Six Soft Skills Recruiters Need

Michaela Coll
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Working in a job that requires a lot of human interaction creates a need for soft skills. Soft skills help with communication, developing those important interpersonal connections, and just being the best recruiter you can be. Here are some soft skills recruiters should have to be successful:

1. Active listening. A great deal of the job is listening to people. Whether it’s listening to candidates in interviews or management relaying the type of role they’re opening, or even just communicating amongst each other, you need to be able to listen well. Active listening will reflect nicely on your company, as well, because candidates will feel they were listened to and had a better experience for it. Internally, your team will know they can rely on you to hear any concerns or needs of the department or company, and for you to do what you can to meet those demands. 

2. Curiosity. Much of a recruiter’s job is asking people questions. While there may be a set number of questions you need to ask an interviewee, a lot of great questions occur during the interview as you listen to a candidate’s response and ask follow up inquiries based on what they’re telling you. Having a curious mind keeps you interested and ready to ask those on-the-spot questions that can help you learn so much more about a person you might not have otherwise known. 

3. Confidence. Having confidence in yourself is key. People ask recruiters a lot of questions and expect them to know a great deal about the company and what’s going on with it. Knowing your business and being confident as a representative of the company is important. It will also create trust in you and the business you represent. 

4. Patience. Any job that requires you to deal with people often requires patience, but even more so with recruiters. You have to be understanding of other people’s situations, prior work experiences, and also work around their schedules to set aside a time that works for them and you. 

5. Time management. Being able to manage your time as a recruiter will help you be successful in a number of ways. Scheduling interviews that meet internal deadlines of when the company is looking to hire someone new, making phone calls, and setting up interviews between candidate’s and other parts of the hiring team will all run smoothly with this skill.  

6. Noticing non-verbal cues. During interviews, there’s a lot a person can tell you just by their body language. If they’re anxious, they may be fidgeting. If someone’s lying, they may break eye contact with you, or their tone of voice might change. These are all indicator’s that can affect how you continue to interact with this individual. Maybe someone is nervous because they really want the job, and so the patience you’ve developed will come in handy here. If someone is lying to you, your curiosity will likely be piqued to ask follow-up questions that can give you a better sense of who you’re dealing with, which will all help in making the final decision of who you want to hire. This soft skill will take you far in getting to know people beyond what they’re telling you about themselves. 

These are just some soft skills that will guarantee a higher quality of performance within your job as a recruiter. Many of these skills make the job easier, as you can deal with people a lot better which will improve the relationships you have with those individuals.


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