Aligning the Recruiting Team with the Client
How often in today’s competitive market do we as recruiters really understand the job order that is being asked of us by our clients? Not only is technology changing at an even faster rate, but also some of the orders are so unusual that we think to ourselves, are there really candidates out there with these skills?
In many cases, our clients are just repeating to recruiters the wants and needs of their customer, i.e., the Federal Government. Our job as an outstanding resource is to establish relationships with our clients that afford us the right to question the validity and viability of what is being asked from us.
As I have mentioned in some of my prior articles, current times call for our customers to try and squeeze 2-3 people into one (those “purple squirrels”). However, that certainly doesn’t mean that they are out there waiting for you to contact them, and even if they are, how can a recruiter lure them away if they are already working?
The key to finding the right candidate is forging that bond or connection with your client,so you can quickly understand the requirements and know if the position can be filled within a reasonable time frame and within the budget constraints you are given. This adds extreme value to your team and will begin creating trust (assuming you are right).
By forging that relationship, you can also start to have a more authoritative position with your client, providing valuable commentary. Clients need feedback too! Don’t be afraid to provide back the information you have found after you have exhausted all of your searching. This will ultimately turn that client into your partner, and eventually you will become the go-to supplier.
The success of a relationship depends upon the dedication you and your team are willing to give to the account.
If a client provides you with a handful of orders to fill, and you cherry pick the ones that are easiest to recruit for, your relationship will at some point come to an abrupt halt. Make it a give-and-take relationship, and work those hard-to-fill orders. Fill those, and you will surpass your competition, and eventually the easier orders will start to arrive. Look at these hard-to-fill orders as a challenge that will make you stand out to your client. You will be totally surprised when other hiring managers from the same company start calling you or your team to help them as well!
Now, if you are a business development or sales person in the IT staffing industry, you can be certain that when you are working with a new client, they most likely give you the hardest orders to fill from the start. As exciting as it is and as pumped as you are when you finally get that order, your instinct is to bring it back to the office and try and convince your team to help you “get in the door.” This can be frustrating when your recruiters look at you like you have two heads. But this is where your sales prowess needs to kick in at the highest levels. Do a little research yourself on the technology, and make sure that what you’re asking them to fill is in fact “real” and possible. A client does not get many chances to earn a recruiter’s trust, and you need them to build your pipeline of successful hires. Do your homework, because sometimes the sale to your own internal staff can be more difficult than trying to bring in a brand new client.
Part of my joy and pleasure in life is to help mentor people in our industry in their effort to succeed in business. I would be more than happy to answer any questions or provide you with free advice to help with your career.