Every relationship, whether it is personal or professional, is maintained by a certain set of behaviors and attitudes. Think about it. Whether you are dating, conducting an interview, or making new friends, you expect the other person to act “properly” whatever that may mean to you. If your blind date is sketchy, spends the evening ignoring you for his or her phone, or stands you up, would you really try to see this person again? Not likely. So why do you, as recruiters, pursue relationships with clients that behave this way?
According to a recent survey by Sendouts, the second biggest obstacle in the recruiting workplace (after distraction) is difficulty managing clients. The participants in the survey named five primary problems:
Level the Playing Field
Ask detailed questions about the job order—the highest priority will always be finding the best candidate for the job. If you do not understand the job, this is impossible.The relationship should be symbiotic. The client needs your help filling positions as much as you need the client’s job orders. So why should the client have all of the power? There are always other job orders that can be pursued, but don’t give up on a client unless these steps are taken first:
If these all prove unsuccessful, it may be time to move on because according to Roy Munk, President of Global Healthcare Services,
"The problem may not be your process but rather the clients you are working with. If you clearly communicate your expectations to the client when you initially begin working with them and then you still run into [these] issues on a regular basis, then you may just need to move on to finding a better client.”
Build a Solid Foundation
As a recruiter, you only have so much time to commit.
"Spend the most time on those where the client buys into your clearly communicated expectations and the least on those where they do not.” –Jason Russell, Executive Recruiter at MRI St. Petersburg
When you feel you have tried everything to make the relationship work, but have no success, it is time to move on. It is still possible, however, that the problem lies with your initial approach to the client. Here are a few tips to help the relationship begin on a good note:
If you follow these steps, clearly communicate your needs and understand the client’s, and if the match is right, the relationship will be much more harmonious, efficient, and effective.