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Posted on September 19, 2011
Quest Resettlement Magazine (September 2011)
Raise the bar with the two key areas for job search in the visible market; Recruitment Agencies and Internet based Job Boards.
Recruitment Agencies will always remain a massive and valuable part of the job search market. They will always be an obvious first step for advice and receipt of your very well tailored CV. Just remember two things; they should never be the only source for the CV and that they work in many different ways despite what they say. I remember being told on several occasion’s that “unlike all other agencies we maintain the relationship and care” only to challenge the numerous others chasing my CV for onward transmission and quote the same thing to them. Recruitment Agencies exist to make money. The professional agencies make money and care about your career path – that’s the only difference that sets some apart.
So, lets not give them a hard time now we have fronted the basics. Recruitment Agencies have many avenue’s to clients that you may never have, even with excellent networking. They can and will work for you securing the interview or raising your profile with their client but some things need to be in place. Guess what? You know this already don’t you?
Selecting the right agencies; don’t scatter gun nor wait on just one. Research their skill set and their specialism. Review their web site for clients and placement stats they may show. Call them, follow up with a face to face and then emails. If it feels wrong (they promise you the world) then it is wrong. Remember to assess the age and experience of the agencies employee. Recruitment “sales” for that is what it is, is an obvious first or second career move for many. If the contact is wet behind the ears then perhaps you should ask for someone else.
So, now you have found the right 3 or 4 agencies and you have confidence in all they portrait. What now?
Be open and honest with them when you meet or chat. They have the knowledge and by being open they will see better where you might fit within their client base. Also, I suggest be persistent for they have may hopeful candidates and are often too busy to remember individuals. Initiate a regular contact plan to keep you top of their mind list. Then, when that is done, record your contact points and subject matter for conversations. If you leave them with next steps, follow up. If you have the action, complete it on time.
Lastly, for Agencies, there are a growing number of specialist (Ex Forces) agencies appearing. They will obviously understand you and what you are going through better than most but balance this with their knowledge of the commerical market place which some will still be learning. Many others however, have caught up quickly with established civilian agencies are will prove valuable.
Selecting the right job sites; There are so many to choose from and unlike Agencies, you have to work them 100% yourself. Also like agencies though, don’t put your CV on dozens nor your hope in just one. Many sites link to each other or are part of one bigger picture so choosing the right one can gain you exposure on a few others. You will be well aware of Rightjob from your time passing through the CTP and the transition process so I suggest you continue with the familiarity of this site. Likewise, you may have valuable clearances in play so why not check out sites that push this like securityclearedjobs.com.
There are, however, others that specialise in full time, part time, Interim, Contract work.Then there are those that specialise in certain industry sectors. The skill is to find those that have the right employment status for you in your preferred Sector. Take time to search. They do exist and your chances of successfully identifying opportunities closest to your aspirations will therefore be greater.
Golden rules of the visible job market:
- Be open and be honest with recruitment agencies
- Build a strong relationship with a select few and contact them regularly to “nudge them”
- Never pay money up front or at anytime in the process. They get paid from placing you (commission)
- Spend time selecting the right agency, in the right location and market sector and register with them
- Never register with dozens for it must always be a quality game not numbers game (unlike the hidden market)
- Apply the above to Internet recruitment sites as best as you can.
Good luck and happy successful searching.