Get that contract | How to work better with your recruitment agencyPart of the nature of contracting is that you can spend an inordinate amount of time seeking out your next assignment. Updating your CV, constantly monitoring jobs boards and submitting applications can seriously gobble up your time, all in the name of securing your next assignment. This is why the savviest contractors rely on their recruitment consultant to do the job search leg work for them. The idea for this blog post came from a great LinkedIn article we came across called “5 things recruiters hate about you”. It’s a pretty tongue-in-cheek piece but worth a read, and it makes the point that working with a recruitment agency is a two way street, and like all relationships, you only get out as much as you put in! With this in mind, we have put together a few tips on how you can work better with your recruitment agency, and increase your chances of landing that dream contract.
Do your researchMost people choose their recruitment agency based on an internet search - this is fine, but there are ways you can make sure you end up working with the best agency for you. Be specific with your search criteria, for example if you are looking for a job in social care, search “Social care recruitment specialist” rather than just “recruitment agency”. Adding your location can also narrow it down. In many cases agencies local to you will have long-standing relationships with hiring businesses in your vicinity. Biggest isn’t always best, so don’t automatically discount agency names you don’t recognise. Sometimes smaller specialist agencies will better serve your contracting niche and provide a more personal service.
Be honestRecruitment consultants are there to guide you towards your next job, but they do need your input to get you there, so expect some pretty probing questions! These are necessary for your consultant to really understand what makes you tick and ultimately match you with the right jobs. Be as honest and upfront as you can - it isn’t a job interview so you can be candid with your recruitment consultant. For example, if you ditched your last contract because you absolutely hated it - tell them! They will be able to advise you on any awkward questions that might come up about it at interview, and apart from anything else they’ll be able to put you forward for roles with an immediate start.
Be responsive and reliableThis might sound obvious, but take your recruitment consultant’s calls! You would be surprised how many job seekers only take calls outside office hours or don’t answer the phone at all. You won’t be the only candidate up for the role, so if you can take 10 minutes out for a coffee and a chat, you will be streets ahead of the candidate that simply doesn’t pick up. Just as responsiveness goes a long way, so does reliability. Recruitment consultants will work harder for candidates who they know will turn up for interviews on time and prepared, and who won’t “ghost” them during any point of the job search.
Take feedbackRecruiters are industry specialists and work closely with employers so take advantage of that knowledge and let them advise you and take their feedback into account, especially suggestions on your CV or interview technique. After an interview, make sure to ask questions about your performance. You won’t always get a job offer, and feedback may not necessarily be what you want to hear but your recruitment consultant has the ear of the employer, and may be able to give you valuable insight to make you the strongest candidate next time round.
***Your recruitment agency is not the enemy! Having a good recruitment consultant on your side gives you the best chance of getting back to back contracts, so it’s worth putting in a bit of effort to get the most from the relationship. When you work with Liquid Friday we are also here to help. We can put you in touch with agencies who are recruiting for roles in your industry and area, with the added bonus that you won’t have the hassle of switching umbrella companies. Did you find this article useful? Please share it on social media for others to read!