Questions to ask to rid yourself of ruinous recruiters

eFC logo

Sniffing out a top recruiter is easier said than done, especially since loads of new firms have been popping up recently in Singapore and Hong Kong.

With so many choices, getting an extraordinary headhunter, not someone who's only enamoured with putting bums on seats, is just downright tricky. So to help you out, here are some tips.

Are they monkeys or do they know the market?

Candidates should ask questions to test how well consultants know the particular job. They should have "about 90 per cent" of their questions answered even prior to the first interview, says Aamir Kiyani, division head, banking and finance, Monroe Consulting Group.

Such questions can include:

· What is the growth potential of this particular role?

· What are the advantages of moving from bank A to bank B?

· What is the range of products on offer?

· If it's a RM role, will a portfolio be inherited?

· What is the size of the team like?

· Is it a growth or replacement role?

· What is the turnover like?

Background checks

Candidates should also be meticulous when looking at the background of the recruiter. John Koh, managing director, WMRC, suggests asking these questions:

· Have you actually worked in the industry I'm in?

· Who are the clients that you have worked with?

· How strong is your relationship with these clients?

· Do you know the line managers in this particular job function?

· How long have you worked as a recruiter?

Koh points out: "An experienced recruiter can quickly seize up an opportunity and decide whether it is a good fit for you. The recruiter is also likely to be a well-known figure, meaning clients are more likely to trust his or her recommendation on a candidate."

Lastly, don't be too worried that you're asking too many questions. Spending about half an hour interacting with the recruiter is ideal. If the consultant has impeccable credentials he or she shouldn't mind, especially because sifting out the unsuitable ultimately saves everyone time.

What's your way of identifying a good recruiter? Give us your take in the space below.