8 Traits Clients Look for in a Recruiter

November 6, 2020
Author: Glenn Hunter

The old adage about “keeping the customer happy” applies in the recruiting world as well. And in recruitment, the customer is the client that hires your firm. There are a few obvious ways to keep your recruiting customer satisfied, from charging fair and reasonable placement fees to filling jobs at lightning speed. But there are other factors to keep in mind, too.

Becoming a trusted advisor is just one of the traits clients want in a recruiter.

Here are eight traits that will help you succeed in the recruitment game.

  1. Access to qualified talent. You’ve been hired because you can bring highly sought-after talent to the table. Your clients either can’t find these prospective hires on their own or don’t have the time to do so. You’re able to uncover these hidden gems because you go deeper than mere googling or searching LinkedIn for candidates. Simply put, you turn up candidates that others can’t – and you never, ever present your client with an unqualified prospect.

  2. Marketing and networking skills. This is the ability to not only market yourself to clients, but to convince them that your candidates will be a great fit. You have the nuanced skills to create and sustain a connected network of relationships, and you’re always working your existing contacts to build a stronger pipeline. You think creatively on behalf of the client, providing valuable market insights that will help them grow their business.

  3. Being a trusted advisor. Often, your knowledge of what candidates are looking for or talent acquisition trends may be extensive in comparison to what your client knows. So you take it upon yourself to educate them. At the same time, you show an interest in the client’s business, their industry and the role you’re recruiting for. Ask and learn how the candidate’s success or failure will be measured, for example, what the day-to-day job duties entail and what the candidate’s impact on the business will be. To do this you need to speak personally with the hiring manager – in person, by phone or via teleconference.

  4. Being an expert on employment conditions and local job markets. As mentioned above, the client often will rely on your expertise in the recruitment process, which includes knowing the employment picture for specific industries in locations that are best positioned for growth. How healthy is a particular city in terms of its job and wage growth, unemployment rate and Gross Domestic Product? How soon will there be a significant recovery of jobs lost due to COVID-19 in which industries, and which of them will be the first – or the last – to come back? Fortunately, with the Market Analysis feature of LaborIQ® by ThinkWhy, you can easily provide your client this information, along with your informed opinion.

  5. Knowing where there’s talent supply and competition for roles. Similarly, clients will want your expertise on pay ranges. Recruiters who can clearly explain why certain roles generate specific salary ranges or why certain roles are difficult to fill will be an asset to the client. Using LaborIQ, you can quickly get unbiased, validated salary data for more than 20,000 job titles for all U.S. markets. Users can customize job requirements by education, experience, skills, industry and company size. In addition, the tool’s intuitive “jobs meter” tells you immediately whether a city’s talent supply for a particular job is in balance, suffers from a significant shortage or has a significant surplus – all factors that will affect the role’s recommended and forecasted salary. Armed with this knowledge, you can advise clients whether their offered salary is too low, too high or right on the money.

  6. Integrity and reliability. Beyond possessing unquestioned integrity in business, you must live up to your word during every stage of the recruitment process. If you promise to deliver to the client five great resumes within two weeks, for example, that’s what you must do. If you propose certain time frames or dates for interviews with the hiring manager, you need to meet them. “That’s how you differentiate yourself – your ability to do what you say you’re going to do,” says Kimberley Suter, a veteran recruiting and HR specialist and a member of ThinkWhy’s Executive Advisory Board. “That’s the biggest thing in recruitment.”

  7. Great listening and communications abilities. You realize that tact and empathy are required to communicate effectively with clients and candidates alike. (Sometimes, of course, there will be bad news to deliver: “I’m sorry, but you weren’t selected for this role.”) But above all, your ability to listen will help create successful matches. You never fail to listen to and respond to what the client wants. You know that providing them with regular updates is a must.

  8. Follow-up. Once you’ve successfully made the placement and collected your fee, you don’t want to be a one-hit wonder. Stay in touch with the client, inquiring about other roles to fill, for example. The aim always is to create a long-term relationship.

Related: How to Create a Win-Win Partnership with New Clients

LaborIQ by ThinkWhy continuously monitors and forecasts labor data at all levels, measuring impact to cities, industries, occupations and business across the U.S.