The cost is just too high when you consider revenue, opportunities, reputation, the morale of your existing team or a combination of all of these.

For some context let's break down a typical hire that goes as planned:

  • Week 1: Ads get placed and someone in your business starts networking with candidates they know

  • Week 2 and 3: Applications have come in and resumes have been reviewed. Quality candidates get rounded up for interviews.

  • Week 4 and 5: Shortlisted candidates get followup interviews and an offer is extended

  • Week 6: Offer is accepted and the candidate resigns and gives notice

  • Week 8: New candidate starts

Sure this can happen faster, but "42 days is the overall average time it takes to fill a given position" (SHRM). Here is the scary thought... what happens if you don't find the right candidate or something happens at the offer stage. At that point, there isn't much more a business owner can do. According to the NFIB 85% of small businesses that were hiring found "few or no" qualified candidates in their recent searches (https://www.nfib.com/surveys/small-business-economic-trends/).


In today's business world positions are never basic. Typically we are not looking for "generalists" whom we can insert into generic roles and operate efficiently. We are living in a niched world and businesses need specialized people who can leverage their expertise to help their company dominate their market.

With that being the case, and knowing that by not hiring can cost your business significantly it makes sense to get some professional help. Often times we get clients coming to us to enlist our services who have had the search open for longer than 90 days and sometimes as long as 6 months. At this point, you can assume that their business has already been adversely affected. And ultimately they end paying a recruiter on top of the losses from them trying to go it on their own.

The moral of the story is that given the abysmal chances of finding specialized candidates for your specialized needs on Job Boards... you should establish a relationship with a recruiter. Get to know them and understand their process. Get your head around their fee agreement and be ready to bring them in when the time is right.

If you think the cost of a recruiter is not in your budget... consider the alternative and what the costs might look like if you arent able to have access to the people you need to run your business.

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