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Job order up! How recruiters should prioritise their work

Posted on 26/02/2020
by Nick Boulton

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Every year, recruitment companies leave cash on the table for two simple reasons:

  1. They don’t prioritise jobs effectively
  2. Consultants don’t use their time efficiently

Successful recruiters are disciplined and ensure they have a plan to work on the right things every day.

Sounds simple, right? WRONG!

Let me tell you what’s probably happening right now in your company:

At the start of the month, your manager calls a team meeting. You all sit down discuss what jobs are “hot”, how many roles you are going to work and which ones you are going to fill.

There’s a bit of grunting, snorting, scoffing and general trash talking about other teams/account managers and the clients who are deemed “A waste of time”.

Your manager then asks everyone how they are feeling about the team’s chances of filling their roles.

After a bit of back slapping, high fiving and chest pumping, the team is optimistic and buoyed. They’re already congratulating each other on how well their month is going to go, trotting out the room like a team of show ponies.

The reality?

At the end of the month, you find that nothing has really changed. The same roles are being worked with little to no urgency - maybe a couple have been filled. Everyone is feeling flat, your managers face looks like he is sucking piss off a nettle and everyone leaves the room deflated, wondering why they’re even working in recruitment.

The question that really needs answering is:

“What’s the best way to separate the wheat from the chaff and how do I fill the most jobs?”

For me, there are five easy ways to prioritise your day, work most efficiently and be successful.

You need an effective day plan

Take time at the end of each day to make a list of priorities for the following day, no exceptions. You’ll be amazed how quickly this gets you on track every morning. Remember hot calling times, focus on what’s urgent and what is fillable, DO NOT waste the key times of the day, you don’t get them back

Tackle the quick wins first

If you have a job with a client that you know inside out, jump on it. Don’t think I’ll get back to that because it’s “easy,” be smart and spend time on this before focusing on a “hard-to-fill” vacancy.

Don’t let the hard-to-fill jobs take up all of your time

After you get the easy-to-fill jobs out of the way, don’t think it’s best to focus entire days on a single hard-to-fill job order. They tend to be the jobs with the biggest fees, so you think, “All I need is one good candidate…”

But if you spend an entire day on one job, your placements will suffer. (In other words, you won’t make money!)

Allocate a block of time each day to the big ticket jobs, not entire days. This will allow you to spread your time across other “hot” jobs, giving you a better chance of making multiple placements and more moolah!

Set aside time for follow-ups

Make sure you set aside time each day for follow-ups with candidates and clients.  If you are not keeping in touch with your clients and candidates constantly, you are likely to miss out on placements. Remember, time kills all deals!

By keeping the lines of communication open and frequent, you will immediately pick up on any changes in circumstance, interest or availability.

Maintain a good database and task list of people.

To make the most out of your day plan and be as efficient as possible, it’s important you are maintaining an up-to-date database of candidates and clients, regularly checking in and being diligent in how you document and forward diarise conversations.

Remember, information is power.


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