Embracing Change In The Recruiting Industry

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Apr 3, 2020

My first “real office job” was in the Air Force and…don’t laugh (many will)…I used an IBM Selectric typewriter. I know, I know, there are people asking what a typewriter is. You should have seen what that was like – three part forms and if you messed up – ugh you had to start over. I hated it almost as bad as the ditto machine (that is another story for another day).

Then, out of the blue, a computer was on my desk. Oh my, how was I ever going to learn this? I have to learn Word Perfect? What the heck? I can’t even mention that on my resume because it could it reveal my age? (I hope not!)

As you can imagine, I did not like the changes that were going on with technology. At the time, I wasn’t able to comprehend how useful the computer would be to me in the future. Fast forward twenty-something years and I still use a computer but for more advanced tasks. Much like technology changes, so does the recruiting industry. The changes that occur on a daily basis in work and life are both important to growing as an individual and being a more knowledgeable person than you were the day before.

Here are some best practices I found helpful in dealing with changes in the recruitment industry.

Embrace Change – It is Inevitable

Change is all around us and is the one constant thing in life. You can be successful while embracing change! It seems like the older I get, the faster changes occur. Just think: It took seventy-five years for the telephone to be in the home of 50 million individuals on a global level.

I have had to adapt to changes at work over the last couple of years. For example, I did not have AI and now my company utilizes Hiretual. I can remember how I felt – Is this taking over my job? Are they going to need me anymore? All those worries and yet, it has actually been very positive for me. I can input my search requirements and the tool gathers data from over thirty sources. My favorite takeaway of using an AI tool like Hiretual is the recruiters I support in the office can review candidates and choose whether the individual is a fit based on the required criteria. Hiretual automatically updates search criteria to find enhanced results. (This is even going on while I am at the beach looking for seashells! I can take a break and not worry about work piling up!)

I also have to adapt when my favorite tools change or go away. I used to use the Pipl search engine a lot…when it was free but now it is strictly a paid tool. I had to adapt to changing the way I search for candidates by utilizing other methods.  I love to use my handy dandy go-to sheet when I am in need of contact information for candidates.

Make Changes While You Can – Don’t Let Them Catch You off Guard

Prepare yourself for change. Think about what changes are occurring and what you need to change in order to keep up with the change. Ask yourself:

  1. What changes could occur?
  2. How can these changes help me for the better?
  3. How can these changes make my job more difficult?
  4. Can these changes be beneficial?
  5. What do I need to do to respond to these changes?
  6. How can I take advantage of change?

I have found many ways to keep up with changes in the recruiting industry, such as attending SourceCon events, both locally and at the yearly conference where new tips and tricks are taught. I am currently working on the SourceCon Academy course, which is helping me refresh old tricks but also learn new ones that I didn’t know about. Following various Facebook pages, such as Recruiters Online and Sourcers Unleashed, is a great way to connect with others who offer insights on various aspects of the recruiting industry.

Change is Scary – Do Not Fear Change

Change can be intimidating. Rosanne Cash once said “The key to change is to let go of fear.” I know, for me, change can be scary and thoughts of doubt have come to my head along with relentless questions like “What if I make a mistake?” or What if it is worse than what I am doing now? What if I fail?

Change is frustrating and stressful but it can be rewarding. Focus on things that will work for you and what new skills you need to acquire to achieve your goals.

Build a support team to help you with changes that may occur in recruiting for you. I know there are many experts in our industry that are more than willing to connect with you to help you with your challenges.

For many, the Coronavirus has resulted in countless difficult changes to daily life, including layoffs, uncertainty, empty shelves, loved ones falling ill and sadly, even passing away. During this time, I am reminded of the children’s TV show host, Fred Rodgers, who is quoted as saying “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me: look for the helpers and you will always find people who are helping.” So, I would say to you, do not hesitate to reach out to helpers, whether in the recruiting industry, friends (maybe even ones you haven’t reached out to in a while) or family. We are all in this together and we WILL survive this event.

I believe wholeheartedly that good will come out of this, and for me personally, I have noticed many positive changes during these times, too. I hear stories of families spending more time together, sitting down to dinner more often, playing cards and board games, and putting together jigsaw puzzles.  I see a lot more people outside these days, taking walks together, riding bikes or just sitting outside together.  People seem to be a little bit friendlier at the grocery stores…at least the ones who aren’t hoarding supplies.

Besides seeking help, this is also a great time to find others to help.  There are a lot of people who need help and there’s nothing like making someone’s day, be it with a smile, a gift or even helping with a task.  Getting outside of yourself, helping others and being grateful always provides just as much joy, if not more, to the helper/giver than to the recipient.

I want to encourage you during this time to let you know that this will make us stronger, more innovative, more creative, more united and really grateful for our blessings, once the dust settles and we’re able to return to some semblance of normal.


Changes in the recruiting industry can consume time and attention and can be stressful. Keep focused on the positive aspects of change and do what you do best. I have not always been successful when making new changes but, as I always say, I gave it the old college try. Find things you can improve on when making changes in the future.

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