Ever fancied a career as a recruitment consultant? Read this first before jumping ship. After almost two decades of experience in the Sydney recruitment market, this is what I have learnt!
Put in the effort and hours
Building any business from scratch is hard work, and expect to put in more than 40 hours a week and even be available 24/7. Maintain open lines of communication at all times with your candidates and clients. If you are looking for a 9am to 5pm job, then consulting is not for you. Clients need to feel like they can contact you at any time if they have an urgent vacancy to fill and, likewise, candidates if they are calling in sick or even running late for work.
Professionalism and attitude
Look the part, sound the part and build long standing relationships based on your reputation. Perception is reality! Once you have been in the business for a while, you will get referrals, snowballing your business. Stay loyal to the company you are working for, as the longer your tenure is, I guarantee the easier your job gets. Have fun in the office and enjoy what you do.
Service, service, service
Maintain excellent customer service at all times. Never EVER be late for a meeting (both internally and externally) and always return all calls. Who knows if one of the calls may be from a candidate who is now a client looking to fill a vacancy. No matter what their background is, treat everyone with respect, as every candidate is worthy and can potentially be placed.
Never stop building and growing your business
An ignorant person is someone that doesn't grow and seek out new opportunities. Relationships take time to develop and will mature at different stages. Focus on developing long term relationships, as candidates become clients, and clients become candidates.
Activity = jobs = placements = commission = shopping
Consistency is key, simple stuff. Make the calls, do the visits, get the jobs on, make placements, make the dosh and go shopping!!
Treat it like your own
Essentially your business is your brand; YOU and only YOU can make it into a successful business, and no one else will do this for you. Do what you say you are going to do, and never let people down. Clients don't buy from the company you work for but from you and you alone. Be passionate and proud of your chosen career.
Don't just rely on job boards to fill jobs
Job boards have been increasingly less successful, and you need to be confident about using other methods in conjunction with job boards to fill roles: LinkedIn, asking for referrals, your own network/head hunting, Twitter and reverse searches on Seek/Indeed. Know the CRM that you are using, and get trained on how to search for candidates.
Never assume that the vacancy is exclusive
Ask for exclusivity. It is as simple as that! Even with my most loyal clients that I have known for almost twenty years, I still ask the question and give them confidence that I will be able to fill the vacancy. 'Are you happy to leave this role with me exclusively, as I am extremely confident that I can fill it for you?'
Time kills ALL deals!
As a temporary consultant, I have learnt that the longer the role is vacant, the less chance you have of filling it. Good luck!