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Recruitment Rant – Part 3 August 29, 2012

Posted by Audit Monkey in The Joy & Pain of Internal Audit, Working Life in Britain.
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The last recruitment consultant rant hasn’t yielded any reader comments, so this will be the last Recruitment Consultant rant, period. The swansong, the final word, the final whinge…until the next time.

As my current employment status is in a state of flux, I am canvassed on a daily basis by a host of recruitment consultants. I am quite happy to accept their calls, as after all, they may have the multi-million dollar job for which I’ve been waiting for. However, given the current distressed state of the job market, I’m often canvassed about the same vacancy from a different agencies in quick succession. When this arises, I operate on a first come, first basis, i.e. the agency who contacted me first regarding vacancy ABC represents me. The reason as to why this is imperative will become clear from the following transcript of a telephone conversation between myself and a recruiter. (The details have been so thinly veiled everyone in the London Audit recruitment industry is going to guess who Audit Monkey is).

Recruiter, “Hi AM, I’ve got a new role on and I wondered if you were interested?”

AM, “Oh yes of course, do tell”.

Recruiter, “I’ve got a role with Bloggs & Co”.

AM, “Oh, is this the role paying £x,xxx pro rata, for ‘n’ months doing xyz”.

Recruiter, “How did you know?”

AM, “You’re the nth person to speak to me about it”.

Recruiter, “Have you been put forward for the position?”

AM, “No, as it’s wasn’t paying terribly much and seemed to be a junior position”. (As if ‘beggars can be choosers’ but you’ve got to have a modicum of self-respect. You also have to be wary of stooping too low to make a future career resurrection at a later date).

Recruiter, “Can I put you forward at a higher day rate with the client?”

AM, with alarm bells ringing, “Er..no. One, I’m already being represented by another agency. Second, if my CV [resume] goes into the client as a duplicate it looks really bad in front of the client. (That the candidate is desperate and spread like marge across the market). Third, it would be unethical for you to represent me, especially at a higher rate”.

Recruiter, “Have you had that discussion with your agency about putting you in a higher rate?”

AM, “Well to be honest, I don’t know but you’ve got to appreciate that I have a relationship with the agency who contacted me in the first instance and this is the first time I’ve spoken to you”.

Recruiter, increasingly exasperated, realising they were onto a non-starter, terribly shrill, “Well, you’ve got to start somewhere!”

If you haven’t already gathered, agencies hate it if a candidate uses another agency to approach a firm for a position which they originally canvassed. Second, I’ve had my application rejected if it’s gone over as a duplicate, so it’s a situation best avoided. Sadly though, this situation shows how tight the labour market is and how recruiters are fighting for any commission they can get.

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