Value in Relationships - Part 1, Candidates
It’s old news to say that the recruitment industry has a bad reputation. We all know that if you start a Google search with the phrase “Recruiters are” - the suggested search options are… less than positive. Greg Savage overviews this topic in his article “Recruiters are liars and scumbags. Google says so” - but what you really want to read is the comments section for a semi-balanced argument on the subject.
Without going into the reasons for this reputation (that’s a separate article all to itself!), it’s clear that a generally negative outlook towards recruiters has made our perceived long-term value to candidates, questionable.
"Is there a value in forming long-term relationships with recruiters?"
“Recruiters in general seem to have a bad reputation. If you know you can trust your recruiter to do the right thing they will definitely look after your best interests; negotiating you the best deal possible. The recruiter can also give you access to valuable market intel.”
- Phil Staples, Manager UK FinTech, Caspian One
Look at it this way. Dave the fast food chain cashier you just met, doesn’t have a comprehensive appreciation of your fine-dining palette. You’re just buying a generic burger. Expectations for a personalised service from Dave aren’t exactly high.
On the other hand, Francesco the owner of a restaurant you regularly frequent, welcomes you by your first name. He asks about the holiday mentioned in your last visit, and suggests your ‘usual’ drink whilst highlighting new items on the menu he knows you’ll love - and he’s right. Because Francesco knows you, and you trust his judgement.
Whilst the ‘Daves’ in recruitment are adding to the industries poor reputation, it’s the ‘Francesco’ recruiters empowered by a personal relationship with you, that are of real value to long-term career success.
“Instinctively, if a new exciting opportunity opens up, I’ll think of the people I already have good relationships with first. From a candidate perspective, you get first dibs! Let’s face it, if you get on well with your recruiter, they can offer a lot of market insight, as well as help with resumes, interviews and more – especially if they are specialists in your skill set.”
- Ryan Hughes, Principal Consultant Canada FinTech, Caspian One
The Mental Health Foundation highlight five universal tips for developing and maintaining good relationships;
Give time -
A relationship is only as strong as the time and energy invested - by both parties. Great recruiters will take the time to form complex connections; expanding beyond past and present needs, exploring career goals and the wider reaching aspects of your life. To do this, equal input from you as candidate is required.
Be present -
Complex relationships can only be developed when candidates are present. A person who gives a recruiter just a CV will always be held back; compared to a candidate who creates a sustainable connection with a recruiter, sharing knowledge, information and insights.
Experienced and well connected recruiters are often privy to market intel and information available to few other people. They’ll know the expectations of their clients, and be able to provide personalised advice on unique factors such as culture fit. Trusting in their advice and listening to their input can be invaluable to long-term career progression.
Be listened to -
Whilst listening to your consultant is important, ensuring you are listened to and understood is just as vital. A common complaint of recruiters is their lack of knowledge on vacancies. At Caspian One each of our recruiters own a unique tech sector or discipline, and are educated to fully comprehend their vertical. We bring in industry experts for in-house training, do onsite visits with clients, network with influencers, share information between teams and are active in our tech communities. Helping a recruiter better appreciate who you are and where you want to go, etc… will help them to support you long-term.
Recognise unhealthy relationships -
Not all recruiters are made equal - ‘Daves’ sadly, do exist. Value is found in maintaining and progressing relationships with specialists that can appreciate your history, skills, background, family situation, financial requirements, 5/10/20 year plans, etc. If you’re not receiving that service it’s important to recognise this early and move on.
So, in reply to the original question “is there a value in forming long-term relationships with recruiters?” - the answer is yes, but... only when both parties invest in its success.
and if the recruiters not a Dave…
For more articles like this use the right-hand form to subscribe. Alternatively start building a new recruiter relationship today by submitting your CV below. Remember to comment & share!