1. Hold collaborative kick-off meetings before every role is hired
Even if it’s the fifth time that a role is being filled, still bring all stakeholders into the room—needs may have shifted, and new needs must be brought up and incorporated into the hiring plan. Showing your hiring managers that each and every req really is that important will make an impression on them and spur their active and eager participation in the process.
2. Don’t jump the gun on writing the job description
Wait until after the kick-off meeting to write the job description—in other words, don’t write it by yourself beforehand and then present it to the stakeholders for review, which is a common method. You need the input of the hiring manager to write an accurate job description, and the hiring manager needs your input to make sure it’s thorough—you’re the one with hiring expertise who can help guide the hiring manager to think about aspects of the role they may not have thought of on their own. By collaborating on the job description, the hiring manager will become more invested in making the hiring process work—and ensure the hire is the right fit for their team.
3. Attend the hiring manager’s team meetings
Human interaction is key. When you have those really tough hiring managers (you know who I mean), you may want to hide behind email—but don’t. Speaking to them in person is much more effective. In fact, you should look to attend the hiring manager (or department’s) weekly team meeting or daily standup meeting. This way, you will learn more about the team—the dynamics, the challenges, the projects, and more. You will get a better understanding of the role and how to sell it to prospective candidates. By becoming an honorary member of the team, the hiring manager will recognize your investment in getting to know them better and the two of you will become more connected in the process.
4. Meet with the hiring manager once per week, no matter what
To further grow your partnership, schedule a recurring meeting on the calendar with all hiring managers once per week, whether they have reqs open or not. Take this time to ask them what has changed with their team since the last time you talked, which projects their team is working on, etc. Also make a point to ask who their high performers are. Why? This is a good opportunity for you to zone in on other people, besides the hiring manager, who can help you learn more about the team and what it takes to be successful. Again, the hiring manager will commend your efforts to really take a deep dive into getting to know the team and its needs.