Before I had started my new role I had done research into recruitment to get more of an insight about what to expect in my first few days, I had heard of recruitment metaphors about Consultant’s ‘spinning plates’ and recruitment being a ‘rollercoaster’. But none of that really related to the real world and what I would be doing day to day. The first few weeks were a whirlwind of training, I learnt about the full recruitment process from initially registering a candidate, getting jobs to work on from clients, writing CV’s, preparing candidates for interviews, and negotiating offers.
After the majority of my classroom-based training had finished I was assigned my patch and supervised while I to started building my own client and candidate base.
After successfully finishing my first twelve months I can tell you that recruitment may be a ‘roller coaster’ but there are far more ups that there are downs and it is your resilience that makes you keep going until you get your next placement. As for ‘spinning plates’, yes you definitely need to keep busy and keep organised. It is really important to have more than one thing to be working on at a certain time, the more plates you have spinning (i.e. the more candidates you are working with or jobs you are working on) the more chance you have of making a successful placement.
Attributes that help you to be successful
I don’t think there is a one size fits all approach to what makes a successful Recruitment Consultant. My experience of meeting other Consultants so far has shown me that everyone is different, everyone takes a slightly different approach and brings different attributes to the role. This is one of the first things that I believe makes you successful. Embracing your personality and being yourself (in a professional way of course!) with clients and candidates will make you more memorable and will also make it easier for you to build professional relationships.
There is however a set of attributes that all of the successful consultants I have met have had:
Organisation – One of the key attributes of a successful consultant is organisation. The more organised you are the more workload you can take on, the more work you can take on the more placements you are likely to make. It is important to remain on top of everything to make sure that you are servicing jobs properly, updating candidates when arranged and have interview dates and times confirmed accurately. Being organised will allow you to stay in control of your workload. As my MD would say “If you say you are going to do something. Do it.”
Resilience – As much as there are SO many positives everyday there are times when things don’t work out as you had planned. Maybe a candidate you had developed a really positive relationship with didn’t get the job. Maybe you are trying to contact HR Managers about a fantastic candidate you are working with, but no one has any openings for them at that time. You need to be resilient. You need to remember that things in recruitment change daily. You need to keep going. Don’t give up at the first hurdle, if you keep going you will move forward and continue to make successful placements.
Interpersonal & communication skills – We spend the majority of our time speaking with clients and candidates to build positive professional relationships. Whether you are meeting someone face to face, talking over the phone or by email it is important that you communicate clearly and in a professional and approachable manner.
If you are ready for a new challenge and to learn a new set of skills, want every working day to be different and have the opportunity to increase your earning potential with commission then I would definitely recommend a Trainee Recruitment Consultant role.