How to succeed in an age of disruption, with SEEK’s Sarah Beck



SEEK’s Head of Executive Search and Global Recruitment, Sarah Beck, took to the stage earlier today at the Recruitment & Consulting Services Association of Australia and New Zealand (RCSA)’s 2016 International Conference. Beck spoke on client relationship management and how to make your business integral to the talent acquisition process.


Here are the key take-outs from her session on how recruiters can succeed in an age of disruption and innovation.

Focus on the true value you can add


Disruption and innovation is having a significant impact on the recruitment profession, however, good recruiters today can add significant value that technology simply cannot.

By getting to know both your clients’ businesses, as well as the granular detail of the roles they need to recruit for, recruiters can add tremendous value.

“Working with the right recruitment companies that can access the right talent is critical,” said Beck. “We want the right people, and we don’t want to miss out on the best people. We want to work with recruiting partners who recognise we have a very strong desire for more value and personalisation than just the transaction.”

But remember, you’re only one channel that’s being used


Strategic talent acquisition teams will use multiple channels to access talent – recruitment agencies are just one of many. So what does that mean for you?

“The best recruiters match the right candidates based on their knowledge of the client and the market,” said Beck. “They take into consideration the specifications of the role, but then add much, much more. They take in all of the intangible considerations too, such as culture, values and intrinsic skills. These are all attributes that are very difficult to assess with technology.”

By offering this depth of understanding to clients, said Beck, you’ll ensure your business has its own USP, and a competitive advantage over other businesses.

Offer clients real insight, and give them genuine solutions


Just being a recruitment agency isn’t a good enough reason for prospective clients to work with you – or, indeed, current clients to keep working with you.

You need to demonstrate to them that not only do you understand the current and future resourcing needs of their business, but that you can offer something different too.

“Recruiters need to do the thinking up front and be creative about how you engage your existing and potential clients,” said Beck.

Beck suggested asking these five questions before talking to a client:

  • What can I tell this client about their team that they don’t already know; using insights and research?

  • What can I share with this potential client about what is going on with their competitors’ hiring and business that they don’t already know about?

  • What can I tell this client about the perception of their employer brand that they may or may not know?

  • What people moves am I aware of that might be of interest to this client?

  • What are some of the global trends in a particular area that could be of interest to this client?


5 opportunities to add value to the major corporates in Australia and New Zealand


In preparation for the session at the RCSA International Conference, Beck had carried out research into what corporates across Australia and New Zealand are looking for from recruiters in the talent acquisition process, and what they value in their partners.

She found that corporate talent acquisition teams struggle with the following… (meaning these are areas of opportunity for recruiters):

  1. Diverse talent. Corporate tald ability. How can you help them achieve this?

  2. Recruitment skills. This may be one you presume corporates have down-pat, but from Beck's conversations they are struggling with the ‘bread and butter’ recruitment skills, such as writing compelling job ads, differentiating and distinguishing themselves, and efficiently shortlisting in a timely way.

  3. Insights to share. Talent acquisition leaders want to be sharing insights and knowledge internally, but don’t always have access to the relevant research and insights. What can you share with them that would help them impress in their roles?

  4. ROI. As with many elements of budget, demonstrating ROI is key. How can you assist them in showing the return on their recruitment budget?

  5. The need to add value to the hiring process. Talent acquisition leaders work with hiring managers with different skill levels, and they want and need to add value to the process. How can you help them do this?


Through her research, Beck also identified the following factors as being valuable to corporate clients:

  1. Sharing insights and data.

  2. Sharing recruitment technical skills and best practices.

  3. Honesty – clients value the truth, especially around why people may not be joining them.

  4. A long-term vision – when recruiters take a long-term approach, understand the business and provide talent referrals outside of the direct hiring process.

  5. CVs that are to spec, demonstrating the recruiter understands both the role and the business.

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SEEK is the destination of choice for job-seekers and hirers in Australia, acting as the conduit between hirers looking to fill vacant roles and candidates looking for work across many and varied industries. SEEK's mission is to help people...

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