By | Kate Reilly
Erin Scruggs didn’t see it coming. As senior director of talent acquisition at LinkedIn, she knew hiring would pick up in 2021, but adding 150 recruiters in four months? That’s wildly fast. In fact, in LinkedIn’s 18-year history, the company has never hired talent professionals so quickly. And, of course, it’s not just talent acquisition — every part of the organization is growing rapidly.
Despite the lackluster recent U.S. jobs report, more and more companies are in a similar boat. “‘Now hiring’ signs are popping up everywhere,” MarketWatch reported recently. Tom Gimbel, chief executive of LaSalle Network, a U.S. recruiting and staffing firm, told The New York Times: “It’s the best job market I’ve seen in 25 years.”
When the pandemic hit, many companies delayed hiring or let people go. They waited to see the shakeout and now have pent-up demand. As LinkedIn COO Dan Shapero told Erin’s team: “Our success in delivering against revenue goals for the company will depend in part on the talent acquisition team’s ability to deliver the talent that we need.’”
Recruiting is where it all starts, and competition for recruiters could not be fiercer.
We spoke with Erin and her colleague Jamie Huygens and they are both in the thick of this hiring spree. Below are some of their best practices for recruiting recruiters at scale:
1. Ask new hires for referrals. Always
Searching for recruiters isn’t that different from hunting for other roles, but the volume needed right now is unique. “Most of our new hires are coming from competitive offer situations where they were interviewing elsewhere and working with other companies’ recruiters,” Erin says. “Tapping into them to say, ‘Hey, we’re so glad you chose us. Who were the best recruiters you worked with as you were exploring other opportunities?’”
It’s so simple, Erin says, but that one question almost always leads to more good candidates. Leveraging LinkedIn Recruiter as teams host sourcing blitzes is another great approach. Teams come together to pick their peers, and adding in a layer of competition to see “who found them best” is a great way to increase candidate volume. Referrals from the entire company are critical as well: The team advertises open recruiter roles so they’re seen when anyone in the company goes to refer talent.