Finding The Right Recruiter

Hello. In this week’s posting “Finding The Right Recruiter“, I wanted to focus on both job seekers & employers on a question that I’m sure has crossed their minds. Which recruiter is the “right” one for me? It’s a tough question, especially in this day & age of literally hundreds if not thousands of recruiters that work within 5 miles of each other in a limited market with limited jobs & limited qualified job seekers.

First, for job seekers. What I suggest is apply to every position that you feel that you are a good fit for. Use the job boards that you are comfortable with, use word of mouth, & don’t think that it’s too pushy to call. It’s really not. What you want to look for in a recruiter is honesty, character, their business connections, & most importantly, WILL THEY FIND ME A JOB. If you come across someone who is asking all the questions & won’t let you get a word in, they may not be the right fit. If you find someone who never calls back with feedback, they are not the right fit. If you took the time to interview, then the recruiter should take the time to let you know how things went. That’s just common manners. Look for recruiters that take the time to not only understand what you’ve done before but take the time to understand what you’re looking for. Those are the recruiters that you will ultimately have the most luck with. I use the word luck intentionally as sometimes, it all comes down to timing, etc…however, the recruiter you want to build a relationship with, send referrals to, & think about calling the next time you need help in your job search, should be someone that took the time to listen to your needs as well as just pitch you a job.

For hiring managers, the solution is similar. You get hundreds of calls per week from every agency under the sun. Out of those hundreds, who is good? How do I know I can work with this person? Of course, if you have a healthy relationship with a few agencies & recruiters that have shown you results, stick with what works. If your recruiter can deliver candidates to you that you know you will be on the money, stay with them. My suggestions are for the managers who are thinking about adding a new agency & how to pre-screen recruiters at those agencies.

Adding an agency to your vendor list may not be a very easy process. You need to get approvals, go to your upper management, get signatures, etc…You can’t do this for everyone who cold calls you with a new “pitch” every other day. How do I know who I can count on? My suggestion is to look at the way that they value your time. The top reason for a hiring manager to use a recruiter is to save time. If you find someone who is pushing you too hard to do something you are not 100% comfortable with, is that the kind of person I want to develop a long term business relationship with? If you ask the recruiter to call you later (even after hours) & they hesitate, is that the type of person that will value your time? Also, if you take the time to give the recruiter the job description, did they ask probing questions that will allow them to pre-screen candidates for you? After you gave them the job description, did they send you resumes that actually made sense as per your conversation, or did they just flood you with 10 candidates that have a few buzz words on their resumes? Did the recruiter look into availability, reasons for leaving, salary history, motivations, communication skills, and overall fit? In this digital age, it is very easy to just exchange emails with a candidate. The recruiters I suggest using are the ones who take the time to speak to each candidate before they send resumes & truly pre-screen them. Then it is a matter of results. Hopefully, those recruiters are the ones that will consistently find good fits for your organization & in general be easy to work with.

Anyway, I hope the New Year is treating everyone well. Thanks for reading, & as always, please feel free to post any ideas, comments, or suggestions, or feel free to contact me directly.