How To Interview For A Job In Recruitment
Written By Jess Reid
RUN in the opposite direction (inserts running emoji) …
On a serious note Recruitment can be, and in my opinion is, a rewarding and quite frankly awesome career to be in. I genuinely mean that.
But to get into recruitment you have to face an interview (like every career) - the difference being you’re facing an interview with a trained interviewer. People who, on the large part, interview others every single day (ahhhhh, they’ll see right through your cunning lines & your lack of preparation).
What’s Your Why?
It’s pretty obvious really – you’ll be asked why recruitment/why you want to move recruitment agency. So be prepared, not just for the question but to demonstrate this reason throughout the process.
(p.s. don’t be negative about an ex employer – it doesn’t look good)
It doesn’t matter if it’s a combination of reasons or just one clear reason. A half-hearted answer won’t make the cut here.
Usually those who do well have a combination of reasons behind their why.
Do You Even Know What’s Involved?
Firstly, make sure you know what a Recruitment Consultant does in a day. You’ll be amazed at the things I’ve heard when interviewing – so I can only imagine those with more internal recruitment experience have heard worse.
It’s also A LOT of hard work.
Early starts, late finishes, chaotic days where you don’t get chance to take a break – not the glamourous; Ibiza holidays, drunken nights out and days playing ping pong with the office dog trying to join in that most places shout about.
You’re going to be on the phone A LOT – recruitment managers love it when you say that. But it’s about making the time on the phone count so think about how you’ll get good quality people on the phone in the first place.
You’ll have to sell – so make sure you understand this before you rock up to interview.
What Company? What Sector?
Make sure before you meet any company you research. If you can’t do this within your own recruitment process then it’s quite likely you won’t be able to help others do it with theirs.
Look at their sectors and what would interest you. It’s pretty key you find a sector you have passion for (or could see one developing) - a bit like dating I guess!
Behave Like A Recruiter...
Be confident. Confidence not arrogance please.
Be resilient; sometimes interviews like to make the interview tough to see what you’re made of. So keep going... don’t let it put you off. Prepare yourself for role plays within interview (they are still used).
Be inquisitive; now this is key. You need to know the recruitment agency is right for you. After all there are thousands out there - some good, some bad. Ask questions around targets, KPIs, incentives, plans for the future, the background of the business, possible sectors you could step into or build from. If they say we have a hot desk/warm desk for you – ask how they’d define that term?
Just be yourself - personality is vital but just keep it professional.
And, when you think you’ve found your right match...
Good luck because this is where the hard work starts. You’ll have good and bad days.
BUT... you’ll enjoy a rewarding career in so many ways.