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Specialists do it better

The recruitment market is awash with agencies these days, often promising lots and delivering little. There are so many players in the market place that it becomes difficult to know who to turn to, and choosing the wrong agency to partner with can have a dire effect on your business.


Having specialist sector knowledge provides a recruiter with an unrivalled understanding of the roles and organisations they are working with. Here at I Am Recruiting, we have become increasingly specialist in our approach, since we believe that the more niche we are, the better our results. With every new role or organisation with whom we work, the greater our knowledge of the sector, the larger our networks become and the more our reputation grows. It’s an ever-increasing circle: success builds success.


Admittedly, as the professional associations and membership organisations recruitment specialists, we are rather biased in favour of specialist agencies, but here are a few reasons why…



Specialists save you money…


We have overheads just like any other business, so recruitment, like any other professional service does not come cheap. But as with other professional services, a good agency has its specialisms: to be blunt, that’s code for “things they’re good at, and things they’re not so good at”. For example, we’re not very good at fundraising appointments, so we leave recruitment for those roles to the experts – but ask us about practically any role within a professional association and we’ll immediately understand what you’re looking for and what makes the role unique.


You’ll have a limited budget, so you think about placing it where you’ll get the best results. Try to work with the best in the business for your particular budget – and don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations from others in your field (or satisfied clients who are willing to provide a testimonial). Not having anybody in post might cost your organisation: not just in terms of temporary or interim staffing costs, but also loss of organisational income/earnings, reputation, member satisfaction, stress of increased workload of existing staff – or the on-costs of delayed project work starting, etc.


Delays to recruitment timetables can be costly – and a specialist agency should know exactly what you need and where to find those candidates – but recruiting the wrong person into a role can cost you even more…



Specialists save you time…


If you’ve already tried and failed to recruit, or you find yourself recruiting the same role time and again, there may be a deep-rooted problem. There might be an issue with the salary, the role itself, the advert you’re using or the interview process itself.


A specialist agency only recruits for a particular field so can offer informed advice and support to all parties involved in recruitment. And if they don’t know the answers, they should have a network of people who do. Building a relationship with a specialist agency means you can ask for favours, such as benchmarking a particular role, sense-checking a new job description or asking if they have somebody on their books in case your own advert fails to attract the perfect candidate. We will often run parallel searches to our clients’ own adverts, as a backup in case they need our assistance.


When we recently advertised a role for an events assistant we ended up with over 600 applications which needed to be looked at and shortlisted, and dealt with from an equal opportunities perspective. Since we’re recruiters, it doesn’t take us too long to long list, then short list the applications – but it might cost you considerably more time and effort.


Niche recruiters should also use their specialist knowledge to go further with the screening process. A recruiter who knows his field inside out should only send you the CVs that really do match, saving you time and effort when it comes to interviewing for the role. I love nothing more than when a client turns around and tells me that I’ve made the recruitment extremely difficult for them, since they could appoint any of the candidates!



Specialists know the market…


A good specialist recruiter won’t put forward an unsuitable candidate for a role. They will understand the strengths and characteristics you are looking for, as well as any nuances relevant to the role, your organisation or sector. Specialists should be able to sell your opportunity to prospective candidates as well as championing the candidates they represent. They will try their best to ensure each applicant is 100% prepared and briefed and can shine at their brightest, whereas a non-specialist agency may not be able to offer as deep a level of support to either the candidate or you, the client.


Ultimately, selecting the right recruiter should save time, money and disappointment for both the job-seeker and the employer looking to hire. They should be able to facilitate an effective recruitment process and secure the best deal for both parties. To make that perfect match, a recruiter must be equipped to do the following: understand what the candidate has to offer; have a firm appreciation of the nuances of the role, organisation and sector; and understand exactly where a career within your organisation is likely to lead.


If you would like to work with a specialist, call Julian Smith on 020 7148 6749 or contact him at julian@iamenterprises.co.uk to discuss your recruitment needs in confidence.

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