Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant?

by K B , updated on November 6, 2010

I get a lot of emails and comments about job seekers’ frustrations with both recruitment consultants and the recruitment process itself. The comment from Leah Gibbs on this post is typical. Candidates often complain that recruiters will pigeon hole them into a particular position, or that they are not able to convince a consultant about their suitability for a role.

Bronwyn Murphy, principal of BJ&M Consulting and trainer to the recruitment industry, says there is a big difference between a recruiter, and a consultant. Here she asks those in the industry what they are. If you’re reading this as a job seeker and struggling to get past the recruitment gate-keeper, her questions will be illuminating. There will be a big difference in the service you receive from a consultant, compared to a recruiter.

Recruiter or Consultant….which one are you?

Let me start by saying there are differences between being a consultant and a recruiter. You can be both or one or the other.  Neither one is better than the other but issues occur when you call yourself a consultant but deliver your service as a recruiter.  Anyone who has attended my training sessions or even broached the subject of recruiters with me over the past (almost) two decades in this profession will have heard me say – “If you are going to call yourself a consultant, act like one!”

Here are a few characteristics that define a good recruiter and a good consultant.

Recruiters:

– Take job orders

– Fill jobs

– Write job advertisements

– Find candidates

– Conduct interviews

– Undertake reference checking

– Negotiate placement

– Schedule and manage times for meetings and interviews between candidates and clients

– Liaise with clients and candidates over feedback

– Keep in touch with candidates and clients until the guarantee period is over

– Attend to a whole lot of administrative tasks

– Manage database and data integrity

– Work quickly

-Work in a transactional manner

Consultants:

– Have an in-depth understanding of the market place they work in

– Have knowledge of the candidate expectations

– Act a resource to their candidates and clients

– Work with the client to develop a job brief

– Can give advice based on their knowledge of the market pace

– Have a wide network of professionals that they can use as candidates or clients

– Are active within these networks to give services and advice as required – that is give as much, if not more, than they receive in knowledge and assistance

– Have advanced skills in interview techniques, negotiation and reference checking

– Can pickup and understand subtle nuances

– Have high emotional intelligence and acute instincts

– Enjoy helping people

– Find satisfaction in a job well done and strive to be of service to all

– Give feedback and solutions to clients and candidates

– Work fast

– Offer solutions

– Pre-empt any issues

– Work tirelessly to resolve issues

– See their role as long term and ongoing

– Provide good value to their networks clients and candidates

– Work proactively

– Build long term relationships

Now be honest, which one are you?

Bronwyn Murphy is a coach, trainer in recruitment skills and tender writer for the recruitment industry. She also specialises in performance management, process engineering and QMS Auditing in the recruitment arena. You can find her website here:  www.bjmconsulting.com.au

Bronwyn would tweet @luddite if she knew how to use Twitter.

K B

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

leecoopers October 22, 2010 at 6:00 am

RT @InterviewIQ: Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

Cindy Marie Jenkins October 21, 2010 at 11:13 pm

This is fascinating timing for me, as I currently am recruiting for an old employer while consulting, and often want to leap to the consulting part.

InterviewIQ October 22, 2010 at 6:00 am

Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

tekiebelu October 28, 2010 at 2:28 am

RT @InterviewIQ: Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

InterviewIQ October 27, 2010 at 10:05 pm

Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

tekiebelu November 2, 2010 at 2:32 am

RT @InterviewIQ: Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

InterviewIQ November 2, 2010 at 1:48 am

Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

cmgoodwin November 7, 2010 at 1:32 am

RT @InterviewIQ: Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

InterviewIQ November 7, 2010 at 1:20 am

Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

davidcherry4 November 23, 2010 at 9:01 am

RT @InterviewIQ: Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

InterviewIQ November 23, 2010 at 6:05 am

Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

damondcfrazier December 8, 2010 at 2:56 am

RT @InterviewIQ: Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

InterviewIQ December 8, 2010 at 12:40 am

Are you in the hands of a recruiter, or a consultant? http://interviewiq.com.au/are-you-in-the

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