Both candidates and Consultancy Agencies occasionally experience frustration when it comes to their relationships. Often, the people on both sides of the equation have good intentions but they still end up frustrated. I’ll address two of the common frustrations candidates have with Consultancy Agencies and how these problems should be addressed.
Candidates not valuing the Middleman
Applying directly to a company can be tempting and easy with tools like Linkedin. These tools expose how few degrees of separation there are between you and your dream job.
It’s true that sometimes applying directly to a company can work out. Still, you will probably recognize the value of a Consultancy Agency over time. There are many ways that working with a Consultancy Agency offers value that may not be immediately apparent.
Consultancy Agencies help you discover opportunities and companies you would not have discovered alone. They sell the benefits of those opportunities and those companies. Companies often receive hundreds of applications and their applicant inbox is generally swamped with lots of unqualified candidates who did the “click-to-apply” because they could. Even if you are highly qualified for the role you will be buried amongst the flotsam and jetsam of poor applicants. A Consultancy Agency can get their client in above the noise.
They can offer you choice and will help you weigh your options.
They can also give you career and industry advice.
Consultancy Agencies help you through the interview process. They understand the firm, the people, the culture and the requirements of the role. Finally, they help you with negotiations so that you don’t sully yourself as a party with a vested interest.
Pointers to note:
(1.) As a candidate, make sure that your Consultancy Agency provides you with the above services and also find out whether they are updated with the latest technology tools for hiring viz. Recruitment Software, Online Interview Tools, etc. They should be up-to-speed on the product, the platform, the company, the personalities, and the wider context of your search. This includes the job options that you have sourced elsewhere. They should be willing to impart their knowledge and to offer you career advice.
?(2.) Make sure that you maintain two-way communication with your Consultancy Agency throughout the process. If you give a little, you will receive advice that will help you make the right choice. Don’t keep your other options secret –your Consultancy Agency may have valuable insight for you on those companies or their potential impact on your career path.
Poor Communication and Follow-Up
How often have you sent a resume or been submitted to a firm only to get limited or no follow-up from the recruiting firm? This is quiet a problem on the long run. Communication issues between candidates and Consultancy Agencies often come down to a few key reasons. Understanding the background to those reasons can help:
“You are not a match for the job you applied for”. Only apply if you are a logical fit for the role either relevant industry expertise or similar vertical expertise or, better yet, both.
“The client’s requirements change”. It can take a while for Consultancy Agencies to find this out and it causes frustration all around.
“Sometimes we aren’t given a reason for rejection. We like to be able to quickly tell you if you are out of consideration”. These data’s should be updated somewhere viz. Applicant Tracking System, so that they could refer back to it for future contact. Some clients are great at providing constructive criticism but others simply move on and don’t want to spend any more time on rejected candidates.
Pointers to note:
(1.) The consultancy’s job is to get back to you as soon as it is reasonable and to keep you posted throughout the process. When you contact them, they should actively try to respond and to keep you in the loop and at least be transparent if they too are being frustrated by a temporary lack of communication from the client.
(2.)You should keep in regular communication with them on the progress of your job search even if it means you have to follow up a second time on a non-answered email. At the very least, you will get a clear explanation on why you are not being inundated with opportunities or detail.
You can help a Consultancy Agency by sharing what you are seeing in the marketplace-–cool jobs, companies, etc. Think of it as content marketing for your own brand as well as helping you keep your brand at the top of the Consultancy Agency’s mind. A good Consultancy Agency who cannot help you directly will try and direct you to other Consultancy Agencies that might be able to help.
You could alternatively try out the Super-Cool Mobile App for Video Interviewing and benefit yourself on a much bigger scale ;)