How the Coordination Team Keeps Recruitment Flowing
Recruitment coordinators keep our hiring process running smoothly. Applicants’ first point of contact, it’s their job to support candidates, keep lines of communication open, facilitate interviews – and much more besides.
Led by Dana Biesterfeld, Recruitment Coordination Team Lead, our busy coordinators are an integral part of GetYourGuide’s Talent Acquisition department. Acting as an all-important liaison between candidates and hiring managers, they’re the first point of contact for individuals seeking to join the company. From juggling schedules through to understanding what makes people tick, the role is as varied as it is rewarding. Here, the team took time out to give a behind-the-scenes glimpse into their day-to-day, and share what really goes on in recruitment coordination.
When people think of Recruitment Coordination they think of scheduling interviews and answering applicants’ questions. But what else does the role involve, and how would you describe its function?
Tamara Khamis Al Gunaid: The Recruiting Coordinator role entails the management and support of candidates throughout their hiring process. It facilitates the function of the Talent Acquisition team and allows the different stakeholders to focus on hiring great candidates while coordinators take care of the experience! Coordinators are a point of contact between all stakeholders in the interview process.
Meury Pontes: As coordinators, we are the first point of contact that candidates have with the company. As we all know, first impressions are very important, and providing a smooth and pleasant candidate experience is paramount.
Jack Andrews: Our role is also to be an advocate for the candidate within GetYourGuide. After all, candidates need a voice for the parts of the process.
Dana Biesterfeld: It: might sound quite straightforward, but it requires a very high level of organization and prioritization, as well as the ability to work on several things at the same time.
Working across so many different departments and locations isn’t straightforward. What would you say are our biggest challenges as coordinators?
Akanksha Gudiseva: My biggest challenge has been catering to different personalities. Everyone is different and has particular needs. It takes time to understand how each person works, but once I’m comfortable with the communication all the scheduling becomes easier. We have many touch points during the whole process and knowing how to prioritize is very important.
Ifie Onyema: One of the most common challenges is finding the most suitable time for all parties involved in scheduling the best time for an interview. Managing multiple calendars and time zones can be difficult.
DB: It’s like a puzzle: once you find a slot that works for both candidate and interviewer you feel like you’ve put the last piece into that puzzle. It’s a great feeling!
IO: Another challenge I see as a coordinator is last-minute cancellations or reschedules. To be a master in this is to have the ability to stay calm in the chaos.
JA: The key is to prepare as much as you can but be ready and organized enough to let go and allow a process to play out – and then be ready to pick up again and adapt if need be.
On the flip side, can you share the best parts of the job? What do you find most rewarding?
MP: We’ve all been there: finding the right job is a stressful process for everyone. If I can help someone to have a more enjoyable and pleasant journey through this stressful process it really brings me joy. Receiving thank you emails from candidates grateful for my support during the process – even from those who haven't been hired – really makes my day.
TKAG: Yes – kind candidates who reply back with a thank you definitely make coordinators feel appreciated!
AG: It is always nice to be acknowledged when the interview experience is good for the candidate. It also makes me feel more motivated to keep doing what we are doing.
IO: I enjoy helping hiring managers find suitable candidates for the role. Being part of a candidate's journey towards becoming a team member, then eventually meeting them in person and seeing their smile, and hearing how much they appreciated the support is very rewarding.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to become a recruitment coordinator?
Nabila Jamal Rusha: Organize, organize, organize! Organization is one of the most important skills that a recruitment coordinator needs because it helps you keep track of your work. Another important factor is good communication skills. The better you are at communicating, the better your relationship with colleagues and potential candidates. And it is important to remember that you are literally giving candidates the first glance at the company they are applying to. As good candidate experience is key, the first impression needs to be top-notch.
IO: In addition to being a talent brand ambassador and partner in candidate experience, I would say be patient and confident in dealing with tough situations. Multitasking and prioritizing are a plus as things are constantly changing. Don’t get overwhelmed, and always anticipate that things might change at the last minute meaning you will need to proactively come up with solutions.
DB: My advice would be to stay organized and resilient! Recruiting is a fast-paced environment and things are constantly changing so you have to stay on top of things and also learn to roll with the changes. There is definitely never a dull moment and I personally love that about talent acquisition!
JA: Patience and tolerance are key. There are many frustrations that can present themselves working with lots of different people from different cultures and communication styles. Keep yourself consistent, but be adaptable if need be. Take the time to get to know the people you are working with, and remember for the hundredth problem you see in one day, it could be the first for the other party. I think anyone that has customer-facing experience could learn to apply those skills within the role of coordinator.
Cast your mind back to when you first started in the role: what did you find the most surprising part of your job?
TKAG: Still being new to Talent Acquisition, I think what surprised me the most in the recruiting process was how much team effort it takes to hire one candidate. When candidates apply they are oblivious to how many people have coordinated their time and energy in delivering an exceptional hiring experience. I really enjoy seeing that offer letter go out right at the end!
N: When I first joined, I thought all I will have to do is schedule and coordinate interviews. What I did not know or understand is how much you get involved in a process or in the roles that are open. You get to know so much about the roles you are working on. You get to know teams that are in completely different fields than you. The amount of information and insights I have gained as a coordinator is absolutely surprising and humbling.
MP: The most surprising part for me is the detail aspect, and how many people are involved in an interview process. It makes calendar management a skill in itself! I've learned so much about the hiring process and why every step is necessary. As a former candidate myself it's interesting to see the behind-the-scenes, and how things operate the way they do.
Finally, what keeps the recruitment coordination team so strong? What do you consider essential qualities for a great team?
JA: One of the employee values we have is trust and this feeds through in all we do as a team. We have to trust each other: when things go wrong we have to trust that things were done with the best intentions and be open to learning from each other and our past mistakes. We need to have trust when it comes down to leaving things up to others and allowing our teammates, who may have different ways of working and different experiences, to get on and get the job done in their own way. We also have to trust that we can approach each other in a candid and open way as we are all on the same side.
AG: When you are dealing with multiple personalities, it is always good to have an open mindset. When you have trust, open communication, and support, the result is always a positive environment.
N: For me it’s communication and support. Knowing that your team is always there to help you when needed and support you and your process is a very comforting thought. Motivation is another important factor: because no one other than the team knows what you are doing, acknowledgment and kind words go a long way.
IO: I would also say support. Knowing you have a team you can count on increases the motivation to go above and beyond.
Thank you to the Recruitment Coordination team for their input: Dana Biesterfeld, Akanksha Gudiseva, Meury Pontes, Nabila Jamal Rusha, Ifie Onyema, Jack Andrews, and Tamara Khamis Al Gunaid.
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