A good recruiter will partner with a candidate during their job search and often well into their career. Just like all professional relationships, there is always a limit to what the recruiter is able to do (we cannot force a client to offer you a job), but all candidates should expect the following to happen when dealing with a recruiter. (Sadly, this is not always the case but rest assured, there are plenty of great recruiters out there willing to do all these things and even go beyond!!)
A Face-to-Face Interview
Before a recruiter sends your CV to a client or company, they should have met with you and interviewed you first. From time to time (when urgency is a problem), the recruiter may wish to telephone interview you, or set up a Skype meeting. However in any case, they should absolutely have spoken with you in detail first to understand your experience and what you are looking for. This is as much about an opportunity for you to get to know the recruiter representing you, as it is about you having the opportunity to demonstrate your skills and personality.
The better a recruiter knows you, the easier it will be for them to sell you into their client, and the better your recruiter can explain to their client why you are the right fit and have the right skill-set for the job. Hint: If the recruiter doesn’t know you, they won’t be able to fight for you and back you when it comes to the crunch.
Advice on your CV, Presentation & Interview Tips
Recruiters advising candidates on any improvements that can be made to their CV is part of the service. If you have a terrible CV, but excellent experience that is clearly not represented in your CV – your recruiter should tell you. Any advice or tips that they give you should be constructive and helpful. Again, we want you to get the job and sometimes a little guidance is needed (remember that we are experts on this.)
A recruiter lives and breathes CVs, candidates and clients. We know what we are talking about and if we are telling you, it is because we want to help you.
Briefing before an Interview
Before you go to a client interview, your recruiter needs to brief you about the company, the person you are meeting with and what they are looking for in a candidate. This DOES NOT mean you are not expected to do your own homework and research, however, a good recruiter will give you as many pointers as they can to help you succeed in your interview. It is after all, in their best interest for you to smash the interview!
Feedback on Interviews
Your recruiter should be able to give you feedback on all your interviews, including your interview with them. We can often help guide and advise on where you can improve your interview skills after the first interview (and we hope to pick up anything that could be an issue for a client in that interview – hence the importance of having a face-to-face meeting with your recruiter in the first instance).
It is part of our job to speak in detail with the client after your interview. From that conversation, your recruiter should be able to give you feedback on your meeting with their client and how you went. Take this feedback on board, as it could be the difference between you nailing your next interview and totally flunking out!
A good recruiter will care where you land. Whether they place you, don’t have any appropriate jobs on at the time or don’t in fact place you in your next role – they should follow up with you and keep in touch. A candidate should always expect a follow up email, text, or phone call from their recruiter.
On the flip side of this – you too can follow up with your recruiter. A solid, two-sided relationship is ultimately the best type of relationship for a candidate and recruiter.
A Friendly Ear
This one is a tricky one as we are all super busy and from time to time, this friendly ear is taken advantage of/the line is a little blurred. BUT any good recruiter will be available as a friendly ear to their candidates.
We understand that just because we see people going through the recruitment phase every day, doesn’t mean that the candidate does as well. As recruiters and consultants to businesses, we are speaking with HR and business leaders daily so we do know a lot of what is going on in companies and how businesses work. Just like in all of life, we appreciate that our knowledge and experience is better shared than kept bottled up. A good recruiter will be available as a sounding board and able to offer some insight when a candidate needs.
Just like in any industry, there are plenty of average recruiters out there but there are some really great ones too. More often than not, it is the candidate and recruiter who establish a really solid ongoing relationship, that have the best outcomes.
For Naomi and the team at Sprint, we pride ourselves on having genuine and long lasting relationships with our candidates throughout their careers. It is not uncommon for us to place a candidate in several of their roles over the years that pass. This is recruitment at its best. It won’t always work like this, but we hope by sharing the above, you know what you as a candidate should expect from your relationship with the recruiter.