Dear Mitch

Mitch Sullivan‘s a man many Recruiters will know. Never one to shy away from debate or express an opinion, he’s been a Recruiter since the days of fax. His desire to not have his eyes bleed every time he saw a job ad drove him to start his own Recruitment Copywriting Course.

In this series, Mitch is answering your questions. For every query your boss can’t or won’t answer, you can write to Dear Mitch. In today’s article the focus is on KPIs, being personally interested in your sector, RPO and Facebook recruiting…

1. What do you think are the best KPIs for a junior Recruiter? I’m a Banking and Finance Headhunter in London and my boss is determined call times are important. Mike, London

Call times to whom – potential clients or potential candidates?

Also, can you be a Junior Recruiter and a Headhunter?

Sorry, I’m supposed to be answering the questions, not asking them.

Mike, this is a tough one for me because it’s been ages since I’ve ever worked with a junior recruiter who needs to get better at contingency.  Plus, KPIs is a tricky subject area because applying right ones depends on the individual skills and preferred work practices of the recruiter. It can also depend on what part of the job they find the most difficult.

For me, the only KPI that really matters is the ratio between CVs sent and interviews offered.

If that’s around 2:1 or better, then you’re always going to make money and you’re probably getting enough of the right information from the client and candidate to enable that kind of CV to interview ratio.

And if you’re doing this well, you should be getting more jobs to work on from the same clients, which means you won’t have to cold call as often.

2. Hi Mitch, I’m not very interested in the sector I work in. How much do you think that matters to me making money? Anon

I think it matters a lot. It’s critical in fact. The money’s one thing, but what about job enjoyment?

If you’re not interested in the job discipline or business sector, you’re never going to do good enough research, ask enough of the right questions or understand the candidates well enough.

You really should change jobs soon.

PS… you’ve just made me imagine how hideous my life would be if I was only ever trying to fill Finance roles.

3. I’m a male property recruiter but I’m constantly frustrated by how much the job is easier for my female colleagues. Have you experienced this? If so, any tips? Tim, Glasgow

No, I haven’t experienced this Tim.

I remember a sales trainer once telling me that women are better natural communicators than men. Could it be this or is there something else at play here?

4. I’ve been offered a job in RPO where the bonuses are a bit different, but it does seem more strategic. Having not worked in retained or RPO do you have any insights per chance? Anon, Rochester

It depends on the RPO.

Some are just candidate processing factories – especially those serving lower skilled roles in very large corporations who think they’re doing the world a favour just by having job vacancies.

There’s also a new breed of RPOs emerging that serve the mid to large SME sector as well as some that focus on the tech start-up market. Those would definitely be more strategic.

Either way, I think getting experience of working in an RPO can only be a good thing in terms of furthering your recruitment knowledge and increasing your ability to sell alternatives to contingency should you ever come back to the agency sector.

5. Hi Mitch, as a social media guru, I’d love your thoughts on Facebook recruitment. My mate has a profile on there dedicated to it. It seems like a waste of time to me with LinkedIn being that way inclined. Kirsty, London

A social media guru?! Who told you that?

I don’t know too much about Facebook and only go there a couple of times a month to swear and take the piss out of my friends.

I’d have thought they’d be better off mastering LinkedIn first. I’m yet to be convinced that Facebook is a place where people want (or expect) to be fed badly written job ads or be pestered by recruiters.


Missed any of the previous articles from this series? Check them out here. And if you’ve got any of your own questions you’d like answering (anonymously or otherwise) you can reach the main man himself, right here: mitch@hunted.com