Who is to blame when we make a bad hire? Is it recruiters? Talent acquisition leaders? Hiring managers? Or someone else entirely?

We love to point the finger when we make a bad hire. And when it’s a good hire, everyone wants to take credit. Of course, the same person (or people) is responsible in both cases…the question is, who is it?

Short answer: it’s a team effort.

As for the long answer…

Recruiters and Hiring Managers Each Play an Important Part

Recruiters and hiring managers each have responsibilities in the hiring and selection process. You can’t make good hires without having both people involved. They both have to play an active role in the process…neither party can sit back and let the other one do all the work.

The recruiters are responsible for submitting quality, viable candidates. Their responsibility is to not only find candidates but engage and learn about them.

Recruiters have to learn about each candidate’s experience, skills, proficiencies, interests, and career goals so that they can determine if they’ll be a good fit for a job. Through this process, they’re performing their own vetting process to weed out bad candidates and make high-quality submissions.

The hiring manager’s role is a little more cut and dry. Ultimately, the hiring manager is responsible for making the final decision. In doing so, they must interview the submitted candidates, as well as review their credentials and character.

However, that’s really just scratching the surface. If you want to consistently make great hires, the recruiters and hiring managers alike need to take things a step further. They need to work together to establish a relationship that enables them to make great hires.

The Relationship Between Recruiters and Hiring Managers is Critical

The relationship between hiring managers and recruiters is essential to making great hires. This is part of why landing great hires is undeniably a team effort. Unfortunately, that relationship is rarely as strong as it should be.

Before a recruiter starts looking for candidates, we must get clarity on what we’re looking for in candidates. The quality of the hire will depend on our level of understanding here.

It starts with the hiring manager. They need to clearly communicate what they’re looking for in their next hire. What will the employee be responsible for? What skills are “must-haves” and which ones are optional? And what is the ultimate goal for someone in this role? And so forth.

Recruiters Should Help Hiring Managers Define Their Needs

Recruiters play an important support role here. More often than not, the hiring manager doesn’t have all the answers to these questions – or isn’t thinking about them in the first place. Recruiters should prompt them to think long and hard about the role and what they want out of candidates.

Altogether, the two should work together to dig into what the hiring manager’s needs truly are. Oftentimes, the best hires come from situations where the recruiter helps the hiring manager get a new perspective on what’s most important in a given role.

Of course, is only possible if the hiring manager is willing to give the recruiter their time and be actively involved in the intake meeting. It’s a team effort!

Besides…Were They Dead When You Hired Them or Did You Kill Them?

Typically, we realize we’ve made a bad hire after they’ve spent some time at the company. Some new hires may ghost us or quit the first week. More often, it’s a sinking feeling a few weeks later that the new hire isn’t a good fit.

It’s important to remember that there are countless factors that can influence a new hire’s performance in the workplace…many of which are beyond the recruiter or hiring manager’s control. Maybe you botched onboarding, and the employee spent their first few weeks feeling adrift, confused, and stressed.

Alternatively, it could be something to do with how the hiring manager treated the employee. In this case, it would be unfair to blame the recruiter. This gets into a different topic entirely, but it demonstrates that neither recruiters nor hiring managers hold the sole responsibility for quality of hire.

We Make the Best Hires When Recruiters and Hiring Managers Work Together

Neither party can make great hires on their own. The hiring process works best when both parties share responsibility and closely coordinate to land top talent.

Given that our people will determine whether the business succeeds or fails, it’s hardly a matter we can afford to overlook.

How does your company ensure hiring managers and recruiters work together to make great hires?

The right people, empowered to perform.