How to Impress a Staffing Agency

With so many job seekers flooding the job market today, employers are seeking assistance from staffing agencies to help them sort through the market and fill open positions. When you apply for a job online, the chances are you are responding to a posting from a staffing agency or a recruiter more often than not. Also, with the market so flooded with job seekers, employers are choosing to use staffing agencies to hire more temporary or temp-to-hire employees than to directly hire permanent employees. While staffing agencies can operate similarly to a typical human resources department, they specialize in finding the right person for the right job – and weeding through all the wrong people. Make sure you have what it takes to impress a staffing agency by reading our advice below.

  1. Respect:
    • Job seekers tend to believe that since they are not speaking directly with a hiring manager from the company they want to work for, they don’t need to turn their A-game on for their contact at a staffing agency.
    • A recruiter or personnel consultant at a staffing agency serves as the initial screener for an open position. If you want to be considered for a job with their client, the recruiter is the first person you need to impress.
    • Make sure you speak professionally, honestly, and politely with a staffing agency. Treat them as you would any other hiring manager in a job interview. If you can’t impress the recruiter, you’ll never even get the chance to turn your charm on for the hiring manager.
  2. Follow instructions:
    • Hundreds of people can apply to the same job posting on a daily basis, so staffing agencies typically try to screen candidates before even viewing their resumes.
    • For example, a job posting might say all interested candidates need to include a cover letter or a salary requirement with their resume. If you don’t, you could be immediately disqualified without your resume even being viewed.
    • Another example would be if you receive a response to your resume asking you to do something specific in order to speak with a recruiter about the position. If a recruiter asks you to call at a certain time or mention something specific when you call, do so!
    • Staffing agencies usually won’t waste their time talking to someone about a position if they have already proved they cannot follow basic instructions.
  3. Be enthusiastic:
    • If you receive a call from a staffing agency and you are interested in the position they have, show them! Staffing agencies won’t want to send a candidate on a job interview with their client if they don’t sound enthused about the position.
    • While you don’t want to be overly eager, it’s important to let staffing agencies know you want a position so they know you won’t cancel out on them last minute.  Enthusiasm shows you are willing to commit to the interview process and would accept an offer if you received one.
    • It’s also important to be honest with a recruiter if you aren’t interested in a position. They won’t want you to feign enthusiasm only to turn down an offer at the last minute. Be straightforward with the staffing agency about exactly what you want and need in a position. The more honest you are with them, the more they will be able to help you.
  4. Be on your best behavior:
    • If you do end up temping with a staffing agency while you wait for a full-time position, treat each temp assignment as you would a permanent position.
    • If you impress the client you are working for, you could potentially be considered for a full-time position should one become available.
    • Also, if you impress the agency who placed you, they will want to continue working with you and placing you in more assignments. The staffing agency will be more inclined to consider you for any permanent opportunities they have, as well.
    • On the other hand, if you treat a temp assignment as just a way to make money, and have no respect for the client or the agency you’re working for, they will be less inclined to work with you in the future.

Staffing agencies can be a great tool for not only employers, but also job seekers. Make sure you are taking full advantage of an agency’s services, because they could be the key to helping you find your dream job.