Why set up a new IT recruitment agency when a Google search of the term returns about 46.2 million results? A crowded marketplace that!
Thing is, whilst as an employer we could find lots of agencies, consultants and service providers – we struggled to find one partner.
And this despite the fact that a similar search for “IT recruitment partners” returns 19.5 million results.
So what do I mean by partner?
… Someone who was willing to get to know how we operate … how we function… what our core values and culture are. How can you find the right jigsaw piece if you don’t know how the end picture should look?
… Someone who would share the risk of recruitment. If the successful candidate leaves deciding they don’t fit your business culture, for example, then you’re back to square one and out of pocket. Surely the recruiter shares some of the responsibility for an imperfect fit?! Reasonably they should share some of the risk then?
… Someone with excellent reach to find the right candidates quickly. Of course you have to hit up the job boards but you have to be much more creative in your thinking than that – we wanted our recruitment partners to kick a few rocks over and try new ideas and routes. Often the best candidate doesn’t even know they’re looking for a new opportunity – they’re not reading the job ads – how do you reach them??
… Someone who would interview and profile from an industry professional’s perspective, not a recruiters perspective. In other words if you are interviewing for a Project Manager, you should have experience of Project Management yourself. To us, that made total common sense – could a hockey coach put together a World Cup winning football team? Probably not – sure you may make some progress with a positive mental attitude and transferable team building techniques but when it came down to the actual strategic, tactical side you’d struggle. It’s the same with IT recruitment.
As an employer do you find recruitment can be an incredibly frustrating process?
We did too. So, unable to find what we were looking for… we created it. Access Talent.
Since then we have found that being a good recruitment partner is as much about passion, insight and being prepared to go that extra mile as it is about the key service elements mentioned above. Some recruitment service providers really lacked these qualities when they talked to us and it came across when talking to candidates too. How can potential employees get excited about working for you if the recruiter has a blasé attitude about the opportunity you’re offering?
Your recruitment partner should listen, ask you lots of questions to really drill down and determine the skills you require, or even better have access to your company pipeline for a proactive rather than reactive search, i.e. finding the right candidate, not the “right now” candidate
Ultimately, I firmly believe that the quality of a recruitment partner can be measured best by the quality of their personnel (the people you deal with) and the quality of the candidates they find for you.
As a client, you have to be sure that you will receive a personal, tailored, bespoke service from a professional who really gets what your ideal candidate looks like. No two requirements or job specifications are the same and only by treating each project on an individual basis can you truly ensure that all objectives are not only met but often exceeded.
And that’s what I mean by a partner.