One of our top clients came into the office this week to talk about a major project we are undertaking to set up a new business unit for their organisation. Chatting away, he told us the story of his best friend who insists on doing all of his recruitment himself to save money.
He talked about how proud his friend is of placing job adverts in lots of different media, then taking all of the CV’s from “applicants” that he receives, all the phone-calls he gets from interested people who just “want to have a chat” about the job, etc. He then spends the next few evenings & weekends going through the CV’s, calling up the 15 or so interesting candidates and chatting to them about their background, experience, etc.
I was sat in a coffee shop over the weekend and overheard two friends talking about cars.
One was exalting the virtues of his lovely German saloon, with leather interior, cruise control, faultless driving experience,etc. His friend was also exalting how cheap his car cost to buy and run, the low “upfront cost”, low cost for spare parts, servicing, etc.
Although the conversation was about cars – the two friends were coming from opposite ends of the scale in terms of car needs and wants. Kind of similar to comparing apples & pears.
This set me thinking about clients “buying” recruitment services and their wants & needs; be it “Transactional” or “Value-add”.
We are all in control of how we spend our time. After all, it’s our life and we are the ones making decisions on how we spend each and every minute of each day.
But in reality, most of us fritter away our time on many different things that truly add no real benefit to our lives.
We live in an unprecedented age of information technology. The internet and “social media” now means we could all spend 24/7 working through the mountain of information that invades our lives from every conceivable angle. If you don’t believe this – just take a look around you on the train, in the coffee shop. How many people are using the “window to the world” that is the smartphone?
With all these new distractions adding to the “old fashioned” attention grabbers of incoming phone-calls, e-mails and colleagues asking for your time – it’s no wonder anyone can actually get any meaningful work completed. So – let’s look at some easy to use ideas to double your daily productivity:
Practical Time Management ideas:
The No1 advice is to be in control of your working day. You make the decisions on how to spend your time, don’t let events overly influence you. So – don’t take that phone call, don’t look at that e-mail, don’t deal with that colleague until it’s the right time for you. It’s not 100% possible to do this, but if you work at improving your control over your time the results will be remarkable. Continue reading Timestealers – overcome your time management demons and double your productivity.
Interviews aren’t a scary experience if you focus on some simple preparation. At Wynne Consulting we have many years’ experience of helping high quality people to be successful at interview, so here are a few easy tips to help you deliver the perfect interview:
The single biggest reason clients use Wynne Consulting is our ability to find people that aren’t on the “Open Job Market”. That means we find the best people in your market sector that aren’t applying for Job Advertisements, talking to Recruitment Agencies or using CV Websites.
Growth in permanent staff salaries are also growing at their highest rate since before the COVID pandemic started in 2020.
There are numerous times in life when ‘more’ is better; More space, bigger car, more money. So doesn’t it make sense to use multiple agencies to fill your roles? Surely more agencies would equal more candidates; and subsequently a better spread of talent to fill your role. The multi agency approach makes some sense from a client perspective, but it’s one of the biggest mistakes in recruitment strategy that we see clients make.
Let me explain…
During a multi agency search, consultants recognise that after considerable work, there’s a strong chance the selected candidate for the position could come from another agency or the client finding someone direct. As a result, this forces recruiters to invest very little work into this type of search. Experienced consultants will skim for candidates who are on the market, send a shortlist and move on to retained and exclusive work; And trust me, this is the smart thing to do, having another candidate get the position after 10 hours of search work is hugely demoralising!
But why is this an issue for you? You’ve placed the role with a multi agency search; and besides, aren’t all recruiters fishing from the same candidate pool? Surely more ‘fishermen’ equals more fish!? But in reality, this is not how recruitment works…
In reality the candidate pool should be seen as more of an iceberg, with 80% of candidates lying ‘under the surface’; these candidates are not actively on the market, won’t reply to your job adverts and won’t have their CV on popular job hunting websites. They require labour intensive methods to properly source, from traditional headhunting to referrals. Most consultants won’t commit time to this form of search when competing against several agencies. So the chances are, if you’re using a multi agency approach, all agencies you’re currently using are only accessing the same 20% of visible candidates.
But let’s play devil’s advocate and say you happen to find the perfect fit. Who cares about the candidates you missed?
But think about it. You’re recruiting from a limited pool of active candidates, while your competitors are accessing the full breadth of talent available. Over a 5 to 10 year period, who is likely to have the stronger team?
Our successful clients know that you can’t build an exceptional team with a limited view of available talent, especially in a niche market . They always opt for an exclusive or retained project with a specialist agency who understands their industry.
Most of the high achievers in any walk of life tend to have a long-term career plan as the foundation to help them achieve their goals. If this is career focused, then it will likely be a staged process with certain “milestones” achieved, perhaps by a certain age. One common target we hear is “I want to be a Director by the time i’m 40.”
Irrelevant of what industry or profession you work in, to optimize your career and maximize yourself you need to plan your career. This doesn’t have to be detailed; it can simply be an overall target which is then broken down into key stages or “milestones”. For example – if you aspire to get to Managing Director level by a certain age; it’s unrealistic that this is going to happen if you have no man management experience 5 years before your target – so make sure you get to manage people in good time to gain the requisite experience.
Deciding on a career change can be a daunting task. Whether it’s for progression, relocation or a complete career change, navigating a job search can be frustrating and full of potholes.
Making sure you have the skills for your target job is the first step, but the secret to securing an interview is ensuring that your target employer gets a comprehensive overview of your relevant skills..
This is where your CV comes in..
My usual go-to action when a professional approaches me with a CV is to overview the profile through the eyes of the average client I deal with. It’s been found that most recruiters and clients will overview a potential CV for an average of 30 seconds; in that duration, you’re challenged with grabbing their attention and forcing them to delve deeper!
From overviewing thousands of CV’s over the last 7 years and speaking to hundreds of clients, both SME and corporate, there are some common mistakes professionals make when putting their profile together that could affect your chances of securing an interview.
Length – Keep your CV short and sweet. Ideally 2-3 pages. Use bullet points to keep information concise. Avoid large blocks of text.
Spelling, Grammar and Font Size Consistency. Attention to detail is something clients value, failing to check your CV will give them the wrong message.
Missing contact details? CVs get passed around internally. Make sure you can be contacted, no matter what.
Unprofessional email? firstname.lastname@example.org. May have been a great idea at the time, but always use something professional on your CV.
Failure to include quantified information. You need more than lists of recent responsibilities. Quantify your sales achievements. Detail the projects you delivered on. This can make a profile stand out.
Do you use a generic CV for every application? Why not tailor your skills to match the job description. Offer solutions to their skills gap.
Many of the major clients we work with use some form of ATS system (applicant tracking system). These systems screen candidates and rank them in order of suitability to a given role. Do you have the right skills for a role? If your CV is not optimised, you could be overlooked. I’ve included some tips below –
Make sure you have an ATS friendly file type – Stick to Word Docs, PDFs or Text Files or similar. Avoid image files, or fancy formatting.
Remove all images from the CV.
Keywords that are higher in the CV carry more weight. Ensure all the markets, products and skills are included in the summary.
Maximise the number of relevant keywords across the document – these contribute to job suitability score during recruitment searches.
Maximise the number of sought after keywords are included.
Of course, the easiest way to optimise your chances of getting a position is to reach out to a specialist recruitment firm. As a mechanical engineering recruitment specialist, Wynne Consulting has over 15 years experience placing professionals. We can offer the best advice and support for your job hunt. Feel free to contact me with a CV for more information email@example.com
One of the biggest problem companies face is how to recruit high quality people in today’s competitive environment. We call them the “Hidden Elite”
The major issue is that the vast majority of high performing people don’t ever look for a job on the “open market”, so don’t talk to recruitment agencies, respond to job adverts and place their CV’s on CV Websites.
So how do companies get hold of these people to have an opportunity to recruit them? This diagram gives an accurate breakdown of a typical company of 100 people:
One of our clients has been recruiting 2x Graduate roles since Christmas.
They received over 200 applicants.
They interviewed over 50 of these candidates.
As part of the process Wynne Consulting suggested 2x candidates.
In the end – the 2 candidates Wynne Consulting suggested were the only 2x candidates recruited.
This is a somewhat extreme example of a typical situation that we find where a client spends a huge amount of time selecting & interviewing candidates that are not successful hires. Wynne Consulting have a laser focus on delivery with the minimum of hassle and time expended. Our expert recruitment approach means we clarify the job role at the beginning; consult on the salary & spec (as in most occasions aspirations are misaligned with what we can source) & then deliver a high quality shortlist quickly.
So what’s the lessons here?
We save you & your management team countless wasted hours processing & interviewing candidates; which is a considerable cost to your business as this work has to be done by highly paid, experienced managers as they are the “Hiring Authority”. It’s not possible to delegate or automate these tasks to lower cost resources.
The sheer amount of time taken to process this volume of applicants dramatically slows down the recruitment process; and in the times we are in where there are more jobs than candidates – time to hire is critical. You need to get these timescales down as much as possible. Anything more than 3 weeks from creating the job spec to receiving a signed acceptance it too long.
So from our vast experience what do we advise?:
Consider a maximum of 8-10 candidates for your job. Any more and your spec isn’t right & you don’t know what you want.
Interview no more than 5 candidates.
Keep the interview process down to a maximum of 2 interviews. The first one could be a video interview but the second one has to be face-to-face.
Aim to conclude the interview process in a maximum of 2 weeks. Candidates lose interest beyond these timescales.
You require expertise in both finding the right candidates; and in the art of recruitment. Get one of these wrong and you won’t get the result you need. Let us know if you need help in any of these areas.