Recruiting is an exciting, fast paced career with amazing opportunities for the right people but nothing truly worthwhile is easy all the time. In this article we’ll look at some of the things veteran recruiters wish they’d known when they started as young, fresh-faced rookies.
1. Be ready for a steep learning curve
As a junior recruiter, you’ll have a lot to learn, and the job can come at you very quickly. Going into it with a learning mindset will help you make the most of opportunities to extend and test your skills, which will help you to succeed in the long term.
2. You will make mistakes
At some point you’re going to drop the ball. You can’t know everything, be able to do everything, know everything, have perfect insight, be completely organised and make the right call every time.
The important thing is how you respond when it all goes wrong. If you take responsibility, get the help you need to fix it, and learn from the experience you’ll still be ahead of the game, and most of your competition.
3. The best candidates spend very little time looking for work
The best candidates won’t be on the market for very long, so it’s important to carve out some regular time for outbound sourcing. Engage candidates who aren’t actively looking for work, but may be interested in the opportunities you have to offer.
4. You will always hate rejections
Phone rejections are an inevitable part of the job, however good you are, and they never feel good. You’re never going to like them, but it does get easier over time. Again, you just have to keep going. Remember that it’s not personal, and the next call could be brilliant.
5. Get comfortable with using reports and data asap
You can use reports and data to tell you which channels to use to market which kind of role, where the bottlenecks in your process are, which stage has the most drop outs, and much more. It can help you fine-tune your process and focus your efforts where they’ll be most effective, and if you’re not confident interpreting the data you’ll have to use guesswork instead.
6. Read up on recruiting industry news
The recruitment industry moves very quickly, particularly in terms of legislation. Your clients and candidates will expect you to understand current and upcoming legislation, and how changes will affect them. There are a number of websites giving news and opinion about what’s happening in the recruitment industry – our advice is to read as much as you have time for.
7. Building your network is crucial
The power of your network is one of the reasons your clients and candidates need you and the ability to connect people with opportunities is fundamental to your place in the market. Building your network means keeping in contact with prospective candidates, as well as unsuccessful ones and former clients. It can be a lot of work and it takes patience, but it opens doors to wonderful opportunities too.
8. Watch your work-life balance
Recruitment can be pressurised and competitive, and that can lead you to work long hours at a breakneck pace, which can lead to burnout. It’s important to unwind sometimes, and make sure you take time to recharge.
9. Plan “outreach” calls early in the day
It’s often easier to reach people earlier in the day, before they’ve got caught up in work. Make outreach calls between eight and ten, and you’re more likely to get a positive response. This also gives candidates and clients who miss your call the widest possible opportunity to pick up your message and get back to you.
10. CV writing isn’t one of the skills you’re looking for
Being bad at writing a CV doesn’t necessarily mean someone is a bad candidate, and a great CV doesn’t necessarily make a good one. Unless your client is a CV writing company, you’re not looking for the candidate who can write the best CV. Try to look past minor errors and formatting mistakes. If there’s any chance this might be the candidate you’re looking for, call them to discuss their CV rather than dropping it in the reject pile. In fact, your “reject” pile should really be a “not this time” pile, because unsuccessful candidates can be a useful resource.
11. Learn to let go
You’re not going to win them all. Not every candidate will interview well, and not every client will respond to you how you’d like. Everyone makes mistakes, has bad calls and bad days. Success belongs to those who can bounce back effectively. Don’t take the setbacks personally – learn the lessons, and keep moving forward.
12. Concentrate on adding value
Your success as a recruiter will depend on your ability to form and maintain positive and lasting business relationships, and that is harder to do if you approach every interaction like a transaction. This can be a challenge, when you’re short of time and you have targets to think about, but you’ll have more success in the long term if you concentrate on being helpful and adding value to your business contacts. If you’re consistently on their side and generous with your time, your network will naturally drive business your way.
If you have questions or if we can help in any way, please call our expert team on 01296 468483 or email email@example.com.