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8 skills of highly successful HR recruiters (and how to test them)


Looking for your next highly successful HR recruiter and want to know which skills are most important?

If it’s been a while since you last hired an HR recruiter — or you’ve never hired one before — it’s likely that the recruiting industry has since undergone several shifts, meaning that the typical skills on an HR recruiter’s resume have also changed. 

But you’ve come to the right place — we’ve put together this list of eight must-have HR recruiter skills to give you the grounding you need to find that top HR recruiter. 

Skills to look for in an HR recruiter and how to test them

Better still, we’ll show you how to test each skill to ensure that they have the right knowledge and skills to help you hire the talent you need to achieve your business goals.

skills to look for in an HR recruiter and how to test them

1. Communication skills

HR recruiters are the main link between candidates and your company, but they’re also responsible for communicating and liaising with various other stakeholders. This means giving clear information to candidates and hiring managers, answering candidates’ questions with confidence and clarity, and staying on top of established communication workflows. 

Successful HR recruiters also have great active listening skills to help them gauge candidates, use the right language to encourage candidates to move forward with the hiring process, and understand non-verbal cues. 

How to test communication skills in HR recruiters

HR recruiter candidates may talk the talk, but evaluating their skills is crucial.

TestGorilla’s Communication test poses situational judgment questions (as well as playing audio files) to help you assess candidates on their skills in: 

  • Understanding, using, and interpreting both written and verbal communication 

  • Clarifying next steps, summarizing messages, and using professional communication etiquette

  • Offering empathy and feedback appropriately

2. Attention to detail

HR recruiters communicate with many candidates and other individuals involved in hiring processes. Without attention to detail to candidate attributes and specific role requirements, costly mistakes can occur.

Successful recruiters have a keen eye for detail and can accurately remember important information, such as each candidate’s skills and career experience and whether they’re active or passive candidates. This helps prevent bad hires, reputational damage, and wasted hiring resources. 

How to test attention to detail skills in HR recruiters

With TestGorilla’s Attention to Detail test, you can evaluate candidates’ skills in picking up on textual detail while processing information by asking them to: 

  • Match or filter information

  • Check information consistency

  • Compare statements 

  • Identify errors, omissions, and inconsistencies in information provided

3. Time management

With so many moving parts to manage, successful HR recruiters must have excellent time management skills. They can identify and prioritize tasks and candidates, work well while meeting ever-changing deadlines, and organize their time effectively enough to meet your company’s recruiting objectives. 

How to test time management skills in HR recruiters

Our Time Management test presents candidates with workplace scenarios and evaluates their time management skills by asking them to choose the most efficient method of solving each situation. The test specifically looks at how well they can:

  • Prioritize, plan, execute, and reflect on tasks

  • Separate urgent and important tasks

  • Manage distractions

4. Sourcing skills 

Candidate sourcing is a non-negotiable skill for any HR recruiter. The best HR recruiters have experience in creating recruitment strategies for a wide range of needs, including passive candidate sourcing, strategic sourcing, and sourcing via an Applicant Tracking System. 

Testing sourcing skills often includes evaluating their knowledge of the local recruitment market and how well they develop candidate personas.

How to test sourcing skills in HR recruiters

Our Talent Acquisition test evaluates candidates’ skills in a range of core sourcing competencies to ensure that they have the right knowledge and experience to bring your sourcing strategies to life.

Better still, our Talent Acquisition test is completely free to use when you sign up for a free plan!

5. Recruitment analytics skills

Increasingly, companies are looking for HR recruiters with recruitment analytics skills to help them analyze recruitment data and use it to hire better candidates, lower costs, and identify areas for improvement in pipelines and processes. 

How to test recruitment analytics skills in HR recruiters

To test recruitment analytics skills, you can use our free Talent Acquisition test to evaluate candidates’ skills in assessing your organization’s current and future needs and using data to make recruiting decisions. 

6. Candidate screening skills 

As well as screening resumes, HR recruiters are responsible for considering a range of variables, including checking if candidates have the required qualifications, identifying whether they’d be a good culture add, and judging if they have any attributes that would make them unsuitable for the position.  

How to test candidate screening skills in HR recruiters

To test candidate screening skills, give HR recruiter candidates a mock candidate profile and ask them to assess it against a hypothetical role. Then conduct a mock phone interview to test how well they can elicit the information they need to move a candidate forward or not. 

7. Candidate experience skills 

How well HR recruiters manage the candidate experience is often the difference between whether top candidates choose to move forward in the hiring process or not. 

Great HR recruiters are always looking for ways to improve the candidate experience including the full cycle of communication with candidates, and making end-to-end recruiting processes intuitive and easy to use. 

How to test candidate experience skills in HR recruiters

To test candidate experience skills, role-play a real-life scenario in which the HR recruiter candidate has to: 

  • Manage a job offer and salary negotiation

  • Inform an unsuccessful candidate of a rejection

  • Manage a counteroffer 

  • Provide constructive interview/application feedback

8. Fundamental HR skills 

A great HR recruiter will also possess the fundamental HR skills that make them a great recruiter and an effective overall HR professional. 

From helping to develop, maintain, and execute HR management policies to practicing relationship management skills, fundamental HR abilities round out a great HR recruiter’s core competencies. 

How to test fundamental HR skills

Our HR Fundamentals test evaluates candidates’ knowledge in the fundamental functions of HR, business acumen relating to those HR functions, and their consultation abilities. This test is also completely free to use when you sign up for a free plan! 

TestGorilla helps you achieve your business goals by evaluating must-have HR recruiter skills 

A great HR recruiter is a hugely valuable asset to any company. After all, you’re trusting them to hire the right people to help you achieve your wider business goals. 

Depending on their industry background, each HR recruiter will have a unique set of skills and attributes that make them valuable members of your HR team. Making sure they have the core skills your organization needs to fulfill your goals, however, is crucial. 

TestGorilla’s library of tests makes it easy for you to identify whether your HR recruiter candidates possess these eight must-have skills to help you hire the best candidate every time. 

To get started with TestGorilla, try our free plan today.


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