A Recruiting Epiphany: A Tortured Path To Expanding My Perspective And Founding Frederick Fox

A Recruiting Epiphany: A Tortured Path To Expanding My Perspective And Founding Frederick Fox

Like most agency recruiters, in 2017 I thought I knew everything about recruiting after completing the technical and psychological training made available to me from 2012-2017. I had risen quickly in my recruiting career through hard work and a highly data-based approach; I was a top producer working for the largest publicly traded staffing company in the world. I thought my methods were industry-leading and proprietary but, in reality, they were industry-wide and over-utilized. I was finding the typical volume of candidates, but I was not really providing my clients with optimal human resource solutions.

As a former computer scientist, investment analyst, musician, and introvert I approached the industry differently from most of my more extroverted peers. Instead of attempting to change me or the way my mind programmed information, I decided to accept my analytical personality and began a journey to turn that into a sustainable advantage. I approached recruiting as a data scientist, analyzing the logic inputs of my search strings. I questioned and then re-questioned whether my logic strings matched my logic – and if my logic was even logical. I was limited by my methods, there had to be better answered…

But something happened in mid-2017 that made me take a huge step back and begin to question everything I thought I knew about search logic, data, and recruiting strategies. Six years into the business in 2017, I finally became smart enough to realize that I needed to approach the industry as a rookie again. A recruiting epiphany occurred, I wasn’t really that different from my peers, and yet I needed to be if I was going to truly succeed.

Recognizing my very significant limitations, I began to research what other leaders were doing. I came across a YouTube video by Glen Cathey, SVP of Digital Innovation at K-Force entitled “how to become a LinkedIn Ninja”. Glen’s presentation sent me down a completely new logic stream, causing me to now examine inclusive & exclusive search logic (one of several great takeaways). Thanks, Glen.

In 2018 I started following Dean De Costa (Recruiting Practice Lead at Lockheed Martin) , Bret Feig (US Talent Lead at QuadPay), Mike “Batman” Cohen, Michael Vroman, David Stephen Patterson, and many others in the space that helped me to realize I had still had many universes within recruiting to discover!
I had operated in one universe, in one niche but, in reality, there was a multiverse of niches, platforms, tools, and strategies that I hadn’t yet implemented – let alone understood.
Here are just a few examples of the recruiting industry tools now being used by the most advanced recruiters:

  • Boolean Logic
  • X-Ray
  • Robotic Task Programming
  • Automation & Funnel Series
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Digital Marketing
  • Inbound Lead Generation
  • Deep Web Sourcing
  • Data Scraping & Housing
  • Dean De Costa’s SSAR pages

I spent many frustrating months trying to absorb these. This is what an analytical introvert does, we examine and then re-examine our understandings. It was painful but, based on this entirely new set of tools I was finally confident in founding my own firm. At Frederick Fox we now practice these methods extensively to provide our clients with ‘best-fit solutions”. We found a recipe which was a process. To keep it somewhat distant from our competition’s understanding we trademarked our process as “old-school effort, new-school technologies”. In essence, we discovered a balanced process combining those two spectrums of searching.

It is a never-ending effort to stay current, but the results are often surprising and, to us as search industry “geeks”, they are exciting.
Of course, many recruiters still see the “science side” of recruiting as overly analytical, paralysis through analysis. But this is wrong. As a veteran recruiter, I can confirm that broad application of these newer methods provides an incredibly useful blend of technology, data, sales, psychology, marketing, and sociology. These coalesce into an understandable structure and yield the very best recruiting solutions. Recruiting can be amongst the most complicated and underappreciated problems that a business faces, but through adopting a wholistic, more advanced data-analytical approach the very best solutions are now being found.

These are the tactics, tools, and methods being used by the best in the industry. Leveraging these is in the best interest of your company or agency. It is important as a recruiter and HR professional to stay in touch with where the industry is heading or to take advantage of the expertise others can bring to the table.

Call us at Frederick Fox to learn more.
The author is a veteran recruiter and the founder of Frederick Fox.