Recruiting Experiences

Taking a Chance on the Scrapper

Working in the recruiting field as a talent sourcer, I scroll through hundreds of profiles each day searching for all manner of candidates for varying positions for our clients. One repeating theme is hiring managers focusing on an ideal candidate and overlooking candidates with transferrable skills.

For instance, when searching for a salesperson, sometimes hiring managers want candidates that have sold in a specific industry. While that sounds like a great idea, I wonder how many great candidates they pass up, simply based on that industry qualifier. If hiring managers took a chance on the best of those candidates, they could bring great sales experience AND a diverse perspective to the organization.

On a more personal note, I can attest to the life-changing impact a hiring manager can have on a candidate who they take a chance on. You see, I am a recent graduate and a non-traditional student. At 30 years old, you would see that most of my work experience had been in retail management. While I did graduate with a degree in Human Resources Management, I had very little experience in the field outside of school. Nonetheless, I applied for the Talent Sourcer position with Recruiting Experiences. I went through a few interviews before chatting with our CEO, Amy Oviedo, who spoke to me in length about the future of the company and how they might get there.

After having the offer extended, I accepted. A few weeks later, she and I had a check-in, and I asked, “why did you take a chance on me?” The answer? I was a scrapper.

I sat back and thought about what that meant. I worked multiple jobs to get through college and graduated with high marks. It showed that I was adaptable, driven, and worked hard. These skills are important but not easily taught. You see, while on paper I may not have been the perfect candidate for this position, my success in other roles and during school showed that I could learn the technical skills needed for this position.

Some of the key skills I learned over the years that benefit me in my new role as a Talent Sourcer are listening, asking probing questions, and managing high workloads.

As a vet assistant, I had to quickly and accurately gather information form clients about their pets and relay that information to the doctor. In that position, I learned to listen not only to what a client said, but also to what was unspoken. It taught me the importance of asking more questions to find answers to questions. Those questions were often the difference between life and death for a beloved animal. I have used the skills I learned from working at the vet clinic in my recruiting journey to ask better questions and dig further when evaluating candidates or meeting with hiring teams.

Another example of my skill development was my experience working as a shift supervisor and barista trainer at Starbucks. In that role I had to move quickly and efficiently to keep customers happy while also taking the time to train the new baristas. Working as a shift supervisor at Starbucks taught me to juggle various responsibilities and prioritize on the fly. This has helped in my recruiting role as I must work quickly and efficiently to maintain communication and positive experiences for both the clients and the candidates.

While my resume may not have been the “perfect” resume for a Talent Sourcer, my interviewer looked beyond the surface level and saw skills I would bring to the table.

For the hiring managers out there, I have one ask. If you want innovation and drive from new team members, take a chance on the scrapper. You will be pleasantly surprised at what someone from a different background will bring to your team.

For more on this concept, watch this famous Ted Talk by Regina Hartley: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5zkY7qjRGo

No Time Wasted: Make the Most of Every Role

Part 1 – Do The Hard Work

My professional journey has not been a straight path.
Whether I loved a job or not, each role helped mold me into who I am today.
One of those jobs was really valuable to me: the old jar factory.

As a junior in high school, I was looking for a job that would allow me to grow more independent from my parents and provide for myself. I was introduced to a position at an old jar factory where we packaged and shipped glass jars. It seemed like a good opportunity for me.

My full-day consisted of packing the jar in a box and setting it on a pallet. We would then wrap those pallets with plastic wrap and load it onto a truck.

That was my entire job.
In a large building with no A/C.
For 8-hours a day.
For 7 years.

I worked at the old jar factory for 7 years while completing high school and my Associate degree.

While this role may not sound like it would shape the professional I am today, it taught me three very important lessons:

  • Resiliency
  • Strengthened Focus
  • Commitment

Resiliency

Working in a jar factory (or any factory for that matter) is not easy. Sure, it is work that is general labor. If you had the ability to lift jars into boxes and package them, you could do well in the role.  However, factory work can definitely wear on you after some time. Putting yourself in a tough situation allows you to humble yourself and gives you the opportunity to grow and become more resilient.

I knew that my time at the jar factory was only temporary which allowed me to focus on the future. My work there gave me the confidence I needed to work toward my future goals.

Strengthened Focus

Even though this position could be considered monotonous work, you do need to have the ability to not let the repetitiveness or tedious process get in the way of doing a good job. If you can get past the same work every hour of every day, you could perform well in a role like this. That ability to strengthen my focus on the job at hand helped me in the future when I joined the military.
I knew I could do the work and do it well. It was the mental toughness that started in the jar factory which carried me through the hardship. Whether it was a physical task or needing to communicate with difficult people, the strength of my mental focus is what led me through those tough times.

Commitment

During my time at the old jar factory, I was able to show my commitment to an organization. Commitment, in my opinion, allows you to build trust with your team and shows that you are
reliable. Even though commitment at work may be slightly different from any other commitment in your life such as commitment to your significant other or commitment to loved ones, there are many similarities. Similarities may include showing your trust in one another or demonstrating that you are there for them all the time. I could have easily given up and walked away from working in the factory, but I knew that I needed the money and I was there for a reason. Although my time at the old jar factory was not the most exciting work I’ve ever done, it helped build me into the worker I am today.

 

The lessons we learn in each role will vary and are difficult to call out in a resume beyond the hard skills like being thorough or paying attention to detail, the ability to work well with others, or patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations. These are all  skills I learned at the jar factory. The ability to take the time spent in each role and learn something useful and beneficial for the next step in your career makes the time spent more meaningful. I never plan on going back to working in a factory, but I am thankful for my time spent there. I am grateful for each lesson I learned during that time. In my current role, I rely on and continue to build upon these skills every day: Resiliency, Strengthened Focus, and Commitment.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Recruiting; An Introduction 

You see it everywhere these days: DEI (or one of its numerous cousin acronyms): Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.  

What even is that? And what does it have to do with recruiting? 

 If you have found yourselves asking those questions, I am hoping I can help.  

While I am not an expert, I am trying to learn about and understand DEI because, as I explore my own identity as a Korean American adoptee, I have realized just how important it is both professionally and personally.   

Here are some definitions and how they affect recruiting:  

Diversity

Diversity can have many definitions. I like this one from the Greater Good Science Center: “diversity” refers to both an obvious fact of human life—namely, that there are many kinds of people—and the idea that this diversity drives cultural, economic, and social vitality and innovation. 

We, as people, are diverse in so many ways: ethnicity, gender, education, wealth, body type, language, sexual orientation, and more. Much more. Our differences make us who we are as humans. Instead of embracing those differences, we often push back against them. This leads to the spaces we occupy looking terribly similar to ourselves. 

This mindset, our bias, influences everything we do. 

In recruiting, we are told to check our bias at the door when reviewing resumes and interviewing candidates, with good reason. By allowing our bias to influence our work, we can overlook candidates who might be the best fit for the job, all because they are too “different.” 

By confronting our biases and checking them as we work, we can start to build pipelines (a pool of candidates recruiters seek out and connect with regarding jobs) with that reflect the world we live in, not our limited perspectives.  

 Equity

Equity can be difficult to define, and just like diversity (as well as inclusion), has been defined in many ways. Per the Urban Strategies Council: Equity is fairness and justice achieved through systematically assessing disparities in opportunities, outcomes, and representation and redressing [those] disparities through targeted actions. 

I originally came across this definition in an article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review on centering equity when it comes to social justice work, something I have become intensely passionate about over the past three years as I have worked to reclaim my identity as an Asian American during a period of violence against that very community. 

It means understanding why certain people do not have equal and equitable opportunities, representation, and outcomes and using your privilege and position to change that. 

In recruiting, it can be easy to make assumptions about a candidate, influenced by our biases. Part of our job is trying to find the “right fit” or the “perfect candidate.” On its face, this would seem like the entire point of recruiting.  

However, this mindset can often lead to us subconsciously seeking out candidates of a specific profile, usually white and male (this profile has been established as the “perfect candidate,” due to things like the patriarchy, white domination, etc. – concepts that are important to name here). 

By stopping the hunt for perfection, and by asking ourselves questions via prompts throughout our sourcing and screening process, we can start to build equity into our recruiting systems, by helping to shape and change our culture towards a more equitable and equal one. 

Inclusion

If you were wondering, “Does inclusion have multiple definitions, too?” Congrats! I appreciate you for reading. 

I really resonated with this definition from Paolo Gaudiano in a May 2021 article for Forbes: “inclusion is the act of ensuring that people’s experiences within an organization are not impacted negatively as a result of their personal characteristics.” 

At its core, inclusion is the act of implementing diversity and equity into our practices. It means when we bring people of various identities in and provide them equitable opportunities, representation, and outcomes, we are actively creating and upholding a culture of belonging. 

In recruiting, if we are practicing diversity and equity in our hiring processes then we can feel confident that our process is an inclusive one. It means we are actively evaluating our systems, providing a safe workplace and culture, and hiring talent from all identities and experiences at all levels of the workplace. 

By creating an inclusive recruiting process, we create inclusive workplaces and cultures. 

—————— 

Practicing diversity, equity, and inclusion in recruiting is not just important, it’s necessary. That is why everyone is talking about it. That is why you’re reading this now. 

It is not enough to just build diverse pipelines, we must hire diverse candidates across all levels of our companies. We must create a safe and equitable hiring process. We must always evaluate and re-evaluate the “how” of our recruiting and hiring processes. 

We must also evaluate and re-evaluate our “why.”  

Diversity, equity, and inclusion are not just buzzwords; they are necessary, foundational elements that we must practice to create diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplaces. 

I talk about these things and more on LinkedIn – connect with me there! 

Building A Kinder Future; A Day In The Life of An Intern at Recruiting Experiences

If you want to make a difference in your profession, training the next generation who will do it is paramount. We believe that kinder recruiting practices can (and should) be our legacy. So, we started a search for the right interns for the job. After all, interns are literally the future of talent acquisition and should be treated with the respect that this role commands.  

Here is our approach:

 

We Choose the Future with Care  

We select our interns very carefully based, not on grades and majors, but on grit, transferrable skills, empathy, and eagerness to learn. Good people are good in any arena, and good people build good businesses. It’s that simple. 

 

Our interns don’t get coffee; They are immediate, contributing members of our team.  

Our goal is to follow-up each classroom lesson with real-world application and ramp quickly to where interns are indistinguishable from newer members of our team.  

Interns complete our full Talent Acquisition Professionals Certification Program– designed to prepare new recruiters and job changers for the full life cycle of recruiting. Then they function as cohesive recruiting team members—with dedicated mentors– for the entirety of their program. 

 

A Day In the Life of A Recruiting Experiences Intern: 

Wondering what a day in the life of a Recruiting Experiences intern looks like? Nobody can explain it better than those who have been through the program themselves: 

I went from not knowing anything, to sourcing for projects and scheduling screens for one of RecEx’s technical recruiters, to scheduling prescreens for MYSELF– all in such a quick time…  

CEO, Amy Oviedo, is an amazing teacher and trainer and I also had a dedicated mentor, who was always willing to help and never seemed tired of my questions. Every day everyone comes to work happy to be there, and it is such a great thing to be a part of!  

-Jack Baradziej, College Senior 

 

My (time) at Recruiting Experiences has been nothing short of enlightening, motivating, and inspiring.  

One of the many things I love is that they allow their interns to be right in the action. For every hour that we spent (in a classroom) another hour was dedicated to hands-on recruiting, including making mistakes; troubleshooting; and having some awkward conversations. This type of learning is what I looked hard for throughout my internship search.  

The RecEx team continuously motivated me to fail fast, get up, and try again. I am beyond lucky to have been a part of such an amazing team. 

-MacKenzie MacAtee, College Senior 

  

I wrapped up a 23 year career as an elementary teacher and started an internship at Recruiting Experiences.   

Have you ever been terrified and excited to start something new? I was the oldest intern but was welcomed into the group wholeheartedly.   

The permanent employees of RecEX are an energetic, friendly, driven group of recruiting professionals. They lead with kindness to clients and candidates, always doing right by everyone. The tone here is one of hard work, results and fun. What I have learned about the job of recruiting and about myself in the last few weeks has been astounding.   

– Anne Hockersmith, Transitioning Teacher 

  

The pull (of the recruiting bug) is real, and I have felt it in full force: 

You send out the first mass message to potential candidates and you get a few nos, maybes, and then there is “Hi John, I would like to learn more about this opportunity.”   

-Dopamine begins to release! - 

You continue to chat with the candidate; You get their phone number and email; You get them on your calendar; You do the pre-screen…   

But maybe they turn out not to be a good fit… everything comes to a stop.   

It’s a rollercoaster that you continue to repeat until eventually you find the perfect fit… and celebrate and start all over again. 

 

The knowledge that I have gained cannot be replicated in a classroom…the hands-on experience with sourcing, screening, and follow-ups takes it to the next level.   

-John Lam, College Senior

  

When hunting for an internship for the summer, my goal was to find something that would provide me with skills that are important for both work and life. This internship has exceeded those goals for me.  

 I have met an incredible group of people and I have stepped completely out of my comfort zone, while receiving nothing but support. The first day of my internship, everyone made me feel like I was already a part of the team. I had never walked into a room and already felt comfortable with so many strangers. And that’s sort of how my entire experience at RecEx has been. Everyone helps make the uncomfortable moments much more comfortable, which I think is essential for growth and rare in a workplace.  

-Annelise Leffler, College Senior 

 

We are beyond proud of our interns and are looking for more all the time. If you have transferrable skills, grit, and empathy and are interested in our program, reach out to info@recruitingex.com. If you know someone who may be interested, please spread the word.  

Together we can pave the way for a kinder future for recruiting. 

 

My Successful Career Shift from Server to Professional Recruiter

When I graduated school, I had no plans to become a recruiter. I’ve learned since, that this is a common occurrence. In fact, despite my network of recruiting professionals, I do not know anyone whose career goal was to become a recruiter. The field is in demand and has significant earning potential, but few are choosing this path. So, how did I end up here? Why would I recommend it as a career choice? Read on, to find out.

Realizing I Needed a Career Shift

I originally went to school for criminal justice. I always wanted to focus on research and get into policy making. I thought I could make my mark on the world by creating policy based on solid, objective research. The reality of this path, however, is that being a researcher takes much more schooling than I was ready to commit to. This left me reconsidering my future. In short, this was the beginning of the story of how I fell into recruiting.

Throughout high school and college I worked in restaurants. I was a dishwasher, busboy, server, and bartender. I pretty much touched every front-of-house position. I fell back on this when my original plans changed but, while working in restaurants has it perks, the shifts did not make sense for my long term plans. Serving helped me realize the power of effort and work ethic. The shifts weren’t always easy, but the people skills serving taught me have been invaluable.

I moved from serving to sales; I was awful at it. It seemed like the harder I tried, the less likely I was to make a sale. My time in the industry was short but it helped me learn quick thinking and conversational skills. It was time to go back to the drawing board.

When My Career Trajectory Started To Change

Through my personal network, I got an opportunity for an internship. Amy Oviedo had just recently started Recruiting Experiences and needed some extra help with the new business. I started by uploading clients and potential leads to our CRM, reviewing and sorting resumes, and scheduling interviews for others. I quickly realized that recruiting fit both my skills and my interests and my career began to take off.

A Role Transitions to a Career

I went through the certified Talent Acquisition Professional Training course at Recruiting Experiences. I came on full time. Almost before I knew it, I was a recruiter! It was official. My first client contract involved sourcing and screening candidates, and then submitting those I thought were viable. This contract gave me valuable sourcing practice and helped me realize the power that quality sourcing has on the recruiting process. Now my client base has grown and my responsibilities to those clients are far more complex. I enjoy my work, continue to grow, and have become a consistent performer in the company. I will be forever thankful for the opportunity I was given to fall into a career I never knew I’d love.

Recruiting is a great career path because of the diverse paths people take to get here. There is no traditional “recruiting” background and the diversity of skills that brings is incredible! Recruiting helped me step into a professional role and fast-forward my career trajectory. I also love the exposure to so many other careers. Whether you are a new grad or a career changer, consider a career in recruiting. I hope my story helps others find the success I’ve been fortunate to have by falling into recruiting.

How To Find A Job Without Actively Searching 

Do you ever wonder how to encourage recruiters to come to you with a new role? Are you in college looking for an internship: an entry level employee looking for their next step: or a seasoned veteran of the workforce who wants to share their wisdom with a new company & team? Keep reading to learn how you can improve your chances of being recruited and let your skills work for you, even when you aren’t working.  

Post Your Stories 

Sharing stories is my favorite way to increase your chance of being recruited. You can select whichever medium you prefer, although I have seen the best results come from LinkedIn. This is probably because of LinkedIn’s popularity for recruiting projects. Sharing your stories about work experiences, lessons learned, projects, or even people that you like to connect with increases the likelihood that your profile will show up in an X-RAY or BOOLEAN search. The key words from your posts or articles may appear in the search as a recruiter sources the talent they are targeting. Additionally, when a recruiter views your page, you can give them a closer look into the skills you have and the way that you communicate through writing (or speaking if you share videos).  

Connect With People Outside of Your Company 

People that are not already in your network or inner circle will be the people most likely to refer you to new information and opportunities. Your coworkers likely know information similar to what you know. If you make an intentional choice to connect with new people outside of your company (or existing network) then you build pathways to the latest information and potential opportunities down the line. One conversation you have may spark a new, non-work-related connection to introduce you to their colleague who has expressed interest in your skillset. One chat can lead to another, and you could very well be in your dream job sooner than you thought.  

Create a Portfolio to Accompany Your Resume 

Graphic Designers, Artists, Photographers, and Musicians all have portfolios of work where we can see what skills they have before we even talk to them. Why shouldn’t other professions do the same? If you are not in a creative field and wondering, “Well how would I create a portfolio?” I have one simple solution: Power Point! Recruiters will often click on your LinkedIn page to look for information they can use to present you to hiring teams or determine if you are a fit for a role. Imagine if you had a public portfolio highlighting your projects and key accomplishments, this differs from your resume which is usually more bland. Your portfolio can include photos, light music, and other eye-catching effects to highlight your expertise AND your creativity.  

 Ready to be Recruited? 

Being recruited can feel amazing but remember the burden of being so awesome involves replying to all the recruiters who want to message you! Connecting with new professionals outside of your circle, sharing your stories on platforms like LinkedIn or YouTube, and creating an engaging portfolio to highlight your career accomplishments will help recruiters come to you and share your value proposition on your behalf. Ready to have opportunities knocking on YOUR door?  

Ace The Interview With This Prep Technique

On their journey to find their next opportunity, a jobseeker will answer a multitude of interview questions from a variety of interviewers. These are important conversations that make or break the chance of moving forward for a job opportunity. Read on for tips to ensure success. Often, Recruiters and interviewers ask specific questions with ideal answers in mind from their candidates. One of the best pieces of advice I can give to those preparing to interview is to formulate a handful of ‘STAR’ stories that aid in exemplifying your skillset, contribution, and experience. Candidates sometimes tend to beat around the bush while indirectly answering the interviewer’s questions due to a lack of structure in their answers. However, a Recruiter is your ticket to a next-step meeting with a hiring manager. It is important to be clear in the stories and attributes conveyed during initial interviews. Indirect answers could cause the recruiter’s submittal notes to reflect less than the candidate’s full potential, resulting in the creation of a roadblock to the new job opportunity. So, what are STAR Stories, you say? STAR Stories

Situation: What happened? Set the stage while providing context and background.

Task: What were the challenges or problems faced?

Action: What did you (INDIVIDUALLY) do and how did you react?

Result: To round out your answer, state the benefits, savings, and/or rewards that occurred.

The benefits of STAR stories, and structured interview answers in general, are numerous. Primarily, it sets the interview conversation up to go increasingly smoother for both parties involved. When the interviewer isn’t getting the type of answer they’re looking for, it forces them to get more creative with asking probing follow-up questions, which takes time away from talking more about your accomplishments and the opportunity at hand.

Further, once you’ve prepared that handful of STAR stories to store in your back packet, interview preparation will become much less of a time commitment. Assuming you’re applying and interested in a similar pool of jobs, you’ll be able to recycle those STAR stories in each interview process. Choose and build your stories off your proudest and most representative achievements. When an interviewer asks to provide an example the next time, you’ll be excited to share.

It seems straightforward, but another meaningful tidbit of advice for those interviewing is to ANSWER THE QUESTIONS. Listen to what these interviewers are asking for in their questions so that your responses can be puzzle pieces to their inquiries. I’ve seen many candidates, unfortunately, be rejected based on their conversation topics of choice. These might include negative feelings about past employers or simply indirect answers to questions. Interviews are a candidate’s time to shine; Get out there and sell yourself!

We all go through interview processes. Preparing for interviews through methods such as STAR stories increases the efficiency and effectiveness for both ourselves and the interviewers. An interview should be a conversation for the interviewer to get to know the candidate as much as the candidate to get to know the interviewer. It shouldn’t only be the responsibility of those interviewing to stay on task and be prepared for the interview. As an interviewee, implement efficiency into the process by preparing for your interviews with STAR stories.

Looking for some interview prep or resume writing assistance?

Connect with me or my teammates and explore Recruiting Experiences’ resume writing services!

How I Used Networking to Find A Rewarding Career: And How I Pay It Forward, As a Recruiter

Networking is the action or process of interacting with others to exchange information and develop professional or social contacts. We’ve all heard that networking is necessary to a variety of careers, but this is especially true in recruiting. I want to share my personal story of how networking got me to where I am today and the ways I see it impact jobseekers every day in my role as a recruiter.

My Personal Journey Through Networking:
Prior to my current role with Recruiting Experiences, I was deeply soul searching for the right fit for me. I’d tried social media, countless Google searches, and endless (and time-consuming) application completions. There were a few interviews. Some were not what I was looking for. Some didn’t see me as a fit. Others were the right position, but the wrong employer.

Finally, I immediately connected with the Director of Talent for a tech company. The initial conversation went well, but I lacked experience in a few areas that her company really needed. In the end, the recruiter was able to find someone better suited for the role. BUT! She shared that she really enjoyed my personality and experience and wanted to be a mentor and help to guide me through my job search. I was thrilled for the help.

Over the next few weeks, I had received messages and invites to apply to positions that this amazing recruiter had found. I’ll be honest, there were a few more disappointments. One interview did not have an existing position available for another 3 months out. A connection to a Facebook group where recruiters can post jobs, led to a dead end. I was afraid I had reached another stopping point and was beginning to feel desperate.

My Network Leads to a Breakthrough!
Within a few days, the recruiter sent me a message to contact a friend, Amy. She informed me that Amy had been an amazing mentor to her and that she loves the business she is in and has had great success. I reached out, and, within a day, I was scheduled to have a phone call with her. After about 10-15 min of chatting, I realized the skills I had developed in my current role would add great value to this team. Amy invited me to come in. I met and interviewed with the entire team within about 1.5 hours. By that night I had a job offer! Better still, I realized the reasons I was leaving my old job didn’t define recruiting in this new space.

Networking Becomes Part of Every Day:
Now, in my daily life as a recruiter, I see such successful outcomes from networking. Sometimes candidates aren’t the right match for a specific position but might be right for another. Often, I know of other positions that can correlate with a candidate’s experience. I am also able to connect a jobseeker with my team to be considered for similar positions. Even recruiters with other companies can be a helping hand. The candidate gets a role, the recruiter fills a role, and I almost always find they remember to return the favor.

According to HubSpot, 85% of jobs are filled through networking. It’s not always about who you know but rather, just getting to know others and their stories. We live in a world where we can connect with someone 5 miles or 5,000 miles away with a keyboard. Choose a social setting, social media, or simply an in-person conversation. By just taking a chance or just giving someone a chance to connect, you can learn about many opportunities or be approached about things you never knew existed. Get out there and connect.

Word of mouth opened a huge door for me. I am now in a workspace where there is professionalism, opportunity, growth, and family. Just think, if I did not keep in touch with a recruiter, who knew someone, I wouldn’t be happy where I am today. I can’t wait to pay it forward to someone else!
Is that someone you? Reach out on LinkedIn!

The Importance of Recruiter-Specific Training: And the Program I Used to Accelerate My Career

Today, recruiters are not just recruiters. On a day-to day basis we change our title from recruiter to human resource coordinator, career coach, scheduler, account manager, and our client’s brand cheerleader. Many of us wear all of these hats with no formal training. Recruiter effectiveness is dependent on a comprehensive skillset. Lack of effective recruiter training can make hard-to-fill and high-volume hiring nearly impossible (hrotoday.com).

Like many recruiters, I didn’t go to school to recruit, I learned my skills on the job. When I joined the Recruiting Experiences team this past January, I came with a solid background in high-volume staffing, but lacked professional and corporate recruiting experience. So, you can imagine, this could have left me feeling vulnerable, as a new hire. But training the next generation is a passion for our CEO, so she designed the onboarding process to include participation in a 5-week training program designed to build corporate recruiting skills. This built my incoming confidence and accelerated my growth in a big way, allowing me to hit the ground running in my new career shift.

Recruiting Experiences’ accredited training programs were created and designed for new grads, human resource professionals, and anyone looking to make a career change. Individuals can learn and practice real-world corporate recruiting skills in a group learning environment while being able to collaborate with other like-minded individuals. It is a crash-course that will prepare even the least-experienced recruiter but also works to fill in the gaps for those working in the profession who may have been thrown into it with no formal training.

During the program, I was able to gain and expand my knowledge of candidate sourcing, screening preparation, knowing how to effectively negotiate offers, and learning to build lasting and positive relationships with not only talent, but also my clients. One of the biggest takeaways of this program for me personally was the negotiating offers section. This is the last step within the interview process, but the hardest, in my opinion. Being your candidate’s advocate while assisting the client with the offer can sometimes be extremely overwhelming. I learned key questions to ask my candidates and client to make sure everyone is on the same page during the closing process, and ways to stay confident to bring the offer over the finish line.

Being able to participate in a program with other fellow recruiters from a wide range of different specified recruiting tracks, like staffing, corporate, internal, and technical recruiting really allowed me to collaborate and grow even more. The program was self-paced, but I was also able to learn with other like-minded individuals who all shared the same goal: to grow as a recruiting professional. The program was designed to drive recruiters with comprehensive, ongoing training around company brand representation, sourcing, and social networking while using the latest tools and technologies that enable recruiters to find qualified candidates more efficiently (hrotoday.com).

If you or someone you know wants to invest in their recruiting career, reach out to training@recruitingex.com to learn more about this full life-cycle training program and other opportunities to grow your skills with Recruiting Experiences.

5 Tips for Successful Virtual Interviews

I started my recruiting journey during the pandemic, so I never got the pleasure of conducting in-person interviews. In a remote heavy, virtual job market successfully navigating virtual interviews can help set you apart from other job seekers. Here are 5 tips to stand out!

1. Whenever possible, enter the meeting room early and familiarize yourself with the platform. Locate the chat, screen share feature, mute, and camera buttons. This will help you share anything you need to and help the interview go smoothly. This will also allow for some buffer time, just in case you have issues logging in. Recently a hiring manager that I work with did an interview with a candidate. The candidate entered the room early and got comfortable with the controls. This allowed for the interview to run smoothly, and the hiring manager was impressed enough to extend an offer. Minimizing communication errors during the interview will lead to a better experience for all.

2. Try your best to create a calm and distraction-free environment where you are going to do the interview. A great option is a quiet room with good lighting and minimal distractions. A strong internet connection will also help the experience run smoothly. Life happens so don’t stress if the dog barks or kid asks a question but do what you can to limit interruptions. If something does happen though, do not be afraid to ask to reschedule. Rescheduling is typically a much better option than muddling through an interview with multiple distractions.

3. For all intents and purposes, treat a virtual interview just like you would an in-person interview. That means do you research but use the virtual environment to your advantage. Consider it an open book test. Virtual interviews allow you to have notes and materials. Write down your important talking points and questions just in case they slip your mind. I was interviewing a candidate for a complicated engineering position. He had his main talking points on a notepad and he shared that it eased nerves and, on my end, there was smooth conversation flow. This helped him stand out compared to other candidates.

4. Choosing what to wear can be confusing for virtual interviews. Consider the environment you’re joining and go one step up from what you’d expect the interviewer to be wearing. That means, if it’s a tech role and you anticipate everyone wears t-shirts, consider a polo or blouse. If you think they are dressing business casual, adding a tie or blazer may be appropriate. You could also ask the Recruiter or Scheduler for their advice on what to wear. You never want to be unprepared so ask for help if you’re unsure about the environment. Check your environment too, a blurred camera can cover a lot of background mess if needed.

5. This last tip might be obvious, but the default should be to have your camera on. If you have to turn it off or keep it off, let the interviewer know. It always impresses me when a candidate makes solid eye contact during the interview. It is the closest you can get to face-to-face conversation during a video interview. The interviewer will also get a better chance to learn more about your personality and character.

These 5 tips are all things candidates have done in the past that have impressed me or hiring managers I’ve worked with during the interview process. Try them out and let me know how they worked on LinkedIn.