Hi everyone, 

For those of you who read my previous blog post, I asked for advice on how to interview for a corporate job. I am an agency recruiter who wants to transition into corporate recruiting. For a recent job opportunity, I passed the phone interview but I guess I did not do too well during the face-to-face interview (I did not get a call back for a third interview). I followed everyone's advice but apparently something was missing. This happened to me before, so I want to see if anyone can speculate on what I am doing wrong. 

There were questions asked that I did not know the answers to because my company does not provide us with stats (ex: how many successful placements did you make last year, what is your average time to fill?); however I took the liberty of finding out some numbers so I can hopefully have more success on my next interview (I have a phone interview with another company on Friday). 

Last year, I placed 123 people in the Los Angeles area. I work for a generalist firm, so I place anything from a warehouse worker to high level managers. Is this number considered poor, average, or high in the eyes of a corporate recruiter?

When asked about my average time-to-fill, I stated it was about 2 weeks. Sometimes more, sometimes less depending on the position. This information is true but I am not sure if that was a realistic thing to say, or frowned upon as too long, or too short? 

I need some advice and I feel my nerves get the best of me when I am on the other end of the desk during an interview.

Thanks in advance for any input you can offer!


Views: 274

Comment by Katrina Kibben on February 23, 2016 at 10:24am

I'm pretty surprised to hear the question about the stats considering most companies don't have a reliable way to measure or manage their own process but I want to circulate this with a few groups and see what they come back with... 

Comment by Jackye Clayton on February 23, 2016 at 10:45am

As someone who transitioned from agency to corporate, have a few ideas!

1) Find out the stats on your own.  This is good not just for interviews it is good information for you to know. (Based on what you posted it looks like you have done that.)

2) Go to the companies website, and see where they have the most openings. Try to build some stories around those.

3) 2 Weeks to hire for IT positions is good.  For administrative positions, not so good. 

4) Look at the profiles of the current and previous recruiters and see what their backgrounds intails. 

5) You ask the questions - remember you are interviewing them too. What are their biggest recruiting challenges? Why are they hiring a new recruiter? How many open positions do they have - how many open reqs do they have at one time?

The toughest part in transitioning into corporate, IMHO, is that it does not move as fast.  They may think that you would be bored. Also, they may feel like they cannot pay you as well as your agency position... things to think about...

Comment by Maureen Sharib on February 23, 2016 at 11:01am

I suspect they thought you were lying.  THEY don't have those kinds of numbers.  Either that or they didn't want you upping the pace.

Comment by Cristina Lewis on February 23, 2016 at 12:31pm

@Jackye Clayton I feel you may be correct. One of the questions asked on my last interview was, "what would your supervisor say about you in terms of what you need to improve on?" I said, "Probably to slow down as I am accustomed to having a high sense of urgency with all positions given to me." If that is true, then I guess I shot myself in the foot. I actually don't mind any type of pace or doing the administrative work that is involved in a corporate position. It keeps me busy and I like to be busy and see a process through A-Z. 

Comment by Katrina Kibben on February 23, 2016 at 5:01pm

Hey Crisitina - also got this comment on a Facebook group I shared this on. She gave me permission to post (and permission for you to contact her: 

Nancy Ford: https://www.facebook.com/nancyfordef 

 I made the leap from agency to internal, and from reading your article, your "time to fill" highlights the fact that you haven't worked end to end recruitment. Your time to fill for an internal position could be anywhere from 30 days to 90 days+ depending on the role, the technical expertise required, and the recruiters' ability to keep the process going, influence, manage, cajole, and deliver. I would recommend highlighting the fact that you will use your delivery focus and relationship management abilities to partner with hiring managers to find the right candidate through a robust and thorough recruitment process. Another key difference between agency and internal that usually causes a bit of concern is that, with internal recruitment, you don't get to pick and choose your roles or your "clients". You MUST work with the managers in your portfolio / work area, and you MUST fill each position that comes across your desk. So being able to find the "sexy" / exciting side to roles that seem very difficult to fill, low level, etc., may differentiate you.

**another note is, you may ask them what their typical time to fill is and whether they're happy with that, what strategies / technology / policies are in place to help improve the stats, etc.?

Comment by Cristina Lewis on February 23, 2016 at 5:19pm

Thank you, Katrina!


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