Just graduated? Everything you need to know to land your dream job in recruitment

In the graduate landscape, it’s fair to say that recruitment jobs come with somewhat of a mixed reputation. We’ve all experienced an aggressive cold call regarding the PPI we never had and the tired out sales clichés when buying a used car, and we’ve all heard the rumours that any job in sales involves astronomical targets in order to make ends meet.

Like with most things the myths are far from reality. A role in recruitment will offer a variety of lucrative benefits, and not all of them are monetary. The vast majority of recruiters are graduates started out as trainees or graduates just like you. They’re now some of the finest industry accredited professionals reaping the significant rewards in their field. To shed a little more light on an industry which is widely misunderstood, here’s the top 5 perks and flaws to lookout for…

1. Recruiters are judged (and paid) on their results

It’s simple: jobs in recruitment reward you richly for you work. Unlike any other industry, recruitment allows you to have a direct impact on the amount of money you make. As well as your starting salary (which can reach as high as £22,000) you can also make bags of additional commission based on the results you achieve.

The frustration of overachieving and still earning peanuts doesn’t exist in most recruitment businesses. If you do well, you’re rewarded at the end of the month, and you’ll find that your rewards correlate to the amount of effort you put in. Recruitment is a true meritocracy, devoid of politics and ‘length of service biased’ decisions. So if you want a career in which you’re systematically rewarded for the results you achieve, recruitment could be for you.

2. Is it hard to get promoted in recruitment?

Working in recruitment means that you can take your career as high as your ambitions. Not everyone will have career ascendency like Jordan Belfort in Wolf of Wall Street, but there’s a reason that most of the successful recruiters you’ve ever met will have flashy cars and disposable income.

Working both hard and smart in recruitment will take you to the top of the career ladder, and those who are committed to their field and to continually sharpening their skills command the highest earning potential. Within a short space of time, high-performing recruiters win considerable responsibility increases and the quick escalation through the business that comes with it.

It goes a little something like this, you develop enough great clients to be too busy to fill all their jobs, so you hire a good recruiter to help you, you train them to be great at client development and delivery too so that you still have way too much work and need to hire another person and so on and so forth until you have a team building. Then you start developing new channels and hire/promote someone to manage the team and therefore promote yourself in turn…

3. Isn’t recruitment just a revolving door?

It goes without saying that you can make serious money in recruitment, therefore competition for places is high. Some of the larger businesses can afford to hire in ‘bulk’ and spend time training these individuals over a longer period of time, however this process usually whittles out the ‘wheat’ from the ‘chaff’ so to speak.

Here at Ashley James Consulting we’ll take the time to understand YOU, your history, your decision making style, how you interact, the type of environment best suited to you and we’ll then take you on that journey and find you the perfect employer. After all if this doesn’t work out, we don’t get paid so it kinda makes sense. We also encourage Trainees and Graduates to spend real time in the business to experience it first hand, nobody likes nasty surprises.

Not everyone looking to help you land the ‘kick start’ role in recruitment will be as transparent though, realistically you won’t earn £40k in year one, there will be times as a recruiter when you’ll want to quit and there are definitely more downs than ups. It’s referred to as champagne and razorblades for a reason, we’ll be honest and up front every step of the way and we’re always here to listen and coach.

4. How do I choose between the offers I receive?

Now, some advice from someone who got it wrong at first (and isn’t afraid to admit it). Don’t choose the biggest basic, don’t pick the company purely based on the brand or just the office location. You need to combine a few rationales here in your decision making aside from the obvious logistics…

– Choose a great manager; someone who still does the job, is still at the top of their game, is firm but fair and will invest time in making you as awesome (ideally more awesome) than them.

– Go with your gut feeling, who did you best get on with? Who invested time in you? Who was most accurate with their interview feedback? Who did you feel the most synergy with? Which business excited you most? You’ll use your gut feeling a lot in this industry, it’ll be a real confidence booster if it’s strong from day one.

5. How do I choose which sector to recruit in?

Hiring is integral to the success of any business, therefore us recruiters are in the fortunate position of being able to choose which sector we work in. Some sectors are more buoyant than others, some have more challenges than others and some will interest you more than others however the one thing they all have in common is that you’ll be working with clients and candidates. Therefore the roles will all be very similar, hence why it’s a tough one to call. You’ll probably benefit if you have a genuine interest or relevant experience from university or previous work in the sector you choose to enter but recruitment is recruitment. So think about the types of roles you’ll be recruiting for, the candidates and clients you’ll be talking to and compare this with the kind of people you get on with. But don’t worry, our process here at Ashley James Consulting is designed to pick out useful snippets from your interests and background to help you decide which recruitment sector is right for you.