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Recruiting Tips for Professional Recruiters and Search Consultants

by | Dec 21, 2021 | Recruiter Training

Recruiting is a very unique profession. Nobody goes to college looking to become a professional recruiter. Instead, they somehow “fall into” the job. They didn’t plan on it, but it happened and they’re very happy that they did.

Thousands of such recruiters use Top Echelon’s applicant tracking system. Some of these search consultants are also members of Top Echelon’s recruiting network. These are recruiters who know how to succeed. Not only that, but they also know how to enjoy success over an extended period of time.

And since that’s the case, it would make sense to consult them regarding recruiting tips for search consultants. We have done that, and as a result, we have some recruiting tips to share.

Recruiting tips: stressing company culture

Our first recruiting tip for search consultants comes from Brenda Wylie Biggs, CPC of KB Search Team, LLC.

According to Wylie-Biggs, companies are looking for more than just a technical fit for their open jobs. They’re looking for a cultural fit, as well. Although employers have always sought candidates who would fit into their culture, this has become even more of a point of emphasis. Cultural fit could be the key to bridging the skills gap that is so often brought up.

“My clients are really evaluating a cultural fit, along with the technical skill set,” said Wylie-Biggs. “So I try to find three key soft skill traits that the company is looking for, in addition to the technical skills.”

Yes, the perfect candidate does not exist. And yes, hiring managers realize that (for the most part). However, they’re still trying to find the best fit possible for their open position. Even though we’re in the midst of a worker and talent shortage.

“Most of my clients are Tier-1 Automotive suppliers,” said Wylie-Biggs. “It’s interesting what hiring managers share. They want to hire people who will be positive role models in their department. They want people who are true partners and look beyond their department since everything in the company is intertwined. In some cases, they want people who are thick-skinned and can handle being the enforcer.”

Recruiter tips and tricks: staying in touch

Our next recruiting tip for search consultants comes from Cindy Cordell, CPC of Corporate Resources, LLC. This tip involves staying in touch with candidates and former clients.

“When you have a lot of candidates in your recruiting database, it’s important to stay in touch with them,” said Cordell. “The same goes for employers.”

When it comes to the manner in which she contacts candidates and former clients, Cordell uses both phone calls and emails. If it’s been a while since she’s spoken with the person, she usually sends an email. If it hasn’t been a long time, she’ll pick up the telephone.

However, when she does send emails, Cordell doesn’t take the mass emailing approach. That includes when she’s sending emails to candidates. The reason: she wants to add a personal touch and stand out from other emails.

“I don’t do one email out to everybody,” said Cordell. “Tons of recruiters do that. I send each one personally.”

According to Cordell, she’s generated job orders and placement activity from pro-actively and consistently staying in touch with candidates and former clients.

“For instance, one of the companies called me back with an HR plant manager position,” said Cordell. “I did a search through my database and came up with a list of candidates that I’ll be calling.”

And if Cordell discovers that her contact information is outdated? She takes steps to update the information, including with the help of LinkedIn. Not every contact with outdated information is listed on LinkedIn, but enough are that it’s worthwhile for Cordell to continue the practice.

Recruiting tips: client visits

Our third and final recruiting tip for search consultants comes from Cindy Sommer of SearchStars, Inc. This tip deals with client visits.

According to Sommer, who works in the Healthcare industry, visiting her clients in-person has made a world of difference for her recruiting business. (The COVID-19 pandemic has affected this practice, of course. However, more recruiters are continuing this practice as the pandemic abates.)

Sommer’s clients are repeat customers. She stays in touch with all of them, no matter where they’re located. One of her clients is located in Manhattan, a three-and-a-half hour drive away. Sommer still makes it a point to visit that client once a year, like she does all of her clients.

“There’s a private practice in Manhattan, where I’ve placed all of their Sonographers,” said Sommer. “They credit me with helping them be successful. So when I drop by, they’re excited to see me, and when I can, I bring treats for everybody.”

There are perks for recruiters who visit their clients. For one thing, they can gain a better understanding of the company and how it works and of the job orders that it issues. Second, it can make working with Human Resources a whole lot easier.

“In a lot of cases—hospitals, for instance—I know the hiring authorities in addition to HR,” said Sommer. “Even if I go through HR, I get to talk with the hiring authorities one-on-one. Many times, they’ll tell HR, ‘Please get Cindy to work on this [job order].’ If you do a good job, they’re going to ask for you by name.”

Phone time is STILL important

Of course, Sommer communicates with her clients on a consistent basis over the telephone, too, as often as necessary. This also helps to foster the relationships that she’s formed with them. However, phone time is no substitute for face-to-face time.

According to Sommer, recruiters don’t have to visit their clients all the time, or even every year. But if you haven’t visited all of your clients at least once, then you should consider planning some trips.

“You don’t have to do it all the time, but visiting at least once will do wonders,” she said. “People just want to see who you are and meet you. I had a company official tell me that it’s really good that I visit and that people get to see me. That way, I’m not just a name on a business card or a voicemail or some anonymous person that nobody’s ever seen.

“There isn’t one client that I don’t stay in touch with personally.”

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