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Sleeping with the enemy

September 14, 2010

I had a bad case of bloggers block today, so I threw it out to my twitter colleagues and asked what people wanted to read from a recruiter.  One comment back was…

’why should recruiters network with their peers?’

What!?!?!

A recruiter talk to another recruiter?

Go to a networking event consisting only of recruiters?

But then I started to see the benefits,

By speaking to other recruiters and networking with them I can then gain access to their clients and their contacts on different social media platforms and poach them and then they will recruit from me and me alone and I can run off into the distance clutching my wads of cash in each of my greedy little palms.

You may laugh (I am taking a gamble here and hoping you realise that I am joking) but many a recruiter has approached me in the past asking if I know how to protect their linked in contacts as they don’t want the competition seeing who they are dealing with.  I have also seen recruiters completely ignore each other at networking events as they are focused (and targeted on) gaining new prey for their cold calls.  I once approached an IT recruiter at a network event as I was looking for an IT contractor to work with the recruitment company I work in and we were having a chat when he said ‘Well I’d love to keep talking but we are no use to each other so do you want to work one side of the room and me the other?’  He didn’t get my business and even worse he didn’t know he had missed it!

Since my small steps in social media recruiting I have been lucky enough to find a network of peers, both agency recruiters and in house recruiters, and when they are not off pitching tents, surfing and drinking Sambuca they have provided me with fantastic tips for social media, outstanding industry news and have improved my skills as a recruiter.  I even network daily with a recruiter who could be seen as a competitor and so far he has proven to be my biggest help and advocate as I continue to try and learn the different ways one can use social media as a business tool.

For all it is worth I think recruiters should network with their peers for a massive variety of reasons.  We can learn skills from each other and help improve our market reputation from the inside out.  For me it is a huge benefit to be able to tap into the expertise of other recruiters and can only serve as a means for me to become better at what I do.   As an agency recruiter networking with in-house recruiters allows the obvious to potentially happen, but also both sides can add value to a recruitment process by discussing industry trends, recruitment styles that work and market knowledge.  The recruiters I network with frequently offline have helped me build a desk through client sharing and I have a network of people I can refer candidates to when the roles I am working on aren’t suitable for them.   Together we can share best practice trends that can in turn create a better recruitment industry.

On a final note, another reason to network with your peers in this role is misery loves company, when I have had ‘one of those’ days, only a recruiter can offer appropriate commiseration and I know they are speaking the truth when they said they have been there too!  It’s a tough job at times.

So I hope I have answered the question well enough, for anyone else who wants to read about something different from a recruitment consultant please leave a comment and I will do my best! 

May have to change my blog name to Challenge Blackmore Blog…

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