6 Conversational Recruiting Techniques to Jump-Start Driver Recruitment

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The recruiting process is essential for a motor carrier’s success, yet recruiters are struggling to bring in the number and quality of drivers that fleets require for the long term. To be successful in today’s competitive market, recruiters must rethink how they interact with potential employees.

The Recruitment Process is Fundamentally Broken

W. Kelly Anderson, President and CEO of Impact Training Solutions, believes the recruiting process undertaken by many carriers is fundamentally broken.

“The typical recruiter is not trained as a salesperson, but a call taker. What happens is that companies receive lots of calls but very few applications. So, we need to start thinking about the whole process in an entirely different way.”

Understandably, recruiters don’t have hours to spend on the phone with every driver who calls; but they should devote as much time as necessary if the caller sounds like a viable prospect.

The key is to create a conversation that enables the recruiter to know fairly quickly whether the prospective driver is a qualified candidate. With each call, recruiters should also be establishing the groundwork for welcoming the driver into their fleet.

Six Relationship Building Techniques

  1. Get a Name: While this may seem obvious, some recruiters become so focused on the driver’s qualifications that they forget to ask his/her name. By asking for a caller’s name, it sets the stage for a “conversation not an interrogation.”
  2. Point of Referral: With each call, be sure to ask the driver how they heard about your company. This only takes a few seconds but provides valuable feedback to identify which of your company’s advertising and sourcing efforts are most effective.
  3. Ask Open-Ended Questions: “Tell me what you are looking for in a job” is an excellent way to get a conversation started. By becoming an active listener, recruiters can gain pertinent information such as qualifications, previous employment, reasons why the driver is looking for a new job, benefits or perks that are important for switching to a new job.
  4. Offer a “Piece of Candy”: From the open-ended conversation, the recruiter has learned why the driver is interested in leaving his/her current job and the key factors important for that driver to consider for their next opportunity. At this point, you can offer what Anderson calls a “piece of candy.” Focus only on those benefits/perks that are important to the driver from the information gleaned throughout the conversation.
  5. Record the Information in the System: During your conversation, enter the driver’s information into your system—current employer, previous history, any special qualifications, and contact information. This information is vital during the initial hiring process and will help in future recruitment efforts even if the driver does not have further interest at this time
  6. Take Action: If the caller is a qualified candidate tell them about the next available orientation date and discuss the steps they should take to attend that particular session. Recruiters need to get drivers excited about the job and motivated enough to follow-through with the hiring process. Give them a valid reason to consider your company for a job instead of another.

Your chances of making a good hire increase significantly if you use conversational techniques and follow through on leads.

From now on make sure every phone call is a relationship-building experience. A positive recruiter experience plays a significant role in how your entire organization is perceived both pre-and-post hire.

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