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About In House Tax

About In House Tax

This weblog is a news and views site for tax professionals within the UK and international in-house tax community.  You will find information about appointments and people moves in and around the in-house tax market, issues affecting the in-house tax professional, opinions on the state of the tax job market, updates on tax technology, and other general thoughts of the day.

Hope you find it useful.

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Location: St Albans, United Kingdom

This site has been developed by Simon Godley, who also runs the niche tax recruitment company Talentpool Selection . Simon spends a lot of his time placing tax specialists into FTSE companies, large in-bound groups and some professional services organisations. He also recruits and is well networked around the UK tax technology and VAT markets.

Tax News

Why bother using a recruiter?

Thursday, 16 February 2012

By Simon Godley

In all hiring processes, there is an organisation (Client) trying to recruit someone (Candidate). There are many strong arguments for a Client to employ an external recruiter to find suitable candidates, however this article addresses the benefits and value to a Candidate i.e. someone considering a job move, and in particular someone (e.g. corporate tax accountant or tax software consultant) looking for a move in a very niche market.

I believe that you have to become progressively more specialist or niche in a certain field in order to keep pushing your career onwards and upwards. And operating in a specialist market (such as transfer pricing or VAT systems within the tax world), you get to think that you know all the companies and players in that market. So when it comes to the point where you either want to, or have to, look for opportunities outside your company, you may feel there’s no need reaching out to a recruiter (or going through a recruiter / headhunter) because you can do it yourself.

Well here’s 5 points to consider:

Market Knowledge - At the early stages of discussion, a recruiter who knows your market well will be able to give you a snapshot of what options are out there. They may be cautious in revealing company names initially, but you will get a useful view of how in demand your background/experience is. Only a small proportion of openings are advertised through the press or social media, so there could be roles in your market that are very much hidden from your field of view. Also, a very experienced recruiter in your market will be able to offer some broader career advice, and give you a view on which moves are achievable for you, and in a lot of cases the ones that are not.

CV presentation - A recruiter can give you advice on your CV, and will in most cases change its presentation before putting across to a client. First impressions from someone glancing a CV can be crucial to success, and it needs to hold their attention for sufficient time for them to want to pick up the phone or arrange a meeting.

Getting that first meeting – in the past you may have made approaches to companies directly, either e-mailing someone you know or applying via a careers portal, but how often has this led to getting a first interview? Does it feel like your CV is going into a black hole, and no-one is seeing it? Good recruiters know how to get candidates first interviews, and without getting that first meeting, you won’t get hired. Also, how will you prepare for the interview? Do you know the background of the person interviewing you, and what sort of questions they might ask? A recruiter close to the client will know this.

Getting some useful (or any) feedback – working through a reliable and trusted recruiter, this will help to keep communication lines open and keep the process moving. One think I hear time and time again from candidates is that they didn’t get any feedback after an interview, and just didn’t seem to find out what went wrong. This can happen going direct or through a recruiter, but a recruiter can push to get some useful feedback. And if it’s a ‘no’ after a first or second interview, a client is much more comfortable delivering bad news (and the reason for bad news) to an intermediary than direct to your face.

Negotiation on salary offer – and with this, I’ve saved the best until last. The most crucial part of the hiring process is getting an offer at the most attractive salary level, and at a level at which you are happy to accept. This part of the process can only be done smoothly through a skillful middle-man i.e. with a recruiter. You may think that a company or hiring authority knows what to offer because they know your value in the market, but in reality they don’t. They need advice and guidance on where to pitch a role, particularly in a very specialist field, and so you need a negotiator to work with you and the client to arrive at something that makes sense.

I know there will many people out there who have successfully found a new job without the help of a recruiter, and if a process is managed well and keeps moving with the right momentum, everything can fall into place nicely. But by engaging with a specialist and trusted recruiter, you will get all of the above benefits, and all for FREE.

Other viewpoints on this very welcome.

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posted by Simon Godley


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