May 3, 2024

The hire/fire crazy train


Partner at Hirewell. #3 Ranked Sarcastic Commenter on LinkedIn.

Successful hiring doesn’t just magically happen

New trend we’ve noticed over the past 2 weeks: companies scaling up hiring again, but they don’t have enough (or any) internal recruiters to do it.

Because they cut them all last year.

We saw this phenomenon in 2021. And it appears we’re seeing it again now. (Admittedly to a lesser extent. I don’t believe hiring will go crazy again until there’s a macro shift in interest rates & the cost of money for fundraising.)

There’s a problem with the talent strategy of “hire & fire your internal recruiters with every cycle shift” approach: it’s not a strategy. It’s as reactive as it gets. (And I say this as someone who 100% benefits from it. The reason why we’re seeing this trend is because companies are coming to us needing help.)

Any time you cut your entire internal recruiting team, a two things happened:

1. You lose all your domain and process knowledge. All the people who know the ins and outs of how your organization hires are gone. You start over from scratch.

How to best partner with the hiring managers. What worked/didn’t work on previous similar searches. How to ‘sell’ your company to job seekers. Relationships built with future possible candidates from previous searches. All the fun things you learn to do better every time a search turns into a trainwreck.

These things take time to hone. And they’re all out the window. The newbie will start from scratch.

2. Anyone left realizes you didn’t learn anything from the last hire/fire cycle.

Layoffs are always unfortunate, but sometimes necessary for a business to survive. Yet repeating the up and down process without asking yourself “is there a better way to do this?” is well, insane. Or just lazy. And no one wants to work for a lazy, crazy company.

(Fun fact: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” was from Rita Mae Brown, not Albert Einstein. You learned something today…)

The point? There’s a better way of doing this. You need:

👉Visionary HR and Talent Acquisition leaders who aren’t still running the 1990’s talent playbook.

If the entirety of your hiring strategy is ‘hire internal recruiters and only use contingent agencies as a last resort’ you’re feeding right into the trap.

👉Find strategic recruiting partners who can integrate with your team, scale up and down as need comes & go, and price things appropriately.

The most innovative things in the recruiting space aren’t faux AI technologies. It’s firms that found the ‘best of all worlds’ approach so you can retain your domain knowledge, get help when you need it (not when you don’t), do the internal heavy lifting (not just source resumes) and not price gouge you. 

Hirewell is one of them. Hit me up before you jump back on the crazy train.

Partner at Hirewell. #3 Ranked Sarcastic Commenter on LinkedIn.

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