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5 Attributes to Look For When Hiring Agency Recruiters

Written By :

Todd DeMarco, CEO & Founder of Prodigy Resources

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11 Jan 2022
5 min read

Similar to the unknown an NFL coach faces when it comes to drafting a college quarterback, staffing agencies often face the same challenge when it comes to hiring recent grads within our industry. While you could land a Tom Brady, you also must face the fact that there’s just as good of a chance that you might end up with a bust no matter how much training you invest in your new employee. 

The staffing industry is known for extremely high turnover, and while there’s no silver bullet to hiring people with no previous industry experience, I’ve found that taking a serious look at the candidate’s values can help mitigate the risk associated with this unknown. This can be especially important when it comes to hiring recent college grads. 

Here are the five core values to look for when hiring agency recruiters. I believe this can also apply to an employer who might be looking at establishing a new partnership with a staffing agency or an HR Leader looking to build their internal recruiting team. 

  1. Are they people pleasers? WOW is going above and beyond what’s expected. It’s delivering an experience so good that people feel compelled to tell others. It involves exceeding expectations in not only big but often little ways. WOW is memorable.

  1. Do they demonstrate accountability? Simply put - hire people whose word means something to them as it will translate to being dependable, accountable, and ultimately trust and integrity. Realizing when they’ve made a commitment, accountable people do everything in their power to honor that commitment. By doing what they say we will do, they build strong team bonds, trusting relationships with their candidates, and solid partnerships with their clients. We all love repeat business, correct?

  1. Are they growth minded? In an industry as competitive as staffing, complacency is enemy number one. Embracing a growth mindset requires a strong work ethic, persisting in the face of setbacks, and welcoming feedback as a gift. It takes humility and a willingness to admit you don't have all the answers. Your ideal candidate must demonstrate that they can continuously improve and adapt to better serve their clients and capitalize on changing market conditions. 

  1. Do they put a strong value on trust? Extraordinary agency recruiters believe all meaningful relationships are built upon a foundation of trust and that involves being real and genuine in all interactions. Open dialogue enables them to create situations where everyone can win. It’s a key ingredient to collaboration and building successful partnerships with your clients instead of relationships based simply on transactions.I t results in loyal relationships where people can count on each other and know where things truly stand in good and challenging times. 

  1. Do they play well with others and can they function productively as part of a team? Will they have the potential to raise the overall game of the entire team? The team should always come first in a staffing agency environment. Those that truly succeed in our industry do the right thing for the team even in situations where it might not necessarily be the best thing for them personally. Successful people in our industry realize the importance of the longer term partnership dynamic versus simply getting what they want now. This goes internally as well as with clients and candidates. It’s especially critical in “half desk” environments where so much depends upon the success of the team. Does the candidate seem like someone set aside their individual ego, personal agenda, and the "what's in it for me?" mentality? Doing so will enable them to prosper in a truly collaborative environment where individual strengths are leveraged for the common good. Staffing agencies that are able to do this can tap into the power of their teams to bring more creativity, positive energy, improved productivity, and greater financial results for everyone involved. Ultimately, this results in less turnover which benefits not only the agency but also those they support like clients and candidates. 
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