When it comes to recruitment, knowledge is power – what you know and who you know can have significant benefits. Time spent on networking can help recruiters expand this knowledge base and prove to be an extremely valuable investment.

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If you are looking to source a pool of potential candidates for a particular sector, attending networking events, user groups or conferences relevant to that industry is crucial. In addition, you will meet the industry leaders who are likely to utilise recruitment consultancies to fill vacancies. Whether you meet numerous people or just a select few, networking is all about making connections from which you can build relationships. You will then get to know who is hiring and which candidates are looking for new opportunities, improving your chances of successfully doing business.

There are a variety of ways to network, including online and in person. Spending time on online forums dedicated to a particular business can be a good way to build up a large network of contacts. Not only is it convenient but can grant access to a larger talent pool than may be available locally. It can be particularly useful when recruiting for international positions where face-to-face contact is not always achievable. However, meeting contacts in person, whether at networking events, conferences or scheduled private meetings, allows recruiters to build up a more personal relationship with clients and candidates. Not only can this lead to a clearer understanding as to how to meet their expectations but if you make a good impression you are more likely to be their first port of call when it comes to recruitment.

Cultivating connections

Maintaining those carefully-cultivated connections is crucial. Having invested the time and effort into finding them, recruiters must be careful to protect their business contacts. You may know the perfect candidate for a specific role but if you have lost touch with either party then you will not be able to effectively bring the two together. Keeping in regular contact, online or in person, will nurture these relationships and ensure you are always perfectly placed to offer the ideal recruitment solution.

Networking can be a constructive way of finding useful information about your target sector that you may not otherwise be party to. A chance comment that a particular position is proving hard to fill can help you identify areas in which there is a shortage of suitable candidates. This allows you to focus on researching and sourcing potential applicants who fit the required criteria, creating a targeted approach that can be highly effective.

Networking can also prove valuable for recruiters looking to move into another industry sector. If the focus of the recruitment business has been on administrative recruitment for example, and the firm wishes to extend its reach into financial recruitment, networking is essential. The two industry sectors are aligned and there will be some synergy but it is vital to get to know the new market. This means researching and meeting the key players and taking advice from experts as well as identifying potential candidates from the new talent pool.

Making contacts is the cornerstone of recruitment and networking is an essential part of this. Online networking is a convenient and useful tool but taking the time to meet face-to-face with potential clients and candidates can be extremely beneficial for recruiters.

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