Six ways to develop strong client relationships

Six ways to develop client relationships photo

We know, and you know that our industry is relationship heavy. Running a successful desk depends on the strength of your relationships not only with candidates, but with your clients too.

Having a solid client relationship means it’s more likely they’ll call you first when a vacancy comes in. You’ll be the recruiter who pops into their head straight away as an advisor and expert they can trust to help them out.

With this in mind, we’ve pulled together six tips for developing a strong client relationship:

  1. Genuinely care: Recruiters can have a reputation for caring about the money behind a placement, rather than finding the best fit for both clients and candidates. Take the time to call your clients regularly, even when they’re not recruiting. Let them know you’re there and let them know what’s happening in the market. If you keep them updated, they’ll do the same to you.
  2. Know their area: Show them you’re a specialist in their – and your – niche. Sign yourself for industry specific publications so you’re aware of what’s happening in their area, and let them know that you know. If your agency is an REC member, take advantage of the REC sector groups, as they offer advice, meetings and regular email updates.
  3. Understand their culture: Every business is different, and you can’t underestimate the importance of company culture when sourcing candidates. Take the time to learn how they operate – are they fast moving, thriving on change or do they take a more measured approach and follow traditional processes? If you understand this, it will be much easier to get their needs right the first time.
  4. Follow recruitment trends: Our industry is constantly evolving, and keeping up-to-date with this will establish you as an expert in their eyes. Read the IRP Legal bulletins, take advantage of the free REC research available to you and let your clients know you’re informed.
  5. Sell solutions: Take the time to get to know your client’s vision for the future of their business, and approach them with candidates who can help make that vision reality. This can move you along the path to becoming a trusted partner.
  6. Be honest and be yourself: All relationships work best when both parties are open and honest, and this absolutely applies with working relationships. Be honest about your capabilities, and make sure your client knows if things may take longer than they expect. If you’re open from the start, it’s just another way they can build trust in you and your ability to deliver.

We recently put together an IRP Professional Guide all about developing client relationships which you can read here.

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