The recruitment world sometimes seems full of middlemen. Search engines, job boards, agencies & consultancies and application platforms make-up the main paths to employers. Most are trying to make the process smoother and help place candidates but some practices can get in the way.
The obstructions come at each level:
- general search engines can help find a vacancy but don't provide an application process but redirect candidates further into the maze of middlemen.
- job boards are a bit of a mix. Some have most of the flaws of general search engines and will redirect candidates to another job board. Most major in vacancies placed by agencies so candidate data is not sent direct to an employer but to an agency or recruitment consultant.
- agencies & consultancies are often one step away from the employer but sometimes they are hawkers - collecting CVs to pass around prospects to sign-up clients.
It's standard practice to remove any contact details from a CV so that an employer can't contact the candidate directly. It's also common practice for candidate CVs to be stripped down to the basics, losing any formatting, so that a unified format can be presented to the employer; again stripping out any personality the candidate has included.
Agencies will also add their own branding to the CV to remind their client, or prospect, who found the candidate helping generate repeat business.
- application platforms are used by some employers to take the pain out of providing an application process. Candidates can expect their personal data to be sent direct to the employer although the platform may manipulate candidate CVs to add the branding of the platform provider which messes up the formatting a candidate has crafted.
The side effect
The total effort a candidate puts into their CV isn't presented to an employer. This is a hinderance for great candidates making it harder for their applications to stand out. When all CVs look the same it makes it harder for employers to pick out the best people to interview to join their teams.
The standards we all need
The middlemen need to step back a bit to enable great candidates to shine. They need to give employers unadulterated copies of CVs and candidate details to enable employers to see the character of candidates.