*** Working with.. not against... recruitment agencies ***

blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All KnowledgePosts: 2,415Registered
The stars in the title are merely so I can find this thread again quickly if I want to update it...

Unfortunately there's been a lot of crap on here lately against my industry so I thought I'd rip some comments from recruiter.com to share with you all. My own additions are in capital letters:

Working with Recruiters

Working with recruiters is the next best thing to working with hiring managers. YES. Recruitment professionals know their clients and they pride themselves on knowing their candidates in the hopes of making the right connections. In order to make this happen there are a few things you need to know:

TELL THEM EVERYTHING:
When building a relationship with a recruiter, this is no time to be shy. Recruiters need to know everything there is to know about you and what you are looking for in your career, i.e. salary, perks, specific employers, etc. Building an effective relationship with a professional recruiter starts with trust and honesty, so be forthcoming with your requests. BE REALISTIC. JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE A GCSE IN CHEMISTRY, IT DOESN'T MAKE YOU A ROCKET SCIENTIST. LIKEWISE, BEING AAT QUALIFIED ON IT'S OWN DOESN'T MAKE YOU A FINANCIAL CONTROLLER OR SENIOR ACCOUNTANT.

FIND OUT EVERYTHING:
Relationships are a two way street. When working with a professional recruiter you need to know as much about them as it relates to their capabilities and ability to help you secure employment. Do a thorough background check on the recruiter and/or the company. I THINK THIS IS GUFF. Review all the social networking sites where the recruiter does business and if they do not recruit via these new mediums, be aware; it might mean that they are not keeping up with workforce trends and new recruiting practices. NOT NECESSARILY TRUE BUT HO HUM...

COMMUNICATE OFTEN:
Unfortunately securing a recruitment professional does not mean you will secure employment immediately. There can be a lot of waiting involved. EXACTLY!!! Sitting still and waiting for the phone to ring is not an option for you. You are part of the communication equation and you must take an active role in all aspects of your career.

Approach your job hunt like you already have a job. If you see something online, hear about it on a website, see it on the news – contact your recruitment professional and collaborate with them on a game plan. Good recruiters are savvy and well connected, like real estate agents. They tend to know where all the hot properties are. However, they can not be everywhere, so the more hands they can have working in your favor the better.

BE REALISTIC:
Understand that you are not the recruiters’ only CANDIDATE. Schedule standing meetings no matter how short; just get them on the calendar. Recruiters understand your urgency however they have other CANDIDATES asking for the same things. Work with your recruitment professional to set realistic goals that are effective and actionable. COMMUNICATE WITH THEM, DON'T BUG THEM TO DEATH.

BELOW ARE MY COMMENTS, SOME OF WHICH I'VE SAID BEFORE BUT WILL REPEAT HERE:

1. Recruitment agencies work for clients not candidates. Clients pay them to find people suitable to fill their vacancies. Candidates are merely a resource - though not an invaluable one - and they pay nothing to use the services of an agency. REMEMBER THIS - IT'S IMPORTANT!!!
2. If you don't hear anything back soon, it may be they have nothing for you or you are unsuitable. If it's the latter, then I'm sorry but it's life, get used to it. Many will testify that in the current climate, you need to get used to disappointment. Deal with it positively and move on...
3. Be patient and persistent but not aggressive. Too much of the latter, and you'll be dropped from their books. Agencies, unlike the job centre, have no obligation to find you work.
4. Signing on with more than one agency is not always a good thing... if you tell them this, you may become lower priority in their efforts.
5. While you may get frustrated if things don't run as fast as you might have (sometimes falsely) expected, don't treat the recruiter with a holier than thou attitude or talk down to them. As per point three, they have no obligation to you... Always treat them as you would a direct hiring manager.

If I can think of more, I'll add them...

Comments

  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    Another recruiting rip:

    7 Signals to Send During Your Next Job Interview

    By LUKE RONEY
    February 28, 2012 RSS Feed Print

    Most of what you say will never be heard. It will be observed.

    Some 90 percent of our communication is nonverbal, according to body language expert and jury consultant Susan Constantine. Given that statistic, it's a good idea to think about body language before you head in for your next job interview.

    [See our Best Jobs of 2012.]

    "Most people are not cognizant of their own body language, of the nonverbal signals we send to others," Constantine says. "Nonverbal signals are sent all the time and can make or break (a job interview)."

    Constantine shares some tips for good body language:

    1. Firm handshake. With most things, moderation is key. This goes for your handshake when first greeting an interviewer. Don't grasp too hard and pump too vigorously. But don't offer up an anemic handshake, either. Aim for the middle of the road, Constantine says, with a firm, confident handshake.

    2. Positive mindset. "Feel joy to meet [the interviewer]," Constantine says, "put yourself in a place of fun, saying, 'I'm having fun and my body language will follow. I'm going to nail this job.' Don't roll your eyes around the room, be very present with [the interviewer]—the 'be there now' rule."

    3. Eye contact. Good eye contact is also crucial to creating a connection with an interviewer. Constantine suggests using a "professional gaze"—looking at the interviewer 80 percent of the time and looking off to the side 20 percent of the time. Also, Constantine says, "Have a genuine, warm smile but not a phony smile."

    [See Don't Kill an Interview with These Blunders.]

    4. Don't be cross. Crossing your arms is a sign of weakness, Constantine says. "Your arms should be totally to your side and your hands should be more mobile."

    5. Go hands-free. Avoid holding onto a briefcase, purse or other large item during the interview—as far as nonverbal communication goes, having something in your hands is the equivalent of speaking with your mouth full.

    "Hands literally fill in the blank for you and it's important to use your hands as punctuation," Constantine says, "but never use choppy hand gestures. Keep your hands controlled and away from your face. Placing your hands between your hips and your shoulders will make you look more confident."

    6. No fidgeting. Don't display your nervousness by twirling your hair or adjusting your tie during an interview. And keep your hands away from your face. "We're usually very nervous during an interview," Constantine says, "but hands near the face is unacceptable."

    [See 5 Things Not to Say in a Job Interview.]

    7. Mirror body language. Look to the interviewer for body language cues. "Once the interviewer moves his or her hands on the desk, you may want to close your hand over the other on the desk, not mimicking exactly, but doing something similar," Constantine says. "You should tilt your head in a listening position, which shows you’re interested. Also, lean from the waist, not from the shoulders."

    Just knowing these body language basics is only half of it, Constantine says. Try to practice them in your day-to-day interactions so they become second nature.

    "You can apply (these things) toward anything in your life, not just a job interview,” she says. "The better you do it in everyday life, the better you do it during an interview."
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    5 Things Not to Say in a Job Interview

    By ALISON GREEN
    February 27, 2012 RSS Feed Print

    Your interview is going well, you feel prepared and on your game, the interviewer is smiling and nodding … and then it happens: You kill it all with a "kiss of death" statement.

    [See our list of the Best Careers.]

    If you want to beat your competition and get a job offer, these five phrases should never cross your lips:

    1. "I'm the best qualified person for the job." Really great candidates realize that they have no idea what the rest of the candidate pool looks like. More importantly, statements like this reek of ego and naiveté. Hiring managers don't want to feel like you're doing a hard sell. From the interviewer's side, the hiring process is about an honest assessment of whether you're a good match (because they don't want to have to fire you later). Hyperbole just gets in the way. Instead, show the interviewer what makes you the best candidate; don't announce it and expect to be believed. If you're the best, your accomplishments are what will make that clear.

    2. "What does your company do?" If you ask questions about the company that could have easily been answered with a bit of research ahead of time, you'll come across as unprepared, unmotivated, and maybe even lazy. Make sure you prepare before the meeting by reading enough about the company that you can answer these key questions: What does this organization do? What is it all about? What would your prospective employers say makes them different from their competition?

    [See 5 Questions to Ask on Your Next Interview.]

    3. "I can't think of any real weaknesses." It may feel tired for an interviewer to ask, "what are your weaknesses?" But that's all the more reason you should have an answer. If you're caught off guard by one of the most well-known interview questions around, you'll look unprepared, like you lack self-awareness, or like you're unwilling to have an honest discussion about your fit for the job. No matter how highly you think of yourself, there should still be plenty of things that you'd like to do better.

    4. "I'm a perfectionist." You might as well say "I work too hard," or "I bring work home with me," or "I'm too good at my job." These all scream "fake answer" and make you look insincere. Claiming perfectionism has become such an interview cliché that your interviewer will assume you're disingenuous and will likely be annoyed. Try something new—hiring managers have heard hundreds of people claim they're perfectionists.

    [See 10 Ways to Ruin a Job Interview.]

    5. "I don't have any questions." You might be spending eight hours a day (or more) in this job, at this company, with this manager, and there's nothing you're wondering about? Interviewers want to know that you're interested in the details of the job, the department in which you'll be working, your prospective supervisor's management style, and the culture of the organization. Otherwise, you're signaling that you're either not that interested or that you just haven't thought much about it. So come prepared with thoughtful, intelligent questions about the work you'd be doing.
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    5 Questions to Ask on Your Next Interview

    By LUKE RONEY
    January 31, 2012 RSS Feed Print

    Luke Roney
    When it comes to job interview prep, much emphasis is put on having the right answers. But while you're struggling to come up with responses to queries on your biggest weakness and why you should be hired, don't forget to craft some smart questions, too.

    You will be judged, after all, by what you ask (or fail to ask).

    "Candidates should always have questions prepared to ask during the interview," says Tom Gimbel of the Chicago-based staffing firm The LaSalle Network. "A lack of questions demonstrates a disinterest in the position and lack of preparation for the interview."

    The questions you ask during an interview should give you a deeper understanding of the company and the job—and that information can help you better sell yourself as the right person for the position. Smart questions also show a prospective employer that you care about where you work, that you have some knowledge about the company, and that you understand the industry overall.

    "Ask a few relevant questions that demonstrate you've done your research and that you're enthusiastic, and that will help you to make an informed decision as to whether or not this is the right opportunity for you," says Melanie Benwell of the Toronto-based recruiting firm PathWorks.

    For your next interview, consider adding the following questions to your repertoire:

    1. What happened to the last guy? "Candidates should always ask what happened to the previous person who had the job," says etiquette expert Jodi R. R. Smith. "You are trying to tell if the job holder is promoted up into the company or if the company uses the person, burns them out and then they leave."

    2. What do you like about working here? "This question will give you further insight into the company's corporate culture and will give the interviewer a chance to talk about themselves for a change—and who doesn't like to talk about themselves?" Benwell says.

    3. How do people typically work together here? "Even if the pay and job content sound good, it's important to understand the environment that you would be going into," says career coach Dorothy Tannahill-Moran. "Job seekers too often forget that this process is as much about them picking you and it is you picking them. You want to ensure the highest potential for success and eventually growth."

    4. How can someone succeed at this job? "This tells you exactly what they're looking for in a candidate and allows you to reiterate your relevant strengths," Benwell says.

    5. What's next in the hiring process? "Too many interviewees forget this easy question and are left wondering when to follow up later on," says Anthony Morrison of the career networking site Cachinko.

    Not all questions, however, are good. Avoid the following:

    1. What do you do? "That general question makes me cringe every time I hear it asked. How can the person prove they are right for job if they don't even know what they would be doing?" says Ryan Mack, a partner at the career website TruYuu.

    2. How much is the pay? "Don't ask about money too early in the interview process," says career coach Roy Cohen. "It's a distraction and will draw attention to you as a dollar amount before they may be ready to evaluate your potential to add real and meaningful value."

    Likewise, don't ask about vacation days and paid holidays—wait for a job offer before you tackle compensation and benefits. This is a time to show what you can offer the prospective employer.

    3. What are the hours? "This question makes candidates look more like clock-watchers on the first interview rather than serious professionals," says Rod Hughes of Oxford Communications.

    4. Do you have other open positions? "This offers the perception that the job you are interviewing for is of little or no interest to you," Hughes says.

    5. Will there be a drug test? If you have to ask, it means you're concerned about your ability to pass.
  • janwaljanwal Experienced Mentor Posts: 1,189Registered
    Hi Robert

    Thank you for posting these........very helpful, as I am going to be on the job market again soon due to getting married and relocating this will be very useful as it's 10 years since I last had to look for work.

    Jan
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    No problem Jan. IMO, your qualifications and experience will get you the interview but your personality, exuberance, organisational fit and attitude will secure you the job. I was one of fifty five for mine in 2008, but despite being one of the least qualified in the process, my aptitude to communicate with the hiring managers... including colloquialisms... secured my position. JUST BE YOURSELF!

    Good luck!
  • Diddy MauDiddy Mau Well-Known Posts: 238Registered
    Just wanted to say.
    Fantastic information.

    This would have taken some time to write, so people should take the time to read them.

    thanks for all of this.
    Hopefully I wont need this, but I know where it is, if I do.
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    Diddy Mau wrote: »
    This would have taken some time to write, so people should take the time to read them.

    Heh heh heh... I should coco... all of the articles are (mostly) straight quotes/rips from some of the recruiter sites I visit... just thought they might prove of some worth on here as I see job hunting tip requests so much!
  • jenny3549jenny3549 Trusted Regular Posts: 472Registered
    Fantastic - thank you so much Robert!

    This is like a complete interview guide. It's over ten years since I had my last one and I would be rather nervous. Reading all of your advice makes me feel I would be prepared.

    Thanks again!
  • RinskeRinske Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,453Registered
    Thanks Blobster!

    It's a great help, even if you didn't write it yourself, you still collated it all here and maybe we should make a jobseekers forum and make this one sticky!
  • *Jo*Jo Experienced Mentor Posts: 509Registered
    Ditto the thanks,

    My daughters 18 year old boyfriend is struggling to find his first job and we have been trying to come up with interview technique for him.

    The usual postings can be applied in any situation not just accountancy and theres a few things there we hadn't thought of.

    Jo
  • StuartWStuartW Online Community Manager LondonPosts: 495Registered
    Thanks for sharing this info, Robert.

    I've always wondered about something when it comes to recruiters. Why do they ask what other agencies you've signed up with?

    Is it - as you mention in your tips - that they might push you down the priority list if you tell them? I remember saying "I'm not telling you that" once, and the consultant got a bit uppity about it. It just felt a bit rude to me and he wasn't able to give me a decent reason...

    What's your opinion on that? Is it just a case of keeping an eye on your competitors?
  • uknittyuknitty Experienced Mentor Posts: 591Registered
    Some jobs are released to more than one agency. If another agency has first dibs on a candidate then it is not likely you can make the placement as the other agency will have already put the candidate forward.

    From a commission point of view it is not worth investing time in a candidate that has been submitted in the last 6 months (sometimes 12 months depending on the agreement with the client) as even if you do all the hard work and make the placement, the other agency can still claim the commission as technically they made the first introduction (even if they submitted the CV to the client previously for a different role)
  • MarkTMarkT Trusted Regular Posts: 302Registered
    uknitty wrote: »
    Some jobs are released to more than one agency. If another agency has first dibs on a candidate then it is not likely you can make the placement as the other agency will have already put the candidate forward.

    From a commission point of view it is not worth investing time in a candidate that has been submitted in the last 6 months (sometimes 12 months depending on the agreement with the client) as even if you do all the hard work and make the placement, the other agency can still claim the commission as technically they made the first introduction (even if they submitted the CV to the client previously for a different role)

    I had this exact thing happen 3 weeks back. I was submitted by one of my recruiters and sat the interview. Then over the weekend, I was hounded by 3 other agencies, one of whom was based 200 miles away from me for the same role. When I told the long distance recruiter I had been for the interview, they got snotty with me and then asked if they could keep my details if they had anything else come up! I replied that no, I would not work with a long distance person as I had no real desire to travel to Essex to meet them, she replied, "Well you've been out of work so long, its a silly thing to say."

    Blobby, whilst reading the points above, I cannot agree with all of the points.

    Communication is a key thing, I firmly agree, but the sharing of information is a one way street, I make calls to my agencies and ask to touch base with them, get the usual reply, he/she is unavailable and they will call me back... So then I leave it a day or so, then call again, get the same answer, then leave it altogether, then they call me out the blue and say that I've not bothered to contact them? So how many attempts should you make with a recruiter to speak with them? And why when they do end up calling me, do I feel like all I am being called for is a source of information as to who and where I've been?
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    StuartW wrote: »
    I've always wondered about something when it comes to recruiters. Why do they ask what other agencies you've signed up with?

    Sorry for the late reply Stuart, I actually read it days ago but UKNITTY had already given the definitive answer to your query...!
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    MarkT wrote: »
    Communication is a key thing, I firmly agree, but the sharing of information is a one way street, I make calls to my agencies and ask to touch base with them, get the usual reply, he/she is unavailable and they will call me back... So then I leave it a day or so, then call again, get the same answer, then leave it altogether, then they call me out the blue and say that I've not bothered to contact them? So how many attempts should you make with a recruiter to speak with them? And why when they do end up calling me, do I feel like all I am being called for is a source of information as to who and where I've been?

    Just like all other forms of service industry, there are a few very good and a many very bad recruiters and agencies. I've temped myself in the past so know there are some shabby ones out there - they usually don't last as soon as a recession hits. I now work for an executive agency so cannot speak as to how bog-standard high street ones work but I empathise with your frustrations, Mark...
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    What Recruiters Look At During The 6 Seconds They Spend On Your Resume

    You need to follow the link to this one as it's the CV images that are important.

    http://www.linkedin.com/news?actionBar=&articleID=5595149483949174869&ids=d3cPcjgPejcNdPcScPgMdjARdiMRcPgVdPkTdz8Qdz8OejwQejkRb3ARd3wVc30RdjkScz4Ncz0VdjkIejoUd3sNejgVcPwQejgNdjARdiMVejwOdjcTd3wSe3wTe30MejkR&aag=true&freq=weekly&trk=eml-tod2-b-pic-1&ut=2CzYRU-oSMj5c1

    Dynamic layout of CV's is absolutely crucial and you should always visually highlight important info, not simply write your CV like another page in a library book!
  • uknittyuknitty Experienced Mentor Posts: 591Registered
    Sorry - did I misunderstand ? I thought an open forum such as this meant that all members could contribute to the discussion. You seem a little put out that someone else has contributed their views to this thread.

    My opinion and experience is just that, and in expressing my view I am in no way preventing you from also responding to a question.

    It has been my experience consultants wish to know if you are registered with other agencies for 2 main reasons

    1/ so they can gain leads and referals to pick up jobs from other agencies.

    2/ to check that the candidates CV has not already been presented by another consultant.

    Your experience may be different. There is no definitve answer because no one has the same experience.
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    A bit of humour here...


    23 Real Job Interview Questions You Don't Want To Be Asked

    http://www.linkedin.com/news?actionBar=&articleID=5595149483949174869&ids=d3cPcjgPejcNdPcScPgMdjARdiMRcPgVdPkTdz8Qdz8OejwQejkRb3ARd3wVc30RdjkScz4Ncz0VdjkIejoUd3sNejgVcPwQejgNdjARdiMVejwOdjcTd3wSe3wTe30MejkR&aag=true&freq=weekly&trk=eml-tod2-b-pic-1&ut=2CzYRU-oSMj5c1

    I like... "Name three things that, if you were told were part of the job, would cause you to not take the position".

    One of my answers would be "We go 'Commando' every last Friday of the month... and we check!"
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    Headhunters Reveal 11 Ways To Ruin Your Chances Of Getting A Job

    http://www.businessinsider.com/headhunters-reveal-11-ways-to-ruin-your-chances-of-getting-a-job-2011-6?op=1

    "A headhunter's job is to find the right candidate for the client (company) who hired the recruitment services - not to find a job to every single job seeker who contacts the recruiting firm,"
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    And one of my own tips is never e-mail your CV to an agency in a non-editable format such as a pdf. Agencies will often reformat your CV to slot into their databases to fulfil certain search criteria and/or remove negative or irrelevant information and may not bother with an average one they have to spend some time over.
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    uknitty wrote: »
    Sorry - did I misunderstand ? I thought an open forum such as this meant that all members could contribute to the discussion. You seem a little put out that someone else has contributed their views to this thread.

    Was this directed at me uknitty? If so, I don't understand either. How did you manage to misinterpret my comment that I thought you had already contributed the perfect answer to Stuart's question and thus none was required from me?

    Where's that * dislike * button? ;)
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    The idea behind starting this was to create the definitive agency and CV help discussion thread... don't think I've ever said anywhere that contributions from others were unwanted. I don't post to it continuously and if questions are asked by those wanting help or answers to general queries, others with recruitment industry knowledge are very welcome to answer.

    I'm simply the thread starter... not the thread owner.
  • uknittyuknitty Experienced Mentor Posts: 591Registered
    It was directed to both you as an individual and to the forum of which we all contribute to. I do tend to think if someone types my name all in caps that a response to that post is required from me.

    As typing in caps is generally accepted to be shouting I did equate this to you seeming "put out". But thanks for clarifying this is not the case.

    Thanks for also explaining that you felt that my answer was so perfect,that you had nothing to add to it. I am very flattered.

    I wouldn't say I misinterpreted your comment, I do however disagree with it. You state I gave the "definitive answer" I would have to disagree with this as there is no such thing in my opinion as a "definitive answer" only different experiences of which everyone, in an open forum can share.
  • blobbyhblobbyh Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,415Registered
    The typing of your name in caps was a genuine error as I honestly thought that's how it was in your user name... I typed it in lower case when I used your name in my later post and able to read it correctly.

    I thought your answer was definitive... my opinion as you say.