There’s a bit of a misconception about what it is that recruiters do. For the most part, recruiters aren’t able to “find” you a job. Our main responsibility – first and foremost – is to fill the jobs our clients need filled. Say we hear from a company that has three roles in Production Planning (to use a recent example). Our next step is to focus our efforts on digging into our network to find Production Planners who are looking to make a move for the right opportunity. Which means that if we hear from, say, a Buyer who buys raw materials, we might not be able to focus on helping that Buyer at that moment because we don’t necessarily have a job for them. It’s not cost-effective for us to go out and try to solicit a job for an individual when our clients are already depending on us to fill other roles. It makes more sense for us to keep in contact with that Buyer until we do get a raw materials Buyer role from one of our clients. The issue is that we can’t always anticipate what needs our clients will have in advance, and it might take some time before that Buyer role comes in.
This (somewhat understandably) can lead to frustration for candidates – the Buyer, in that example – when they’re working with recruiters. It leads to a perception that recruiters don’t want to help certain candidates. You contact a recruiter because you need a job now, not in the future. But it’s not that we don’t want to help you find a job now. It’s that our clients depend on us to help them fill roles quickly. A boutique player like us might only have a certain number on the go at any given time – here’s our list of currently-active jobs, for reference. We often have a pretty solid variety of jobs within our niche, but even so – in a discipline as diverse and specialized as Supply Chain and Procurement, this kind of unfortunate timing can be pretty common.
That’s why we try to counsel new candidates who contact us to be patient. If you don’t have experience in our industry (Supply Chain and Procurement), we’re quick to tell you that you should seek out another recruiter. But if we want to stay connected with you, it’s because we know we’ll get an appropriate job at some point – and at that point, hopefully you’ll still be looking. In the meantime, we ask candidates to be patient while the right roles roll in.
However (hence the reason for this post), there’s another case: if you’re senior enough? If you’re a business leader with tons of relevant experience at the VP, Executive, or Senior Director level? If you have polish and proven accomplishments? Reach out, and a recruiter might just be willing to “Market” you to one of their clients, even if we’re not actively working with that client on a job.
It’s something that not enough executives understand. It’s also often the case that executives with proven accomplishments don’t quite appreciate just how valuable they are on the marketplace. But recruiters like Argentus in a specific niche have deep networks and contacts at a huge wealth of companies. We’re willing to take the time to represent a Senior Director, VP, or Executive who’s proven, and tap our contacts to find you a job in a way that we’re just unable to do with junior and mid-career candidates.
Even if you’re currently in a stable, satisfying role, it doesn’t hurt to have an off-the-record discussion with a recruiter who can help you (with complete confidentiality) put some feelers into the marketplace to see what might be out there, and what else might be out there that hasn’t surfaced yet. It might help you land a job that you can’t even find on job boards or public listings for companies.
So that’s today’s bit of wisdom that you might not have considered: if you’re a Senior Director, VP, or Executive, why not try reaching out to a recruiter and seeing if we can market you to some of our clients? We’d love to hear from you!