You're a good recruitment agency. Right?

A recent perusal of the internet’s famed “front page” lead me to a conversation regarding things we don’t want to do but feel we have to do. It wasn’t very far down the page before someone mentioned having a LinkedIn account. It took all but two replies to that statement to set people off on how much they dislike recruiters. “Recruiters are like used car salesman but for people,” said one contributor. We work with recruiters every day. We come from a recruiting background. We like recruiters. So you can imagine this was a bit startling. We continued to read, however, and what followed were a lot of complaints about recruiting practices that we nor our clients would ever encourage or enact. But that doesn’t change perspective. Rather it is up to us to show people we are an ethical and good recruitment agency. Here are a few things we know you do, but we want to make sure you’re making your clients and candidates aware that you are a good recruitment agency.

We offer real opportunities

One of the most common complaints registered was along the lines of recruiters trying to sell jobs that were in an area in which the candidate had little to no experience and for a reduction of the pay. And of course, it was conveniently located four states over. This is not the hallmark of a good recruitment agency, and if it’s not representative of your firm, show your candidate that you’re a realistic recruiter. A good recruitment agency understands its clients’ needs and knows their candidates’ capabilities. They know what it really takes to make a placement that is gain for both sides, and they don’t try to present a candidate or an opportunity for anything other than who they are or what it is.

We make honest commitments, not empty promises

The inherent quality of a commitment implies a level of relationship. A good recruitment agency believes in the value of strong relationships with clients and candidates. Relationships can’t survive on the foundation of empty promises. A number of comments in the aforementioned thread expressed frustration with promises from recruiters that they would find and present an opportunity that was an improvement to the candidate’s existing job. These promises were usually attached to a statement that ensured the candidate a job. We of good recruiting practices know better than to make promises in regards to results. We believe in the long term benefit of relationships built on equity and trust, and we know making foolhardy assurances about compensation and advancements is a surefire way to destruct a relationship.

We present qualified candidates 

There were a number of issues presented from the client side as well. The most prominent was the presentation of candidates who did not meet the baseline requirements stated in the job posting. This is a disservice to both the client and the candidate. It is financially disruptive to extend a client company’s search process by wasting their time with ill-fitting candidates, and it is embarrassingly deceptive to build a candidate’s hopes for a position for which they are not qualified. We know you’re a good recruitment agency, and we want your clients and candidates to know it as well. This ties into the previous point regarding honesty. It’s vital to let a candidate know they are not right for a position. At best, it solidifies with that candidate that you are not interested in wasting their time and you’re going to deal fairly with them. At worst, it upsets the candidate solely, rather than upsetting a client as well.

Let’s not forget where this conversation started. LinkedIn. The necessary evil of LinkedIn is undeniable. It’s a powerful tool. But like many powerful tools, it is most effective when used with finesse and in combination with other, complementary tools. If your web presence as a recruiter is solely on LinkedIn, then you may be a good recruitment agency, but you could be driving away potential placements simply off the negative connotation between LinkedIn and recruiter spam. Having a high-quality and high-functioning website to funnel clients and candidates presents a level of professionalism that supersedes the perception sometimes associated with LinkedIn-only recruiters. If you’re a good recruitment agency that needs a great website, let us know.

Adam is a copy writer, content specialist and editor with Recruiters Websites, a web design firm specializing in websites for the recruiting and staffing industry.

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