Your start-up recruitment business has taken off and you find there’s not enough hours in the day to nurture existing client relationships let alone look for new ones. It’s now time to take on talented individuals to help grow your business.
Think before you act
However, even at this stage, it’s important to be strategic about workforce planning. How do you envisage your business growing? This will have a direct impact on who you hire and when. For example, are you planning on building your geographical presence or creating specialist divisions? Or do you just want to focus on one sector split by permanent and temporary candidates?
It’s all in the planning you see
When you break it down, there’s a lot to think of at this stage. Your business plans should help clarify what potential talent you need and when. It doesn’t need to be written in tablets of stone but it will help to focus your mind on the dream team needed to help realize your growth aspirations. Only then can you give serious thought as to how you are going to attract this top talent for your recruitment business.
As you’ve sat down and worked out exactly what you need then it’s time to a create job spec for the role. Be specific in what you are looking for and what you can offer in return. It’s your company – how are you going to sell your dream to someone else? What is your USP that will get you noticed from other jobs in the market place?
Think about their motivations
Recruiters are motivated by potential earnings…but only at first. Beyond a good salary and job satisfaction, people want to work in a place that makes them happy. Where you work and who you work with has a big impact on your happiness. Your personality will directly impact on those around you and vice versa. Put yourself in the place of a potential candidate. Would you want to work with you?
As a business owner you cannot have all the answers to every challenge. Therefore, you need someone with the right entrepreneurial mindset. Someone to suggest new ideas on how to win more business. Or can see a smarter way of doing things. Have you a mindset that is receptive to new ideas from others?
and then motivate them to join you!
Once you understand an applicant’s motivations, you need to ‘sell’ the WIIFM (what’s in it for me) package. What role will they play? How much responsibility will they have? How can they contribute to the success of the business?
People also need to buy into you and your vision for the business. Therefore, communicate your hopes for the business. Paint a picture of where you see it in 12 months, two years and five years and share the roadmap which shows how that vision can (and will) become a reality.
Don’t look for ‘Jack-of-all-Trades’ recruiters
Resist the temptation to recruit consultants who you think may be able to add one or two additional tasks to their existing list of responsibilities, such as organising invoices and payroll to chasing debtors. That will simply kill their resolve and see them (and you) earn less money. You’re not hiring an administrator. You’re looking for someone to help grow your business. Instead, consider outsourcing back office tasks that drain your time and energy.
Search in all the right places
Chances are you have developed a great network over the last few years and now is the time to tap it for what it’s worth. Many recruitment business owners hire consultants they worked with previously, so are there any former colleagues who would fit your bill?
Do you write posts on LinkedIn Publisher asking for referrals from within your online network? Cross post these into relevant recruitment groups and promote them on your News/Blog page and other social media accounts. Last, but not least – network. Get yourself out there.
The right person for the job
Recruiting for your own business is different to recruiting for a client – you’re emotionally involved. Therefore, it’s a good idea to let someone else sit in on the initial interview process. You may have met someone you think is wonderful but may actually fall short of what you need to drive the business forward. Be open to a trusted advisor/friend’s opinion before making a final decision.
Start off as you mean to go on
How you behave now will in fact set your company culture – so make sure it’s an inclusive one. Many people don’t leave a company – they leave their boss. So be clear on what you expect from them; value their input; encourage them to contribute ideas and challenge you and give them whatever they need to do their job…and do it well. Appreciate and look after them and soon you will be the kind of agency owner that recruiters are asking to work with.