How to Hire a Materials Handling Systems Purple Squirrel

by Susan Henson
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In the recruiting world, there is an elusive creature called a Purple Squirrel, and every recruiter, at one point in their career has been sent on a quest to find one. This week we are highlighting Michele Beaver, a recruiting industry veteran, and general superstar.

Michele has run in staffing circles for 30 years, and the last 8 years at Amtec. 

According to Michele, “There’s not a recruiting assignment  I can’t touch, I have been doing this for so long. My assignments tend to be HR positions and sales and sales management, especially at the executive level.”

When I asked Michele about a challenging recruiting assignment she considered a purple squirrel hunt, she immediately shared a story about Southwest Toyota Lift Systems and candidate Jeremy Shaw. 

Searching for the Perfect Candidate

The assignment? Find a candidate to fill a Materials Handling Systems Design role. Typically, this job entails designing and developing automated manufacturing and material handling systems to assist with the movement and conveyance of materials, supplies, and products. 

But, says Michele, because she knew her client so well, she targeted her search for someone in the industry with the soft skills that you would find in a sales or consulting position. 

“Along with the technical experience and credentials for this role, the company needed me to deliver a candidate who would fit their culture; someone who could consult, sell and explain to all levels of the company the ‘why’ behind the plan,” said Michele.

Michele said the search took four months, and she interviewed close to 10 candidates before she found Jeremy. In her opinion, Jeremy checked all the boxes the client needed to successfully fill this position. 

The 2021 Purple Squirrel Challenge

“I haven’t had any difficult assignments yet in 2021, but the year is just beginning,” said Michele. With everything that happened in 2020, I’m ready for anything. I’m tenacious and I love the challenge of these difficult candidate searches,” she continued. “It feels so rewarding when I can match a fantastic candidate with a great, stable employer. It’s a win-win.”

If you need to hire a specialized manufacturing candidate,  Amtec can help! We are connected to a vast network of quality engineering candidates and our talented recruiters like Michele Beaver can find and deliver high-quality candidates. 

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