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Talent Acquisition Specialists

Oh… My… Lord!! If ever there was an ‘oxymoron‘, it has to be “Talent Acquisition Specialist.” In truth, just take the ‘oxy’ away! What a uniquely despicable character they truly are.

Y’know, I never thought I’d say it, but… (*sigh*) I miss HR, I really do.

You knew where you were with HR, bless ’em. That meant you could save all your hate, anger and disgust for Recruitment Agents. But, with the advent of the Talent Acquisition Specialist (TAS), a particularly exquisite barrier has now been placed at the entry point to any corporate position. And TAS’s arm themselves with a particular weapon – the Applicant Tracking System… but I’ll vent about that shortly…

You knew where you stood with HR. You knew the part they played in the hiring process. You knew what you had to do to get by them. Generally speaking, if you had two of everything down the side, one of everything down the middle and could manage a conversation, HR would consider you worthy of further consideration.

Now this stage is key: getting in front of the hiring manager is (by and large) the only way to get hired.

You need to present to the hiring manager as a capable candidate and then leave it with them as to whether they believe you’re “a good fit.” Succeeding or failing to get hired at this point is pretty much acceptable. You’ve presented your case. You’ve been challenged to account for yourself. That is what an interview is about.

And then you wait to hear from them. Well, when I say ‘them‘, obviously this was the point HR got back involved. There was always a specific delight in the voice of the girl from HR who called to say: “…you’ve got the job and we simply can’t wait for you to start!

Arhh, love ’em…

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I have no idea whatsoever when or why it was thought that something called a “Talent Acquisition Specialist” was required to make the hiring process complete!

However, as a ‘barrier to progress‘, they display an ability that would leave any nightclub doorman thinking he needed some CPD.

Seemingly the TAS’s only engagement strategy is the telephone. The call comes in a period of no less than 20mins and no more than 45mins. I’ve never met a TAS, but I’ve spoken to a few now… certainly more than I would choose to; although I can’t yet determine if they’re ‘Recruitment Agency drop-outs‘ or ‘HR on steroids ‘n too much red meat.’

Honestly, if anyone can tell me what REAL use they play, please email me, ‘cos if I’m doing them an injustice, I should be told, as currently they’re getting waaaaay too much of my hate and I’m sure there’s more deserving vents out there coming up short.

Actually, if anyone can tell me how to get round a TAS, really, email me!

They seem to be the final arbiter in the hiring process, making a decision (seemingly) instantly on the phone as to your suitability, and I’m left wondering just what part the ‘hiring‘ manager now must play.

Two faults of the TAS ?

  • i. they always…. and I mean always… leave you thinking the conversation has been successful and that you’re through to the next stage in the process.
  • ii. they never…. and I mean NEVER… contact you again. Not only is that unprofessional… that’s downright rude!

I would have to say the final nail in the TAS’s coffin has to be that invariably they know very little (if anything!) about the position you’re after. Which means they’re evaluating suitability for the organisation, not the ability to perform the actual role… and that evaluation is so subjective, it’s bloody subliminal !

I’m sure there’s a personable, informed, professional and perfectly nice TAS out there… somewhere… and I look forward to talking with them… one day… (Ooo… was that a pig just flying past my window…?!)

I harbour a suspicion that this vent is not yet complete, and that I’ll be returning to this section all too shortly.



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