You need to hire a recruiter? Questions you need to ask!

Recruiting excellent talent is becoming more and more challenging.  Choosing a professional recruiter can sometimes be a challenge as well.

For those of you who are uncertain about using a third party recruiter here are some questions you may want to ask:

1) What do you know about the industry, my business and the people I need in my business?

You want to feel confident that the recruitment firm has the insight and the contacts to be able to find the right people for you!

2) Can you provide examples/references of similar work??

It doesn’t matter whether they have made placements in your particular industry – it matters more that they can access “chemistry or fit” along with specific skill sets required for the job

3)What is your process?

If the only thing they do is fire away resumes… that’s not a process you want to become involve with!  Where is the value added?

4) What KPI’s do you measure your success…?

Making the placement isn’t the only measure of success.. let them tell you what else is important along the way to a successful close!

5) Do you offer other services such as salary, career advice, market trend report?

Most good recruiters have excellent “market intelligence” that you can obtain just for asking – no charge!

6) What organizations does your firm belong to?

If they are serious about their profession, they will be members of professional groups.  Enough said!

There are more questions that will come out as you have discussions with various firms but if you ask these, you are off to a great start!

What a Recruiter Wants and Needs From You, the Candidate/Job Seeker

What a Recruiter Wants and Needs From You

Recruiters are valuable to job seekers in several ways.

Recruiters are an amazing resource for job seekers. The trouble is that most job seekers have unrealistic expectations of recruiters, and mistakenly believe that recruiters find jobs for people. The truth is that recruiters fill jobs for companies.

This principle works great if you are a job seeker with the right skill set to fill a position that’s currently open or will be in the near future. In other words, if you are marketable and happen to find a recruiter working in your area of expertise, the odds of that recruiter placing you are pretty high. However, if you are working with a recruiter who doesn’t have any open positions in your industry, or you are difficult to work with, you may be headed down a dead end.

Recruiters are valuable to job seekers in several ways. The most obvious is that they may be able to present you for a position. They also offer tremendous value to job seekers in areas that may not be so obvious. For example, recruiters might have insight into your market or geography that you didn’t know about. They may offer advice about job-search activities, your résumé or your interview skills. In many cases, it’s actually in their best interest for you to be hired.

That means if you help recruiters get what they want and need from you, you will have a greater chance of getting what you want from them. Here are some ways you can make the most of your relationship with recruiters:

– Build a connection. People want to help people. Seek appropriate ways to connect with recruiters as people so as to inspire them to want to work with you. Don’t go overboard and be inappropriate, but be personable.

– Be up front. Don’t make recruiters pull information out of you and don’t mislead them with your answers, as they need key facts from you. Truthfully answer inquiries about how much you make, whether you’re willing to relocate, how you feel about traveling, or any other key questions. Anything less is a waste of time — both theirs and yours.

– Remember that a recruiter has limited time. Recruiters have lots of people wanting their attention. Use the time you have with them effectively and direct their attention to your value. In order to stand out from the sea of other job seekers, quote achievements that highlight how your performance differentiates you. Recruiters are looking for sound bites they can repeat to a hiring manager.

– Respond promptly. Check your voice mail and e-mail at least twice a day. Recruiters live in a “hurry up and wait” world and will call you when they need you, so don’t hesitate. Otherwise they will keep looking to find someone else to meet their immediate need.

– Don’t let a recruiter be surprised by anything. Recruiters hate to fall in love with a candidate, only to find out later that there are skeletons in his or her closet. Honesty, while putting your best foot forward, is still the best policy. Let recruiters know what’s going on and they will do their best to help you.

– Provide information about your job-search progress. If you are interviewing and getting close to an offer, let your recruiters know. They may want the opportunity to push the interviewer into making an offer, and it’s in your best interest if they do.

– Remember that you are a reflection of the recruiter. Recruiters risk their professional reputation and relationships with hiring managers each time they present a candidate. If they present wrong candidates or someone who doesn’t perform well in an interview, their work life becomes more difficult. Recruiters live in a world dominated by trust and don’t have authority over hiring managers; they act in service to hiring managers. They can’t afford much risk in this area.

– Comply with their process. Give recruiters what they need when they need it. While they don’t make the rules or create the process, they are often held accountable for it. If you want them to help you, you have to help them.

– Share the responsibility of maintaining communication and following up. If a recruiter is working 20 positions, and 100 people apply to each of those openings, then that means 2,000 people want his or her attention at any given time. Recruiters should be professional, to be sure, but ask yourself this: How fast could you get back to someone if you had so many people wanting something from you? Don’t lose sight of the fact that the sole responsibility of recruiters is making their hiring managers happy.

– Don’t harass recruiters under the guise of being persistent. This will only frustrate and eventually anger the person you want working on your behalf. Recruiters can say and do things you cannot. They can also give you an inside scoop that you can’t get anywhere else. Are these really the people you want to make angry? Recruiters may not make the decision to hire you, but they can surely make a decision to eliminate you from the process.

All in all, recruiters function as educators and filters, and they should give you as much information as possible about positions, companies and managers. As they do this, they will be simultaneously learning about you and deciding if hiring managers should invest their time with you as a prospective hire. The trick is to be a job seeker with whom recruiters want to invest their time.

What does your “on-line presence” say about you?

One of the most over looked factors of email is your email address?  What does it say about you if you are looking for a career move?  If you are not sure, have someone you respect look at your email address and give you their honest feedback?

Here’s a useful link for folks who are really concerned about their “on-line” brand!

http://blogs.forbes.com/danschawbel/2011/02/28/the-reputation-economy/?partner=alerts

I want to leave my current job!

We get asked this all the time.  “how do I go about searching for a job, when I have one already?”This week, I spoke with a couple of candidates who approached me confidentially to discuss a possible career move.  Note – I said “career move”  vs  “job”.  So many people go through life dissatisfied with their careers and don’t do anything about it!  When approaching a professional recruiter, they(the recruiter) will want to know where you are in the thought process.  I usually ask people – on a scale of 1 – 6 ( six meaning you will leave any moment) where are you in the process of leaving your current employer.  This crystalizes your time frame for making a dcision and that is important – especially to a recruiter who might be working with clients who have immediate or pending needs. Take stock of your career right now.  Where are you on that scale of 1- 6?  If you are anywhere near a 4 or 5 or 6 then get to work!  Start writing down things that are important to you when making a career move.  Name the top three things that are important to you so that you don’t get confused when faced with mulitple job offers!

What do I say…in an interview?

Twice in the past week, I was asked by two candidates “how do I answer certain questions?” What they were really asking is “how do I answer, based upon what the interviewer wants to hear?” My response… don’t try to figure out what you think they want you to say.. just tell it like it is. There’s no right or wrong answer, your experience, is your experience. Be yourself.    The interview is a place of discovery… for the organization to get to know the candidate and vice versa.  In the end.. it’s all about the right “fit” for BOTH parties.

Prime Celebrates 20 Years!

Prime Management Group Inc., a London executive search firm, is marking its 20th anniversary. Founded by Kimberley Chesney, the firm has dealt with thousands of candidates and client organizations and weathered the storms of three economic downturns.

PMG has offices in Kitchener and London, but works with affiliates in 400 locations worldwide. The firm is working with alternative energy companies expanding into Southwestern Ontario.

New website launches!

We are excited to announce the launch of the new PMG website!

New Office in Kitchener-Waterloo

We are pleased to announce the opening of the Kitchener-Waterloo-Cambridge branch of PMG. Located in downtown Kitchener, this location will specialize in servicing the needs of the “Golden Triangle” manufacturing industry. Please join us in welcoming Colleen Young, Senior Recruitment Specialist as the manager of our new branch.

It’s Lonely at the Top

As a Senior Manager in your company, do you ever feel that way? Do you find that you are often putting more hours in and receiving less job satisfaction? Well you are not alone! Recent surveys show that Senior Managers suffer from feelings of isolation because of the extreme pressure they are under. Never before have we seen such uncertainty. While you may possess all the hard and soft skills necessary for being a good leader, you may feel pulled in a number of different directions. How do you cope?

First of all, the fact that you have recognized these feelings is a good thing. You can’t fix a problem unless you can identify it! Secondly, don’t be afraid to confide in a trusted colleague. Chances are, they have experienced the same feelings you are having. Talking about the problem can be a vehicle to open up ideas for ways to cope. Thirdly, don’t let your values clash with what is being asked of you at your organization. Easier said than done! However, there are many, many companies and organizations who still have the good old fashion values of integrity, honesty and respect.

One of our clients recently shared that they would sooner hire team members who possess integrity, honesty and respect for others over another candidate who possessed all the talent in the world. They look for hardworking, dedicated people with track records in developing others around them. Non-selfish, well balanced individuals thrive in their environment.

There is one thing for sure – working 70 hours a week will do nothing for your home life! Something always suffers when you choose to ignore it! If you are a good leader, you will lead by example and demonstrate well rounded attributes of a balanced, productive individual. Sprinting is fine but watch out for the long term effects of neglecting or taking for granted. Pay attention to your health. Talk to other senior managers and remember to delegate.

Hiring the right people and delegating to competent individuals has never caused an organization to suffer!