Beware of the cowboy recruiter!

For candidates on the lookout for new job opportunities, enlisting the help of a recruiter is a great way of finding out about the latest roles available in your specialism and getting you a foot in the door with the companies you want to work with. However, it’s worth being mindful that there are some recruitment agencies out there who can actually do your career more harm than good....

Here Paramount’s Managing Director Daniel Clifton lifts the lid on the cowboy recruitment companies who could turn your hunt for a dream job into a nightmare:

If you are looking for work at the moment and have signed up to one or more recruitment agencies to help you look for the right next career move I have one simple question for you:

Do you know where your CV has been sent this week?

The reason I ask is the reason why I am writing this article. We see it far too often that candidate details are being sent to a client without their prior knowledge – a practice which can not only put you as the candidate at a disadvantage, it can also put the client in an awkward position and it is damaging to the reputation of the recruitment industry as a whole. After all, it’s not the way a good recruiter is supposed to behave.

Your chosen recruiter/s should be open and honest with you about what they are doing on your behalf. Consider these two golden truths:

1. A good recruiter should always tell you when they are sending your details out and to which client. If they aren’t, your details could be pitched to a company you don’t want to work for, or worst still your own company (mistakes do happen).

2. A good recruiter should always discuss a job opportunity with you first before putting you forward for a vacancy to make sure it’s a good fit for you, your skills and your career aspirations. They should also be able to tell you about the company or organisation you would be working for, their culture and why you’d fit right in.

If your recruiter isn’t following these two golden rules, it’s fair to say they may not be acting in your best interests. Matching job opportunities to job seekers requires informed relationships with clients and candidates and is rarely achieved by simply firing off CVs like a scattergun. Just think – how can they get you your dream job if they are not taking the time to understand what it is you are truly looking for?

It’s also worth remembering that while these less scrupulous agencies are not particularly investing in their relationship with you, it’s possible that they may not be that close to their ‘clients’ either. They may tell you they have sent your details over for a particular vacancy, but in reality if they have not been formally briefed on it or if they are not a preferred supplier, your CV will never land on the desk of the decision maker and the opportunity will pass you by.

Sadly, the first you’ll know about that will be when you aren’t shortlisted for a job you knew you should have been a shoo-in for.

There are many great specialist recruitment consultancies operating in the life sciences sector (including Paramount of course!), and they will work hard to get you the right next appointment. So pick a reputable recruiter – or even two or three – but remember that registering with every recruitment agency won’t necessarily increase your chances of getting a new job. In fact, sharing your details with the wrong agency could very well work against you.

If you are considering your next career move, why not speak to us and see what Paramount can do for your prospects.  We have experienced consultants dedicated to specific market sectors who can advise you on your career path.  Check out our specific webpages for professionals within Healthcare Communications and for those of you within Genomics and Bioinformatics.

Daniel Clifton
Managing Director
Paramount Recruitment Ltd
+44 (0)121 616 3460

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23rd June

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