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Spotlight: A day in the life of a Trainee Recruitment Consultant

Posted by: Rebecca Craighill
Company News

Sophie joined Navartis in April 2019 as a Trainee Recruitment Consultant and earned her first placement after 8 weeks, ahead of target.

We sat down with Sophie to get an understanding of what her average day looks like, how her background has helped her at Navartis, what challenges she’s faced, and how it felt to earn her first placement.

Q. What does your typical day consist of?

Because I’m relatively new to the game, it’s really important for me to really throw myself in and get on the phone to clients and candidates in order to bring in new business and build relationships. It means asking a lot of questions. That’s the only way you learn.

I have one contractor out at the minute, who I placed in June 2019. I speak to him on a weekly basis to ensure he’s happy in his role. This gives me an understanding of how he’s fitting in with his new team, and gives me an insight into any upcoming projects or business needs that I can help with.

I always like to spend the last few minutes of the day planning for tomorrow so that I can walk through the door first thing and hit the ground running. Time management and organisation are very important.

Q. How did it feel to earn your first placement?

The training and support at Navartis is really good and the whole process is designed to set you up for success. I got a lot of feedback at every stage so you need to be willing to adapt. I took on board all the coaching of our Training Manager Paul and the advice from my team, so it wasn’t a huge surprise for me when the placement went through.

When you earn a placement you get to bang a gong, so the whole office gets behind you and cheers. It was a little nerve-racking and weird to have everyone stare at me, but it was a fantastic feeling to know I’ve contributed to the team’s success. 

Now all I have to do is repeat the process. Sounds easy, right?

Q. What is your career background & why did you enter recruitment?

I come from a business development background which involved a lot of client meetings, delivering presentations and going through sales processes. I’m used to dealing with senior white-collar professionals like transport directors and business owners, so I haven’t been fazed by talking to similar people in this role.

For me, the move to recruitment was a way for me to utilise my sales skills in a different setting. My previous role had me driving to a lot of meetings so I spent hours alone in my car. That can be lonely, if I’m honest. It couldn’t be further from the culture at Navartis – it’s a busy, bustling office and everyone chats to each other. The teams are always sharing leads so I’ve gone from a solo worker to part of a team.

Navartis appealed because of its clear career progression. The career path is very clear and upfront so it’s in my hands. I know what I need to do to pass probation, make Senior, and progress through the business. I love having goals to strive for.

Q. What challenges have you faced so far in your first few months as a trainee?

It’s a very different environment to what I’ve been used to – busy, noisy, very active. I’ve had to adapt to that. I think I’ve found my place in the team but that’s also something I had to put some work into, coming from a solo job.

One of the biggest hurdles to jump over in recruitment is that some things will always be out of your hands. The process could go well all the way through and then fall at the last hurdle. There are things you can do to safeguard against that – it’s about leaving no stone unturned and being prepared for all circumstances. But even with all that, mitigating circumstances can always pop up.

I’m a classic over-thinker. That helps me with what we’ve just talked about, but it can also make me a little paranoid. All I can do is cover all the bases and be prepared to roll with the punches.

Maybe the biggest challenge for me was leaving the training bay and joining the team. In the bay you feel a little safer, almost protected from the scary world of recruitment. It was a challenge, but now that I’m out of the bay and really into the swing of things I’m really enjoying it.

Q. What qualities does someone need to get started in recruitment?

You need to be open minded and willing to learn. If you go into this thinking you know everything, it won’t work. My biggest piece of advice would be to absorb everything like a sponge. 

Confidence also plays a part. I didn’t struggle there because I’m used to chatting to senior white-collar professionals. But I can see how that could be a hurdle for some people. It’s never easy to jump on the phone and try to hold your own talking about a profession you have zero experience with when the person on the end of the line has had that job for 20 years. Luckily, the live session stage of the interview process lets you know how you’ll handle this.

So confidence is key – you just have to dive in, ask a lot of questions, and be willing to learn. 

Further Reading

- A Day in the Life of a Senior Recruitment Consultant
- A Day in the Life of a Principal Recruitment Consultant
- 5 essential skills to maximise your recruitment career
- 6 ways to start your career when you don't have any experience

We're recruiting!

Navartis are specialist recruitment consultants supplying highly skilled technical and management professionals. We’re always on the lookout for hard-working and passionate people to join our growing team. Click here to start your journey today.

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