How To Build Long-Lasting and Lucrative Client Relationships

HR & Recruitment
March 27, 2022


One of the most recurring comments we see across social media is clients complaining about how recruiters just send over bucket loads of terrible candidates that don’t suit their needs and then crying out for a recruiter who actually listens to them, the brief and works with with them to source and attract not just great talent but the right talent.

Considering most recruiters (or recruitment agencies) tout doing this as one of their key values, why are so many clients still complaining about it not happening? 

Here’s a quick overview of what content you can expect in this post;

  • The key problem - Short-term mentality in recruiters
  • Why developing your values as a recruiter is super important
  • Ideology: Be a matchmaker
  • Bring it all together - One extremely attractive recruiter

The Key Problem 

Before we kick things off and start telling you how to do your job (which we will later), let’s address the real problem, for most of us recruiters we will probably never be the cause of the comments you’re about to read, but you can be sure that we will suffer the backlash still - welcome the scourge of the recruitment industry, the shotgun approach.

As we said, most of us will never or have never used this approach to recruitment, the shotgun approach is quite simply throw as many candidates at a client until something hits - This kind of recruitment style is hands-down the fastest way to P**S off your clients and lose candidates all at the same time. 

Here are just a couple of the responses, comments and even posts we’ve seen from not just our own clients (not talking about us of course) but also potential clients across the whole landscape.

“I’m so fed up of so-called ‘expert recruiters’ sending me hundreds of applications for absolute garbage”

“Show me a recruiter who actually sells our company to the candidates and I'll make them our sole recruitment supplier.

“We're almost always hiring for at least 4 engineering or ops roles at any given time. A shocking number of candidates show up without even knowing our name let alone what we do. What a waste of everyone's time!”

Stop Thinking In The Short Term

The underlying problem that drives the shotgun approach to recruitment is simply a short-term mentality, the need to get the sales in as fast as possible this month with no regard for the next week, month, or even year!

Now, you may not be adopting quite such an aggressive stance as the previous example, but if you are finding that your sales dry up after a couple months or that you are constantly doing BD week in week out, then chances are, you are probably a short term person too, and likelihood is you don’t even realise.

The fundamental difference is actually the ability to look past what is right in front of you. For example only dealing with this month's sales and ultimately not planning ahead, building that pipeline and developing a strong sales strategy that will pay dividends further down the line. 

We understand that there are targets to be hit and your boss will likely scream at you if you miss them, but here's the caveat, if you were to say not hit your billing target this month (queue the shock, horror and awe), but instead seal 2 or 3 big clients on a long term or even exclusive project basis, would you think he would still scream and shout? Probably not, because your boss, if he wants to run a successful business, is likely also thinking long term, so if you bring in this kind of opportunity he is going to be one happy bunny!

Additionally, this kind of thinking will allow you not to stress so much about where are your next sales coming from, and whether you can afford the rent next month, because if you change your thinking to a long term focus, then there will be no need to panic, because you planned for the highs and the lows….Right.

Develop Your Values As A Recruiter

This may sound a bit soft and fluffy, but actually it’s incredibly important, and could be the difference between you earning £30k this year and £160,000!

Values are everything we stand behind, they are what help us to make decisions and forge communities, and more importantly to recruiters it’s why people buy from us.

Let’s face it recruiters and recruitment companies are all the same, we have one job really, one purpose, to help Mr.Client (or Mrs., or even Cat in 2022), find the right Candidate that’s it, it’s not rocket science. However, the reason the client chooses you over someone else is because they feel a connection, a sense of trust and belief that you are the one who can bring them the best candidate possible, and yes you may think it’s your wizardry in sales patter or even the fact you work for a large company, but ultimately it’s YOU they bought into and a big part of why is because of your values, or at least the pre-conception of them from the way you present yourself.

Having great values isn’t just about stating the obvious ones like trust, empathy and blah blah, instead it’s about defining what is unique about you and ultimately being honest and true to your word, we aren’t saying you need to write them down and display them, but it might be a good idea to do that in the beginning, because it can be very easy to stray from them when the going gets tough, and you really need to make that sale, but if you stick true to them especially in those moments, your clients and candidates will stick with you over anybody else because they believe you won’t simply throw them to the wall when it suits you and they can trust that what they are spending money on is something of quality.

Be A Matchmaker

A little while ago we actually touched on this, a recruiter's job is really a lot like a matchmaker, like a personal version of tinder in a way, your job is to work with the client to understand everything they are, what makes them special and what they see as their ideal employee and then go out and match them to the perfect candidate that ticks all the boxes. 

Adopting this ideology is the best way to get long term clients, and a seriously strong network of candidates. Period.

A really smart way of developing this is to use whatever CRM you currently use and build up portfolios for each and every candidate and client you interact with, and don’t just stop at their work experiences and skills sets, also get down into their interests, what they see as their idea career projection, and understand their personality. This will exponentially increase the chances that the candidates you send over will at very least make it to the final interview, and also the likelihood that the client will use you again and again, plus it makes your life so much easier because you’ve got a literal bible of candidates and clients that you know match up.

Additionally, try to work with your clients and candidates in helping them to understand how they can become more attractive themselves ( and we don’t mean visually), work with clients to help them develop their EVP (employee value proposition), give them insights into what they can do outside of the obvious things like salary, to better attract higher quality candidates, because in reality that is what they are looking for, not just someone who can source good candidates but someone who understands the landscape so well that they can provide ideas that will help them to attract amazing people too.

Now You’re One Attractive Recruiter

If you take all of these points we’ve run through and apply them to your daily routine, it won’t take long before you become one hell of an attractive recruiter to work with, and clients will start to see you as the go-to recruiter for them, no more BD, no more fighting for one-off projects, you will literally have clients banging at your door to help them, this is when you can start to negotiate long term exclusive partnerships, that really do pay dividends. 

The best recruiters only work with a few clients, because they understand the value in the long term.

That’s It!

That’s a wrap for this short post on how to develop long term, lucrative relationships. If you have subscribed to our emails and/or social channels, be sure to keep an eye out for more content that we will be posting on how to become a successful recruiter and what we predict recruitment is going to look like in 2022 and beyond.

If you are looking for a new challenge in 2022, Vertex is hiring for multiple roles from entry through to senior level, and with our top billers taking in excess of £100,000 a year, every year!, you’d be crazy to miss out! 

Check out our careers page for more information here 

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