How To: Get your recruiter to work for you

A dream recruiter is someone you can trust and who has your interests at heart. They have your back, give you honest and constructive feedback, manage your expectations, look at your skills and know how they can be applied to different type of roles.

“Ha”, you say. “They don’t exist” 

What if I told you that they do exist? They are rare but the good news is that you can cultivate a dream recruiter! 

How? Start by finding one with a bit of talent, a persistent manner, a curious mind and a human heart. 

Then develop a rapport.

  • First, Go Hunting. 
    • Ask family, friends, work colleagues, mentors, clients, someone you respect, for the names of recruitment consultants they have used and would recommend. 
    • Research online and find out who the Top 7 recruitment agencies are in your particular field.
    • Look at the roles they are advertising on both their own website and on various job boards. If they seem to be working a lot of roles this would indicate that they have a decent share of the job market and are therefore more likely to have a range of roles for you to consider.
    • Note down the details of the actual consultant whose name is linked to the roles that interest you.
    • Contact them and ask to meet. They may very well try and fob you off as most recruitment consultants are extremely busy. 
    • Persist however (in a nice way; flattery can open so many closing doors!) and explain you want to move, that the next move is key for your career and that you are keen to make the right choice so an exploratory chat would be very helpful. 
    • When you meet them ask yourself – Do they seem professional? Know their market? Appear to be genuinely interested in you? Generate a sense of trust? – If it’s a YES you have the beginning of a working relationship! Trust your gut instinct. It is often right.
  • Second, Start Gathering.
    • Keep regular contact with your recruiter (say, every 3 weeks) and talk about EVERYTHING! Not just about current vacancies, but also about latest film releases, what you did over the weekend, upcoming holiday plans…..AND…share market insight, This is gold dust for recruiters as it can give them an edge over competitors. Hardly anyone does this and they will remember you for it. 
    • It does go both ways though, so make sure, your recruiter shares their market knowledge too. 
  • Thirdly, Maintain and Reap 
    • They should have a good understanding about what makes you tick. 
    • Keep them on their toes by asking questions regarding specific roles, such as: 
    • Is the role a replacement or a new position? If the former, why did previous person leave? 
    • Are there any internal candidates being considered as well?
    • How well do you know the company? How many agencies are working on this vacancy?
    • What is the background of the hiring manager and their team?
    • There are countless more, but these 4 are a great place to start. 
    • Give them a heads up that you are leaving your current role and all that rapport will cash in…..they will start searching for you and let you know about roles that are not yet even advertised! 

Extra bonus insight: 

  • It never hurts to work with 2-3 good recruiters. Any more and it becomes a headache and you run the risk of saturating the market with your profile.
  • Find your recruiters BEFORE you actually need them and build the rapport early. It will save you a lot of time, effort and heartache when you need it the most.  
CareerVictoria Fellowes