Recruitment Focus: 8 Steps for Success as a Search Consultant

Recruiting is like anything else. You have to focus on the things that are the most important if you are enjoy more placements, billings, and overall success. With that in mind, recruitment focus is especially important in today’s employment marketplace.

That’s because we are in the throes of a candidate-driven market. In this type of market, candidates have more employment opportunities and options. As a result, finding qualified candidates for your clients’ job order is more challenging.

Yes, they’re using your agency’s services because they can’t find the candidates they want to hire. However, candidates are so scarce right now that even your agency is having difficulty finding the candidates that your clients want to hire. That makes is sort of a good/bad news scenario.

It’s good news that your clients can’t find the candidates they want. It’s bad news that you can’t find the candidates your clients want, either.

So, this begs a couple of questions:

  • What should you as a recruiter focus on to enjoy more success?
  • What approach should you take when focusing on these things to enjoy more success?

To help answer these questions, we’re going to draw upon the wisdom of recruiting industry trainer Barb Bruno, CPC/CTS of Good as Gold Training and Development. Barb’s training techniques have guided thousands to a higher level of sales and profits. She is best known for her methodical, easy-to-implement strategies that she shares with her audiences.

According to Bruno, companies are starving for top talent right now, and it’s the recruiter who can produce that talent the fastest who will win.  As a result, you’ll find it more important than ever to dedicate time daily to focus on top priorities.

It’s also important that you focus on the 5% of candidates that you will place and provide resources for the other 95%.

Recruitment focus = proper planning

In order to focus on priorities, you need to plan.  If you don’t plan your day, urgent issues will often take the place of important, results-oriented tasks that should be your focus.  If you’re currently not a planner, planning is one step that you can implement today that will help you increase your current level of success.

Below are eight steps for sharpening your recruitment focus as an executive search consultant:

Step #1: Set your priorities.

Force yourself to fill out a planner for your next day, every single day, before you leave work. And here’s the most important part: write down your six non-negotiable actions for the following day. What are “non-negotiable actions”? Those are the things that are closest to money or will result in your getting paid the fastest. And as you well know, you can’t stay in business unless you get paid.

These are the top priorities which must be completed before you leave work the following day. In order to help you complete these priorities, set a goal of completing 65% of your planned outgoing calls before noon.

Step #2: Don’t worry . . . act!

Stop “talking about” or “worrying about” what you have to get done. Both of those activities are great time wasters. After all, you can’t get done what needs to get done if you’re talking about what needs to get done instead of getting done what needs to get done. Follow me?

If you must worry about something, limit yourself to five minutes. Then apply the proper recruitment focus . . . specifically focus on actions that will lead to tangible solutions.

Step #3: Tame the email beast.

Stop answering emails as they arrive! That’s the quickest and easiest way to get distracted, outside of checking notifications on your smartphone every five seconds. Instead, set up structured schedule for checking and responding to your email. According to Barb, this should be first thing in the morning, at mid-day, and at the end of the day.

Email is one of the greatest distractions to results-oriented activities. And we want results!

Step #4: Swallow the biggest frog.

Swallow the biggest frog first! And I do NOT mean that literally!

This simply means doing the activity that you dread the most first. That way, it’s out of the way. If you don’t get a dreaded task “off your plate” first thing in the morning, then it can prevent you from achieving your peak performance throughout the day.

That way, you can go back to swallowing those little frogs that you love so much.

Step #5: Check your (personal) baggage.

According to Barb, you should imagine a suitcase outside your door or office. Now mentally “dump” all of your personal issues or challenges into the suitcase before you enter your office. (Make sure to bring the large suitcase.)

The reason for this mental exercise is simple. If you drag your personal baggage to work, then it can prevent you from focusing on work and limit your success. In addition, inform your family and friends to only contact you at lunch or after working hours. That’s NOT to say that your family and friends fall into

Step #6: Visit appropriate websites.

This one is also simple. Don’t view inappropriate websites during working hours or send inappropriate emails. And when we say “inappropriate,” we mean not work-related or related to money-producing activities that are going to help you reach your billing goals.

If you want to participate in social networks or social media sites, that activity is completed during evening hours on your own personal computer.

Step #7: Research and source during off-hours.

This is more a corollary to the sixth step. Yes, you have to conduct research and sourcing of candidates. And yes, social media is one of the many ways in which to accomplish this.

However, it’s a good idea to do these things during the even hours. At the very least, they should be done during non prime-time hours. For the purposes of this blog post and our discussion, “prime-time hours” are defined as “money-making hours.”

Step #8: Remember the 80/20 Rule.

Ask yourself constantly, “Is this the best use of my time?” If your answer is “No,” then you need to delegate those tasks to someone else. Remember: you achieve 80% of your results from 20% of your actions.

Once you identify your top talents, those which represent the 20%, the key is to spend more of your time completing those exact actions.

So, let’s wrap up and summarize how you can increase your recruitment focus as an agency recruiter or executive search consultant. Below are four steps for doing so:

  1. Take control of your level of success.
  2. Focus where you can get results!
  3. Let the outgoing calls, not the incoming calls, control your destiny.
  4. If you focus, then you will produce greater results!

My thanks to Barb Bruno, who contributed to this article. And if you’re looking for more of Barb’s extensive wisdom and expertise, then check out the videos that she has in our extensive library of free recruitment and selection training courses. These courses are recorded versions of Top Echelon’s Expert Recruiter Coaching Series of live webinars, which we offer every month.

These webinars touch upon a variety of recruiting-related topics dealing with both candidates and clients. As always, our goal with these webinars (and corresponding videos) is to help agency recruiters and executive search consultants make more placements.

Better recruitment focus with executive search software

Maintaining the proper recruitment focus is tough enough without have the right software to get the job done. And I have good news—Top Echelon happens to have such a software! (AND we’re willing to sell it to you! Although that’s probably not as much of a surprise, is it?)

Top Echelon’s executive search software has a ton of great features, including a robust and powerful Activity Planner, which helps you to stay on task during the course of your recruiting day. Our Planner helps agency recruiters and search consultants schedule events, meetings, calls, and tasks. That way, you know what you need to do, what’s completed, and what’s overdue.

But, wait . . . there’s more! (Isn’t there aways more?) Act now and you can get 15 days of our software for FREE! This is the full version of the software and you do NOT need a credit card to start the trial. You can just start. Like right now!

Click HERE to start your free 15-day trial of the best executive search software.

Top Echelon’s applicant tracking system for agency recruiters and executive search consultants is also one of the most affordable on the market, at a cost of just $59.50 per user per month with the annual pricing plan. But if you’d rather get a live demo of the software first to get a feel for what it can do, then we can certainly show you the software. At your leisure, of course.

Click HERE to request a live demo of Top Echelon’s leading recruitment agency software!