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BY Joel Junker
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How Recruiting Firms Add Value During a Pandemic

Now, more than ever, recruiting firms can add value to companies and candidates. I have to admit that I had some significant concerns in March about how Cameron-Brooks would navigate through the impacts of Covid-19. The economy declined, unemployment rose to historic levels, and business travel came to a stand-still.  I think EVERYONE had concerns.

The following questions swirled around in my head:

“Even if companies have open positions, will they hire?”

“If they want to hire, how will they evaluate candidates and make hiring decisions without physically meeting the candidate?”

“Will JMOs make as strong of an impact over video as they do in person?”

In other words, “Even if companies can hire, how will all of this work?”

To answer these questions, we adapted our entire in-person Conference experience into a virtual format to include impromptu interview coaching, large and small group presentations, and feedback sessions.  Since March, we’ve successfully conducted 2 virtual conferences. While we’d prefer to get back to the in-person experience, I expect conferences will be virtual until we have a vaccine or proven herd immunity.

Since this is going to be the new normal, I wanted to share some lessons learned.

First, the virtual conference still gets the same results as the in-person conference.  I’ll admit this surprised me.  Candidates are still conducting career searches and interviewing with a variety of industry leading companies with open positions. We’ve quickly segued after the virtual conferences into follow-up interviews, spanning two weeks. This virtual process has lead to earning offers which have remained at the same level of quality (or in some cases even higher than) they were pre-Covid.

Most importantly, I’ve learned that Cameron-Brooks provides even more value for both Client Companies and JMO candidates during this unique economic time.

By partnering with Cameron-Brooks, companies reduce the variability of their hiring, expand their talent pool and have more confidence hiring virtually during the pandemic.

There are still many companies out there with open positions who need talented leaders for their most difficult to fill positions. Companies are being more selective for these roles because they are so important.  Like the rest of us though, most cannot travel or bring candidates from outside their area onsite.  This could limit them to the geographic area for who they can hire.  To overcome this challenge, they reach out to Cameron-Brooks. We have a pool of vetted candidates with top leadership skills and a track record of success.  While some companies still have reservations about hiring virtually, we give them a higher degree of confidence because of how well we know each candidate, our thorough candidate vetting process, and personalization of building a company’s interview schedule.

Candidates have access to more opportunities with companies with open positions who are eager to hire.

This has always been true despite the current market but even more so now with higher unemployment and difficulty getting in front of hiring managers.  The fact is that unemployment is high, many companies are on a hiring freeze due to economic uncertainties and those that can hire have the ability to be very selective.  Additionally, it has always been difficult to navigate through a company’s filtering process, especially now when people can’t travel to meet in-person.

JMOs are running into this problem and I hear many defaulting to staying in.  Others end up taking an offer with a company that they are not all that excited about but it pays well and has a good location (which just leads to quitting within a year).

There is an alternative.  Partner with Cameron-Brooks.  If you have a track record of success, the right strategy, attitude that reflects the market, and the mindset of get your foot in the door and navigate to the ideal – YOU CAN DO A CAREER SEARCH!  MANY GREAT COMPANIES ARE HIRING through the Cameron-Brooks process.  We’re still averaging eight interviews per candidate in the midst of a pandemic.

Every obstacle and / or crisis creates an opportunity.  This is Cameron-Brooks’ opportunity to showcase and add value.  It is a great opportunity for companies who are hiring to bring in great leaders.  It is a unique opportunity for JMOs to transition into development positions and help a leading company navigate through COVID.

What will you decide to do?  The Obstacle is the Way!  Here at Cameron-Brooks, we are going to keep moving forward and partner with companies and JMOs who will do the same.

Joel Junker