Consultancy Vs Agency
Consultancy Vs Agency by APS Consultant (Kathryn Reay)
I’ve seen a lot on LinkedIn recently about recruiter bashing and as much as I believe that recruiters are just doing their job and most are nice normal people I think we’ve all had bad experiences with recruiters over the years.
I know I certainly have – from not letting me know the outcome of an interview, to miss communicating key contractual changes, to refusing to put me forward for a role with a new client even when I knew my current assignment wasn’t going to be extended. And my personal favorite – sending me a standard email whilst I was on honeymoon saying that the project I’m working on for a client has been canned and I’m out of work!
And looking back I can think of very few positive experiences – sure I’ve had some enjoyable phone calls and meetings with recruiters and I’ve been placed in roles by recruiters but not much stands out as amazing service. What I feel has been missing is what I would describe as ‘after sales service’.
I suppose due to the sheer volume of applicants and clients recruiters are dealing with these things just aren’t possible.
But as a contractor the things that really matter to me are – feeling part of a team, help with finding my next assignment, being paid on time and correctly, networking opportunities, feedback from my client, recomendations once I’ve completed the assignment and even little things like someone liking my linkedin post or sharing my latest blog.
Ultimately what I’ve found lacking in the recruitment world is that personal touch. Feeling valued and respected as an individual and feeling that someone ‘has your back’.
This perhaps doesn’t matter so much when you’re looking for work only very occasionally and then becoming part of a team within your new employer but as a freelance contractor I didn’t feel that traditional recruitment was meeting my needs.
Which is what led me to my current assignment through APS (Assurance Programme Solutions). From the start this felt like a new experience – instead of sending my CV off into the abiss through a recruitment site or similar, I applied via a new app, Fluxable, where I answered a few questions relvent to the role and quickly recieved a call directly from APS which was followed by a telephone interview then a face to face interview with their client. From applying on the Monday to being offered the role on the Thursday afternoon I wasn’t kept waiting or guessing. So far so positive!
Since starting work for APS in one of their clients 3 months ago, I have met with each of the two Managing Directors of APS to check in and receive feedback, I’ve been involved in onboarding another APS recruit to our project which both made me feel part of the team and helped him settle in quicker, I’ve received regular newsletters, I’ve been paid on time or early without any chasing, I’ve been out for drinks with the APS staff based in my geographical area and I’ve had conversations about career progression and possible extension of my contract well ahead of my assignment being up.
The result is: I feel supported and valued, I feel loyalty to APS whilst still feeling able to grow my consulting and interim freelance business, I feel better able to do a good job and have a wealth of experience behind me that I can tap into and I feel secure that, where opportunities exist, the guys at APS will support me in moving into a new assignment when the time comes.
So whatever the future brings this has been a very interesting and beneficial experience and has shown me how business can and should be done.