Let’s start by saying that in recruitment both the client and the candidate(s) are your customer.
Recruitment is classed as a sales role, but what you’re effectively selling is a person with an opinion and a viewpoint.
It’s a bit different to selling a product.
You have to balance both parties’ needs, for one, negotiating and engaging on each side. For exceptional customer experience, you must understand both the client, to find the best solution for the role they need filling, and the candidate, in terms of what matters most to them – be it the role, the rate, the location, the duration etc. You also have to decipher how they want to be managed throughout the process.
A great recruiter can read a client and understand how they like to interact. Some don’t want to be bothered until you have a strong shortlist of candidates. Others like to get to know you, to take time to listen, take advice about rates, availability of skills, and are keen to answer questions – they like to be updated on progress, and take comfort in knowing how things are going. They may also want your opinion on which candidate best fits the bill. These are dream clients, as when you have time to really get to know who you’re dealing with, it makes it far easier to gauge the culture and match it with a suitable candidate.
Similarly, on the candidate side, some want a daily update, others don’t want to be bothered until there’s concrete news. But generally speaking, regular updates with the candidate are valuable in building rapport and establishing their ideal role requirements. But do take heed, if you get it wrong, you can easily become that annoying pestering recruiter, or that one that they had to chase. It’s a balancing act.
You might wonder why is good customer experience is even important in recruitment? Surely the role of a recruiter is simply to send a CV?
It’s a common misconception. Oftentimes a potential employee’s first experience of an organisation is through a recruiter, so it’s paramount that it reflects the brand. The last thing the client wants is negative reviews. One thing you definitely don’t want is negative noise in the market about your recruitment process.