In today’s candidate driven market, it’s vital clients engage and motivate their recruitment partners. Easier said than done though. Clients are busy and often sceptical about recruitment firms. Yet most companies have a plethora of unfilled vacancies.  How then can companies work together with recruitment consultants and improve their recruitment success?

These tips are quick ways to help you secure better performance from the recruitment consultants you work with. These are ‘at-the-coalface’ tactical recommendations, designed for hiring managers who wish to immediately improve the probability of filling roles, whatever industry sector you operate in.

Work with niche driven recruitment people who genuinely know your sector

Take some time to analyse the approaches you receive, or the recommendations you receive. The candidate market is too competitive to work with generalists – you need to be sure your recruitment partner knows your sector.

Give vacancy exclusivity, along with reasonable timings

Recruiters work much harder when working on sole agency roles. This is akin to a magic bullet solution. Be brave, give your chosen recruiter sole agency rights and watch their commitment levels soar. They’ll do a better job for you and go the extra yard. You can reduce the risk by setting sensible timings for first applications.

Meet your recruitment partners

Probably just behind awarding sole agency in terms of maximising performance from your recruiters. If you want applicants to understand your culture, your people, and your office / location this is an easy win. Even forty five minutes of your time will do the trick. In terms of payback, this is a no-brainer – it helps the candidate matching process no end.

Use candour when describing the role

Recruiters understand that not every position is earth shatteringly exciting. Clients who are straight about the details of the role save an awful lot of time by reducing subsequent candidate drop-outs. Don’t worry about providing a written brief. If you’ve already given your recruiter exclusivity they’ll scribble down every word and will produce a more candidate friendly version in any case.

Consider carefully why candidates would be interested – use back to front thinking

In today’s economy someone in a permanent role needs good reasons to switch. While there are always active job seekers, you need to be clear about why candidates should be excited. Clients who want someone to simply change companies yet do the same role, at a similar salary, may be waiting a long while to find a new person. Instead, think back to front. For instance, if you want your new team member to be motivated yet stretched a little you’d be wise to consider people with less experience. They’ll see the role as a step up. (You might save money on the salary side too).

Feedback quickly on candidate CVs

Imagine the impact on your recruiter if CVs sit in your inbox for a week or so? The role which was viewed as “urgent” will be downgraded by your recruiter and candidate searching activity will slow. Don’t wait for a batch of five or ten CVs either. If you’ve selected the right recruiter, most CVs should result in interviews. Note: responding quickly is also a simple way to protect and ehance your employer brand within the candidate pool.

Be clear about interview plans and who candidates will meet

Enlightened clients know that suprising interviewees isn’t a good move. Even if they cope well with having to meet a variety of unexpected people for instance, candidates can find it unsettling and leave the interview with a mixed impression. Brief your recruiter on your plans and remove this possibility at a stroke.

Speed is of the essence

The cardinal sin for candidates is inaction. If there’s long gaps – more than a week – between interviews or offer decisions, all of that goodwill and positivity can soon evaporate. Especially if one of your competitors moves more quickly. Moving quickly is psychologically attractive to candidates and sends out a powerful wanted signal. Waiting for the ‘perfect’ candidate can result in your recruiter losing faith.

Offer market competitive or market generous packages

Money is not usually the most compelling driver for candidates. We view it as a hygiene factor usually. However, if the package isn’t market competitive you’ll likely have to endure your preferred candidate saying no, and may have to restart the entire process. Your recruiter will be able to give you an honest idea of what salary level is required. Clients who try to negotiate directly with candidates, in the hope of testing the water with a lower than required offer, often come unstuck.

See the recruitment process as a joint partnership with your recruiter

This may not be a populist view but our experience is that the majority of recruiters work hard for clients. However, by awarding job exclusivity and inviting your recuiter to a meeting you’ll be viewed as a key client. As a result, your recruiters will work long hours for you and think nothing of talking to candidates on your behalf over the weekend. If you follow these tips, chances are you’ll see increased performance from your recruitment partners.


To discuss these recommendations please contact Ben Vickers or Rowan Lisi, Partners, Colloco Search, T 0118 9507 9389, M 07921 126 502, T 0118 9507 9389 M 07955 055 094