With more than 30 years’ in the recruitment industry Asset’s Permanent Recruitment Consultant Judith Bright shares her insight into the role of a recruitment consultant and walks through the process; from the time we take a job brief and what we look for before we recommend a candidate to a client for a role.
Simply put, the role of a recruitment consultant is to identify the best candidates for a role; minismising the number of people our client has to meet and connecting our client with the top two or three candidates.
The position brief.
At Asset Recruitment we work hard to ‘position excellence’. What this means is – as much as it’s about matching the best candidate to the role we’re tasked with recruiting, it’s also about identifying the candidate that is most likely to stay with the company and share their vision.
So when taking a position brief, it’s a priority for us to take the time to understand not only the role we’re recruiting for, but our client’s reason for recruiting for the role, the company culture, current market conditions, the existing team structure and how the role may develop.
Looking further than the position description.
With all this in mind and once the initial screening of resumes and database searching is complete, we’ll have a narrowed down list of individuals we’d like to further discuss the role with.
This is where really understanding the role and company plays an important part. A recruitment consultant should act as a custodian for a client’s brand and promote the role to candidates on more than just $$$ and a position description. Detailing training and development opportunities, how this position compares to others in the market, the overall culture of the firm etc. further strengthens the appeal from interested candidates. It also helps determine candidates who do not want to advance their application, providing greater return on time invested for all involved in the process.
A genuine insight.
When meeting with candidates it’s important to make it engaging and fun. Getting an accurate understanding around cultural fit and abilities can be quite difficult when the person you’re chatting to is nervous. Often candidates find that coming through a recruitment agency can help with those interview butterflies and candidates are a little more relaxed when discussing their overall career goals. At Asset we structure our interviews in a conversational style to help them open up about their job search criteria to determine if they’d be a good fit for the company and position.
The position brief from our client enables us to pro-actively identify ways for a candidate to demonstrate if they have the competences the role requires. And so during our interviewing we structure our questions appropriately. When conversing with candidates we are considering many aspects – their skills, aptitude, attitude, career goals, ideal work/life balance and we’ll discuss relevant situations they’ve experienced in previous roles. Depending on the role we may also ask the candidate to undertake aptitude testing and other checks as required such as criminal, insolvency, medical checks and tests for illegal substances.
One of the final processes – but one of the most vital, is reference checking. It’s important we tailor our questions to the referees in a way we can validate any competency-based examples the candidate has provided. Of high value also are the comments the referee makes on work ethic, attitude and motivation.
Interview preparation and feedback.
Long standing relationships with many of our clients mean we have real insight into the type of person that would fit well within their organisation. When preparing a candidate for an interview with our client we’ll work through areas that are likely to be of focus, discuss how the interview might be structured, and how they can present ideas and past experiences. Helping them feel relaxed and confident about the meeting and supporting them throughout the process so that it helps make the most of the time for both client and candidate when they meet.
Post interview, gathering feedback is a standard procedure from both our client and candidate. This helps validate we’re on the right track and enables us to be a mutual party for any questions or queries about the position, candidate or company.
The hiring decision.
At the end of the day, the hiring decision is made by the client. But we do as much as we can to make sure the most suited candidates are presented for the position. We also work with both parties through the final offer stages to ensure the best outcome is achieved, and ensure we follow up post placement in case of any issues or concerns.
We provide the most value through partnering with our clients, building relationships over time, rather than simply providing a service. Recruitment agencies who provide a service will likely focus on finding a person that has the hard-skills to do the job; in turn, recruitment agencies who operate in partnership with their clients will be more focused on finding the right person for the job – identifying candidates that not only have the skills for the role, but also fit the culture of the organisation and share their vision.