Qualifying the Job Order: 4 Important Components

In my previous blog post, I presented four components that recruiters can use for qualifying their job orders more thoroughly. However, I did not go into much detail. That’s because I’m going into that detail NOW! (There’s a reason for everything, of course.)

As I mentioned, the four components are urgency, a set timetable for the process, a firm commitment, and clear expectations.  My breakdown of those four is below:


You can determine if there’s urgency tied to the job order rather easily.  If you ask the hiring manager when they would like to schedule interviews, and they answer, “ASAP,” that is not a reflection of urgency.  As you will see, when you agree on a set timetable, which is the second important component, you’re actually verifying that there’s urgency tied to this search.  Remember, vagueness and generalities are your enemies.  They allow the hiring manager room to wiggle down the road, when they inexplicably invoke their unspoken “right to change the contents of this job order.”

There are two important pieces of information you’ll need in order to gauge the level of urgency involved.  First, you need to know the dates and times of initial interviews, and then you need to know the deadline for filling the position.  Once again, nothing vague will do.  We’re talking about actual dates, such as “We need somebody in here by the last day of the month, at the very latest.”  Ah—now that sounds urgent.

#2—Set timetable for the process

Now that you have dates for both the initial interviews and a date for filling the position, you can fill in everything in between . . . presentation of candidates, second interviews, third interviews, the offer period, acceptance, and even on-boarding.  There’s an added benefit to doing this, as well.  If you’re dealing with a new hiring manager or one who’s not as savvy about what the hiring process entails, this is a great opportunity to educate them about its intricacies and the investment of time and energy involved.  After all, if you’re going to receive a placement check at the end of this search, it would nice if the hiring manager understood the amount of work you completed in order for you to earn that fee.  The hiring manager’s willingness to agree to this timetable is beneficial in two other ways, as well, which are the third and fourth components.

#3—Firm commitment

The hiring manager’s willingness to agree to a set timetable for the search process indicates a commitment on their part, and that’s arguably the most important component for qualifying the job order.  After all, you can have urgency for a search without being committed to the process for filling that search.  Or, to put it another way, the hiring manager can attach urgency to the search without making a commitment to your process for filling it.  What’s to stop them from hanging up with you, picking up the phone again, and calling another recruiter?  Nothing, which is why a commitment is important.

#4—Clear expectations

A set timetable also paves the way for clear expectations.  If the hiring manager agrees to interviews occurring at a certain time and on certain dates, they can logically believe that you’re going to expect for those things to happen on the times and dates specified.  What’s even more crucial, though, is that they believe you’re going to hold them accountable for those expectations.

That’s why some hiring managers like to be vague and fuzzy when it comes to the specifics of the job order and the search.  If they’re able to speak in generalities, then they can’t be held accountable for much, if anything.  If they say something later in the process that contradicts the expectations that were set at the beginning, then you can remind them of those expectations.  More importantly, you’ll be better able to enforce those expectations and make sure that those expectations are met in full.

In my next blog post, I’ll discuss why qualifying the job orders at the start of the search process with these four components is only the beginning.