Hiring Manager vs. Recruiter: Main Differences

July 25, 2023
Hady ElHady
Hiring Manager vs. Recruiter: Main Differences

Let's dive into what makes hiring managers and recruiters different - their roles, duties, and expertise. Whether you are a company owner, hiring manager, or recruiter yourself, understanding the key differences can give you the confidence to move through the recruitment process smoothly. And in case you are looking to boost your hiring process, HiPeople Assessment and Reference Checks features are always here to help!

What is the Role of a Hiring Manager ?

Hiring Managers play a significant role in any company. They are in charge of bringing on new staff and making sure they're the perfect fit. As internal stakeholders of the company, hiring managers have an insider's understanding of the company's objectives, culture, and hiring requirements. This helps them collaborate with various other stakeholders, such as recruiters, to find and bring in the right people who share the organization's vision.

Hiring managers assess potential hires based on their abilities and qualifications and on how well they'd fit in with the company culture and values. Further, their role isn't limited only to the hiring process. They take it further by defining job roles, coming up with a selection process, evaluating cultural suitability, and ultimately making the final decision on who to hire.

Hiring Manager Key Responsibilities

  1. They Define Job Responsibilities: Hiring managers collaborate with the appropriate teams and people involved in hiring to create job descriptions outlining the necessary qualifications, skills, and background needed for the job.
  2. Assessing Cultural Fit: Hiring managers determine how well a candidate will fit in with the company's culture, values, and mission.
  3. Designing the Selection Process: Hiring managers design a successful selection process, like going through resumes, deciding the round of interviews, and assessing a candidate's suitability for the job.
  4. Making the Hiring Decision: In the end, the hiring manager has the authority and the final say in choosing the right candidate and offering them the job.

What is the Role of a Recruiter?

Just like hiring managers, recruiters also play a vital role in hiring. Recruiters specialize in talent acquisition. They use their knowledge, experience, and skills to locate and draw in potential candidates. Recruiters can be either internal employees who work within an organization's HR department. Or they can be external professionals who represent a recruitment agency.

Recruiters use multiple hiring methods, like job boards, social media, networking events, and their own contacts, to help organizations find the perfect fit. They work hard to build connections, find the ideal candidates, and match them with great job openings.

Recruiter Key Responsibilities

  1. Screening the Candidates: Recruiters have the responsibility of reviewing the resumes of multiple candidates. They also perform initial interviews with potential candidates and evaluate a candidate's abilities, qualifications, and suitability for the job.
  2. Building a Pipeline of Talented Candidates: Recruiters are always looking to connect with potential candidates, establishing relationships and a list of qualified people for any future job opportunities.
  3. Collaborating with Hiring Managers: Recruiters usually work closely with the hiring managers of an organization. Recruiters are responsible for understanding the hiring needs of the managers, keeping them updated on the candidate pool, and helping to select the best person for the job.

Hiring Manager vs. Recruiter: Top Differences

Now that we have discussed the basics of hiring managers and recruiters, let's talk about the main differences between the two of them:

1. Focus and Perspective

  • Hiring Manager: Hiring managers have an internal perspective. They zero in on the company's needs, find the right people for the job and ensure they fit the organization's objectives and values.
  • Recruiter: On the other hand, recruiters have an external perspective. They focus on attracting candidates from a broad talent pool.  They use their skills to source the right individuals and foster relationships with potential candidates.

2. Skills and Expertise

  • Hiring Manager: Hiring managers have the expertise and a deep understanding of their company's culture, goals, and requirements for the job role.
  • Recruiter: Recruiters are highly skilled in finding the best candidates, screening them, and building connections. They are professionally trained and possess expertise in talent acquisition, analyzing the job market, and keeping up with the latest hiring trends.

3. Engagement Level

  • Hiring Manager: Hiring managers are really invested in the hiring process. They spend time with a limited number of selected candidates. They take a hands-on approach, getting involved in interviews, checking out candidates, and judging whether they'd do well in the company.
  • Recruiter: Recruiters engage with a higher number of candidates than hiring managers throughout the process. They're responsible for conducting initial screenings, managing applicant tracking systems, and organizing the logistics. All of this lets them handle a large number of candidates at once.

4. Role in the Hiring Process

  • Hiring Manager: Hiring managers are the key players in the recruitment process. They work with recruiters to establish job specifications, ask all the right questions during interviews, and make the final call on who gets the job.
  • Recruiter: Just like hiring managers, recruiters also play a vital role in the hiring process. However, their role is different from that of hiring managers. Recruiters source and screen candidates, manage talent pipelines and support the hiring manager throughout the recruitment process.

4. Type of Relationship With the Candidates

  • Hiring Manager: Once the hiring manager has made their selection, they'll be building a direct working relationship with the chosen candidate. This relationship goes beyond the hiring process. Hiring managers are responsible for getting the new employee settled in, teaching them the ropes, and monitoring their progress. It's all part of the job!
  • Recruiter: Recruiters form connections with potential hires throughout the recruitment process, even if they don't get the role. They can leverage these relationships for future job opportunities or even for referrals.

5. Responsibilities Handled by Them

  • Hiring Manager: Apart from handling the hiring and recruitment process, hiring managers have other responsibilities like overseeing team performance, setting goals, and driving strategic initiatives. They have limited time to conduct interviews and evaluate candidates.
  • Recruiter: Recruiters have the primary responsibility of talent acquisition. They spend a lot of their time sourcing potential candidates, conducting screenings, and managing the recruitment process. Their goal is to find and bring in the best candidates as quickly and efficiently as possible.

How to Find a Hiring Manager?

Now that you know the key differences between a hiring manager and a recruiter, are you ready to hire them? If yes, here are some of the best practices you should know about while choosing a hiring manager for your company:

1. Know the Needs and Expectations of Your Company

Before you start looking for a hiring manager, it's important to determine what your organization needs and expects from the hiring manager. Consider the size of your organization, the industry you're in, and the specific tasks the hiring manager will have to handle. Analyzing these details beforehand will help you find a candidate who fits your requirements perfectly.

2. Prioritize the Candidate's Expertise and Experience

When you're looking to hire a hiring manager, it's essential to prioritize candidates with experience and expertise in talent acquisition and recruitment. Aim for professionals who have a successful history of managing the recruitment process, bringing in top talent, and creating effective hiring strategies. Having experience in your industry or similar organizations can also be beneficial, as it can provide insight into the hiring hurdles and current trends.

3. Evaluate Their Problem-Solving Skills

When looking for a hiring manager for your company, make sure to evaluate the candidate's problem-solving and decision-making skills. For this, you can ask them questions that make them describe situations they've been in and how they handled them. Look for someone who can think clearly, adjust to new surroundings, and make sound choices based on facts and understanding.

4. Make Sure They Have Good Leadership Skills

The hiring manager often works in tandem with the hiring team and can even have direct reports. When looking at potential candidates, it's important to assess their leadership and team management abilities to ensure they can effectively motivate and inspire their teams. Look out for someone who can offer constructive feedback, give team members a push, encourage cooperation, and boost productivity. Strong leadership skills will help create a positive workspace and make the hiring process successful.

How to Find a Recruiter?

If you are in the process of finding a recruiter for your company, ensure to follow these best practices:

1. Look for Professionals With Relevant Industry Knowledge

When it comes to hiring a recruiter for your organization, it's important to consider the areas of specialization you need. It might be helpful to hire a professional who has expertise in the industry and job roles you're usually looking to fill. Make sure they have an understanding of the skills needed and can help you find the best people for the job.

2. Prioritize Professionals With Technical Know-How

Recruitment is becoming increasingly tech-focused, so it's important to ensure the recruiter you hire has the necessary technological know-how. Make sure the candidate is familiar with applicant tracking systems and data analytics tools and is adept at using social media and online platforms to engage with potential candidates.

3. Networking Skills is Important

Successful recruiters are great relationship-builders and networkers. When assessing a recruiter, it's essential to see if they have good interpersonal skills, active listening abilities, and the ability to build rapport. Hiring a professional with solid networking skills will ensure they can find great candidates for your company and keep great relationships with your hiring team.

4. Prioritize Time Management Skills

Recruiters have to juggle multiple job openings, tight deadlines, and so much more. To ensure they can be successful in this role, it's important to assess candidates' time management and organizational skills. Are they able to prioritize tasks, manage their workload efficiently, and work under pressure? Look for individuals who are able to multitask, pay attention to detail, and still deliver quality results even when the pressure is on.


Gaining insight into the differences between hiring managers and recruiters can help organizations get the most out of their recruiting strategies, draw in top-notch candidates, and create winning teams.

Both of these professionals bring their own special knowledge and viewpoint to the table, which ultimately helps make the recruitment process more streamlined and successful. It is essential to work closely with both of these professionals to ensure that you can hire the most qualified professional for the job in your company.  

At HiPeople, we understand the importance of the hiring and recruitment process for your organization's long-term success and growth. To make your hiring process quicker and more effective, use HiPeople's top-notch Assessments!