HR and Unscrupulous messages
As an HR Advisor I meet many people – the hopeful candidates, the HR heads looking for the right people or OD interventions, the recruiters helping them out – it is a symbiotic relationship where people find value and often get paid for matching a candidate with a requirement. The HR industry is based on a lot of faith and credibility; it is the bridge connecting the talent to the need and often keeps the engine of companies running smoothly.
I am a proud and grateful part of this bridge and so when certain activities were brought to my attention, it saddened me greatly. After the incidents had transpired and I along with some of my distinguished colleagues set out to resolve it, we decided to write about our experiences so it may be learning for all dealing with the HR and its various sources and vendors.
There are many kinds of recruiters in the market and everyone has more or less a similar model of working, they often get the requirement from companies, source the right candidates, and get paid if their wards are placed within the company.
HR heads of companies are willing for this kind of set up because it allows them to then prepare for the interviews without having to source the candidates, and once a relationship has been set between the recruiter and the head, the candidates are often well matched to the requirements. This industry is all about understanding who one is working with and once a connection has been established it is easier to work hand in glove. I myself have been in this industry for over 25 years, and have made professional connects that have become lasting relationships based on trust and mutual respect for each other’s work. That is why when we came to know of certain practices followed by some mutual acquaintances, we were disheartened and quite angry, frankly.
We stumbled across some candidates who told us that they had paid money to people who had promised them jobs but nothing had materialised for them, others told us that they had been interviewed but never heard from the companies again and on an enquiry was told they were not a right fit. These were people who had families, responsibilities, and money issues and they were being fleeced because someone was aware that they were desperate for a job. These ‘recruiters’ are in cahoots with some HR people in order to show credibility. They take the money from the candidate, set up an ‘interview’ for a requirement that probably does not exist and then give the feedback that they weren’t selected due to some compatibility issues. They keep the candidate dangling with false assurances that they will find more jobs but often nothing materialises. This disheartening news is often followed by the realisation that their money will not be returned since they have been ‘given service’.
As an HR consultant, I have often heard many stories about how this industry is perceived – the good, the bad and the ugly- but this was the kind of unethical turn that I could not abide by. So we formed a small group and decided to figure out how these so-called recruiters were pushing themselves in the market. It turns out that they would often create a social media presence using mutual acquaintances so that they would seem well connected and powerful. Then whenever they would find certain job postings by the HRs of various companies, they would change the email address to theirs and become the single point of contact. When interested candidates applied to them, they would often take the money and then send them over to the HR people to build relationships. Some of the HR managers we talked to were completely unaware of this practice, but we did uncover some who were involved in these practices on a commission basis. As unacceptable it was that there were recruiters cheating candidates, it was further a shock that there were some HR managers who were a part of this sham.
Having been a recruiter, candidate, and HR manager myself, I appeal everyone out there to help put a stop to these unethical practices. I myself sat down with one such person and talked to him about his business model. While that chat was one to politely tell him about being found out and tried for fraud of he continues, there are others who carry on, unabashedly doing the same. We managed to stop a few people as we uncovered the names of one’s involved – but we would like this to be a warning. The HR community is extremely strong and well connected and while it is an amicable well-oiled machine, we will not suffer our scruples being trampled upon. This is an industry which deals with Human Resources, and often people forget about the ‘human’ aspect of it and end up earning money through less than respectable means.
This is unacceptable to us – we work extremely hard to build relationships and we cannot stand for any means by which these relationships are sullied.
Come forward and tell us your stories and we will make sure we help you to the best of our abilities. These unscrupulous elements must not be encouraged in our community and we need to be vigilant and discouraging towards such practices.