Navigating Change: 5 Steps a Recruitment Manager Should Take When a Key Recruiter Resigns

June 16, 2023

Directions when a recruiter resigns

In the world of recruitment, turnover is an inevitable reality. When a key recruiter resigns, it can be a challenging and potentially disruptive situation. However, as a recruitment manager, it’s crucial to handle such changes with poise and professionalism to ensure continuity and minimize the impact on your team’s performance.  

Here are 5 essential steps that a recruitment manager should take when faced with the resignation of a key recruiter. 

  1. Evaluate the Impact

The first step is to assess the impact of the resignation on your recruitment team and existing workload. Consider the number of open roles the departing recruiter was handling, their importance, and the urgency to fill them. Evaluate the capacity of your remaining team members to absorb the workload, and identify any critical knowledge gaps that need to be addressed. This evaluation will help you understand the scope of the challenge and determine the necessary actions moving forward. 

  1. Conduct an Exit Interview

Schedule an exit interview with the departing recruiter to gain insights into their reasons for leaving. This conversation can provide valuable feedback on any underlying issues within the team or organization. It can also help identify areas for improvement or potential changes in recruitment strategies and recruiter experience. Maintain an open and non-confrontational environment during the interview to encourage honest and constructive feedback. 

  1. Reassign Responsibilities 

Once you have a clear understanding of the departing recruiter’s workload and pending tasks, it’s time to reassign responsibilities. Prioritize critical roles that need immediate attention and distribute them among the remaining recruiters. Ensure a fair and equitable workload distribution, considering each team member’s expertise and bandwidth. Communicate the changes effectively, clearly defining the roles and expectations for each recruiter. 

  1. Bridge the Knowledge Gap

A departing recruiter may possess valuable knowledge about ongoing candidate interactions, hiring processes, and unique strategies. To prevent any disruption, arrange knowledge transfer sessions between the departing and remaining recruiters. Encourage the departing recruiter to document essential information and share best practices, templates, and resources that can facilitate a smooth transition. This knowledge-sharing will help maintain consistency and ensure that valuable insights are not lost. Having a centralised knowledge repository that your recruiters consistently add content to will make this easier and mitigate knowledge flight. 

  1. Review and Refine Recruitment Strategies and Experience

Use the departure of a key recruiter as an opportunity to review and refine your recruitment strategies. Analyse the effectiveness of your current processes and identify areas for improvement. Assess whether any changes are necessary in your sourcing methods, candidate assessment techniques, or interviewing practices. Investigate whether improvements can be made to the recruiter experience across onboarding, recruiter enablement, learning and development, and beyond.  Leverage the collective experience and expertise of your team to explore innovative approaches and implement changes that can enhance overall recruitment performance. 


When a key recruiter resigns, it can create challenges for a recruitment manager. However, by approaching the situation strategically and proactively, a manager can navigate the transition effectively. By evaluating the impact, conducting an exit interview, reassigning responsibilities, bridging the knowledge gap, and reviewing recruitment strategies and experience, a recruitment manager can ensure continuity, maintain team morale, and seize the opportunity for growth and improvement in their recruitment team and function.

Remember, adaptability and resilience are key qualities in managing change within the recruitment function. 

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