Looking for a job? Don’t underestimate the value of a recruitment agency. Recruiters have years of experience placing job seekers in exciting and varied roles. But not all recruitment firms are the same and the reason the successful ones are so successful at placing candidates is because they ensure the right fit.
If you’re looking for a recruitment agency to help you find employment, it’s important to sign up with a
firm that you believe has your best interests at heart. Here are 10 questions we recommend you ask prospective recruitment agencies to help you determine if you’re handing your employment search over
to the right one.
1.What knowledge do you have of a sector?
If you have a skillset in a particular industry, ask your potential recruitment agency if they have experience in this sector. No two industries are the same and each require market knowledge. You’re not necessarily looking for a specialist recruitment firm, but knowing they have experience in your field will certainly help with the job hunt.
2. What is your success rate?
Ask them how many job seekers they are successfully placing each week/fortnight/month.
This will give you insight into how busy they are and what their placement success rate is.
3.Do you offer temporary and permanent placements?
Whether you are looking for a temporary job or a permanent position, ask your recruitment agency whether they provide one or both services. Often, a temporary placement can lead to a permanent position, and if you’re not sure what job is right for you, temporary placements can offer you the opportunity to experience a range of jobs and industries.
4.How do you match candidates with clients?
A lot of businesses are placing an increased emphasis on finding a candidate with the right attitude and fit for their organisational culture, not just the right skillset for the job. This means it’s important to ask your recruitment firm what their process is for matching candidates with clients? How do they ensure the right fit, because after all you want to find the right company for you too!
5.What is your screening process?
A key role of a recruitment agency is to screen and shortlist candidates for a potential job. This will
require them to delve into your employment history, seek references and determine whether you have
any previous criminal convictions or not. The recruitment firm should let you know what their screening process is and what checks they’ll be undertaking but if you’re unsure, ask them.
6.How long does the job hunting process take?
If you’re looking for a job, you probably also want to know how long it will take the recruitment firm to find you a job. After all, you may have a mortgage to pay, living costs to cover, childcare bills to pay or a credit card that needs paying off. Ask the agency what is the average time it takes to find employment and when you could expect to be gainfully employed.
7.What companies do you work for?
When you meet with a recruitment agency, they’ll ask you questions about your employment history.
Feel free to do the same to them. Ask them who they have worked for previously. What companies do
they provide a recruitment service too? This will help you to gain an understanding of the breadth of service they can provide and which organisations they have those all-important working relationships with.
8.Do you offer CV writing and interview support?
Looking for a job isn’t always easy and for many job seekers, putting together a CV can be an arduous, albeit necessary task. Ask the recruitment firm if they offer support in putting together CVs or preparing you for interviews. In many cases, they may work with a partner organisation who offers these services
and can put you in touch so you’re well prepared for the job hunting process.
9.What happens once I get a job?
While you are looking for a job, a recruitment agency should be in regular contact with you to ensure you find a successful placement. But what happens after you are gainfully employed? Ask the recruitment agency about their follow up care. Will they keep in touch to see how the job is going? Will they be proactive in finding you another position if the role you are in is temporary? Knowing you are going to be looked after, and not just treated as another job seeking candidate, will help to reassure you that you are in good hands.
10.What are your fees?
In most cases, it is the organisation seeking a candidate to fill a role which pays a fee to the recruitment agency. However, don’t just assume a recruitment service is free, even though you’re a job seeker.
Ask them if they charge a fee, and if so how much. The last thing you want is any hidden surprises
coming out of your first pay packet.
Looking for a new job can be an exciting experience but it will be made all the more enjoyable if you have
a good recruitment firm working for you. Make sure you choose a firm that you are happy with and which you believe will find the right position for you. Don’t be afraid to ask them questions. After all, they want your business as much as you need their service.