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Take control of your desk now

Posted By APSO, Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Take control of your desk now

Recruitment can be a real rollercoaster especially as we juggle multiple clients, candidates and job orders. Whilst we cannot, as much as we’d like to, control our candidates or clients, we can control our desk to maintain productivity and reduce our stress.

1.       Set Clear Goals

You need to have a clear understanding of your targets and what activity is required to achieve them. Set yourself goals from big (annual) to small (this week) and you’ll be more likely to reach them. Write them down. Research shows that you’ve got more chance of achieving a goal if you’ve committed it to paper.


2.       Plan Ahead

Use resources, whichever works for you, to plan your activities and allocate time accordingly. Whether paper or electronic, a diary is a must for any recruiter. Remember that recruitment rarely sticks to a schedule so be sure to allocate time each day for those “unexpected” tasks, such as arranging an interview on behalf of a client.


3.       Stay Organised

Recruiters make money from information and it’s essential that we are able to quickly and easily access what we need. Keep your desk organised and invest in a simple filing system – whatever works best for you – so that you’re able to stay on top of the piles of paper.


4.       Take Action!

Procrastination is a recruiter’s worst enemy. We all have things we don’t like about the job – often cold calling or regretting candidates. Don’t delay, do the unpleasant things first as we generally have more energy in the morning and it’s great to cross off the list the tasks we’ve been dreading.


5.       Focus

Commit to a single task, be fully engaged and you’ll achieve more. If you’ve got a list of cold calls to make, advise your colleagues that you’re not to be disturbed and put your head down and get it done.


6.       Stop Multi-tasking

This seems a contradiction because recruitment is all about multi-tasking. However, to maximise productivity, group similar tasks and you’ll find that you will get more done. By way of example, set aside time to do all of your telephonic references. By getting into the groove and doing several in a row you’ll probably find that you’ll get a better quality of reference and also a few more completed in a shorter space of time.


7.       Switch off your Email.

If you’ve still got the notification for new emails switched on, turn it off now! Recruiters get literally hundreds of emails and every time it pings or flashes on screen you’re likely to stop what you’re doing to address the mail. Rather schedule time, even if it’s every 90 minutes, to consciously open your Inbox and deal with emails.



8.       Prioritise.

Not everything urgent is important. Take a few minutes at the end of each day to draw up your To Do List and prioritise the items. Begin tomorrow with the most important items so that you’ve at least achieved these before the “wheels fall-off”


9.       Take care of yourself

Be sure to make time for lunch, eating healthy food to refuel your body and mind, and get in some exercise. Get in the recommended sleep and if possible, rise an hour earlier. It’s amazing how much more can be achieved in the morning, especially if you can get to the office before the phones start ringing.


10.   Use your Time wisely

Take care to use your time wisely. Be punctual, not only does it reduce stress associated with running late, but it means that your schedule for the day remains intact. One late meeting has a domino effect. If you must attend meetings, ask for an agenda and stick to it. If your team is notorious for having meetings that end up in talk-shops, why not institute a Standing rule. Meetings that are conducted standing will most often finish quickly as there is no room for getting comfy. 

Tags:  achieve  apso  goal setting  goals  multi-tasking  orgnise  prioritise  strategy  take action  time management 

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9 Time Management Tips for Recruiters

Posted By APSO, Thursday, 02 October 2014
Updated: Thursday, 18 September 2014

9 Time Management Tips for Recruiters


Author: Gary Stauble is the Principal Consultant for The Recruiting Lab, a Coaching Company that assists Firm Owners and Solo Recruiters in generating more profit in less time. Visit his site for additional resources,

  • Practice Single Tasking:

Batch your activities into segments such as marketing calls, recruiting calls etc. Do one type of activity at a time. This type of organised execution is a hallmark of high production.

Is it easy? Not at first. But, if you train yourself to do nothing but execute one type of call (marketing, recruiting etc.) during a calling hour, you’ll get out many more calls each day.

  • Do not take incoming calls during a calling segment:

This takes discipline but will produce big results for you. Return calls after you finish each calling segment and after your planning session at 5pm. Exceptions would be for placement-sensitive issues only.

  • Ask yourself, "What’s the fastest way to a send out?" In real estate, there are three things you must keep in mind when buying a home: location, location, location.

In recruiting, there are three things that lead to placements: send outs, send outs, and send outs.

Send outs (your candidate interviewed by your client) are more important than search assignments. An average send out to placement ratio is 1 out of 7. So if you just focused on getting 15 send outs per month, with a 1 out of 7 ratio, you’d be making 2 placements per month. With an average fee size of R25 000, you’d be over R175 000 in production.

  • Do a little bit of each part of the business each day:

If you do some marketing, some recruiting, some sourcing, some closing each day, you’ll even out your production and sleep better at night. I heard this idea from Peter Leffkowitz when I started out as a recruiter and it’s made a huge impact in my ability to avoid the peaks and valleys of production.

  • Do the closest activity to a placement first:

What could be simpler than this? When planning your day simply prioritise what’s closest to revenue. Usually the money oriented tasks involve these things: scheduling send outs, debriefing with clients or candidates after an interview, reference checks, closing issues etc.

These tasks are the first thing you should do each day and take priority over any other task regardless of what you’ve got down on your planner. Top producers have a laser-like focus on what leads to revenue.

  • Plan each activity segment the night before:

You’ve heard this before but are you really doing it each day? I recommend planning for a full hour each day from 4-5pm. Hold all calls during your planning time.

  • Execute marketing calls each day:

I suggest making between 5-25 calls each day. The amount you make depends on how close you are to "full capacity".

Full capacity for most contingency people is 5-10 "A" level contingency searches. For retained or engaged assignments, usually 3-4 search assignments would be determined as full capacity.

Think of your marketing calls the way you think of brushing your teeth; not the most exciting part of your day but it definitely pays off in the end and is a good thing to do early in the day.

  • Print your plan:

Have a physical plan in front of you so you can cross things off. For most people, this will increase your investment in finishing your plan for the day as we are generally visual people and can execute what we “see” we need to do.

  • Create a daily template for what time you will do each activity:

You must have a set schedule template in order to plan. See my example below:

An example of a daily schedule:

08:30-09:30 AM- Priority calls (prep/ debrief/ references/ offers etc.)    

09:30-11:00 AM- Marketing calls               

11:00-12:00 PM- Interview candidates   

12:00-01:00 PM- Lunch

01:00-01:30 PM- Sourcing/ Name Gathering       

01:30-04:00 PM- Recruiting        

04:00-05:00 PM- Planning


Tags:  APSO  apsogram  tasks  templates  time management 

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