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How to make recruiters like you

You may not like recruiters. You may think that they are like estate agents or journalists. You may even accuse them of being parasites. But if you want a new job, it’s counterproductive to antagonize them and productive to get them on your side. Here’s how to do it:

· Put yourself in their shoes

All the recruiters we spoke to would like to point out that they make their money by placing candidates. If they don’t place anyone, they won’t get paid. If they think you are a strong candidate they will therefore be nice to you. If they don’t think you’re a strong candidate, don’t blame them for passing you over.

“Don’t take it personally,” says the head of one financial services recruitment boutique. “Remember that we need to be viewed as useful and essential by the client and therefore we can only put forward candidates matching the job description and who are of a higher calibre than the client is able to source directly.”

· Spell out what you have to offer

Most recruiters receive hundreds of CVs a week. They don’t have time to read them all in detail. Therefore, if you’re applying for a job use the covering letter to spell out precisely why you’re a good fit.

“I am at the buzz word-driven end of a buzz word-driven industry,” says one recruiter. “You need to make it very obvious that you are suited to the role. For example, just because you’ve worked with credit derivatives, I do now know that you can do copulas.”

· Don’t expect them to pay for everything

Recruiters will often suggest a meeting in a coffee shop. You may feel they should pay for anything you consume, but you will endear yourself better if you volunteer to pick up the tab.

“When a candidate offers to pay, it makes me feel that they have got some value from the meeting,” says one recruiter.

· Regularly update your CV

This is not so much about getting recruiters to like you as getting their computer systems to like you.

“Most CVs are entered into computer systems and most of these systems operate using a combination of recentness and relevancy,” says a recruiter. “If you make a small change and send it through to us again, it will move to the top of the queue.”

· Find someone to refer you

On the whole, recruiters will like you more if you are referred by someone they respect (preferably a client). This does not always hold true, however.

“People who are referred are often a bit needy. You have to ask why they didn’t come through directly,” says a recruiter.

Comments (91)

Comments
  1. – Be white, tall, Oxbridge and public school.

  2. “Don’t take it personally,” says the head of one financial services recruitment boutique. “Remember that we need to be viewed as useful and essential by the client and therefore we can only put forward candidates matching the job description and who are of a higher calibre than the client is able to source directly.”

    majority of HHs have no real idea about the underlying businesses they recruit for so have difficulty putting forward the right CVs in any case.

    “Most CVs are entered into computer systems and most of these systems operate using a combination of recentness and relevancy,” says a recruiter. “If you make a small change and send it through to us again, it will move to the top of the queue.”

    It’s these large recruitment agencies we try to avoid – massive warehousing of CVs , always CV gathering to show a large database to potential clients. luckily (in one way) the recent break-ups and redundancies from the big firms has seen lots more small operations in business, more devoted to actually headhunt than to be CV merchants.

  3. “People who are referred are often a bit needy. You have to ask why they didn’t come through directly,” says a recruiter.

    huh? going direct to a HH is needy/desperate for sure. strange statement at the end there – please explain.

    Actually, it sounds like all the statements have come from 1 headhunter, and, as usual, we know who it is (those of us who are experienced enough)……

  4. None of this will make any difference to a recruiter. The only thing that will is being a good candidate and having a good CV. If you don’t then if you buy me lunch I still won’t call you.

    Filthy Rich Headhunter Reply
     
  5. “Recruiters will often suggest a meeting in a coffee shop. You may feel they should pay for anything you consume, but you will endear yourself better if you volunteer to pick up the tab.”

    You are joking right?
    Often it’s us who give info to you, it’s not often that we gain anything useful from HHs. you should pay for everything then. Also it’s not our job to go coffee with you, it is your job though, so things like this are expensed.

    Sarah – sounds like you interviewed a junior person at the company we can’t mention

  6. @Ponteretto – I didn’t interview anyone from the place that no one dares to mention. I interviewed three different people, all heads of firms.

    Sarah, Editor, eFinancialCareers Reply
     
  7. Ponteretto, am I correct in assuming you are talking about those incompetent clowns at the company we cant mention. Why Sarah do you let them this site and damage your own credibility?

  8. I couldn’t agree more with ponterotto

    Sarah and you are an editor……blimey!!! make sure to check your spelling

  9. I normally quite enjoy the articles and banter on efinancialcareers but this article is just nonsense.

    Who pays for coffee? CVs on a database and how to get to the top of a search? Referred candidates being needy? Jesus…..

    Just find a good recruiter (either by reputation or recommendation) who works in your sector / specialist area. If they are any good they will advise you honestly what they feel they can do for you before you even send a CV in to them.

  10. @me I can’t see the spelling mistake. Do you mean no one? It can be written as two words, or as no-one. Both are legitimate.

    Sarah, Editor, eFinancialCareers Reply
     
  11. To answer the question :

    1. Be naive and let them know who else you are interviewing with.
    2. Be prepared to be interview fodder (they are sending you along to a firm to make themselves look good in order to press the point home to their client that they have a lot of people on their books).
    3. Be prepared to give names away of staff with whom you have worked with before.

    Yes -we have all been through it and I hope most have learnt – stay away!!

    Young and naive no more Reply
     
  12. Be funny. No one likes a misery guts. I know some RMs whose careers were made by desk surfing and shooting the breeze with all and sundry.

  13. @sarah
    i do dare to name – we all do, but YOU will censor it away! i remember a similar set of postings last year about the firm we’re not allowed to mention (“FWANATM”).

    As “young and naive and no more” points out – these are some of the practices carried out by the FWANATM). Adding on these two further things:

    (4) Asking the question “where have you been interviewing?”

    This is so they can mass dump candidates on a client they didn’t know was hiring, messing up your own chances and the work of another more innovative headhunter. FWANATM usual excuse is that they don’t want to send your cv to places you have been already! is there anyone that dumb to actually tell them?

    (5) Advertising relentlessly for positions that don’t exist so they can build up the database

    some other firms of course do this, but not to the same extent as FWANATM

  14. Other suggestions include:
    Complimenting them on their pointy shoes, full Windsor knots and ‘fashionable’ haircuts? Or re-affirming that they are ahead of Foxtens estate agents in the life pecking order?

  15. Steve,

    You. Are. A. Legend :)

    But you forgot to mention complimenting them on the ever present thick-pinstriped suit from Burtons, and the ‘membership’ card to ‘city boys’ bar, Abacus.

    pointy shoes – hahaha Reply
     
  16. You don’t make a career in HR by choice. You end up in HR after having failed at better things.

  17. FWANATM??

    confused by FWANATM Reply
     
  18. If a HH invites you to coffee and accepts your offer to pay – you don’t want to work with them. They have a budget for that and it gets expensed. As someone already pointed out you are a valuable source of info even if you aren’t the right candidate for a job they currently have. Here’s the bottom line on HH – find a couple of good ones by referral from your friends and stick to those.

  19. what a joke…..so if a candidate buys a 2 coffee they will be looked on favourably by the agent…..is this a wind up or something

  20. HH – for every 100 there is 1 that is worth the trouble to talk to.

    HH: “So you’re looking at M&A roles? But your CV indicates you’ve never worked in M&A…”

    Candidate: “Really? Strategic Advisory, Corporate Finance and Origination, European Execution Team… I am sure it is clear that I have….”

    HH: “But it doesn’t say M&A anywhere….”

    Candidate (thinks to himself): “WTF? Even you weren’t so fit I should be walking out of the door right now….”

    Candidate: “So, how long have you been doing this? Do you have a boyfriend?”

    And so on …..

    True Story. Blonde, fit, and well worth the 3 weeks of fun prior to redundancy.

  21. Can you the sheer horror of it if one day your son or daughter stated that they wanted to be a HH ? Don’t these HH types have parents who could have advised them otherwise ? I blame the parents….

  22. HH (in his best Estuary accent) : “So what did you get your MBA in ?” (Yes,true…)

  23. Ronaldo you are a WISE man..you all guys got the picture well done, You ll do well with the HHs if you make the point from the begining that they are oh so smart people, so cool and oh my god I love your new dress darling..

    Ho Ho Ho; i know which one you are talking about, well worth it!!

  24. Recruiters are a load of cr*p. Don’t talk to them….

  25. hi Sarah
    Surely, in the interests of transparency,you can name the ‘sources’ of the quotes in your article?

    That way your readers can at least avoid having to shell out for a coffee…

  26. @risky – no one will go on the record for this kind of thing. They know they’ll probably get a negative reception from candidates and would rather not be associated with it. It’s a bit like Gordon Brown and the Iraq investigation – people will say more if it’s a closed enquiry.

    Sarah, Editor, eFinancialCareers Reply
     
  27. Hey, there is a lot of sh’t out there agreed, but the good ones are still making money and providing a valuable service.

    When the head of Trading invites you to the England game for a job well done or your candidates send you presents for helping them get a new job, or God forbid the Consultative Recruiter actually helps the unplacable by spending 2 minutes explaining where they are going wrong.

    It goes both ways.

    HH WHat’s your sharpe ratio for the last 3 years?
    Trader – We don’t measure that here
    HH That is a very important indication for a few of my Hedge Fund Clients.
    Trader – Well they are rubbish then.
    HH They include three of the most successful Hedge Funds over the last 5 years. OK how many times was the strategy leveraged?
    Candidate puts phone down.

    Through my career I have had at least 8 people call me back after getting a job not through me as my advice had helped and I got nothing for it. (admittedly that’s only one a year). Oh and yes we know the bad guys, just don’t talk to them. Go through recommendations. The good ones will get rewarded for service and attitude.

  28. @Sarah-Ponterotto vs Ponteretto

    That’s where your spelling/sight let you down.

    On the way to my MSc Economics (and quite probably no job) Reply
     
  29. Recruiters are all morons but then again so are most bankers so I guess its a good match

  30. I recieve somewhere between 100-200 CVs per week, only 2-3% are relevant to the specific part of the industry I cover. I have neither the time nor inclination to answer every single email. It is my job to select and screen the most relevant and present these to my clients. Unfortunately, there are some pretty desperate bankers out there, a lot of them frustrated at being out of work and looking for someone to blame. Recruiters are an easy target as most of them are crap at their jobs, but there are some excellent specialist firms out there. The best advice is to find an agency that specialises in your area, be it risk, operations, trading etc and call them. If you are indeed relevent to their business area and have got through to a decent operation this will become clear within minutes of speaking with them. If not, hang up and try another.

  31. All headhunters, jobs websites, bodyshoppers, recruitment firms …should be banned, and their HR people bundled and thrown into the Atlantic never to be found, never to return to civilisation. They waste time, money, energy and other resources of jobseekers. They play with their lives heartlessly. And on top of that, they peddle myths, untruths, presumptions and worse to unsuspecting jobseekers.

  32. I have tried to use HHs and RCs in rare moments in the past and I have found them all to be entirely useless. I have never found a role in old-fashioned merchant banking or investment banking through vermin like this.

    A combination of nepotism and good connections seems to have done the trick.

    These are third rate people who can’t get jobs as estate agents / journalists or MPs. I have noticed these people seem to spring exclusively from the T & B communities: typically cheap leather shoes, disgustingly tailored suits and no polity whatever.

    I have never found a job through these idiots and I’m not about to start now. Such people shuffle the same crowd from desk to desk and add nothing of value to the real economy.

    ChildofLordPatrick Reply
     
  33. The real question is how to make me like headhunters, these pathetic dumbasses

  34. References are routinely used to expand the recruiters’s network. Providing them will not help the candidate in any way.

    In my experience >80% of advertised roles don’t exist by the time the role gets advertised. They either didn’t exist from the start and were just recruiter “prospects”, or are back fill cv’s for candidates already placed, or are no hope applications for a client who already has an internal candidate.

  35. Most CVs are entered into computer systems and most of these systems operate using a combination of recentness and relevancy

  36. The point is that if you have no connections you must use others. In this time we need them and they need us. That’s the way it is. But sad anyway..

  37. “… it’s not often that we gain anything useful from HHs”

    What like a new job? Whopper.

  38. Never seen this before its great, bankers calling other people names and talking about adding real value to the economy.

    The attitudes on here are priceless, people who never use recruiters or who think job boards should be thrown into the Atlantic(?) who are putting their thoughts across ON A RECRUITMENT JOB BOARD WEBSITE,… you couldn’t make it up

    And we are the morons??

    Love it.

  39. Thanks Sarah
    I understand even if I do think that its a bit harsh comparing a headhunter to Gordon. They may be parasites but they arent a patch on him.

  40. how pathetic! do you really want the drink offered by someone who might be unemployed, before securing him/her a job?

  41. “Don’t take it personally,” says the head of one financial services recruitment boutique.
    Even this is offensive, as if candidates were cattle.
    I wish I knew the name of this “gentleman” so that I could suggest everyone to avoid him and leave HIM in turn out of a job.
    We are what we do and our c/v is therefore ourselves. Candidates are personally putting themselves at stake when submitting their cv, so they will obviously take it personally .
    What DECENT HHs should do is learn again politeness and professionality.
    Recently an “irritating” HH contacted me through this website after seeing my anonymous resume; asked me for a full CV hinting at opportunities and once he got it he never bothered to reply/contact me despite 1 phone and 1 e.mail msgs from my side. What a poor show of professionality!
    Ponterotto got a point saying that 99 pct of them do not have a clue of what they are reading in a CV; this is understandable. What it’s not acceptable is that they do not listen and do not make their brains work hard enough.
    Only “off the shelf products” candidates apply, please!

  42. Recruiter1, well nailed. Why look at Efinancial if you have your own network and don’t need us. There are some brilliant comments on here.

    Right, if any angry Banker is struggling for a job and getting nowhere with us vermin I have some advice. Don’t say some of us don’t try to help.

    1. Your job may now be obsolete, try one of the accounting firms, apply direct, they are recruiting or even a consultancy (unlucky).

    2. Check that your CV is written properly. Lord Henry from Bonkers Asset Management could have got one of his gun dogs to better.

    3. We are paid 25% upwards of first year total compensation, and they are not going to pay that in this climate if you don’t posses all skills and more.

    4. If you think you are perfect for a role then pester the recruiter, if he is worth his salt he will give you honest feedback.

    5. It is illegal to post an advert that is not real. If you have issue with some firms get data protection to look into it. I am safe.

    6. If you don’t treat me with respect then you are a liability at interview and you will not make the short list.

    Now run along and get your own jobs, and you can buy me a pint as thanks.

  43. That’s true
    sarah – that’s like the millionth time you’ve spelt my name wrong

    Ponterotto – broken bridge

    Ponteretto – vaguely translates as colon bridge ?? (from my home language into english)

    (or is it cleverly deliberate?)

  44. @ confused about FWANATM

    Firm We Are Not Allowed To Mention = FWANATM

    A cowboy recruitment outfit we are not allowed to name on this site, in direct violation of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights . It’ll be like Iran here within weeks

  45. “HH WHat’s your sharpe ratio for the last 3 years?
    Trader – We don’t measure that here
    HH That is a very important indication for a few of my Hedge Fund Clients.
    Trader – Well they are rubbish then.
    HH They include three of the most successful Hedge Funds over the last 5 years. OK how many times was the strategy leveraged?
    Candidate puts phone down”

    That’s pure fiction – a conversation that couldn’t have happened. The HH who wrote this doesn’t have a clue

  46. Dear Sarah
    I just came to town and would like to speak to the best, honest, professional recruiter. Can you recommend one according to your taste please?

  47. @ponterotto – really sorry. Had no intention of making you sound like a colon.

    Sarah, Editor, eFinancialCareers Reply
     
  48. I have said it once and I will say it again – Do not use these so-called HH’s (aka recruitment clerks).

  49. Eeeer, I don’t know where to start … These people are clueless. If you ever get recruited via HH, it must be pure luck… I’ve met only one professional HH in my entire life… Firstly, they have no idea about the essence of the roles, for which they are recruiting.

    Many of them have really annoying manners. One HH actually gave me some advice on how to handle job interviews as if it was my first job interview (I have 10 years of professional experience). This moron actually told me to dress neatly and smile. He used to call me and complain how hard his job, as if I give a toss. He was so depressing! It’s really annoying to deal with a depressed HH.

    When they are interested in your candidacy and pass on your CV, they may get psychotic and impatient. But in most cases, they don’t care because they send CVs of 100 other guys for the same position and they never bother reply to your calls and emails. Rude! Where have they been raised? At a barn?

  50. Sarah, it’s Ponterotto, not Ponteretto, but I’m sure no one really cares.

  51. I am a 60 year old English male, alive, healthy, intelligent, slightly over weight but working on that (It doesn’t affect my abilities) But seemingly in the world of the RC or HH… I’M DEAD!!

    I have been avidly applying for jobs for the past 6 months to no avail!

    I am so annoyed and frustrated at being patronised by recruitment agencies in trying to obtain gainful employment that fits my experience! Why am I told that I am “over qualified” for a particular role? To me that means I can do the job. Why am I told that I “would be bored” in a particular role? I can decide if I am bored or not. Then they say “Don’t take it personally.” Sorry but I do take it personally otherwise why would they say it otherwise?

    “Remember that we need to be viewed as useful and essential by the client and therefore we can only put forward candidates matching the job description and who are of a higher calibre than the client is able to source directly.” Why do you think I apply for an advertised role? I have read the brief job description and matched it with my CV! Yet the RC or HH will tell me that I am not suitable!! Age discrimination is still rife in the City and RCs and HHs know this!

  52. I find it perturbing to speak to twenty something recruiters who start with ‘tell me about yourself’ or ‘where do you see yourself in five years’ and still get excited over ‘top tier’ candidates who have sat in positions of responsibility and oversight during the biggest financial balls up in many a year and are quite happy to revolve them back into a job by singing their praises and are overly mindful of the salary band and their retainer….. just hope they are not going to manage your pension fund. Alienate recruiters?… Can we shoot some of them?

  53. Bigfellah-60 years old and desperate to work-Oh dear.

  54. @ Bigfellah – actually a topic worthy of some debate rather than the usual recruiters bashing.

    Of course age discrimination is alive and kicking in the City, perpetrated by the banks unwillingness to consider anyone who is past their mid 40s rather than it being recruiters making that call.

    As it is often pointed out here by unemployed bankers, recruiters by their very nature are fairly mercenary and take the approach that a fee is a fee, whether that comes from placing a 23 year old or someone is 60 is pretty much irrelevant.

    I would never discriminate on the basis of age, however have had clients basically tell me that they don’t want anyone over a certain age, giving excuses such as “they wouldn’t be a good team fit”.

  55. Is FWANATM the new Goldman Sachs?

  56. @ Recruiter 1973
    Have you ever found the moral courage and honesty to tell the candidate(s) about the client’s excuses?
    If you did candidates could then pursue this through an employment tribunal.
    If you didn’t you probably broke the law as well as the client.
    Age discrimination persists because people like you can’t accept that you are discriminating on the basis of age.

  57. I hope to see many of these outfits go out of business by the end of this year. Indeed I have withdrawn financing from some of them already….

    Small business banker Reply
     
  58. @ Roger

    On a number of occassions where I have a very good relationship with the candidate I have been honest and told them that its just not likely they will be considered and given them the reason. Sadly, for most experienced / older (however you want to phrase it) candidates this comes as no shock. The most common response is that they wouldn’t want to work for a firm that took that approach anyway.

    There is very little value in banging my head against a brick wall and wasting time trying to get people a job where they are never going to get one, when I know that there may be other clients out there who will consider a candidate based on what they can do not how old they are. This is where I focus my efforts

  59. I would like to add to Bigfellah’s gripe as a late 40s English male who has spent the last 20 years abroad and is looking to come back to the UK. “Been away too long” is the automatic response before they complain they can’t find anyone with the skills and hire a Pole instead.

    My own complaint is with those who do not reply to applications or e mails – beyond an automated response if you’re lucky – and are always “in a meeting” when you make a follow up call. I speak several languages, including two less common ones, and it is quite obvious from applying for positions requiring these languages, and ticking most if not all of the other boxes, and then not getting any response, that they do not read the CVs properly, (and yes I did get mine rewritten: total W.O.M, as it has resulted in less interviews than my old one did, which I wrote myself). It is not good enough to say that they receive hundreds of CVs, – it is their job to read them – or that they are busy – so am I. Being polite works both ways, and any application deserves a reply. It was actually quite refreshing to get an old-fashioned rejection letter: needless to say it was from a direct recruiter, not an agency.

    Grumpy old man Reply
     
  60. btw I couldn’t be bother to respond to someone who actually can’t get it.
    and @ ponterotto I don’t know what your native language is, although I can probably guess, but ponteretto means something else. Retto is not colon!

  61. @ Recruiter 1973

    You say “On a number of occassions where I have a very good relationship with the candidate I have been honest and told them that its just not likely they will be considered and given them the reason. Sadly, for most experienced / older (however you want to phrase it) candidates this comes as no shock. The most common response is that they wouldn’t want to work for a firm that took that approach anyway.” Surely this is not being honest – this is a case for the tribunal as Roger says. In such cases you should tell the candidate which employer is discriminating so that they can be taken to task over the issue.

    By your own admission, you state “I would never discriminate on the basis of age, however have had clients basically tell me that they don’t want anyone over a certain age, giving excuses such as “they wouldn’t be a good team fit”.” The sooner the discriminating employers (like those you mention)and/or recruiters (like yourself) who sweep it under the carpet are apprehended the better the chances of anyone regardless of age have getting a proper job.

    Name and shame should be the name of the game.

  62. @ Bigfellah-You are too old to post on here so stop moaning

  63. @ Bigfellah- Try a hobby. Knitting, bridge, model making, stamp collecting etc

  64. @ Bigfellah
    by 60 you really should have made
    (1) enough money not to worry about a job
    (2) lots and lots of contacts in the City that you do not need to use a headhunter
    you shouldn’t be posting here granddad

    littlelittlefella Reply
     
  65. @ ponterotto
    you are such a smart man!!

  66. @ Bigfellah- Go to the shops and buy some werthers orignal and sit and enjoy your garden. You will be worn out after your ‘big day out’ anyway.

  67. @ Bigfellah

    What I’m saying is that I will look to place people regardless of age.

    I take a pragmatic approach to actually get people placed rather than mess around with approaches to firms that will never consider a candidate for whatever spurious reason – not just age but lack of degree, etc

    If you disagree with this level of practicality then, don’t think its worth me bothering to try help candidates and would rather I ignore them, thats an opinion that you’re entitled to even if I think its wide of the mark.

  68. LittleFellah your a bit out of line.

    I am happy for you to have your view but think that some great actors, judges, bishops and even those in politics etc etc achieve amazing things past 60. Are you really saying the Queen should resign due to age.

    I am pleased to say I know people in their 70s and 80s wildly enjoying creating wealth very hapily employed.,

  69. @kenballl -zzzzzzzzz. I agree people can achieve alot in their final years. Just dont come on here and whine about it if you cant get a job. You cant really compare actors, the quen etc with Bankers. They dont have to do a full days work, getting up early etc.

  70. @Bigfellah-The problem is no one really wants someone like their granddad wandering round a bank in their slippers looking for the nearerst chair so they can have a quick nap.

  71. @ Bigfellah -60 years old and using a computer, thats pretty impressive.

  72. @ kenballl

    the queen has achieved little in her life, sitting around all day doing nothing, waiving, watching people bow , having her a$$ wiped by a slave, waiving some more, corgi neutering have been features of he life since becoming queen

    not a good example

  73. @ Bigfellah
    Agree with Amazed
    I wish my granddad was as cool as you

    littlelittlefella Reply
     
  74. @sarah
    does efinancialcareers verify the job adverts posted by firms such as say, FWANATM?

  75. @ponterotto – In posting a position with us, all recruiters agree to our terms and conditions, which stipulate that job advertisements must relate to specific and genuine job opportunities available at the time of posting.

    Sarah, Editor, eFinancialCareers Reply
     
  76. FWANATM – I am certain that someone will identify them at some point. He/she can’t be blamed if acting in a state of intoxication induced by unemployment. Now let us pray…

    Calvin Luther Knox Reply
     
  77. @sarah
    Ahh-ha…thought so

  78. Football Managers, work hard, very stressful, but it’s the stigma attached. If you have not made it to massive global role then you are going to struggle in banking. (unless you are a technical guru and you can get some contracts)

    Final point the age thing is an aside. If a banker is very client facing and networked to the max then he might not need a recruiter (unless the target firm see it as hiring a freind and then will use a recruiter at a reduced fee). Lots of bankers, quants and technologist lack the ability to sell themselves and actualy focus on what is going to help thier career. They can’t see the wood from the tree’s, and that is where we can help.

    If nobody had heard of Stephen Hawkin and he sent his CV in direct to hr at banks without help, would he get the best research job in the world? NO he would get a random job that would not help him fulfill his potential (probably just the bank with the best ramp) His CV would take a age to write, I could do it in minutes. We help these people.

    MND Recruitment Reply
     
  79. its the kind of drivel written by MND Recruitment that only serves to act as a deterrent for me (and I imagine for many others) to not have anything to do with Recruitment clerks.

  80. ” If a banker is very client facing and networked to the max then he might not need a recruiter (unless the target firm see it as hiring a freind and then will use a recruiter at a reduced fee). Lots of bankers, quants and technologist lack the ability to sell themselves and actualy focus on what is going to help thier career. They can’t see the wood from the tree’s, and that is where we can help. ”

    sorry but you don’t have to be client facing to have contacts. in the course of a 40 year career you would have (1) made friends at work , (2) worked with people who moved elsewhere.

    The sheer number of people this guy would have come into contact with , no matter what job he has been doing, should mean he has lots of connections in the city. Getting to 60 and not have ever got to a senior enough position such that everyone knows you is strange.

    Even still, I think if he digged deep into his old contact list, he’d not have to lower himself and enlist the help of a vastly (in comparison) inexperienced headhunter.

  81. @ Bigfellah – Have you tried using your contacts? Usually geezers like you are sought after by private banks to solicit business (that is getting you to introduce your contacts to them), banks pay you a retrocession on revenues created by your client. Then again, this is assuming you have a) high level contacts, b) those contacts actually trust and appreciate your advice…

  82. I don’t understand the constant ranting. Yes we all hate recruitment consultants (even I do and I used to be one) but do we have to be so bitter? Why can’t everyone just accept that there are some recruiters that are good at their jobs (exceptional even) and some (many) that are bad. It’s the same with many other professions but because so many of us deal with recruiters it’s just far more visible. Using words like parasites is a little bit pathetic.

  83. Finally some reason SAMEOLD well said. Its just a job, the same as bankers or other people in the City just have jobs. They are not saving the world or lives or anything actually important. Too lump everyone in the same boat is childish. There are clearly bad bankers out there too but those of us with brains (not the tabloid press obviously!) realise that this can not apply to a whole industry.

    Two things make recruiters an easy target-the city has been villified recently so they are all feeling bitter as they have been attacked and need to take it out on someone.

    Secondly some people who work for large financial institutions, traditionally earn big bonuses, think that because they earn a lot of money that they are somehow more important than others and look down on them.

    Its called snobbery. Some great examples of it on here, I guess it makes them feel better about themselves.

    Keep it coming!

  84. I’m sure this is a well meant article and the part which states ‘don’t take it personally’ is probably the best part, but I’m struggling with the rest it.

    First of all any recruiter who will stand to make money from a potential candidate and is not willing to pay for coffee is simply not worth their salt.

    Second whilst I can appreciate that recruiters are often inundated with CV’s, especially in these difficult times but it is their job to:

    (a) Find the Gems amongst the coal. (determine the good from the bad), if you can’t even be bothered to do this, why are you in this game?

    (b) Utilise their expertise to understand what a candidate is trying to tell them about their experience, instead of simply relying upon a flashy CV or getting a candidate to spell it all out on in a lengthy covering letter. If a candidate can’t rely on a recruitment agent to do a bit of work on their behalf and utilise their expertise instead of just being a mere box ticker – what’s the point? candidates may as well approach a company directly and save having to pay essentially an ineffective middle man.

    (c) Be proactive with a candidate, if you where in their shoes, how would you like to be

  85. To the naysayers abounding here, if no one uses recruiters, why do top firms continue to use their services to source active candidates and headhunt passive ones? You may not like them, but use your obviously inflated heads and think that clients are clearly getting something out of the deal that they’re prepared to pay good money for.

    Dare I ask – do you feel the same about in-house search teams? They are the only viable alternative in many cases, but they are rarely as effective for anything specialist.

    Poor market conditions, regardless of the severity, always see a reduction in recruiters. Many firms will go bust and in some cases that’s no bad thing, but there are some great HH’s out there that leave both candidate and client happy with the process having done a great job. If you haven’t managed to work with one of these firms at any point in your career, then maybe that actually says something about you rather than the industry as a whole…

  86. what a load of *tish. alot of the comments here are from people that dont understand what a real recruiter or headhunter can do for them and how complex, time consuming and detailed the search and placement process is. the real true headhunters will find the good candidates without the candidates having to do anything at all apart from perform in their jobs. unfortunately the 80:20 pareto rule applys and therefore the 80% here that bad mouthing the profession has obviously come into contact with the 80% of poor recruiters and HH’s. the top therefore like for like. 80 to the 80 and the 20 for the 20.
    so basically if you want to be treated with the upmost professionalism and be put in front of the best opportunities then put your head down stop whinging, work hard and make a name for yourself.

  87. Its a game of networking and I think the role of head hunters should be abolished by the companies another way to save lot of money.I know people who have applied to companies directly but the same person with the same CV go through a Head Hunter get the Job. The concerned in the company favor a head hunter in recruiting the person and both have thier cuts from the commission

  88. The recruiter-versus-banker-bashing goes on and on and on….
    Fact: Two very well-known investment banks jointly spent in excess of $50 million during 2008 on recruitment fees worlwide. I work with both.
    Either they are prepared to pay rather large sums of money for a service which they believe is beneficial to their business or it’s just another display of financial recklessness, somewhat ironically managed and controlled by these very same bankers.

    Pot Kettle Black Reply
     
  89. @sall786 – again a lack of understanding. There are a number of reasons why a candidate may not have got through directly, such as of them is presentation and the ability to talk to the hiring manager directly, as well as line managers having neither time nor inclination to screen every CV that pops in off the database. It also tells you that the managers VALUE what the HH adds to the process. I know you don’t want to acknowledge this, but the facts speak for themselves. I don’t know any internal recs at good firms who have or would take kick backs, so don’t please don’t invent theories just because you don’t like the truth of a situation.

    As has been said countless times now, if it’s a valueless service and a waste of money, why do companies voluntarily use HH’s. If there are more effective and cheaper approaches, don’t you think they’d be used?

    Bottom line – don’t knock it just because you don’t understand it.

  90. Having read these comments it is necessary to remind some people of the basics of how recruiters operate:
    They source talent for the clients’ organisations, not jobs for candidates. They are paid for this service by their clients. It does not cost candidates a penny.
    Understand the model, and your place in it.

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