10 Top Tips For Working With Recruitment Agencies

Thoughout my career I’ve heard recruitment consultants being compared in a derogatory way to estate agents, that they are unprofessional and out to make a quick buck. This is unfair to both professions.  There are many highly professional, experienced recruiters out there who would provide you with a competitive advantage in your job search.


Here are 10 quick tips to ensure you have a positive experience.


1. Research

Do some research before sending an agency your CV. Check that they operate in your preferred industry, consistently recruit people at your level and are members of a professional body.


2. Preparation

Be prepared for the first contact from an Agency. Be clear on the type of roles, locations and salary levels you would be willing to consider. If you are unsure of the correct salary level for a certain role, don’t be afraid to consult with the recruiter.



3. Acurracy 

Ensure your CV/Application form is accurate with regards to qualification grades, employment dates, and employment history. “Bending the truth” on a CV is a real faux pas. The employer will quickly identify any inconsistencies which will prevent you securing a job offer, possibly give you a negative reputation and will reflect badly on the recruiter which will stop them selecting you for future vacancies.


4. Consistency

Agencies prefer candidates looking for a role that is consistent with their experience as it’s easier to have the CV approved by a Client. If you are changing industries or have a break in your employment history, you will need to speak with the recruiter before submitting a CV


5. Communication

Responding quickly to a recruiter’s telephone call or email is not only profitable to the recruiter but more importantly beneficial to you, the candidate. Recruitment is fast paced and the recruiter is often competing to get their candidates considered by the employer ahead of those of a rival agency’s


6. Agencies Exist To Make Money

Always remember that Agencies are a business and therefore place their priority with the customer, which unfortunately is not you. They have sales targets to meet and will only work on speculative CVs if the individual’s skillset is rare and highly sought after.


7. Keyword Targetted 

When applying for a particular role, ensure that your CV, application form and covering letter target the appropriate keywords in the advert. These keywords will be identified by recruiters and recruitment software to select candidates with the right expertise from the database


8. Speculative Adverts

If a job advert sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Some Agencies will use these adverts to “trawl” the industry for exceptional candidates. Don’t be surprised if you are told that this job has been filled only to see it resurface at a later date. Not all Agencies are members of The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC)


9. Free Service

Never part with any money to a recruitment agency. It is unlawful for anyone to charge you a fee or commission to get you a job.


10. Partnership

The biggest piece of advice I can give, is one I coach to Clients. Working in partnership with an agency gives you a competitive advantage. If you follow this mantra, you can’t go wrong.


Happy job hunting!


About the Author

Matt Wallace – CV Writer/Recruitment Mentor

We Write CVs – matt@wewritecvs.com

UK based CV Writers who are former Recruitment and HR professionals  working solely for We Write CV’s guaranteeing Clients a quality service. Check out our range of services delivered at a competitive prices.

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