So over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been working on a number of tender documents for a number of The Recruitment Network members, I’ve been helping them put together their proposition to send through to different organizations, to win their business.

 

Something I’ve been amazed about is how impersonal these have been. I find it incredible

in today’s day and age that businesses are still trying to develop relationships with suppliers and customers or companies are trying to develop relationships with recruitment companies, based on tick boxes on documents, as opposed to really getting to understand how a partnership could be formed.

 

Obviously, we’ve written these proposals, and we’re going to win a couple of them, which is great news, and they were obviously worth quite valuable sums of money. So we’ll carry on doing that and we’ll carry on helping our members win proposals, public sector, private sector, etc.

 

But I do think it’s really important as recruitment organizations that we spend more time with our customers trying to build up the personal relationship side of what we’re doing.

 

I’m still fearful that recruiters spend a little bit too much time hiding behind emails, hiding behind InMails, almost delivering a bit of a portal-driven service, in essence, because sometimes it’s easier to do that, sometimes maybe we’re a little bit lazy, or maybe you don’t even have the time to do it.

 

Whatever the reason is, I think it’s happening more and more at the moment. I can’t help thinking that whilst technology is there to make us more agile in how we do stuff and I certainly get that and I certainly embrace that. I do think recruiters need to get out and spend more time in front of customers to develop proper relationships, to be able to tender and pitch for business

based on building a partnership proposition that is fit for purpose and best in class and best practice for both parties, not something that just ticks a number of boxes on a tender application.

 

So, I think that a lot of this is down to us as recruiters to spend more time developing minimum standards and targets and objectives based around what I’ll refer to as touch time with customers.

 

So, I don’t know, in your business, how much time you’re spending as a recruiter, how much time you’re spending in front of your customers, talking to your customers, getting to know them properly, but if you’re not doing enough of it, then I suggest it’s something that you need to think about.

 

Otherwise more and more we’re going to end up being in a very portal-driven relationship, which based on this tender, 60% of the weighting was based purely on the price, as opposed to the quality of the delivery or the quality of the relationship.

 

That, to me, is quite scary and quite frightening. Certainly, a question mark whether you want to go for a business like that or a partnership like that, but more importantly, I think we need to try and help our customers move away from that mentality as well.

 

It’s up to us as the recruiters to become more personal and less portal.

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