Most people don’t know it, but HR is not just a tough job. It’s a tough industry. And just like every other industry, there are specialties and verticals and technologies to master. As a third party recruiter, my initial (you might say natural state) was to feel stymied and frustrated by the HR Pros who “stood in my way” when it came to Hiring Managers (ahhhhh, cue music from heaven). And for a while, the aggressive recruiter vs. in-house talent stance worked. But, as arguably the greenest (and I mean that in the inexperienced sense not the eco sense which I cannot get away from these days. . .I mean I grew up in Hippie Valley over in Santa Cruz but enough already!) member on our affectionately monikered FOT, I have been able to view the industry and the individual’s roles with “fresh eyes”.
What do I see? Well, I’m soooo glad you asked. I see that times are changing. First of all, HR, as a field, is getting more respect. Marsha, who couldn’t hack it in a leadership role so we let her do the hiring is no longer the standard. HR or Talent Management (all fancified) is finally getting some respect. Great! Or is it? Will HR Pros have to step up to the plate and really add value? Is it an industry standard now and not just for the superstars who have (ugh) blogs? Continuing education, fancy free software and costly mis-hires are making the execs sit up and take notice.
As HR grows and segments and replicates, so does the art of recruiting. Yes, I concede that a new recruiting firm for some vertical pops up every minute or two, especially in Jersey. But not all last. I’m a deep-root girl. I can’t do anything I don’t love and I can’t love anything until I know it (except for a Kompressor, I know that I would love one and have never even pressed my rear into the seat). So as recruiting (the art formerly known as the ugly cousin of HR) grows in sophistication and expectation, it gets further segmented: data mining, sourcing, pipelining, pre-development, testing, screening. . . sorry, I fell asleep.
My point is, it’s great that Human Resources and Recruiting are coming into their own, as an industry instead of a tag-on, to whatever business you happen to be in. But with that visibility and the seat at the executive table, we owe our champions and each other a job well done.
Maren Hogan is a millennial living the dream in Omaha, Nebraska. When she’s not plotting the downfall of Gen Xer’s like me, she’s doing marketing and development for an IT recruiting and outsourcing firm called HCI. When she’s not at HCI, she’s blogging at Big O Recruiting and becoming addicted to Twitter…