When you’re overwhelmed at work, it’s easy to focus only on what could be better about your team’s circumstances. After all, there will always be difficult developer job openings on your plate and you could always use an additional recruiter or two. Plus, you could probably use a little extra budget, right?
But what about the people that you do have on staff? How can you get the maximum amount of output from each person to hit your hiring goals, without overworking them? Here are a few team building strategies that all HR leaders can rely on to manage their understaffed tech recruitment teams.
Let’s face it—each person on your team has a unique skill set. But that's a good thing, and your recruiters can (and should) compliment each other.
One group of recruiters might be more natural “sellers” who thrive at creating and building relationships with potential candidates. They do their best work at events like tech conferences and meetups. But other members of your team might be more effective at managing the interview process. They know what to look for on a developer application, they’re empathetic to the needs of candidates, and they can see and resolve potential gaps in the process before developers ever notice them.
To keep your tech recruiters from feeling overworked, think about each person’s strengths. Then, ask yourself the following question: “How is my team equipped to take on more specialized responsibilities?” If you feel confident in your answer, think of ways to put people in roles that utilize their greatest strengths, while taking the tasks they’re not as comfortable with off of their plates.
Developers aren’t the only ones who dislike unnecessary meetings. And if you’re currently understaffed, it might be time to reevaluate your recruiters’ calendars.
Julie Morgenstern, author of Never Check E-Mail in the Morning, told the Harvard Business Review that every meeting should be driven by a clear agenda that enables your team to have productive discussions about their key assignments. More importantly, she urges managers to set a limit of no more than three agenda items per meeting. She adds, “Sometimes an email or memo can accomplish the same goal in a much shorter amount of time.”
Be honest with yourself about the urgency of every block of time on your recruiters’ calendars. Things like intake meetings with hiring managers should remain a priority. But when it comes to general status updates, don’t be afraid to remove those from everyone’s day-to-day.
Recruiting developers can be incredibly solitary at times. When things aren’t going according to plan, your tech recruiters need to know that they can come to you for support on a regular basis.
But wait, didn’t we just talk about canceling unnecessary meetings? Yes, and we still believe it’s an excellent way to give your team more time to do their jobs. But one-on-one sessions with each of your direct reports shouldn’t fall into the category of frivolous get-togethers at work.
Ask each of your recruiters how often they’d like to catch up with you. Some might request weekly check-ins, while others might only want to meet on a monthly basis. There’s no such thing as a wrong answer, but whatever you decide, do everything you can to honor those meetings.