Chat with us, powered by LiveChat The Qualifier Job Order and the 'Big Lie' in Recruitment

The Qualifier Job Order and the ‘Big Lie’ in Recruiting

by | Mar 19, 2015 | Recruiter Training, Top Echelon Blog

A student of mine called the other day.  He had spent all week conducting a concentrated marketing campaign and had written a few new job orders.

He was now using my Job Order Matrix system to qualify his JOs, but it was taking him what he thought was an inordinate amount of time.  He asked if there was a shortcut in the JO qualification process.  I asked if he had ever heard of the Qualifier Job Order approach and he had not.  And so we began to talk about this technique.

When a top recruiter writes 15 job orders, they will usually fall into three distinct categories:

  1. 0-1 will be of “search assignment” quality
  2. 4-5 will be of the “matching” type
  3. About 10, or two-thirds, will be of the “can’t help” variety

The qualifier job order

In general, recruiters seem to naturally possess a “positive mental attitude.”  Because of this, they think that every job order they write is of “search assignment” quality—that it’s supremely “fillable.”  While it may be necessary to have a positive outlook, we need to temper it with a strong dose of reality.

Let’s use the example of Ricky Recruiter’s new marketing campaign.  Ricky makes marketing call after marketing call with no positive results.  Then, out of the blue, one of his phone calls reaches a hiring manager who actually seems to like Ricky and is willing to talk with him—and, surprise of surprises, is actually looking to fill a critical need and is open to giving Ricky some job order information.

At this point, Ricky is so elated that he keeps the poor hiring manager on the phone way too long.  It’s only human nature.

But keep this in mind.  This hiring manager was not expecting Ricky’s call.  Combine that with the fact that most Americans are nice people and you start getting a sense of the beginning of Ricky’s downfall.  Blindly moving forward, Ricky takes his time and fills out all of the empty blocks on his job order form.  When he finally hangs up, he runs to his manager and says, “See, everything I write is a search assignment.”

Or, Ricky might tell his manager the “Big Lie.”  It goes something like this:

“You know, Mr. Manager, you keep telling me to make a lot of marketing calls—and I am fine with that.  But every job order I write is a true search assignment.  I have more job orders on my desk now than I can possibly fill.  What I need to do is recruit.”

And that’s what he will do—to the exclusion, I might add, of any further marketing activity.  His downfall is now complete!

The ‘Big Lie’

Now, why does our industry fall into the ‘Big Lie” trap?  Because the assembled, unqualified job order on your desk are, for the most part, garbage.  You are working in areas where you are not going to be paid and then, at the end of the day, you can’t understand why you have no/low production.

You criticize the industry or your manager or anybody but yourself.  But what has really taken place is that you haven’t properly qualified your job orders so that you can be assured of subsequent successful placements.  What you have done is wasted time.

Think of the rest of the scenario.  Think of what happens when the hiring manager finishes his long initial call with Ricky.  He turns to his secretary and says something like this:

“You know, it never dawned on me while I was talking to this guy, but he’s a recruiter.  He took a lot of my time asking me questions on our company that he could have found the answers to by doing a little Internet research.  And he actually wants me to pay him a fee to find someone for us.  Can you imagine that?  I mean, we can run ads.  Our personnel people can find that kind of person.  I tell you what, the next time he calls, tell him we moved to Peru.  Or better yet, I’m in a meeting and can’t be disturbed.  I don’t want to talk to him anymore.  He’s already wasted my time, and I’m just not that interested.”

So you see, you have two opposite points of view of the same situation.  The recruiter, who thinks he has a search assignment, is going to spend the next three weeks recruiting on it, while giving up his recruitment campaign ideas.  And the hiring manager has just given specific instructions to his secretary not to let this person in any more.

Well, if that’s going to happen, let’s find out on the first day, before we have expended any more of our straight commission time on it.

Remember to try out the Big Biller recruiting software to help you match job orders with qualified candidates. Try it free today!

Training Video: Uncover Hidden Candidates 

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Bob Marshall of TBMG International, founder of The Marshall Plan, has an extensive background in the recruiting industry as a recruiter, manager, vice president, president, consultant, and trainer.  In 2015, Bob is celebrating his 35th year in the recruitment business.  Marshall can be reached at or at 770.898.5550.  His website is

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