If your boss does not know THIS... change your job!

If your boss does not know THIS… change your job!

If you are a Recruitment Director, worried about the future, you will be acting on this. If you are a recruiter, I hope your leaders are dealing with this stuff. If not, you might want to find a job where they are. Fast.

750 recruiters attended my recent speaking tour of Europe, most of them Owners and Managers of Agencies. We covered a lot of ground in three hours, and here is a taste;

Disrupt your business now…before someone else does it for you!

Engineer micro internal change based on a plan for the future. Self-disrupt!

The secret to success in business is very simple. It’s the ability to adapt and change that underpins success.


The most compelling reason most of us in this room will fail is a lack of planning, foresight, and investment for the way the world is going to be.

Not everyone will thrive. There will be big winners in agency recruitment.
And big losers.

No wave of economic recovery is going to save you, if what you are selling is not what the customer wants!

The future of agency recruitment is all about the battle for candidates. Not so much clients.

Talent is the epicentre of competitive advantage.

Candidate identification will get easier and easier. Candidate recruiting and hiring will get harder and harder.


To the very cream of talent, privacy is the new advantage. The best candidates don’t put themselves out there any more.

We must accept, indeed embrace, the fact that recruitment is merging with marketing.

Finding candidates is a science. Recruiting them is a seduction.


In fact, every recruiting function, be it agency or in house, should really operate as a digital marketing agency.

Your company’s digital footprint is by far the largest and most important marketing presence that you have. Do you treat this key asset that way?

It’s no longer about candidates ‘applying’. It’s no longer about getting their attention. We need to know their intention.


The future of success in candidate acquisition is Digital Predictive Recruitment.

Technology in recruitment is not mostly about driving efficiency and automation. It should ensure a great candidate experience.

Don’t confuse candidate identification (via technology often), with candidate recruitment, via human beings (always), or candidate engagement (both).


Most recruiters proudly talk about their database when the word ‘technology’ is raised. But, most recruiter databases are candidate graveyards!

‘Social’ is not a ‘fad’, or a ‘task’, or a ‘project’. You have to embed social in your everyday recruitment activities.

Never underestimate the seductive power of your digital footprint.


Recruitment agencies need to invest more in marketing, including branding, and social, than they should in old school, hard-core sales.

Stop hiring dinosaurs. Yesterdays heroes who cannot or will not adapt to the new world of recruitment.

Profit is not a dirty word. Profit is like oxygen. We don’t wake up every day with ‘profit’ as our only goal, but like oxygen, we sure notice when it’s not there!

We are “short term” junkies in this business. It’s hard for us to see the value in investing for a return tomorrow. And that shortsightedness is now more than an Achilles heel. It’s a death sentence.


We should not chase shitty margin deals so aggressively. Don’t be seduced by revenue and look always to make money.

If your company is made up of those lazy recruiters whose ‘strategy’ consists of posting and praying poorly written ads, or even LinkedIn InMail inundation, than you’re not only going to find yourself frustrated in the battle for talent, you’re likely to find yourself out of business.

We have to use consumer-marketing techniques to amplify our positive brand with a wide pool of candidates.

Open job orders will no longer be our key metric going forward. That will become irrelevant. Companies will hire talent when they find it. We have to be the ones that find it for them.


Owner Manager Masterclass. ‘Powering Profits in Disrupted times’. With Chris Savage. Six cities, Australia and New Zealand. Over 100 signed up already. THIS IS GOING TO SELL OUT.  Book NOW for Early Bird Discounts.


About Greg Savage

Over a career spanning thirty years, Greg Savage has established himself as a global recruitment leader. Greg is a regular keynote speaker at staffing and recruitment conferences around the world.

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6 Responses to If your boss does not know THIS… change your job!

  1. Callum McGovern December 1, 2015 at 10:59 am #

    This seems more of presentation for the recruitment industry of 5 years ago when people were worried about how the impact of social media would affect the use and function of recruiters.
    As with any new tool designed to help the recruitment industry it’s worth understanding that there are literally thousands of recruiting firms and tens of thousands of recruiters.
    The sheer volume of recruitment agencies means new tools quickly become cluttered very quickly. And once it’s cluttered, for candidates, it just becomes noise and they don’t pay attention. Ask any passive candidate to name 10 recruitment agencies – i think most would struggle beyond naming three at most.
    Candidates are motivated by exciting opportunities. If what are presenting is motivating for them, you will engage them. Just presenting the same old company that works with 50 agencies to a candidate who has heard the same explanation of the client for umpteenth time isn’t going to get their interest.
    So no, the future isn’t about the chase for candidates, it’s about clients. When there are 1 billion Facebook users I don’t privacy is as a big an issue as you think. Yes, some people may be worried about their boss seeing what they did on Saturday night but I don’t think this will result is a mass exodus of social media by candidates.

    • Greg Savage December 1, 2015 at 3:48 pm #

      Callum, you are right that many of these things have been spoken about for a while, but on the other hand, many have most certainly NOT been around for 5 years, and are ideas that people are only now coming to grips with. That aside , the point is that “brand new” or not, these ideas are front and center in terms of relevance. My experience is that the VAST majority of recruiters have not acted on any of these important initiatives and threats. You made my point for me when you said “Ask any passive candidate to name 10 recruitment agencies – i think most would struggle beyond naming three at most.” Exactly! because most recruiters do not think like marketers and have not built their brand. This is what I am saying they need to do! And, er no, Callum, the future IS about candidates, that is something most recruiters agree on. “Finding” someone on Facebook or anywhere else is NOT the same as recruiting them which is a much different skills I just toured the UK and Europe and spoke to almost a 1000 recruiters and most of them seemed to think i was on the right track. Follow this Twitter hashtag if you want to see what they thought #REC Savage (You do have twitter right?). Thanks for reading my blog, thanks for commenting, thats appreciated .. but I pretty much disagree with almost everything you said. But tats the beauty of democracy.

  2. Carl December 1, 2015 at 10:29 pm #

    Greg, you are a legend. Love reading your latest blog post and agree with your sentiments as well as some of the things Callum said too. Do you think the same goes for a niche business operating in South Africa which is arguably behind OZ/Europe/UK and US in terms of the actual development of the recruitment industry?

  3. Navid December 3, 2015 at 1:05 pm #

    Hi Greg,

    I don’t doubt the stuff that you are sharing here. All very good material and I believe everyone has to evolve.

    But here is some food for thought and perhaps a subject for more discussions in your future articles.

    An ideal recruiter today must invest in creating good value and branding it in digital space. They must find new ways of engaging candidates, offering better and faster service and ultimately connecting top talent to clients.

    However from what I am hearing from my peers in the industry and to some degree my own personal experience is that, we are trying to offer a service that belongs to the year 2015 while at least 50% of clients have a process that belongs to the year 2000. Strict HR process, outdated screening / interviewing and often as long as a seat is filled they couldn’t care much who filled it.

    There is no question that we need to evolve and most agency recruiters are doing their best to do so, but for the extra effort, how well-tuned the marketplace is to receive it?

  4. Robert Parkinson December 4, 2015 at 4:54 am #

    great article greg, we ran a training session based on this the very same say I read it!

  5. Travis Bueche February 2, 2016 at 11:57 am #

    Being engaged and building relationships with your candidates is vital. That particular candidate that you want may not be available at the time, but if you continue your relationship with the candidate he will call you first when looking for that new career opportunity. That’s because you separated yourself from other recruiters. Greg said it best, use networking events to build these relationships and building yourself as a brand in which positively brands your company. I know that social media is a huge deal with new recruiters but nothing will take the place of engagement, networking and building a relationship upon trust. Once that is built you maybe surprised to find out that “the word of mouth” just might be your best recruitment tool. That’s only if you choose the right candidates to follow and trust in you.

    A little off topic but the article…. The biggest downfall with start up companies is focusing on revenue instead of profit. Volume is not as important as quality. It’s very easy for a start up company to lose site of this. It happens quick and with no warning but owners see high revenue and assume high profit. Most of the time it’s is just the opposite and is something to pay close attention to.

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