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Dear Workforce How Do I Lure Top Loan Officers to My Mortgage Company, Especially Since We Have No Recruiting Budget

I am the recruiting department in a fast-growing mortgage company. My company does not have a budget for my department. The only tool for recruiting allowed to me at this time is the phone book to cold call other mortgage companies and try to recruit seasoned loan officers. I am very uncomfortable with this situation. I have not found this type of recruiting to be effective. How do I get across this hurdle?
February 8, 2007
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Related Topics: Candidate Sourcing, Dear Workforce
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Dear Stressed-out:

Justifying a recruiting budget can be a difficult thing to do, especially if one has never before existed (and particularly when the company culture is not supportive). Unfortunately, recruiting is an extremely dynamic function and very dependent on industry, skill set, discipline, the company's image and so on. There are no silver bullets.
The most important data you can use to justify alternatives relates to your current methods being ineffective, causing an unfavorable impact on the business. How long is it taking to fill positions and what is the relative cost of vacancies? If you are short-staffed on loan officers, what impact does this have on revenue?
By calculating the average revenue generated per loan officer, you can determine the average cost for each day the position remains vacant. Very narrow and limited investments in recruiting sometimes create a quality-of-hire issue. What impacts are there when you hire a bad loan officer?
Another cost that tends to go up when internal recruiting processes are ineffective is agency fees--and these payments can get buried in department budgets. The bottom line: You will need to identify, document and demonstrate the costs to your company of not investing more broadly in recruiting practices.
You can use this information to create a business case for a recruiting budget. Just be sure to use conservative estimates to keep it realistic. However, before making a case for recruiting practices with which you are more comfortable, first examine the
behavior of the talent you are trying to attract.
Do applicants respond to advertisements online or in the newspaper? Do they read The Wall Street Journal? Would they accept an invitation to an open house or networking
event? Are they more inclined to listen to friends and colleagues? Do they attend conferences or trade shows? Do they expect to be contacted by, and welcome calls from, headhunters?
It will be very important to know which specific types of recruiting will be effective with the target audience as you make your business case. If direct sourcing and cold calling is the most effective source, you will want to budget accordingly, or perhaps add sourcing specialists to handle cold calling.
To help round out your case, you may also want to do some benchmarking with other mortgage companies to find out which recruiting methods they use. If you take an objective approach and build a realistic and practical business justification, you should be able to get your budget. If management still won't listen, perhaps it's time to move on.
SOURCE: Ed Newman, the Newman Group, Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, April 19, 2006.
LEARN MORE: Please read how to ramp up hiring in tight labor markets.
The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.

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