07 DEC, 18
The recruitment industry is thriving and has shown remarkable growth over the past few decades. Ranging from large global companies, to small boutique agencies and individual consultants, the current recruitment market is saturated. Predictions are the UK hospitality sector will be worth £100 billion by the end of 2018 – which is why it is more important than ever to be able to provide a recruitment service that will stand out from the crowd.

A hospitality recruitment consultant is the bridge between the client and the candidate, and there are a number of things the consultant must be/do if they want to be successful in this demanding industry.

A positive attitude is essential for a consultant. Positivity and determination should never be over-looked, and it is important to remember that a vast amount of new recruits and clients will come to you based on positive past experiences and word of mouth. It’s very cliché, but a smile is the best way to make a first and lasting impression.

Being organised is key to having a productive day in any job, in recruitment it is essential.  You will be juggling many people on your books and knowing when they are available and what they can do for you will make your life much easier.  Keeping in touch with clients and candidates and encouraging them to let you know their needs in advance will give you time to make sensible decisions based on the full picture.

Knowledge is power!  An in-depth knowledge of the hospitality industry is absolutely necessary to be a successful recruitment consultant. If you are speaking with a client or a candidate and it is obvious you are unsure what you are talking about, then they will lose all trust with you and most likely not want to grow a partnership. You can use the knowledge of what to do and what not to do within the industry to aid your success in making the right decisions for both your candidates and clients.  In hospitality, the industry that never sleeps, being contactable 24/7 and knowing how important that is in this market will surely make you stand out from the crowd.  

Confidence is key. If you are not strong and confident with what you are offering to both your clients and candidates, then you will not last long in this industry. Confidence in each interaction is extremely important – if you don’t believe in yourself and what your company can do, then how will anyone else?
Be Ruthless but fair.  You will need to make decisions on people and decide if they are right for you and your company and of course for the client.  Your client trusts you to place the right person based on what you know.  Great skill and great attitude is of course what we all want walking through our door and you will read their CV and you may see their skills if you offer training yet mostly you will be relying on your gut.  It’s true what they say there is no second chances in making first impressions and you are the filter between the candidate and the client.  Their impression reflects directly on you.  Be prepared to take risks but follow your gut on that first impression.

This is knowing your client and knowing your candidates, what they need yet also how they like to work on a day to day basis; 
Every client will work differently some will want a lengthy conversation about their requirements and concerns others will prefer and email or even at times a text!  This does of course link with knowing the market and understanding for example that a Head Chef will not want a call in the middle of service.  It is also knowing that the same Head Chef may not want to converse much at all, this is more knowing the individual.  Mistakes will be made as we can only go from experience of the individual yet following the general rule of times not to call certain departments will absolutely help you on your way to gaining their confidence that you can empathise with their daily stresses.  Understanding the personality you are dealing with and who your candidate will be reporting to will help you find the right placements based on their skill and attitude.
Every candidate will have specific needs and it is as simple as having a system where you can note this down so that when you are placing them you know this works for them.  Being aware of their situation out of work and the routes they will need to travel will help you make decisions and minimise risk of unnecessary cancellations/delays.

The ability to read between the lines and understand ‘unspoken’ requirements is a special skill that good recruitment consultants, especially in hospitality, need. Not completely listening to the requirements or preferences of your client and candidate will have detrimental effects. Actively listening enhances your ability to communicate more effectively and understand and have empathy for the client and candidate.  Also listen to your peers, we all work differently and bouncing ideas around can open your mind to new possibilities.

With the vast amount of recruitment agencies currently in the hospitality market, the defining feature of your business is how you build and maintain your relationships. Great contacts, and the ability to nurture long-term relationships is crucial. Your candidates must feel like worthy individuals, and not just another number on your books – same goes for your clients. It is only possible to build credibility if you are honest – so never compromising on ethics will take you a long way.

Being ambitious, self-motivated and having a strong drive to succeed is a must for any hospitality recruitment consultant. ‘Driven’ means that you are stimulated and influenced by something, and this combined with a thirst for success will ensure you make a positive difference in the industry. Every consultant needs to work towards goals, both personal and on a whole for the business.  Ambition is what will push you to achieve these goals!

I think this is one of the most important – if you don’t love what you are doing and putting your heart and soul into it, then why will clients or candidates trust and invest in what you are doing?  Love and commitment for what you do will only result in positive things. Knowledge and passion work hand in hand, so visiting clients, understanding industry trends and staying up to date will help you find people great jobs, help clients get the best staff, and help you to achieve your goals.

This comes with all the above points combined.  In particular a combination of a good attitude where you concentrate on the positives plus an in-depth knowledge of the market and the people you’re dealing with.  With this skill you can work the jigsaw puzzle that is recruitment!

People will inevitably be unpredictable and that can often result in them letting you down at the last minute.  Also, it can sometimes be a disorganised client with last minute demands that changes your day completely.  Either way we know it’s an ever-changing industry and we always prepare for shifting demands.  This said there will always be a time where no matter how organised and prepared you are it can feel demand is exceeding supply and it’s all kicking off!  This is where you take a breath and mentally re-cap on your list;
  • Keep positive, there’s always a solution you might just need to bounce some ideas around.
  • You’ve organised your diary, all the tools to reaching your goals are in front of you.
  • You know the market and you are confident, trust your decisions and believe in yourself!
  • Remember what the client needs and keep this in mind when looking for solutions.
  • Keep the client in the loop – remember honestly and integrity.
  • Listen to them and their concerns and let them hear your passion and determination.
  • Time to think outside that box and use your unique skills based on knowledge only you have.
  • Which brings us back to keeping calm……and carrying on!
Overall, it is important for recruiters to represent and reflect their brand and company’s ethos. We are lucky that each of our recruitment consultants at Renard share a huge passion for what we do and in turn get to work with some of the hospitality’s top clients and candidates. 

Megan McGuiness - Recruitment Consultant 


07 DEC, 18
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