After discovering that the current conditions of the SAP, Oracle and IT recruitment markets are very promising, I felt it was necessary to talk about how you can go about finding the increasing number of opportunities. One way, is through a recruitment consultant. But what is it that makes a good recruiter? And why would you choose to be represented by one?

There has long been scepticism revolving around the recruitment industry that only a handful of recruitment agencies are successfully overcoming. I am sure that those companies who successfully operate despite the negative paradigm are doing so because you, the candidate, find great value in good recruiter’s expertise, support and advice when putting you forward for roles.

So what are the components of this so called ‘added value?’

Well firstly, it is essential that you are represented by a recruiter who genuinely takes an interest in your preferences and then goes out of their way to accommodate those needs to the best of their ability. A bad recruiter will just submit your CV into their database and then try to persuade you to take on roles that they happen to have live at the present time – which isn’t very useful for either party.

I am not going on to suggest that in every job seeking situation you should find and use a good recruiter. Instead, I want to highlight to you the main benefits that a GOOD recruiter can offer you.

Here is what I think are the ‘10 benefits of a good recruiter.’

1) The underlying purpose of the role

A good recruiter doesn’t just know the job of interest; they know how and why the job is open. They will be able to tell you the exact reasons that the hiring company have chosen to source a candidate for the specific role and how that job will lead towards them achieving their goals. Consequently, you can attend an interview with a huge advantage over any other candidate because you can demonstrate how your skills and expertise, when applied to the role, will fit into the company’s initiatives.

2) A good recruiter can give you certainty of the opening

A surprising number of requirements are never filled as a result of the hiring manager’s lack of commitment to the hire. A good recruiter understands this and will therefore be able to identify when the client is genuine with their requirement. The recruiter will ask questions such as ‘if I found the ideal candidate today, could you make an offer by the morning?’ which establishes the importance of the role. The added value comes from knowing that every role a recruiter puts you forward for, has real intent and has a high chance of turning into an offer.

3) A good recruiter can give you the nitty gritty

In addition to establishing whether the role is actually genuine, a worthwhile recruiter will find out exactly what the role entails. They will know the specific tasks that require completing that aren’t necessarily mentioned on the job description and they will be able to tell you which of the attributes on that description are most crucial. You will then know whether the role is really within your interest.

4) Identify the role requirements

A good recruiter can assist the client in identifying the exact type of person they want and want specific skills the candidate needs to have in order to satisfy the role. From time to time the hiring manager will be unsure themselves as to specific attributes as they are unable to balance between what they want and what they actually need. A good recruiter will talk this through with a client before contacting candidates so that only ‘suitable’ consultants are contacted. This way you know that any role you are put forward for, the recruiter believes you have the credentials’ to exceed the ‘now clear’ requirements for the role.

5) Will prepare you for the interview

A good recruiter will have a solid network, and in the majority of cases, will have a good working relationship with the hiring manager. This greatly adds value as you will be supplied with information on the person who will be conducting your interview. For example, their background, what they personally look for in a potential hire and typical questions that they ask. A good recruiter will give you an opportunity to prepare yourself for the interview in a way that is impossible without their aid. You can then walk into the interview room with a ‘level head’ as you will know what to expect and how to approach answering their questions.

6) A good recruiter will highlight your relevant experience

Before submitting your CV to the company of interest, a good recruiter will go through it with you to make sure that the most relevant skills and experience are highlighted. They will also emphasise those attributes when presenting you to their client to ensure that they truly understands why you are being put forward for the opening.

7) Will negotiate the best possible salary

A good recruiter understands how to negotiate the best possible salary for you without pricing you at an uncompetitive rate. After all, it is in the interest of the recruiter to negotiate the highest possible salary, but at the same time, he doesn’t want to miss filling the position by representing overpriced candidates. You can rely on a good recruiter to obtain the highest possible earnings within the client’s budget largely because they can be influential in the way that they represent you.

8) Will have a good relationship with the company

A good recruiter will have a solid, personal relationship with the company of interest. This will have met the hiring managers face to face on a number of occasions and will therefore be able to supply you with inside information of how the company operates and how you can transition yourself to fit into the organisation. You can always query the recruiter’s relationship with the particular client to give you an indication of persuasive they can be when representing you.

9) A good recruiter will follow up on your behalf

It is within the interest of both you and the recruiter to get you promptly into the right role. As a consequence, a good recruiter will persist to chase up the client as to ensure the placement is within reach. This is sometimes necessary when the hiring manager does not place as much importance on the hire as you may like. After all, there is not a lot worse than having to wait long periods of time for feedback.

10) A good recruiter will coach you through your resignation

One thing many recruiters do not consider is the difficulties that candidates can go through if they are resigning from a position. There are complications in this process that can cause bad relationships with employers upon exit. And to be honest, this does not hold any advantages. A good consultant can assist you through resignation and give you guidance on when would be the appropriate time to resign. Greg Savage’s blog ‘How to Resign Without being a Prat’outlines the most positive way in which you can exit a firm. His advice is great, although somewhat generic to all resignation situations; so in specific circumstances, your recruiter can guide you through step by step.

Just like an Olympian, a good recruiter makes the recruitment process look easy not because it is — but because they have years of experience, considerable skill, a huge amount of patience, and a raft of other qualities. Utilising the qualities of a good recruiter can not only present you with a brand new opportunity, but can be a very rewarding experience as well.

When you do approach a recruitment company, make sure that you are dealing with a ‘good recruiter’ who automatically does a number of the above principles to really add value to your recruitment process. You can then be confident that they have the relationship and the knowledge to place you in the ideal role in the shortest possible time. Don’t be afraid to question the consultant’s ability as this will give you a much clearer idea as to whether the ‘juice is worth the squeeze.’

If you are a SAP consultant looking to find new opportunities, why don’t you challenge our recruiters to find you your next role? Or have a look at Whitehall Resources current jobs.

What do you think? Have you found other measures of a good recruiter? Let me know your thoughts and experiences by leaving a comment below and feel free to share my post. Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog to receive my future installments, where I will be talking everything SAP, Oracle and Non-SAP recruitment.  Or, for all the latest SAP and Whitehall Resources news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.

Other useful material on this topic:

5 Signs of a Great Recruiter

Why recruiters will be at the heart of our corporate future

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