Hi. If you have taken the opportunity to read the first of my articles on the subject of growing your recruitment agency, then you will know that: This series of three articles will help you explore as a recruitment agency owner, director or manager what key changes, you can make to grow your recruitment agency.
It will give you a great checklist if you are looking to start a recruitment agency. It will also act as a checklist of best practice for you if you have already made significant inroads into your growth plans. As with article one, while I use the generic term ‘agency’ this will be as relevant if you are a recruitment business or search firm. If you haven’t read the first one then now you know what to expect here!
So let’s press on and number 6 on your list is:
Run your recruitment business and/or team by process not by people. Better to have six dogged recruitment consultants following process to the letter, than have six mavericks full of personality, doing things their way. Have six recruiters with the right personality (and values – see part one here) adhering to the process and you will have a thriving business. If you fill your business full of mavericks doing it via the “grown up” recruitment way, you will neither get to the headcount that you want nor the profit. Fill it with mavericks and your staff turnover will be high and your income and profit will be a rollercoaster of stress for you. Hold everybody accountable to each other for adhering to set processes. Process doesn’t produce robots. Process allows great people to shine. Have you got five dogged recruiters and one maverick? Sure, the maverick (if successful) brings the money in. That same person also upsets the other five more than they will tell you. And that spills over to non performance, politics and attrition. Run your recruitment agency by process.
7. Be consistent. In all you do. You are the leader of the gang. People need to know the boundaries of what is acceptable and what is not. That means consistency of mood, communication, times for meetings, frequency of meetings, one to ones and the way you handle situations. In your recruitment agency when you announce a series of planned recruitment consultant training sessions you will be leading and you cancel the second one at short notice because you have “an urgent client call to make” you have just lost all credibility of the level of importance you place on staff training. And your staff. If you monitor your people and your recruitment agency’s KPI’s be consistent with what you do with them and how you deal with them. I’ve seen way too many leaders of teams pick holes in a team members KPI’s when they don’t hit revenue target and not even comment on the same persons KPI’s when they do hit target. So what does that say about you when you do that? That the only thing that counts is revenue, that’s what. Leave your outside issues at the front door before you go in to work, leave your enjoyment of one employees company over another to personal taste and have one word above your door, Consistency.
8. Treat each and every single candidate as if they are the only candidate you have. The only thing that will bring money into your recruitment agency is quality candidates. The biggest thing that will grow your reputation with your clients is the quality of your candidates. The best way to grow your network is treat candidates like a king. The number one gripe from candidates about recruitment agencies and recruitment consultants is the slap dash way they are treated. Take a new look at every step in your recruitment process and ensure that at every touch point it is a world class experience for your candidate. Cradle to grave…and beyond.
9. Concentrate on ‘The Big Four’. If you have read some of my other previous articles or watched some of my videos, then this won’t be new to you. And if you have, then it might be a timely reminder. The Big Four. (1) High demand short supply. When you focus on high demand short supply vacancies and candidates a number of things happen. Clients listen to what you have to say. Your fees are at a premium. Your candidates’ day rate or salary peaks. You always have someone and something to talk about and even average candidates get job offers. (2) Niche and growing. That will make you a little money now. It will make you a lot of money later. And it will help you position you and your recruitment consultancy as a thought leader and ahead of the pack. Imagine if you were in at the start of DevOps. Another added benefit of niche and growing is when it goes big it becomes ‘high demand short supply’ and then you are absolutely at the top of your game and the market. (3) Legislative or Regulatory change. Right now think GDPR. When it’s legislative or regulatory, every business has to comply. With compliance there is no argument. Overtime and holiday pay. Bonus and holiday pay. You name it – you own it. Imagine the scenario where every business over 200 headcount on one site had to have a qualified nurse on site during working hours by a certain date in the year. Wow! (4) Disruption. Where there is disruption there is opportunity. Think Brexit – the Government have hired dozens upon dozens of lawyers as part of their Brexit team, the number of qualified nurses outside of the EU applying to work in Britain has been reduced by 90% and banks are threatening to pull out of London. Opportunity! In a more straight forward scenario – when a leader of a team of workers resigns and leaves, then left behind is a raft of worried, unhappy, uncertain and frustrated people. People are loyal to their boss first and their company second. Follow the trail of who has moved where, who did they replace, who has replaced them and you have a path paved with opportunity. The big four … a licence to grow your recruitment agency.
10. Get training for yourself, keep up to date with new ideas, best practices and keep ahead of the pack. You are the leader of your team and your recruitment agency. You have the opportunity to be the leader in your area, sector and specialism. You owe it to your employees to be ahead of the curve. That’s means attending the best and appropriate events, networking with the right people, watching and listening to webinars, signing up to the cutting edge newsletters, journals, podcasts and video content. When your staff come top you asking for a subscription to a chrome extension and you don’t know what a “chrome” is then that’s a wake up call. If you were to take out a months trial for Lusha, Contactout or Rocketreach and found out what was the best one and indeed if any of them were value for money then you will save a fortune in money and time letting your troops do it. Leadership is about leading from the front. Sure you might send out a scouting party from time to time. That’s called delegation. Stay ahead, keep ahead and be head of all that goes on. Be inspirational*. Although that’s* worthy possibly of further comment on part three.
If you have enjoyed this article then you can read the final part in the trilogy of how to grow your recruitment agency here. If you would like a discussion with me about what it takes to make your mark in recruitment (whether you are looking to grow or not) then give me a call or drop me a line. Thanks for reading this article. If you are reading it outside of the ku.dos site then do visit www.kudos.training Either way call me on 07976 828637
Written by Warren Kemp of kudos.training, Recruitment Matters International and The Kemp Consultancy. ku.dos is online recruitment training for permanent recruiters and headhunters. Warren has been helping recruiters recruit better since 1998.