After a frustrating couple of months I’ve found myself asking this question on a more regular basis. Of course I already know the short answer….no, it doesn’t. What we do is definitely not rocket science and everyone knows what *astronomical fees we charge! (*no pun intended) But if you’ll permit me to continue, I’m going to try and explain why we’re here and why, when you find a good one, they can make your life easier and maybe even save you a few quid.
These days when I have a conversation with a client or candidate about how things are going they generally have one of two perceptions - either business must be booming because of all the extra candidates on the market, or it must be horrendous because there’s no jobs to go at. Both hypothesis are wrong.
Yes there’s a load of extra job seekers out there but what that means, for my business at least, is a load of extra “noise” around each vacancy. People have always chanced their arm once in a while by applying for jobs beyond their experience - fair enough - but at the moment it’s commonplace and because there are so few jobs out there and so many job boards, the ones that are advertised are duplicated many, many times so you end up with stacks of applications from candidates with no chance of ever landing the role.
Experienced recruiters will say, “good candidates are hard to find” - they’re even harder to find through the crowds and because most good candidates still have jobs, they’re reluctant to look at other opportunities whilst there’s so much nervousness in the market.
What about vacancies then? Well let me let you into a little secret; I’ve never struggled to get vacancies. And here’s another one; I don’t fill them all either. That’s the case today and it was the case 5 years ago when I first set up Character. Nothing’s changed. The struggle is always finding the candidates.
So if we’re not guaranteeing to fill vacancies and admitting we’re not Albert Einstein, why use us then?
Well the big one is time - obviously. Because of the extra noise, it takes longer to work each vacancy and you should be busy doing something cool like art directing a shot, dreaming up awesome concepts, kerning type, writing sweet copy or code - you know, stuff we we can’t do… your job.
Great recruiters can write compelling and attractive job ads (this is a brilliant sign post by the way - there are some shockers out there), they know where to advertise to get the best response and if they’ve got their finger on the pulse, they probably already have one or two names in mind before they’ve even finished taking the brief.
Nervous candidates feel easier applying for roles through us too because of the confidentiality we provide - they know they’re in safe hands and word won’t get back to their current employers.
And because it’s what we do everyday we’re good at filtering big shortlists. Great recruiters know their candidates - what makes them tick and the potential impact they can have - we don’t just dismiss on key words or qualifications just to break the shortlist down quickly.
Every candidate put forward and probably twice the number again will have at least been interviewed over the phone, if not face to face - that takes time, time you don’t have.
We’ll really sell your company as well. I can’t say this on behalf of every recruiter but I really like all my clients - I wouldn’t work with them otherwise and if I can’t see the potential in the role or how it’ll help a candidate make progress in their career, I won’t work it. I honestly mean that.
Finally, once we’re down the line and you want to make an offer, we’ll do our best to make sure that offer sticks and prepare candidates for potential counter offers - something that’s happening more and more at the moment. We’ve seen it happen, we know the signs and we’ll be talking about it from the very first conversation.
So does the world really need recruitment consultants? Well maybe need is too stronger word - I certainly think you’ll notice the difference when you do find a good one though.