As a career coach and former recruiter, my clients, who are job seekers, tell me that what they enjoy most about working with me is that they feel valued, and their skills and knowledge validated when we work together. My number on priority is to be there for my clients and to help them to be at their best for the next step in their career.
However, I’ve noticed a common complaint when job seekers work with recruiters. It’s to do with it what makes them feel valued during the application and selection process, and what frustrates them most when working with a recruiter.
One of the biggest frustrations that my career transition clients share with me is that many recruiters don’t answer their calls, and don’t follow up after an application has been submitted, nor provide support and feedback after a job interview.
Job seekers therefore don’t feel valued, and often the lack of communication from their recruiter makes them feel rejected during a time that is already quite stressful as they are in-between jobs. That lack of communication makes them wonder if they will ever get another job.
I know that most recruitment consultants are under the pump and don’t have time to spend on the phone with each and every candidate but that’s no excuse. A candidate is a potential future client so each and every candidate must be treated with equal respect and care. There are some excellent recruiters out there (and reach out to me if you want to know who they are!) but there are many who are very transactional.
As a recruiter, the job is full on and often there just aren’t enough hours in the day. Of course, KPI’s are important as targets must be met, calls (warm and cold) to potential customers must be made, screening calls for candidates, interviews, and placements must be made per week. There are multiple priorities screaming for attention at any given time.
That is still no excuse for not giving each and every candidate the timely communication they deserve.
For all recruiters, relationships matter – of course you develop strong relationships with your customers – don’t forget that candidate relationships matter too.
What Top Recruitment Consultants Must Do:
- Spend time getting to know your clients. Understand the culture of the organisations, the culture of the team and the management style and expectations of the hiring manager. Little nuances in communication may be missed over the phone, so face-to-face meetings with all your clients is essential. Take the time to understand their needs and always read between the lines – often what is not said is as important as what IS said. Learn to read body language so that you are able to fully understand what is being communicated to you.
- By the same token, spend time getting to know your candidates. Get to know their aspirations, and their fears. The more you understand not only what they CAN do, but what they WILL do (their work preferences) and also the best cultural FIT for any business they interview at, the better for you as a recruitment consultant.
- Prep your candidate so they know what to expect, the type of interview they will be attending, whether it is to be one on one, a panel interview, sequential interview, video interview, case study assessment, psychometric assessment, skills test. Help them to PREPARE for success.
- Speak to your candidates before their interview to help put them at ease and to let them know you are there for them. Encourage them to make contact to debrief after their interviews.
- FOLLOW UP with your clients and your candidates. Always keep your candidates in the loop whether they need to wait, they are progressing, they aren’t successful or if there are changes to the job specifications or expectations. Open and regular communications is business etiquette and will auger well for you in the future.
- Remember that your candidates may be future clients. Everyone must be treated as a star candidate.
- After a candidate is placed, and for those who are not placed, set up a system so that you will follow up with them every so often to know that you are thinking of them. This will help to develop strong relationships for the future and often result in new assignments and opportunities for you as you will become known as the recruitment consultant who cares.
- Build your own Personal Brand as a top recruiter. As LinkedIn is the top professional networking platform, make sure that your own brand as a top recruiter is obvious. Share posts and updates on LinkedIn that EDUCATE and ADD VALUE to your customers AND to your candidates. Your customers will love you if you help them to position themselves as Employers of Choice through the valuable education that you provide in your posts and articles. And candidates will love you as they will learn how best to work with recruiters.
- Post an article on LinkedIn that helps your candidates to understand the best way to work with you, as a recruitment consultant. An article will stay at the top of your profile separate from the newsfeed. Your candidates will thank you for it! Educate them on the recruitment process so they feel supported by your thought leadership and generosity of spirit.
- Always listen, learn, encourage, support, and communicate, communicate, communicate.
If you are a recruiter, and have devised a great way to provide value to your candidates, please share what works well – inspire new recruiters so they can be the best they can be too.
If you’re a job seeker and want to learn how to work with recruiters, book a complimentary Career Clarity Chat and let’s find out how we can work together for your success!