Best Practices for Recruiting On LinkedIn

What to Do When Your Recruiters Have Req Overload

When there are too many reqs siting on a Recruiter?s desk, the noise from hiring managers begin. What are some steps TA teams can do to help mitigate when hiring more recruiters is not an option?

Listen in on what our panelists have to say.

This event is part of the “Let’s Talk Recruiting” series where a panel of recruiting practitioners get together online and have a conversation on a variety of topics related to corporate recruiting.


Click to Play the Recording


Our Panelists…

Name & LinkedIn Profile Group Title Company
Craig Natale TA Leaders Head, Global Talent Acquisition Partners Jazz Pharmaceuticals
Deborah Baimas Recruiting SFBA Manager, Talent Acquisition Aera Technology
Jean Sheehan TA Leaders Director, Talent Acquisition ConServe
Michael Lishewski Recruiting Boston Senior Recruiter Wayfair
Sam Schloss Recruiting NYC Talent Acquisition Specialist Thomas

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We asked our attendees, “What is one thing that you do when you have too many reqs sitting on your desk?”

Here are their answers:

  • A move to the top the ones where the managers are engaged heavily
  • allocate them
  • ask for help
  • Ask for more support from hiring managers for app review
  • Ask others for support if they have bandwidth
  • Beg for additional resources; if unsuccessful, describe to senior leaders the negative impact on service level
  • Block out calendar time for each req - stick to it.
  • Break them into similar roles so the sourcing efforts can knock out multiple opportunities
  • Buckle down and prioritize the openings.
  • Calibrate
  • Constant communication with manager and team, support each other.
  • Cry 😉
  • Cry, no honestly I will reach out to my team for support
  • Divide all reqs into a 5 day period, to ensure all reqs get touched weekly
  • Find out which ones are highest priority; let my boss know
  • Get with my mgr and re-prioritize what needs attention now vs later
  • give priority to the reqs with responsive hiring managers
  • hire more recruiters
  • I don't get assigned reqs, but we review the older reqs and contact managers to see if they are still required.
  • I take a look at them to them prioritize them by; need to fill/urgency, which roles can I close in the next 2 weeks
  • involve the business and finance in prioritization
  • levelset expectations
  • Leverage automation available in your ATS
  • Look for other recruiters or communicate to manager and look for coordinators who have some down time
  • lose quality and speed to hire
  • Making sure I am organized and communicate
  • manage expectations with hiring managers
  • Need to inform management that there is a potential issue w/workload
  • Negotiate with partners
  • Organize them by priority
  • outsource
  • Partner to help find support, and focus on priorities
  • Priorities them..
  • Prioritise roles
  • Prioritize
  • Prioritize
  • Prioritize
  • prioritize
  • Prioritize
  • Prioritize
  • Prioritize
  • Prioritize according to business goals.
  • Prioritize and balance workload
  • Prioritize and communicate the "why"
  • Prioritize and delegate and clarify the hiring manager's role and responsibility in the process.
  • Prioritize and schedule tasks for my entire day while allowing interruptions.
  • Prioritize based on business needs
  • Prioritize based on urgency and critical need
  • Prioritize by criticality to the org, time open and stage of completion
  • Prioritize by need
  • Prioritize recs, then shift recs to other members on the team
  • prioritize them and take a deep breath
  • Prioritize them from most urgent to nonurgent
  • Prioritize them! How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.!
  • Prioritize using data, set realistic KPIs and expectations, roll up your sleeves with them, and/or bring on a contractor
  • Prioritize what I can cross of “the list” the fastest & where I can make headway the fastest
  • Prioritize which reqs are most important and reach out to hiring managers and let them know the situation.
  • prioritize with the business
  • Prioritize with the hiring managers/boss based on business needs
  • Prioritize, and set expectations with the managers/stake holders
  • Prioritize, see what we can hold off on, queue up sourcing, but possibly hold on interviewing
  • priotorize them
  • Re-prioritize
  • Read all reqs and see if there is any crossover between them
  • reconfirm with hiring managers what is needed yesterday to prioritize
  • Reduce my sourcing and screening time by necessity
  • Req overview / Priority overview
  • Sort them based on degree of importance, schedule time in my day to focus on each one.
  • Take a deep breath
  • Thv
  • try to prioritize reqs
  • Unfortunately work a ton of hours
  • Work a lot harder
  • Work as a group to help get through them and get other managers involved
  • Work with the business to prioritize

Chat Messages from the Session…

10:01:14 >> Jeanne Amey : Good Morning!

10:05:35 >> Sean Rehder : Feel free to add any comments or questions here in the Chat area.

Make sure as an attendee, if you message something in the Chat area that you select “All Panelists and Attendees.” 

The default is just to Panelists but I want everyone to see the messages coming through.

10:10:55 >> Catherine Hansen : @Craig, I love that message to the business about the req loads and service levels.  Curious how you arrive at the magic overload number – is it by position (for example engineering is tough vs a marketing manager)?

10:11:24 >> Daniella McDonald : Looking beyond the reqs or delegating between the current team or business priorities, how can you make the business case for more recruiters?

10:11:25 >> Craig Natale   to   All panelists : Hi Catherine, it is…all reqs are not created equal, right?

10:11:31 >> Jeanne Amey : We did req load balancing regularly while I was at Princess/Holland America – 18 on team and wide variety of recruiting – call center would explode and we’d need to redeploy to support-

10:11:47 >> Jeanne Amey : We benchmarked outside the company to establish req load levels

10:11:57 >> Elaine DeWitt : Good question Catherine, In my previous job, most of the recruiters had 50 – 60 reqs.  And it was in a complex Healthcare organization.

10:12:43 >> Craig Natale   to   All panelists : we need to set our teams up for success…50 reqs does not do that for most recruiters…though clearly if there is no budget, one is then limited in the approach

10:12:49 >> Jeanne Amey : Call center and like reqs – up to 30 was load, add in any leadership roles – Mgr and Dir or above and that number backs way back to 18-20 as idea… we didn’t always make that but it was the rule of thumb

10:14:03 >> Jeanne Amey : @Elaine – 50-60 seems very high for complex healthcare org

10:15:13 >> Shhailly Sharma : Candidate pipeline has always been a bummer for me

Because HM always come with something new or different in there required skills

which end up in raising bad goodwill for the company

10:16:00 >> Heather Levine : @Elaine – I’m in insurance sales recruiting. Not agnets but their staff. I’m working with up to 50 requests at once. Previouly with large home health company with up to 80 reqs at once. Insane!

10:16:04 >> Daniella McDonald : In one position I had we kept the recruiters at 12 positions each. The positions were more professional like software developers, legal, sales, marketing. In my last position our team had anywhere from 10-40 positions, but many were hourly like drivers, warehouse, retail sales versus professional or management.

10:18:09 >> Elaine DeWitt : Anything over 50 is a challenge, but there were times when I had over 70.  We all worked many hours to keep up.

10:18:23 >> Catherine Hansen : Yes, 40-60 reqs in tech industry (engineering) would not be even close to manageable.  We have evergreen SWE reqs with various specialties (ex; front end, backend, etc) about 12 at a time

10:19:46 >> Jeanne Amey : @Craig – yeah and as soon as the workforce plan is in and approved ALL reqs get opened at once and expectation is they’ll be filled quickly

10:19:47 >> Heather Levine : Gartner put out info on req load avg over all and by industry. avg was 20 with some less. up to 30 is what was found to be “manageable” although that really isn’t.

10:20:36 >> Jeanne Amey : @Heather – if reqs are all alike – i.e. insurance claims adjusters – 30 can be manageable if the recruiter is efficient with time

10:20:46 >> Craig Natale   to   All panelists : @Jeanne- the business has to stage those openings…it’s not fair to expect recruiters to complete a front loaded WF plan

10:21:18 >> Heather Levine : Fair. I would agree with that statement. time management is super important.

10:22:04 >> Heather Levine : location of positions and type really help with being able to send candidates to multiple places or even just hire more than one from the pool.

10:22:58 >> Catherine Hansen : @Deborah, completely agree.

10:23:15 >> Song Chang   to   All panelists : +1 Deborah

10:23:32 >> Jeanne Amey : @Michael – agree – I had a couple of recruiters that would not ask for help – they saw it as a weakness-

10:23:49 >> Jeanne Amey : it wasnt’ until we regularly did req load balancing as a team that they saw there were no consequences

10:25:38 >> Leif Wennerstrom   to   All panelists : Love monthly agreements

10:27:29 >> Daniella McDonald : We had a recruiting coordinator who we used for some overflow recruiting help. She was working on recruiting projects for the team, but would handle up to 10 reqs as needed.

10:27:51 >> Craig Natale   to   All panelists : sounds like she needs a promotion!

10:32:53 >> Brian Mulligan   to   All panelists : daily operating rhythm was always huge for me. I start each day with what’s closest to closing and do whatever I can for that req. this means my “problem children” are saved for last because if I do those first I’ll never get anything done.

10:33:03 >> Brian Mulligan : daily operating rhythm was always huge for me. I start each day with what’s closest to closing and do whatever I can for that req. this means my “problem children” are saved for last because if I do those first I’ll never get anything done.

10:33:20 >> Daniella McDonald : @Craig one of my team members did that calendar blocking too. For calls, for emails, req by req

10:34:02 >> Jeanne Amey : @Brian – agree with your work flow for the day – problem client groups can monopolize your valuable time

10:34:43 >> Catherine Hansen : @Craig, this is very important.  Top engineering candidates have multiple offers and are trying to line offers up exactly this way

10:34:56 >> Catherine Hansen : Sometimes we’ll lose our chance to compete if we don’t push certain reqs

10:37:47 >> Catherine Hansen : @All, interested to hear how you “push back” on high priority reqs from leadership bench where they insist on reviewing all CVs (and reject most up front)

10:40:32 >> Jeanne Amey : @Catherine – I had a client group where I had to create reporting to push back as the leader would always push back on any candidates we presented – my solution was an old fashioned Excel report with resumes embedded for a calibration meeting with she and her team members – she did “drive bys” and thought she was being thorough – she wasn’t – it got us through the process with full slate of candidates in front of all for the conversation – the body of work was good – she was scattered

10:41:37 >> Jeanne Amey : busy execs can get lost in the process unless the team is strong in helping them participate in the way that’s most effective

10:43:50 >> Jeanne Amey : @Deborah – every hiring manager thinks they are recruiting experts 🙂

10:44:28 >> Catherine Hansen : @Deborah – yes it’s hard, especially for the kinds of talent your company is searching for.  A lot of those skill sets are still nascent and in high demand, esp in Silicon Valley

10:45:15 >> Catherine Hansen : @Jeanne – yes I hear you!

10:45:22 >> Abby Dooley : What is a Proxy account?!

10:48:44 >> Jeanne Amey : @Deborah – we had an intake form as well – it helped really guide the right conversation and expectation setting up front

10:50:08 >> Elaine DeWitt : We also had an “Intake” form and met with the hiring leaders to review and agree on the process and expectations.

10:57:38 >> Jeanne Amey : @Sean – it’s on the ballot in CA that boards of directors must be divers – m/f, lbgtq

10:57:55 >> Jeanne Amey : It may roll through OFCCP and it’s a good trend to be sure

10:58:06 >> Catherine Hansen : Yes – Newsom signed

10:58:09 >> Jeanne Amey : Right Sean

10:58:20 >> Catherine Hansen : For CA based boards

10:58:35 >> Catherine Hansen : THANK YOU PANEL!

10:58:35 >> Jeanne Amey : GREAT session everyone!


Some of the attendees…

Name & LinkedIn Profile Group Title Company
Toni Wells Recruiting Atlanta Talent Acquisition Recruiter Macy's
Elise Gebeili Recruiting Boston Human Resources Director Triumvirate Environmental
Andy Pittaluga Recruiting Boston Technical Recruiter Bose Corporation
Jessica Marotta Recruiting Boston Principal, Talent Acquisition Forrester
Eileen Beno Recruiting Chicago Senior Technical Recruiter / Scientific Recruiter Fermilab
Sarah Schaefer Recruiting Chicago Senior Recruiter Fresenius Kabi USA
Marie deGroh Recruiting Chicago Principal Talent Acquisition Partner - Cognitive Solutions & Research IBM
Heather Levine Recruiting Dallas Recruiter - Allstate Agency Auto Dealership Program Allstate
Kris Saprano Recruiting Denver ED and ICU Recruiter SCL Health
Cindy Wong Recruiting LA Sr. Talent Acquisition Specialist Princess Cruises
Lance Hunsicker Recruiting LA Executive Recruiter Parsons Corporation
Bianca Medici Recruiting LA Talent Acquisition Manager Havas Edge
Bez Rengifo Recruiting LA Sr. Manager / Director, People Services (HR Business Partner department) Loma Linda University Health Care
Matt Englund Recruiting Minneapolis Talent Acquisition Leader Nerdery
Denise Ward Recruiting Minneapolis Technical Recruiter Wunderlich-Malec Engineering
Christine Smith Recruiting Minneapolis Talent Acquisition Lead North American Region CommScope
Dana Bozich Recruiting Minneapolis Talent Acquisition Specialist Sedgwick
Jenna Kalish Recruiting NYC Sr. Recruiter, Talent Acquisition WebMD
Hansol Lee Recruiting NYC Talent Acquisition Manager CAST
Brian Mulligan Recruiting Philly Corporate Recruiter Penske
Elaine Dewitt Recruiting Phoenix Contract Recruiter HonorHealth
Nan Marchello Recruiting Phoenix Senior Manager of National Talent Acquisition Truly Nolen of America
Abby Dooley Recruiting Seattle Recruiter (Technical) Edifecs
Marita Arevalo Recruiting Seattle Recruiter Aegis Living
Radhika Aggarwal Recruiting SFBA Senior Technical Recruiter Macy's
Natalya McCool Recruiting SFBA Recruiter Berkeley Lab
Song Chang Recruiting SFBA Manager, Technical Recruiting Flexport
Catherine Hansen Recruiting SFBA Senior Manager, Recruiting Hippo Insurance
Katie Hoffmeister Recruiting.Work Talent Acquisition Recruiter H&A Architects & Engineers
David Baker TA Leaders Sr. Director of Growth & Development/Brokerage Services One Homecare Solutions
Kevin Francis TA Leaders Director of Talent Acquisition Lark Technologies
Jeanne Amey TA Leaders Vice President Talent Acquisition PennyMac Loan Services, LLC
Melissa Rutledge TA Leaders Talent Acquisition Director Point B
Bennett Yang TA Leaders Director Talent Acquisition SoundHound
Jessica Wall TA Leaders Associate Director, Talent Acquisition: Recruitment and Supplier Relationships SAGE Therapeutics
James Perduto TA Leaders Head of Talent Acquisition & Mobility Programs Looking for Work
Leif Wennerstrom TA Leaders Director, Business and University Talent Acquisition Procore Technologies
Daniella McDonald TA Leaders Talent Acquisition Leader Looking for Work
David Jaramillo TA Leaders Recruiting|Talent|Sourcing Director. Let's Attract Divergence Academy
Jay Barrow TA Leaders Head of Talent Acquisition Southern States Cooperative
Guiti Nabavi TA Leaders Director, Diversity & University Recruiting Hinge Health

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