In a recent interview with SANINC Owner and President, Mark Stocker, we turned our focus back to our roots.
What is Recruiting and Why Does it Matter?
Let’s start there. Why does recruiting matter?
Mark Stocker (MS): On the most basic level, recruiters give prospective candidates access to openings that are more confidential in nature, providing them the ability to explore opportunities they wouldn’t necessarily otherwise hear about. Most executive positions just aren’t on job boards. Those are done via confidential searches which require a relationship with a recruiter. But, beyond that, recruiters can offer a much better understanding of what career path options are available within certain spaces. It’s not just about what jobs are on the recruiter’s docket, but also what partnering with a recruiter long-term can do for your career or your company.
A Partnership Above All
So, it’s not just about finding people to fill slots in the open opportunities you’re working on?
MS: Not at all. We’re career consultants. We provide access, but we’re not just contracted vendors. We’re partners, with both our clients and our candidates. Candidates who partner with us can have their resumes reviewed by experts that have seen thousands of resumes. We understand our industry, and we understand what our clients are looking for. We know how to compare a candidate’s resume and to help them stand out. Recruiters like us aren’t submitting resumes in large batches. We’re sending very targeted resumes directly to our clients. We have the ability to make sure candidates are investing their time pursuing the right opportunities.
I appreciate the distinction you’re making about “we” versus “recruiters” in general. What’s the difference between the stereotypical recruiting firm and what the team at SANINC does?
MS: Recruiters are often seen as pushy, as people who are just looking for someone to fill a position. That’s where the term headhunter comes from. But at SANINC, we are partners. Our team really wants to know what your desires and ambitions are. We’re keeping you aware of what you want to be looped in on, not just what jobs we need to fill. We’re coaches who help you keep your ears open. This often starts well before a candidate is even ready to make a move. We’ve spent decades building relationships in the industries we work in. We know your market because it’s our market too.
Know Your Industry
How important is it to “know your industry”? Does it really make that much of a difference?
MS: Absolutely. Good recruiters should be able to teach you some things about your industry. For instance, they should know why certain positions within certain sectors inherently pay more, which positions have to travel more, or which require certain certifications. They should know the importance of having exposure to specific clients or certain materials and processes, and they should know how the big players in the industry think. With true market mastery insight, a recruiter should know when the best thing to do is not to make a move yet. We can see those trends and understand those nuances because our fingers are on the pulse. Quite simply, we speak the language.
SANINC is a Step Above
What else does SANINC bring to the table besides market mastery that sets it apart from other firms?
MS: Because of our client partnerships and our strong footing within our industries, we’re able to deliver high level insights on a broader scale than most other firms. For example, we partner with one of the largest news outlets within the Metals Industry to produce an annual compensation survey. The survey rotates disciplines/sectors every few years, and with it we can actively track compensation trends within the industry.
How do you get where you and your team are today? Is there a secret to success in recruiting?
MS: I think the bottom line is that every recruiter has to be curious. You have to be willing to ask the right questions, sometimes repeatedly and over time, to really drill down to who people are. People just can’t be captured in a single-page resume. Sure, we know the details of our industries. We can give insights into the norms of compensation in those spaces, and we can coach the candidate through every step of the interview and hiring process. But at the end of the day, whether it’s the candidate or the client, our goal is to build relationships. No one knows what they don’t know. But, with the right questions and the right type of listening, one can build lifelong networks that benefit everyone.
Recruiting is about Connection
If one thing was clear when speaking with Mark, the emphasis on people over jobs is what sets a strong recruitment firm apart. Recruiting is about connection. A recruiter’s first objective is to listen with a curious ear and to build relationships with individuals on both sides of the door. A recruiter is only as strong as their network, and you can only build a network by investing time and giving authentic attention to the people you work with. Finding the right fit for a client and a candidate is always the goal, but recognizing what each client and candidate brings to the table on their own is where true success can be found.
Curious about what it’s like to work with Mark and our team? Contact us to learn more about what a career consultant can do for you.