The Reality of Recruiting Part 1

Last week I sent out an open call on Twitter for players who are involved in the process of recruiting for their guilds. Either they’re an officer or a GM or some other person in a position of leadership. I was able to get in touch with a myriad of personalities and guild types. There are numerous post in the WoWosphere about recruiting do’s and don’ts along with various tidbits of advice. The aim of this post is to outline their mentality and thought process when considering applicants.

This is part 1 of 3.

When recruiting, what are common characteristics that you value in players who you consider?

Aggressiveness and enthusiasm are a huge factor in how I perceive an application. I immediately discard applications that offer the bare minimum of responses–yes/no and even the occasional "maybe" to our questions. Even if they’re undergeared or inexperienced, an applicant who goes the extra mile to show us that they can keep up with us via WWS reports, their level of preparedness, or their devotion to theorycrafting has an advantage over a decked-out applicant whose attitude is blasé. One mage we recruited came from a no-name guild on our server, but his DPS was impressive for his gear and he was extremely eager to prove himself to be in our caliber. His application even noted that he had 50 stacks of fish feasts banked for new content–that’s some preparedness and willingness to wipe right there!

– Cerinne, Impulse (Cenarius US)
Blog: Spectrecles

We are looking for people who will stick with us, so we want them to be interested in progression at our casual but serious pace. Personality is important to us, as we want to enjoy one another’s company.  We look to see that someone knows their class and can demonstrate this both through their answers to their application and through their armory.

– Sylly
Blog: Rolling Hots

I like it when people are up front and honest about why they are leaving their current guild and willing to share the name of their current or most recent guild. Completely anonymous applications make me instantly suspicious. I want to know that their guild officers are in the loop about their desire to leave, because that is a pretty clear indication of how they’ll handle things down the road if they want to leave OUR guild.

Other characteristics include: Experience, demonstrated knowledge of their class/spec/role and maturity.

– Seri
Blog: World of Snarkcraft

Being articulate, someone who seems to be a good fit with our raid personality wise, someone who isn’t afraid to research their class in order to improve their abilities. We also do trial runs  in five mans and sometimes bring them to 10/25 mans to see how they do, but in general it’s actual trial time that usually gives us the whole picture, regardless of what we test/try out prior to accepting a trial.

Knowing one’s class and being able to play their character properly (It seems obvious, but then again…).

– Fire

What are some of the expectations that you set for recruits right off the bat?

I expect that within 2 weeks of joining the guild, any player should be able to compete equally with any other member of the raid.  While we do often invite friends of people we have recruited, we don’t want to carry anyone, no matter who they are married to/dating/best-friends with or how hilarious they are in vent.  Other specific expectations include 75% raid attendance, fully gemmed & enchanted gear, being self-sufficient (flasks, food, repair costs without complaining) and DPS above a given threshold; for Ulduar this is 3.3k right now.

We expect that our recruits know more than our raiders.  We also expect good rotations, solid knowledge of all encounters, the gear that they would like in the future, and know how to be kind and courteous to all folks.

– Kitts, Lowered Expectations
Blog: Blood Elf Priestess

That they sign up to our progression raids, come to the raid with appropriate reagents / pots / flasks and 100% repaired. We’ll also try to let them know which bosses we’re going to take on, so ask that they will keep an eye on the guild’s forums for tactics and / or look up the tactics by themselves.  We also use teamspeak and expect them to at least be able to listen in.

– Eid, Dead Poets Society

Pull your weight. If you are a new 80 then we expect you to research your class, know what heroics to run to get geared, do dailies to get rep, get gear enchanted, etc.


Take the initiative. If you don’t know where to find this information ask a senior guild member to help find it. I am a Warlock, but as an admitted forum troll in the guild I know where to send someone if they are looking for the hunter hit cap or where to send a druid looking to dual spec Resto.

– Finnugen, Legacy of the Elite

Do you conduct any sort of background checks on recruits? If so, via what methods?

We don’t really go talk to their former or current guild masters, if that’s what you mean. But I do run a guild history check on the name at Warcraft Realms and WoWProgress to see if the person’s a guild hopper. I also sometimes do a search on the realm forums to see if the recruit is prone to trolling (a no-no). There’s also a question on the app asking if the recruit knows anyone or has played with anyone in the guild. I definitely make a point to ask the people named in those 2 questions. Amory, etc, but I think that’s pretty standard.

– Raesa
Blog: Violaceous Mana

Only if we suspect that there may have been issues in a former guild, or if someone mentions something to the officers about the person. Then we’ll talk to officers in the former guild. Usually, any issues will come to light very quickly, and we can gkick accordingly if necessary, or give them a chance to reform themselves.

– Trilynne, Dawn of Maelstrom

Since our guild has long had a "referral process" and requires vouches from other members and eventually from an officer, the background check usually comes from the people they associate with. If you’re in tight with a bunch of our members and they say you’re alright? Then you’re probably not going to be a bad match for us. However, complete unknowns usually never get in. Someone we’re on the fence about usually sits down and gets asked about what they are looking for in a guild, etc. We also ask prior guild members or ask around the community at large. We’re not a huge server, a history follows you most times.

– Aislinana, Northrend Commonwealth