How to get into recruiting

Read on to learn more about establishing a career in recruiting and the top tips to help you become successful in the field.

Matching candidates with the right job can be difficult and, as a result, a number of organizations and agencies rely on great recruiters to fill open positions efficiently and effectively. Luckily for those interested in pursuing a career in recruitment, you can become a successful recruiter whether you have experience in the industry or not.

However, recruitment is a high-performing, and often competitive career, where the outcome is typically directly related to your efforts. With this in mind, we're taking a closer look at the recruitment career path and the top tips to help you get into the recruiting space successfully.

The 'one path' myth

For job seekers interested in becoming a recruiter, you'll be glad to know that in most cases, a bachelor's degree or university education in HR isn't a necessity. In fact, recruiters come from a litany of backgrounds: just take a look at our own corporate recruiters at Beacon Hill. These professionals have a variety of backgrounds and types of work experience, with degrees in anything from business and hospitality to communication and psychology. A study from LinkedIn found the most popular recruiter majors to be:

  • Human resources.
  • Business.
  • Marketing.
  • Psychology.
  • Sociology.

The common theme among these varied specializations is a deep interest in interacting with people and communicating ideas clearly. With a dedication to helping organizations find qualified talent that's the right fit, anyone can become a great recruiter.

5 tips to get into recruitment

The recruitment space has seen considerable changes, particularly in the last few years with the rise of remote work. This is emphasized by a study from Upwork that estimates that 22% of the American workforce — the equivalent of 36.2 million individuals — will be working remotely by 2025, representing an 87% increase from pre-pandemic levels. This drastic transformation has resulted in a considerably more saturated landscape for recruiters as job seekers can now receive offers from anywhere around the country and are no longer limited to their regional market. As the recruitment landscape continues to evolve and becomes increasingly competitive, here are our top tips for getting into recruiting successfully:

1. Understand your transferable skills

Whether you're an experienced professional in the recruitment industry or an interested newcomer with a unique, and possibly unrelated, background, it's essential to understand the specific skills that you need to bring into a career as a recruiter. The most common skills among good recruiters include:

  • Strong communication.
  • Ability to market and sell.
  • Motivation and resilience.
  • IT and social media proficiency.
  • Time management.
  • Relationship-building.

The odds are that you already possess a host of transferable skills that will be incredibly valuable in the recruiting space.

2. Update your social media presence:

Your social media presence has a considerable impact on your career as a recruiter — specifically, your LinkedIn profile. Ensuring your profile clearly demonstrates your transferable skills, and applicable experience, can help recruiters that are solely dedicated to finding other recruiters, find you. This also represents a valuable opportunity to connect with and learn from other professionals in the recruitment space, as well as follow recruitment-related content to help you keep pace with the industry. Keep in mind that recruiters can use indicators, such as the LinkedIn Groups you are a part of, to find prospective hires with interests in the talent acquisition field.

3. Market yourself:

As you get into recruiting, consider the unique value you can bring to a company. You can be proactive and reach out to organizations and recruiting agencies — whether that be through LinkedIn, directly on their website or any other outlet — and sell yourself and your transferable skills to establish your value as a candidate. This not only demonstrates your initiative but also your determination and willingness to communicate and learn along the way.

4. Continuous networking:

In any industry, networking is a highly-valuable way to reach experienced professionals that can offer resources, support or simply helpful career advice, and recruiting is no exception. When reaching out to accomplished recruiters, it's essential not to ask for a job, but rather to learn more about the industry. Fortunately, most recruitment professionals are more than happy to help. Connect with both agency and corporate recruiters and absorb the wealth of knowledge they're willing to share. This will be a key element to catapulting your career in recruiting and helping you build lasting relationships with experienced recruiters.

5. Choose a path — agency vs. corporate recruitment

With a career in recruiting, you have options in terms of the direction you'd like to take but before choosing between these specializations, it's essential to understand the differences between them.

  • Agency recruitment: An agency recruiter is employed by a staffing agency that often partners with organizations when they're in need of qualified candidates. Agency recruiters have the benefit of working with a variety of clients and often specialize in sourcing candidates with particular skills such as accounting, IT, etc. which gives them a deeper understanding of what the current market requires for a specific position.
  • Corporate recruitment: A corporate recruiter, on the other hand, is typically employed by a company to find high-quality job seekers for their open roles. These professionals benefit from repeatedly working with the same hiring managers, allowing them to gain a comprehensive understanding of what the company needs.

While specific parameters can vary depending on the particular job at hand, agency recruitment is generally commission-based with a higher earning potential than corporate recruitment positions. However, it's important to note that corporate recruitment may be slightly less conducive to burnout, as there are typically fewer positions to fill and clients to manage.

Artist or scientist — finding the right approach to recruitment

On your path to becoming a professional recruiter, you'll likely be considering what recruitment strategy or style works best for you.

"Artists"

Some recruiters take a matchmaking marketing and relationship-based approach, where those tasked with recruiting talent take into account the company's brand and characteristics — such as location, industry or niche — to identify the most suitable candidates. This often includes considering the soft skills that job candidates possess to ensure they're the right fit for the organization.

"Scientists"

Other recruiters use data and research-heavy techniques, leveraging a wealth of software and analytics tools to streamline and optimize the recruitment process. Data-driven recruiting is essentially the use of tangible facts and statistics to inform hiring decisions with the aim of greater efficiency, reduced costs and an improved process.

In the end, recruiting isn't "art" or "science" but ideally a combination of both. For example, a recruiter might take market data and present it to a hiring manager, utilizing their deep understanding of the hiring manager and their needs to present a compelling case as to why a position's offered salary is too low. Or, perhaps, the recruiter uses this information to show that the job level or description provided might need to be modified to better fit the candidate they're looking for. Overall, there's no one-size-fits-all recruitment strategy to follow. The most effective recruiters understand there's a need to combine multiple approaches to ensure a more efficient and successful recruitment process.

The Beacon Hill recruiting process

At Beacon Hill, we leverage integrated staffing and talent solutions to make the right match between talent and talent seekers. This ultimately ensures that organizations have the access to the right people at the right time, with the ability to address workforce challenges and stay within budget.

If you're an accomplished staffing professional, you deserve a team where your talents and expertise thrive — and we want to help. We prioritize identifying and employing talented and tenured recruiting professionals who know what they're doing and make all of us at Beacon Hill better, offering:

  • A self-determined career.
  • Flexibility for life
  • Conscientious leadership.
  • A supportive, goal-oriented environment.
  • Team-building opportunities.

And the list doesn't end there! With uncapped commissions, multiple career paths and a supportive, collaborative and determined team surrounding you, we're here to ensure you have the resources and support that you need to succeed. If you're ready to advance your career in recruiting, find out more about our internal openings or all of the career opportunities available at Beacon Hill today.

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