What it takes to start your own recruitment business

By Tayo Leigh

 24 Nov 2015     Comments

What it takes to start your own recruitment business

You get to meet a lot of people working in recruitment.

You also get to see the many opportunities in the industries you touch upon, and the areas not being served enough or properly. It can be enough to convince you to start your own recruitment business!

But what should you know before leaving your secure job in a large agency, and what lessons can be learned from others who have made the same step?

Here are the 10 things recruiters should know before starting their own recruitment business.

Get used to being lonely – Most likely you’re changing from a large, busy company to being on your own, so get used to spurring yourself along or calling upon friends for daily interaction!

You’ll need to be practical – Again, you’re on your own so who will organise your phone lines, your desk, your office rental, your insurance and your stationery? You!

You’ll need many hats – You are sales, HR, finance, IT and the delivery team all wrapped into one so will need to learn what each discipline does. And quickly.

You are only as good as your candidates – You’ve got the clients, that’s why you were brave enough to start your agency. But you need a steady supply of candidates at every career stage. What’s your plan?

No one cares about your business like you do – Once you are big enough to take on staff, remember they will most likely stay around 2 years. Be prepared for the day they say yes to a better offer.

Know what your first year looks like – A day can seem long if things aren’t going well, so what about 12 months of uphill struggles? Know what you will have to do and don’t let yourself get disheartened.

Don’t expect a salary at first – If you are lucky then you will be able to cover your costs, but most likely you will be relying on your savings. Have you saved enough?

Don’t expect your contacts to join you – You are starting your own agency based on your network, but why would a client leave an established agency to work with you? Expect to start all over again to win new business.

Find support staff quickly – Your number one goal is sales. Find an online solution for your invoicing, contracts and even phone service and you can be client-side for more of the day.

Earn rather than save – Don’t spend more time trying to cut your costs rather than bringing in money. While you focus on reducing your running costs, clients are going elsewhere.

Start with a solid plan, deal with your set-up as a matter of urgency, and never forget why you started in the first place. Because you are a people person and love connecting the right people with the right role.

Good luck!

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