I recently saw a post on LinkedIn titled, “Three Things That Will Get You Hired”. Several of the responses talked about “getting around HR”, and how obstructionist HR can be. One even questioned the validity of having people more skilled in downsizing and eliminations involved in hiring at all. The fact that it is very often the same skill set involved, deciding who would be best for the job, aside, I continue to be perturbed by how HR is perceived by candidates and managers alike.
As a 20+ year HR veteran (recruiting, comp, training and employee relations) I always went out of my way to find ways to partner with the managers I supported and the candidates who would make them successful. Here’s a tip from the other side. If you see HR as an obstruction or incompetent, they will respond to you that way. As Goethe put it, “The way you see people is the way you treat people. And the way you treat them is what they become.”
When you’re trying to get hired, you and HR have the same goal. You are both trying to fill a position with the best person. The HR person needs to get that position filled to satisfy the needs of their client (the manager) and you need to collaborate with HR if you want to have the opportunity convince HR that you are that person and get the job. If HR feels like you are trying to get around them, I guarantee that you will not. HR professionals are very skilled at deflecting candidates. Especially those whom they feel are trying to put something over on them. Work with HR, reach out to the hiring manager, use every LinkedIn connection you can find in the target company and make a concerted effort to get the job.
So I don’t have “Three Things That Will Get You Hired” but there’s a nugget that can help you at least get an interview.