Why do you want to meet me ahead of my interview?

At Blues Point we try to meet all our candidates ahead of interview.  Depending on the client this could be a quick chat at our offices en route to their interview or for clients further away, a chat via Skype. More often than not though the meeting with Blues Point it is the first stage of the client’s recruitment process, and ought to be treated as such.  However some candidates don’t understand why we want to meet them first, so for this week’s blog I want to explain why our clients prefer us to meet with candidates before they do, and how you can get the most out of the meeting.

We provide a better service to our clients. 

IT Managers are busy people, so the more time we can save them, the better the service we provide.  Your first interview with Blues Point is not like registering with a temp agency and filling out a form – we need to make sure you are well prepared for your interview with the client and cover off any potential issues that might come up regarding salary, availability, location etc.  This puts us in a stronger position to negotiate on your behalf if the client makes an offer.  We need to make sure you have thoroughly researched the company.  The last thing our clients want is to waste time interviewing candidates that are unsuitable for the role – they rate us above other recruiters because they know we do a thorough job and will highlight to them any problems that came up during the first interview.

We provide a better service to our candidates.

Some people dazzle at interviews and others struggle, but ultimately it is hard to get it right every time.  Some of our clients adopt a very formal process, and others are very relaxed.  With any employer there will be certain quirks that it is worth giving you the ‘heads up’ about, to give you the best possible chance of succeeding at the interview.  And if you were not the successful candidate this time but we felt you had a lot to offer, we’ll continue to work with you and help you find a new role.  We can tell other clients about you, and recommend that they interview you – this happens all the time and a high proportion of candidates we place are people that we have interviewed for a previous role.  Remember that for every person we place successfully in a role there will be two or three others that just missed out, so we want to help those people if we can.

“To make sure you don’t have three heads”…

This is an old joke in recruitment but essentially we need to make sure you have covered the basics – you might be surprised to learn that some candidates turn up for interviews looking dishevelled, but any recruiter will be able to tell you about clients that have been horrified by candidates that didn’t feel it necessary to brush their hair, clean their teeth, apply deodorant, or iron a shirt.  Smelling of cigarettes or worse still, alcohol, also won’t impress our clients!  By meeting candidates we can eliminate those that are not willing to make the most basic effort rather than waste our client’s time.

Face to face is best

There’s a reason why recruiters like us are still achieving great success while others have fallen by the wayside during the recession.  Of course we are fortunate to have so much technology at our fingertips these days – we can fire CVs off quickly via email, we have cutting edge recruitment software, databases, social media, mobile and video technology to make our jobs easier.  But it would be foolish to underestimate the importance of meeting someone face to face – no matter how much technology moves on, you’ll still learn far more about someone from sitting in a room with them having a chat for 20 minutes than you would via any other means.

Ultimately the meeting is intended to benefit everyone – ourselves, the client and you.  It’s not just a box ticking exercise. So use it to your advantage, and get the most out of it.