What our Recruiters Want From you

Looking for a new job can be a stressful task. That’s why many people enlist the help of a recruiter to aid them in their search.

But while many jobseekers will be expecting certain things from their agency, the recruiter also wants certain things from the other party involved - yes, that’s you!

Of course, the recruiter’s job is to find you a job, but that doesn’t mean you can’t take a few steps to make their life easier - remember, you’re both working towards the same goal.

Many of the things a recruiter wants from you is just common sense, however, some are so obvious that they may be overlooked.

Here are a few things that will help both you and your recruiter in the long run.

Honesty it the best policy

An old cliché no doubt, but one that certainly rings true. Everyone is tempted to embellish their skills when writing a CV. However, if you do, you’re only likely to get found out at the interview stage when a prospective employee pries into your exaggerations.

“Honesty is always the best policy, if you have pending applications make it clear to your consultant, the likelihood is you will be looking for a job again and consultants have memories like elephants and won’t forget that time you let them down.” Bilal Oussellam, Recruitment Consultant, Edinburgh

By telling the truth about your experience and capabilities early on, your recruiter is more likely to help you get good interviews that are suited to your actual skills.

“I would advise anyone looking for work to ensure that they have an up-to-date CV with full dates of employment and job descriptions. There is nothing more frustrating for a consultant who finds a good CV only to find out that it is not up to date and they have actually been unemployed or changed jobs for the last 3-4 months yet the CV states the last job is to ‘present’.” Fiona Norman, Senior Consultant, Edinburgh
Be honest with your recruiter from the start, or it may come back to bite you later on.

Know what you want

If you already have an idea of the kind of job you want, it will help your recruiter no end. The more you co-operate, the more streamlined the whole process becomes.

The first time you speak to your new recruiter you should outline all of the things that you are looking for. This will help them set out a clear strategy that helps you achieve your goals quicker.

“I would always ask candidates to do their research and not just apply for the role because they thought it looked good. Keep track of where you submit your CV and only apply for opportunities you fully intend to pursue.” Bilal Ousselam

You might be looking for a complete change of career direction, and that’s fine, but you still need to have an idea of the route you want to take. After all, it could involve specialist training, further education or some other form of qualification.

“Make sure you have a real think about what is most important to you. Is it salary? Progression opportunities? Work/life balance? How far would you willingly work from home, even in the snowy, dark winter months? Give the recruiter as much detail as possible. That way we won’t bother you discussing opportunities which aren’t relevant. If this information you give us when we first speak change, particularly if you would now need more money, or to be close to home. We don’t want to speak to clients about you to then have you changed the goal posts at the last minute.” Fiona Todd, Senior Consultant, Glasgow

Write a CV not an essay

Recruiters receive hundreds of CVs everyday and they’ve only got a few minutes to scan-read each one.

If you’ve written a dense essay, outlining why you are perfect for every job in existence, chances are you’ll be skipped over very quickly.

“Sell yourself to us! The more you put in your CV the more you are selling yourself and make recruiters take an interest in your CV from a first glance. Remember we have never met you and don’t know you therefore we only have a piece of paper to get to know you initially… get yourself noticed and impress us with your experience, duties and responsibilities.” Fiona Norman

A good CV should be tailored to suit each job spec. This means having your most relevant skills and experience displayed clearly at the beginning of the document. It’s important not to overdo it, so keep it simple. A few sentences should be just fine and it will help the recruiter know that you are the person for the job much quicker.

“DO NOT assume that recruiters or employers can read between the lines. Treat the reader like they’re stupid, ensuring that you’re identifying most (if not all) of the key words and skills in a detailed job advert. If you have great project experience but don’t mention the specific project, then you could miss out on the perfect job! I would even go to the length of ensuring that you hit these key words and skills briefly in an opening statement before going into more detail.” Matthew Kirk, Senior Consultant, Liverpool.

It’s also worth mentioning attention to detail here. If your CV is full of typos and grammatical mistakes it’s not really the best advert for your services.

Be open to suggestions

From time to time, your recruiter may suggest a role that’s slightly outside of what you’re looking at. The recruiter may feel that your skills could be adapted to a different type of job.

Even if it’s a job you wouldn't have actively looked for yourself, keeping an open mind is quite important. You may end up interviewing for and getting the role and changing the direction of your career for the better - you never know.

“Remember we’re the specialists within our markets. We know what businesses have a great work/life balance, and we know which hiring managers are great to work with. So let us consult with you! If we bring a job to your attention that we think is a good fit for you, you should hear us out. With the masses of candidates we work with at any one time – you should be flattered and intrigued to learn what role we think is right for you.” Fiona Todd
Ask questions

If you don’t understand something, ask! Maybe it’s about a job role, or you’d like some feedback from an interview that you didn’t get.

Don’t be afraid to get in touch with your recruiter and ask for information. They will be more than happy to help.

“I have worked in the logistics industry for 4 years and over that time I have developed some excellent relationships with my candidates and clients. When approaching an agency for work it is really important to trust that they have done their research about the companies they chose to work with. We spend a lot of time listening to what our candidates want in a job and aim to find them a job to match.” Jennifer Taylor, Senior Consultant, Liverpool

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