Skills of a good recruiter

Recruitment is a great industry with a lot of career growth and financial earning potential, however, the industry is not for everyone. There are people who love the industry and some not so much. There is no university degree that would prepare you for becoming a recruiter and you will see people from all educational backgrounds: economics, fashion, computer science, etc.

While there are a lot of styles of recruitment and there is no defined criteria that would make one a good recruiter, we will discuss some traits/skills that recruitment agencies are looking for in Japan.

What Skills are necessary for Recruitment?

  1.  Resilience: You need to be resilient because in Recruitment you get a lot of rejections. You are working with people and people are unpredictable. A Yes today may become a No tomorrow, and your candidate may reject your offer and your client may reject your candidate.
  2. Time Management and Multi-Tasking: Being able to manager your time and multi-task is absolutely crucial. At any given time you are communicating with multiple clients, dozens of candidates, while also having company related responsibilities and KPIs. It is very easy to get overwhelmed and being able to manager your time and do multiple tasks in a single day is important. 
  3. Being Proactive: Recruitment industry is highly competitive and you need to proactively take actions to connect with clients and candidates. If you wait for even a day to reach out to a potential client or candidate, the chances are your competitor has already reached out and taken ownership. 
  4. Being Commercial: As a Sales Job performance matters and you need to act to maximize your placements. Sometimes you come across a candidate who is searching for a job and you need to ask yourself, what are the chances of placing this candidate? If your answer is Zero, let the candidate know you can’t help and search for a candidate that you can actually place. 
  5. Being People Person: In the job your reputation and performance is heavily dependent on your connections. To be successful you need to leave an impression and constantly talk to a lot of diffrent people to grow your network and connections. 

While these are the traits that recruitment agencies in Japan are looking for, it is also important to discuss whether recruitment would be a right fit for you.

You will enjoy recruitment if you like:

  1. Competitive environment: in Japan, there is a labor-shortage of candidates and the recruitment industry is highly lucrative with thousands of agencies. What this leads to is a competitive market. You are competing against other agencies to get to candidates first and convincing candidates to work with you instead of your competitors.
  2. Fast-paced environment: good talents get off markets quickly and in sales, time kills all deals. Your work is fast-paced, with meetings, calls, emails, and more. You get to go outside of your office and meet a lot of candidates over coffee/lunch. You get to go outside of your office to visit one of the most innovative companies in the industry.
  3. Performance-based environment: being a sales job, your promotions and bonus are purely based on your performance. As such, the work you work and the better your performance is, the faster you will get promoted (higher base), and the bigger your quarterly bonus will become. This is awesome for result-oriented individual and you will meet consultants who have become managers within 2-3 years of joining the industry. What this also means is that you will also see consultants who have been in the industry for 10+ years and still are consultants.
  4. Work-hard & Play-hard culture: recruitment industry is competitive and fast-placed, so you

*Your job is helping people find jobs, but you need to balance it with making money

Something to note before you decide to join recruitment is many people say “I want to come into recruitment because I want to help people”. That is an excellent attitude, and for sure as a recruiter you will be helping people and many will be thankful for your service.

At the same time, recruitment is also a business, where making money is important. You will need to focus your attention on the candidates who you can most likely place and thus make a commission. What this means is that although you are still helping people, but this means you will need to give up on helping the people who need the help the most (the ones that graduated from low-tier university, has been out of work for a year, etc.).