When I was an internal recruiter I always used to wonder why recruiters called me despite me asking them to email me. From my point of view, it was easier to answer questions when I had time to prepare rather than being put on the spot.
Since moving into agency recruitment, it’s become clear how essential it is to communicate over the phone.
Speed. If a candidate is to be booked in for an interview, rather than going back and forth over email regarding timings, it’s quicker to of course lock the interview time in on the phone by looking at calendars on the spot. If you want the best candidate, speed and urgency can often be the key to getting the best.
Miscommunication. Recruitment, i.e. people being placed into roles that they desire, is a sensitive matter, that often requires frank and at times difficult conversations. Communication via email can often be misinterpreted, without the cues and nuances of two way conversation. For example, if a candidate is rejected after an interview, it is the recruiters’ responsibility to really understand why. Understanding the details of the situation helps both the client, the candidate and the recruiter in the process going forward.
Advice. It is the recruiter’s job to consult, whether it be giving advice on the current market, a candidate’s situation or likewise giving a candidate advice on the client’s point of view i.e. why they are being offered a certain salary. It is far easier to give sound advice over the phone so that the other person really does understand and any questions or concerns can be talked through thoroughly.
Confidentiality. Salary, fees, budgets... these types of things are better to be discussed offline, as well as sensitive situations such as why there is a vacancy in the first place.
Rapport. Albert Mehrabian’s 7-38-55 Rule of Personal Communication is enough to show that rapport cannot be built by words alone. For all parties involved in the recruitment cycle, it makes the process far easier if you enjoy speaking with, trust and like the people you are working with to achieve the objective.