The viability of Independent Recruiting as a homebased business is no longer a secret. With Entrepreneur magazine, Recruiter magazine, The Fordyce Letter and other authorities reporting on the success of this billion dollar industry, it is not surprising that individuals try to become independent recruiters everyday. The following are challenges new recruiters face and how to handle them.
1. PROPER TRAINING
Not everyone that has been a recruiter is qualified to offer training. As a matter of fact, I can think of a few individuals who have become renowned trainers in this profession; and yet are not active recruiters. Knowing the right way to recruit is essential to an individual’s success. Make sure that the training package you choose has up-to-date strategies and techniques. The recruiting environment is very dynamic and while traditional methods continue to be effective. The industry offers so many tools and resources to recruiters today, which are geared at bring new comers up-to-speed, and increasing the productivity of existing recruiters.
2. DEALING WITH NEWBIE COMPLEXES
From the on-set, a recruiter coming into this industry, especially as an independent recruiter, should be prepared to hold their own. Given that entry barriers are low, new recruiters come in everyday and threaten the business stability of existing recruiters. Now, not many people will stand to the side while you mess with their meat and potatoes. To the advantage of new independent recruiters, employers really do not care who started recruiting first; they look for results. An interesting idea is that, if an employer is satisfied with the recruiter that they are currently working with, they would not give you (the newbie) the time of day. In this business, the recruiter that has the right candidate, and who can get this candidate and the employer to agree to an employment relationship gets paid.
3. WHERE TO START
Most people think that they have to start with a job-order or a signed recruiting contract. Think again, your product is human capital. That is where you start. Determine what niche you will work in and immediately start to recruit talented people in that niche.
Recruiting is advertised as a profession that you can get into with little or no overhead, so why is it so expensive to advertise for jobs, search resume databases, use researchers, or get training amongst other things? Well, here is your answer. Most vendors that offer services to this industry are aware of the income potential of an independent recruiting career. They charge you in anticipation of what you will be able to afford as an accomplished recruiter. If you are already a recruiter, most of these charges will not matter much to you. But if you are new to the business and have not made any money yet, some of the demands in costs could block you from ever getting into this industry. Luckily for us, a few vendors make it their prerogative to offer recruiter services, such as training at significantly low costs without compromising value. Never make the price of a product the determinant of that products value, research vendors, contact them and find out what it is you are paying for before you make any purchase.
5. EFFECTIVE PLANNING
A good recruiter knows exactly what they will be doing at different blocks of time in a day. Without planning, a new recruiter can easily become overwhelmed with a multitude of issues that seemingly demand equal attention. Before you know it, one day begins to roll into the other without much being achieved. Take time to schedule your day and stick to your plan, you will find that you achieve more this way.
6. GETTING JOB ORDERS SIGNED AND CHOOSING CLIENTS TO WORK WITH
Most new recruiters are excited to get any job-order and will accept any terms offered by the client. The best time to negotiate terms with a client you want to work with is up-front, not later. Make sure that you and your client are on the same footing at the start of any recruiter/client relationship. You are a recruiter, career consultant, head-hunter or whatever you wish to call yourself, not a desperate salesman. In reviewing your client’s terms, present yourself as a business equal and demand that the terms you work with are both fair to you and the client. This is not just advantageous to you, but also to the client, because, if the terms are fair, their job-order will receive the right amount of attention, and not just get tossed into a pile of unworkable job orders.
7. NO REALLY – WHERE ARE THE CANDIDATES?
Now you are talking. Contrary to popular belief, getting the job-orders is the easy part of a recruiter’s job. Finding the candidates is where the work is. My first job-order as a young recruiter was for 17 medical doctors, for a major teaching hospital in Iowa. The employer was going to pay $15,000 for each candidate it employs. I was so excited; I almost hit the roof, but don’t ask me how many of those positions I filled. I learned a lot with that job-order; for starters, I would never accept a fee of $15,000 to move a medical professional to a rural area, it is a lot of work and requires a lot of other resources.
Candidates are everywhere, you talk to them daily, go to church with them, watch them on television, surf through their information on the internet, buy prescriptions from them, attend PTA meetings with them and so on. However, there are concentrated areas where candidates sit, waiting to be discovered by recruiters such as resume boards, institutional databases, professional databases, educational institutions, seminars, blog websites, and so on. Your goal as a recruiter is to create an enormous candidate pool, and become familiar with all avenues from which you can pull candidates. If you do so upfront, you will find that when you have an immediate need for a candidate, you will know exactly where to go to get them, and avoid running around in circles as a good number of recruiters do.
8. NOW YOU HAVE FOUND THEM, RECRUIT THEM
There are a number of sourcing resources today that will help you dig up even the hardest to find candidates. Finding the candidates is only a quarter of the equation. You now have to convince them to allow you to represent them; sell your open jobs to them; keep them interested in your positions; have them visit your client for further evaluation; and if the client likes them, convince them to accept the job offer; help them transition from their old positions; and ensure that they do not accept a counter offer from their current organizations. This section of recruiting, though not independent of others, is the area which if mastered, separates top producers from mediocre recruiters.
9. CLOSING THE DEAL
Closing a recruiting deal involves excellent client and candidate management. Even when a deal seems done in this industry, it can fall apart in a matter of minutes if the recruiter is not pro-actively anticipating problems and taking care of them. Training should be designed to help new recruiters prepare for and handle foreseeable problems.
10. REPEATING SUCCESS
The hallmark of excellence is the ability to replicate a successful process. Once you have made a placement, evaluate those strategies that worked and those that did not work. Lose the techniques that did not work and incorporate the ones that did into your business model.