Recruitment Nightmares: To Sleep, Perchance to Dream…

Dreaming about work. We’ve all done it at one time or another. Sometimes it’s good… Sometimes, it’s very, very bad. That’s why we’ve prepared this blog on Recruitment Nightmares.

So… Here’s our worst nightmare!

Not a picture of the Cactus office. We swear.

8:30am – You arrive at work. Your voicemail is flashing, and your emails are popping up faster than you can read them – not a good start.

9:04am – Your phone rings – that candidate who you’ve pinned all of your hopes on, who you’ve been consulting with for the past three months and who is perfect for your really important role with your super special client (who you spent months persuading to work with you)…is dropping out of the process. Their partner has decided relocation is not an option. 26 minutes before their interview, after four stages of testing, backflipping and jumping through various fire-filled hoops.

It's already too much!

9:29am – You’ve called and called, but you can’t get hold of your client, who’s gone out of their way to meet your perfect – and now absent – candidate for a final cup of “seal the deal” coffee. Presumably they’re waiting – and when they get back to the office, they’re going to be furious. What more could go wrong?

10:00am – Having received a stern talking to from your client, you’re now on the hunt for emergency candidates to fill the void left by your super duper no-show. However, you’ve got a bit of a sinking feeling deep down inside – a candidate you placed, who is due to start on Monday, hasn’t been in touch for a while, and an email you sent them a couple of days ago has gone ignored… Not to mention the two voicemails you’ve left – not a good sign.

Definitely something to lose sleep over...

11:00am – You’ve called your candidate – on every number you can find – to no avail. Plus, your search for fresh candidates isn’t going well – every candidate you find that could be right has already been spoken to about the role, and a few have been sent by an unscrupulous competitor who hasn’t actually told the candidate who the job is with.

This means with every candidate, you’re formatting their CV, preparing their application – and then having to reject them immediately after. Not only this, but your already annoyed client thinks you’re clutching at straws, and sending anyone you can find.

Midday – You get a nice, friendly email from your favourite client, who you’ve got plenty of CVs with for a great role… Which has now been filled internally.


1:00pm – Your phone rings, and it’s another client – this time, one who interviewed one of your candidates yesterday. The interview went well… Except for the fact that the candidate was spotted by another manager on their way out, who holds a grudge – and has told the hiring manager they don’t want your candidate in the business. Needless to say, they’re not being progressed to the next stage.

2:00pm – You’ve just had some lunch (an over-full, difficult to eat sandwich, and a bad cup of coffee) and come back to the office to an email about the assessment centre that’s taking place the day after tomorrow. You’ve got six candidates ready to go…and they’ve changed the venue. To the other side of the city. At a different time. Cue frantic phone calls to each candidate – with the best two not being able to make the new time.

Damn those phone calls!

3:00pm – You have some client follow-ups to make – after all, surely  your luck must be about to change, right? Wrong. Not able to get through to a single person.

4:00pm – You finally get hold of your AWOL placement – and your worst fears are confirmed. They’re dropping out, having been counter offered by their current employer – mere days before they were due to start. Now you need to call your client, break the bad news to them – and find more CVs in an already competitive market.

5:30pm – It’s finally over – you’ve survived. Tomorrow is another day… Right?

Or maybe not...

Next time: Recruitment Fantasies!

Cactus Search is the leading provider of Call and Contact Centre Management candidates to some of the most prestigious companies in the UK and Internationally.

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