How to get the most from a recruitment consultant when you are looking for your next career move

Experienced recruiter, Jake Cassidy, shares his thoughts on how to make recruitment work for you.

Everyone knows that finding a great new career opportunity can be very difficult, and often working with a recruitment consultant can bring mixed results. So how can you ensure you utilise your recruitment consultant to really help you find that great new role?

How can I help you?

The way a recruitment consultant can assist you will greatly differ depending on the position you are in personally. For example; are you currently in between jobs/actively looking to leave the business you work with, and are keen to see what is out there? Or are you in a position when you know a good career move is on the horizon and you want to keep your ear to the ground about something special that comes up?

Whichever position you are in, the most important part is making sure you have relationships with one or two select recruiters who excel in your particular market. Why is this important? If they are truly an expert in their chosen market they will be the first to hear about upcoming opportunities and often will know about these roles before they become general market knowledge. These recruiters will also generally have a broader selection of relevant opportunities should you be actively looking because they spend their whole working week ‘prospecting’ businesses for these types of roles.

How should you approach your job hunt with a recruiter?

This all depends on which camp you fall in to;

If you are not actively looking

  • Be in regular contact – you are of course busy getting on with your day job and don’t want to be constantly inundated with calls from a recruiter when looking for a new role isn’t top on your agenda – make it clear how often it is worth being in contact (once a week, once a month, once a quarter?)
  • Be clear with your requirements – what exactly is that fantastic career move going to looking like? Could it be a fantastic new business that are expanding in your region? A small start-up that may offer some equity to attract superstars? Or are you only interested in hearing about the powerhouses of your industry?

If you are very actively looking

  • Regular contact – set a regular schedule of how often you can keep in touch to hear about what is happening in the market (once a week, once a fortnight?) Also, if you are busy and someone is trying to get hold of you, there is nothing worse than radio silence! Take 10 seconds out and send them a text saying when you are going to call back.
  • Be realistic with your job requirements – everyone has a picture in their mind of the perfect job, but there could be some not so perfect looking roles that could actually turn out to be a fantastic opportunity. Be more open to hear about jobs that may mean you have to learn something new (vertical market, technology etc.…) or maybe provide a different type of challenge than you are used to (working for an interesting start-up)
  • Be realistic with your salary expectations (are you pricing yourself out of the market? Perhaps you are holding out for a £50k basic to no avail but there are a few opportunities you have missed out on that maybe paid slightly less but ticked all the other boxes? Perhaps you could earn even more than you ever dreamed in commission…
  • Be proactive – it astounds me the amount of people who claim they are actively looking for a role but seem to be very reactive to finding new opportunities. Sometimes looking for a new job is a full-time job in itself!

Regardless of why you are looking for a new role a good recruitment consultant can be a brilliant ally and give you the opportunity to look at a broader spectrum of opportunities you may not be able to uncover through your own network.

Ultimately working with a recruiter is a two way street; the key to making it a success is building a great relationship and making sure you are working towards clear and mutual goals.

About Jake Cassidy

Jake has worked as a Client Partner at Enterprise Sales Personnel Ltd for the last 3 years. Jake specialises in identifying new opportunities in the Scottish Market and aiding individuals to secure their ideal IT sales role.