Wednesday, August 16, 2006


I'd been meaning to write about the routine of recruiting for a while. One because it will be something of an AAR for myself, and two because it will allow others to see what I'm doing and maybe point me in a good direction. To do this though you good people need to understand the calendar as seen through USAREC's eyes.

The month in recruiting starts around the second week of the calendar month. Basically it's a 15th to the 14th thing. Not always though since the months always end on a Monday and start on a Tuesday. That's true for the weeks as well. The first day any week is Tuesday, and the last is Monday. The first two weeks of the Recruiting Month (RCM) are known as Week 1 (W1) and Week (2). The last two weeks of the RCM are known as T2 and T1.

In a perfect USAREC world a recruiter will find people to join in W1&2 during T2&1. This is a far from perfect world though and, well, you're often forced to take what you can, and put it into the Army when possible.

To be successful a recruiter needs to know from where their contracts come. The two primary sources of recruiter-generated enlistments are telephone (P1) and Face-to-face (P3) prospecting. Although a recruiter is making their life harder if they don't make time to work their COIs and Future Soldiers.

Since the school year has just started, right now my P1 focus is on seniors. There is a method to my madness. It's early in the year. A senior enlisted now, if properly maintained and worked, should be worth another contract or two through a referral during the year. Plus, the station is required to contact certain percentages of their assigned seniors during the year. This kills a couple birds with one stone. However during the school year it's difficult to contact seniors in before the afternoon (and if you did you don't want them anyway since they're likely a drop-out).

The mornings are spent looking for grads and whatever else. I will P1 for grads because, well, it's easy, but most grads are in college or working during the day. When calling I'm hoping to catch the person who's at home leeching off their parents with no job and not in school. Those people are fun because you can usually get a make out of them, and if not you can make fun of them for being an out-of-work loser. Silver lining and all.

Monday, for me, is heavy P1 with P3 thrown in to get me outside. As it says in the book P1 is the most cost effective lead source. In a normal hour I can make about 30 phone calls, contact a handful of people, and maybe make an appointment. All while enjoying a Coke and reading Baseball Prospectus(get a subscription if you don't have one already). All told I expect to come up with an appointment if I do about 2 hours of calls. If I don't have one by 2 and a half hours it's time to pull up stakes and hit the road for some f2f.

For me, F2F prospecting is basically just getting out into the community and waiting for the people to talk to me. It happens often enough. Someone will see me standing in line at QT or Target, strike up a conversation, and I have a name and a number and some pre-qual data. Depending on the "vibe" the person gives me I may or may not count the appointment (by "counting" I mean reporting it to the station commander as an appointment made). If the person doesn't strike me as serious about the appointment I'll hold on to the info and follow up later on the phone when they no-show, or I'll be pleasantly surprised when I have an unexpected appointment show up. That's a good feeling.

The week will be less painful if Monday closes out with 3 made, or two made and a conduct. Hopefully with someone agreeing to test for me as well.

Tuesday marks the official start to a new RCW, as well as the focus shifting from making to conducting appointments. P1 remains my prospecting focus, but I'll try and spend more time out of the office, conducting appointments, or visiting COIs. The goal for close-out is to have added two makes and one conduct to my numbers for the week.

Wednesday is the last day I where I wantprospecting to be the focus of my work (somewhere a 79R just gasped). Although prospecting never stops (ever, ever, ever) you do need to start the actual work of putting someone in boots. Those transcripts, police checks, DD372s don't get themselves you know. Or at least not at the speed needed by the station commander. Perfect week finds me closing Wednesday with one more make, two more conducts, and a tester either completed or scheduled.

Thursday is when I like getting the work done. Going to the high school for the will-grad letter. Running around the valley doing police and court checks. Hanging out with the birth verification dude at Vital Stats. All that leg work that's supposed to magically happen while I'm doing the 60 hours of prospecting that the plan I was required to write two weeks ago says I'm supposed to be doing. Thursday closes with no more makes, maybe a conduct, and a projection for a phys/enlist sometime in the next couple days.

If all goes well Friday is a station day. Follow-up with any no-shows, talk with applicants who aren't ready to commit, spend some time with the other recruiters bitching about how we don't have anyone in the Army. With some more luck my Saturday is free. If not, Saturday is more follow-ups.

Anyway, that's my general plan and thought process. It never survives contact with reality though. When a kid is on the floor I hate to leave the office because when something goes wrong it's easier to start fixing it if I'm in the area. Plus there's always school visits, delays in getting records from Maricopa County, and any of a million other things that happen to ruin my recruiting mojo.

Oh well.

A tic mark was placed next to my name for the GA who enlisted today. I'm no longer the world's worst recruiter. However I'm not the best either since I had two on the floor and the other got DQ'd. Damnit.


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