In the recruiting business, it is important not only to provide top talent to our clients, but also to build strong relationships with clients and candidates. When we have built those solid relationships, we have the greater chance of understanding what both our clients and candidates need throughout the interviewing and hiring process. Having this information allows us to provide enormous value to all parties by ensuring the right placement is made.
There are 4 key ways to build and foster those strong relationships with clients and candidates:
The most important thing that we must do as recruiters is to listen and be attentive to what our clients and candidates are telling us. Yes, we must ask questions in order to find out what type of candidates to search for or if a certain candidate has the skills needed for the position. However, after asking each question, we must stop talking for a moment and carefully listen to our clients and candidates.
When we listen carefully, we are sure to better understand each person’s needs. Also, your candidates and clients will be able to tell through your actions how well you listened once the interviewing process begins.
Personally, I would prefer to do business with someone who I know will listen and understand my needs. It is no different with anyone else.
As recruiters, we ask a lot of information from both our clients and candidates. It is only fair that we allow some information about ourselves into conversations. For example, if it is mentioned that a client or candidate has a dog, I typically will ask questions about the dog and mention that I also have a dog.
Whenever you can find some common interest between yourself and someone else, it can quickly develop a common bond that you may not have had previously.
The key thing to remember here is NOT to be afraid to share some information about you.
Who thinks kindly of someone who doesn’t communicate clearly or often? I certainly do not and I definitely would not think kindly of someone who ignored my phone calls or emails.
I know how busy it can get for recruiters; I have been there! However, the worst mistake you can make is to NOT communicate clearly and often with your candidates and clients. Any relationship that you have built and maintained can quickly deteriorate if you are ignoring phone calls or emails.
Even if you do not have the immediate time or information to provide regarding a question, reply back via email or make a quick phone call to let your candidate or client know that you have received their message and will follow up with information tomorrow. Trust me; the simple acknowledgement that you received their message makes a HUGE difference here in trust and reliability.
4. Use of Video
Sometimes, as recruiters, it can be difficult for us to schedule face-to-face time with our clients and candidates. I know that in my past experience, it was not always easy to travel to the location of each of my clients and candidates. Distance, time-zone differences, flight costs, etc., can all make it difficult to us to foster that important face-to-face interaction that helps to further build strong relationships.
A remedy to this problem is the increasing use of video interviews that we are seeing more of in the industry. If you haven’t tried video interviewing to speak with candidates and connect candidates and clients, then you are missing an extremely beneficial tool in today’s recruiting industry. When it is impossible to physically meet with your clients and candidates, video can provide much more valuable interaction than a simple phone call.
What are some other tips you have found helpful when building strong relationships with your clients or candidates? Please share your successes and suggestions in the comments below.