Recruiters depend on strong relationships with both the clients and the candidates they serve. Healthy relationships are the Recruiter’s key to success. By knowing their client’s culture and value proposition in addition to understanding the skills and career goals of their talent pool, Recruiters position themselves to make a strong match in a short time frame with accuracy.
Strong relationships require trust. Here are a few ways a Recruiter can build trust with the candidates you interact with.
1. Focus on intrinsic values.
What are your client’s core values? What set of shared values and traits do the core staff all share? Make a list of these; then seek to connect to candidates who share these values and characteristics. Not only will you cultivate candidates who offer a better cultural fit for the client, you will also have a richer source for conversation.
2. Tailor your communication to the candidate’s preferences.
When you ask potential candidates if you can stay in touch, ask which form of communication they prefer. Then, communicate accordingly. For instance, some candidates prefer email; others like to meet face to face. Tailoring your communication to their preferences demonstrates you are listening. You will also help the candidate retain more information by catering to their particular learning style.
3. Do what you say you’ll do.
Consistency is a core element of trust. If you tell the candidate you’ll stay in touch monthly, do so. If you promise to investigate a detail about an open position and report back, follow through on that promise. The more consistent you are, the easier it is for a candidate to trust you and to rely on your help.
4. Be honest.
If you determine that a candidate is not a good fit for the client, after all, say so. Practice tact but be honest. Lack of honesty destroys trust by sowing doubt.
5. Help candidates even when you do not benefit immediately.
Some professionals look askance at recruiters based on past experiences. You can set yourself apart and build trust by offering help, even when it doesn’t benefit you directly. For instance, you might provide resume tips or refer a candidate to an open position they may enjoy, even if it’s not with your client. Help them see you as a trustworthy professional, rather than a self-interested headhunter.
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