If you’re looking for your next job, you may be tempted to go it alone. After all, if there are plenty of available jobs in your area or your skills are in demand, do you really need the help in your job search? Maybe. There are several ways a recruiter or temp agency can help you get what you want from your career. They have connections with decision-makers, know where the best jobs are, have insight into the best places to work, and can enhance your chances of landing the job and reaching your career goals.
Here are just a few of the ways a staffing firm recruiter can help in your career search.
Recruiters have the inside track on jobs.
Recruiters who work at temp agencies and other staffing firms know where the jobs are. They have insight into who is hiring and often know about jobs before they are posted – or positions that are never posted. If your recruiter knows what you’re looking for, they can give you a heads–up as soon as a job becomes available that you could be interested in. You’ll have the opportunity to apply before it’s posted, and the field is crowded with other applicants.
Recruiters know the hiring managers.
There’s nothing scarier than walking into a job interview with no idea what to expect. What is the interviewer going to ask? What is the company looking for in their next employee? Your recruiter will know. Not only do they have a detailed list of the qualifications for the job, but they also have an ongoing relationship with decision-makers within the company. Your recruiter can give you advice on what to wear and tell you what kind of questions to expect. They can share the reason the last person left and what they need most in the person who will fill the position. They can even clue you in on pet peeves like the hiring manager hates blue shirts and looks for good eye contact.
Recruiters can help you “try before you buy.”
If you’re not sure if a job will be the right fit for you, or you’ve been trying to get a foot in the door of your dream employer, a recruiter can make that happen with temp jobs. Temp-to-hire, for example, is a common way for employers to hire for difficult to fill positions. Sure, it gives them the opportunity to make sure they’re making the right hire, but it also gives you the chance to make that same decision for yourself. You’ll know that you get along with your coworkers, respect your boss and enjoy the work before you commit to working there.
Recruiters can offer some career guidance.
When you’re conducting a job search, there are a lot of unknowns, especially if it’s been a while since you’ve been in the market for a new job. When you send over your resume, ask the recruiter what they think about it. They might recommend stronger words, an easier to read format or points you should add (or leave out). They can give you interview tips and maybe even roleplay a few interview questions if you are nervous. They know the local job market, so they can give you a realistic view of what kind of compensation you can expect and, in some cases, negotiate with the employer on your behalf.
Recruiters can lighten your job search burden.
Looking for work can be stressful. You don’t know where you stand with the employers you interviewed with. You may not even be sure if your applications are getting to the right person. A job search takes a lot of time and energy, which can be daunting if you’re already working full–time. Working with a staffing firm is like putting your job search on autopilot. While you’re busy earning income or taking care of other obligations, the recruiter is working on your behalf.
Recruiters can provide feedback.
One of the most frustrating parts about looking for a job is when you don’t get the offer, but you don’t have any idea where it went wrong. You thought you were well qualified, felt prepared enough and it seemed like you got along great with the hiring manager, but weeks later – crickets! But when you work with a recruiter, they can let you know, often soon after the interview, what went well and what didn’t. They can even get answers for questions you forgot to ask in the interview.
Recruiters can keep you from taking the wrong job.
While you have to be professional with a recruiter, you can be a little more honest with them than you might feel you can be with an employer because the stakes aren’t as high. If you ask a question or express concerns that indicate a specific job might not be the right fit for you, they can just steer you toward another one. If you do the same with the employer, you’re just out of the running and that’s it! So, please, let the recruiter know if you need a job on the bus route or prefer a boss that will offer plenty of feedback. It’s in the best interest of the recruiter that you and the employers are happy.
You won’t have to obsess about your search.
Rather than apply for jobs all over town, you can apply just once through your recruiter and be considered for possibly dozens of jobs that the recruiter will have available. It is important to stay in touch with your recruiter, though, because if they don’t hear from you, they may just assume you have found a job on your own or are no longer looking. A once a week email or phone call is plenty.
You can avoid wasting your time.
There’s nothing worse than making time in your schedule for an interview, maybe buying a new interview outfit, scheduling a babysitter only to find out in the first five minutes of the interview that a job isn’t right for you. When you work with a recruiter, you won’t find out that the job doesn’t pay enough to be worth taking the time to interview or the actual job wasn’t as described. Unfortunately, discussing pay upfront is still considered taboo. A recruiter can be your end-run around this landmine. You’ll easily know exactly what the job is and how much it pays before you take the time to meet with the interviewer.
Recruiters can keep you up on the latest.
A lot has changed in recent months. You may not know what to expect. If you haven’t had a video interview before, it can be daunting and confusing. A recruiter can give you some pointers and even some practice so you’ll know how to make a great impression even with technology that might be new to you.
Recruiters can help you increase your professional network.
You might know some people in your industry, but chances are they are your peers or maybe managers where you used to work. When you work with a recruiter, their network is your network and best of all, a lot of their contacts are true decision-makers. This can give you a real competitive advantage over others in your field.
Recruiters understand the local markets.
Every area is a little different, even if they are relatively nearby. Working in Toronto, ON is nothing like working in London, ON, even though they are in the same province. That’s why we have offices that specifically serve ON, Toronto, ON, London, ON, Vaughn, ON, New Market, ON, and St. Thomas, ON. The recruiters who work in each of these offices will be market specialists who know the area employers and challenges and opportunities that are unique to the area.
Be sure to choose the right recruiter.
Working with a recruiter can be a great addition to your job search. Whether you’re looking for a temp agency to help you find flexible short-term positions or a full-service staffing firm that can offer temporary, temp-to-hire, and direct hire opportunities you need to do your homework. Typically, a staffing firm will specialize in a specific geographic region or focus on a particular industry or skill set. Look for recruiters who truly understand the type of job you’re looking for in the area where you want to work.
Remember that recruiters are paid by the employer.
Their top priority is to provide the hiring managers with the best people for each job. They will do their best to make you happy, but they can’t put you forward for a job for which you are not qualified. They can help you polish your resume a bit, but they can’t write it for you. They can advocate for you, but they are not the ultimate decision-maker. Feel free to vent or express disappointment, but don’t take your anger out on them. Ask them what you can do better next time and move forward to the next opportunity.
Take the Next Step Forward in Your Career
At HCR, our recruiters help job seekers find positions in a variety of industries, including the automotive and manufacturing sectors. We also partner with leading businesses in the Greater Toronto Area and Southwestern Ontario, so we can help you connect with some of the top local companies.
The HCR team is happy to meet with you to discuss your career goals and help you find the best ways to move your career forward. To learn more, please contact us today.