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How to progress in built environment recruitment

19th April 2012

In terms of recruitment, we had a great 2011, posting a turnover higher than ever and placing more temporary and permanent employees into roles than at any other time. This led to us expanding, opening a new office in Liverpool and bringing on new consultants.

It doesn’t stop there. We are confident of growing the business further in 2012 and are constantly on the lookout for new talented members of staff that can add real value to our team.

With this in mind, I thought I would go through top five tips to becoming a successful built environment recruitment consultant.

Recruiting within the built environment sector has always been challenging but in the current climate it’s harder than ever. Recruitment consultants that can be subtle in how they sell, honest with their clients and candidates and generally apply themselves in a structured and efficient way will always perform well in this potentially very lucrative market.

I have put my top five tips below but the basis of these can be used in a variety of different roles and sectors. The tips are easy to adopt but really do make a big difference when taking those steps up the career ladder.

1. Be a good networker

My number one tip would be to be a good networker; don’t make assumptions that because you are supplying one site or office that you’ve got the client sewn up. It’s crucial to use the contacts you are dealing with as a reference point (even try and get some testimonials) and make sure you network through all of the potential recruiters within the company. Too many recruiters spend so much time trying to develop new business that they often neglect to spot the opportunities that exist within the companies that they are already supplying.

2. Good planning and structure

Good time management is absolutely vital otherwise you will find yourself being very busy and achieving very little. Recruitment, especially temp recruitment, goes at 100 miles per hour and it is very easy to get caught up and forget important things to do and leave tasks unfinished. Loose ends will always trip you up so having a good structure to your week will enable you to get back on track after you have been distracted. If you struggle to plan your day / week it might be worth utilising a good old fashioned month plan where your objectives, targets, to do lists and key clients are all in one document and therefore easy to focus on.

3. A client might want to buy, but won’t want to be sold to.

My experience within the built environment sector tells me that clients do not respond well when they feel pressured or if they feel that they are being sold to. It’s a mature market so most senior recruiters within our sector fully understand what we do and how we can benefit them so you need to be subtle in how you sell your services. If you get an opportunity to talk or meet with the client you must remember that they are just another person behind a desk with a job to do; in many cases recruitment is a very small part of their job. Remain honest and sincere and focus on creating a dialogue that will enable you to better understand what they look for from an agency and what services best fit their company. This requires asking a lot of questions and being a good attentive listener. The idea is to get them talking about themselves; people like talking about themselves!

4. Be patient

Following on from tip number three, you have to be patient and set yourself realistic expectations from a call or from a meeting. If you set yourself an objective of getting a job in from every call then you will struggle. As long as you are better off after the call than you were before the call then you can see that as a positive outcome. It might be that all you’ve done is confirm an email address or got a new contact name but its progress. The rate of progress will depend on what you do with this additional information.

5. Apply yourself!

There is no real substitute for plenty of hard work. Having worked in the sector for nearly 18 years I have never worked with a successful consultant that was lazy or unmotivated. With a consultant that has a good work ethic but is not having the success that you would expect, you have a number of options open to you. You can set them up with new objectives; you can train them within new markets and generally point them in a different direction. If you have a consultant that does not apply themselves, constantly needs to be prodded by their manager and generally seems de-motivated there is not much you can do about it apart from show them the door. Your success and survival requires you to roll your sleeves up, get stuck in and look for as many ways as possible to generate new leads, expand your network of contacts and create opportunities to make more money for your employer and most importantly, for yourself.

If you wanted to talk about this and find out more about the positions open at Bromak, please get in touch.

David Brooks
Managing Director

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