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Lead Recruiter Job Description
  • Publish: April 2, 2021
  • Author: StrongerTeams Editorial
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Lead Recruiter Job Description

A Lead Recruiter assists organizations in recruiting new staff by finding talent, sifting applicants, and managing the selection process.

Lead Recruiters are typically experienced and will be entrusted with more complex or higher-level recruitment projects. They may also work with organizations to determine hiring needs and develop a hiring plan.

A Lead Recruiter may work as an independent supplier, be part of a recruitment agency, or work within a larger organization.

Similar Job Titles:

Recruiter, Senior Recruiter, Junior Recruiter, Healthcare Recruiter, Executive Recruiter, Entry Level Recruiter, Corporate Recruiter, Technical Recruiter, Sales Recruiter

What Does a Lead Recruiter Typically Do?

A Lead Recruiter delivers on an organization’s hiring plan by finding candidates for open positions proactively or reactively.

A Lead Recruiter’s job consists of:

  1. Agreeing on a recruitment mandate with the organization
  2. Searching for and approaching suitable candidates
  3. Running job ads to attract applicants
  4. Managing the interview, assessment, and shortlisting processes
  5. Maintaining a lead database
  6. Coaching and mentoring junior Recruiters
  7. Selling and marketing

Agreeing on a Recruitment Plan With the Organization

The organization’s Hiring Manager and HR department work together with a Lead Recruiter to identify job vacancies, draw up job profiles and job descriptions, and understand the kind of personality required to perform well in the organization. 

Once the requirements have been fully understood, the Lead Recruiter will research the market and propose timelines for the recruitment process. The organization and the Lead Recruiter will finally agree on a mandate for the Lead Recruiter to begin recruitment. 

Successful Lead Recruiters will have enough knowledge of and insight into the organization to be able to offer valuable advice and support in the development of a recruitment plan and will be regarded as a prized consultative resource.

Searching for and Approaching Suitable Candidates

A Lead Recruiter may approach suitable candidates for higher-level positions. The building of a strong network of contacts for open positions made up of candidates placed in the past, job seekers, and leads passed on to the Lead Recruiter, is paramount.

With the agreement of the hiring organization, the network can be approached anonymously to determine whether any of the contacts would be interested in the open position. 

Discretion and probity are required to maintain the anonymity of the hiring organization until a contact displays genuine interest.

Running Job Ads To Attract Applicants

A Lead Recruiter develops, places, and tracks job ads on relevant media to attract applicants to open positions. The hiring organization may provide the wording for job postings, but in many cases, the Lead Recruiter will be entrusted with creating the ad copy. 

The ads must attract the right applicants, focusing on both the quantity and quality of the candidates. A Lead Recruiter should also have the skill to ensure that the job ads are media-friendly, stand out, and generate hits.

Managing the Interview, Assessment, and Shortlisting Processes

Expertise in interviewing, assessment, and selection processes are key to a Lead Recruiter’s success. The hiring organization may require direct input into the assessment and selection processes and may even provide assessment material, such as case studies, preferred psychometric tests, etc. 

Experienced Lead Recruiters will have their trusted methodologies to sift out the best candidates from the generated applications. The hiring organization’s relationship with and trust in a Lead Recruiter will determine the autonomy with which a Lead Recruiter is allowed to operate.

Once interviewed, assessed, and selected, the Lead Recruiter will prepare a shortlist of strong candidates for the hiring organization. A Lead Recruiter still retains control of the process and is responsible for arranging all subsequent interviews, updating the candidates, and managing the information flow between candidates and the hiring organization.

Maintaining a Lead Database

An active and extensive database of leads is essential to secure future mandates. The leads will be made up of former placements (successful hires), interviewees who have impressed, and contacts made through networking activities. 

A Lead Recruiter must work to maintain and grow the lead database and should devote time and effort to keeping in touch with contacts.

Coaching and Mentoring Junior Recruiters

Agency-based Lead Recruiters may have to coach and mentor more junior or entry-level Recruiters. A Lead Recruiter will often possess many years of experience and should be prepared to help up-and-coming Recruiters with training in both hard and soft skills.

Selling and Marketing

Lead Recruiters who work as independent suppliers or in an agency need to market and sell their services constantly. Successful Lead Recruiters must use well-honed time management skills to make sure the sales pipeline is constantly being filled with new business. They must network, advertise, cold-call, use contacts to generate new clients, hunt for mandates, and close new business.

Roles a Lead Recruiter Typically Collaborates With

A Lead Recruiter works closely with the following roles:

Collaborative Roles
HR ManagerHuman Resources ExecutiveCompensation and Benefits Manager
Benefits ManagerSenior HR SpecialistHR Coordinator
Hiring ManagerCorporate RecruiterRecruiting Consultant

Lead Recruiter Salary

On average, a Lead Recruiter can typically expect to earn between $64,000 and $81,000 annually in the U.S. The median is around $68,405.

What Is the Lead Recruiter Pay Difference by Location?

A Lead Recruiter’s average salary will differ by location as follows:

CityAverage Salary
Washington, D.C.$76,148
San Francisco, CA$85,506
Denver, CO$69,178
Boston, MA$77,072
Seattle, WA$74,794
Milwaukee, WI$67,699
Austin, TX$67,276
New York, NY$82,291

What Is the Lead Recruiter Pay Difference by Experience Level?

Depending on experience, the salary of a Lead Recruiter will vary as follows:

Experience LevelAverage Salary
< 1 year$66,934
1–4 years$67,402
5–9 years$69,749
10–19 years$73,207
20+ years$74,744

Lead Recruiter Job Description Template

[Company] is a leader in the recruitment field, and we are looking to strengthen our team by hiring a dynamic, experienced, and professional Lead Recruiter.

We are looking for someone with a proven track record of placing top candidates with blue-chip companies, maintaining and growing client relationships, and sourcing high-performing applicants for senior positions.

You will join a team of junior and senior Recruiters and will be expected to support less experienced colleagues in their development.

Lead Recruiter Responsibilities

  • Managing, consolidating, and growing your client base
  • Negotiating and agreeing on hiring plans with your clients
  • Running push-and-pull recruitment processes
  • Managing interviews, assessments, and shortlist selection
  • Coaching and mentoring junior team members
  • Assisting with [Company]’s marketing efforts

Required Skill Set

You need to possess the following qualifications, skills, and behaviors:

  • Bachelor’s degree in HR, Recruitment, or similar
  • At least five years’ experience in a recruitment role
  • Expert knowledge of all interview, assessment, and selection techniques
  • Expert knowledge of HR databases and applicant tracking systems
  • Vast experience with common HRIS (Human Resources Information Systems)
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Strong decision-making ability
  • Vast coaching experience
  • Proven ability to meet deadlines and work under pressure

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