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Working in Recruitment: Expectation vs Reality

  • by: Rebecca Fagan
  • On: 17, Nov 2017
2 min read

What’s it like to work in recruitment? Our Development Coach Ben Shorter reveals the secrets of the recruitment industry.

Scrolling through any job board for recruitment jobs, you will see the current trend of promising commission that is unrealistically high. Some even claim you can make 100k in your first or second year!

Whilst a small percentage of new recruiters have a very active desk that quickly generates large amounts of commission, these innately talented recruiters are the exception to the rule. The reality for most trainees working in recruitment is a completely different story.

Around 1% of employees earn a six-figure salary in the UK.

According to Reed.co.uk, the average salary in the recruitment industry is £44,202; this encapsulates all levels from entry to director. The average recruiter’s salary is £17,000 more than the average salary in the UK.

Trainee recruiters often suffer from the belief that they will make a six-figure sum straight away; these unrealistic expectations can lead to disappointment and lack of motivation, resulting in poor performance over time. However, those prepared to build a successful career should not be dissuaded from working in recruitment – Rome wasn’t built in a day!

How to Build a Successful Recruitment Career

The beauty of working in recruitment is that you can treat your desk as your own business. The more time you spend building relationships with candidates and clients, the more revenue you will generate in the long term.

They key factors involved in a successful recruitment career include strong professional relationships with candidates and clients, coupled with a brilliant understanding of the industry you work within. Gaining a network will take time, as will learning how you can stand out from other recruiters.

The reality of working in recruitment is simple: the average recruiter will, with dedication and skill, earn 60% more than the general population.

Exceptional recruiters can earn a fortune, and there are non-managing recruitment consultants that earn between £150,000 and £350,000 per year, with the majority derived from performance-related bonuses or commission.

Becoming an exceptional recruiter takes time. If you are determined to make money and build a recruitment career, switch your focus to becoming an exceptional recruiter and the money will come.

Learn more about working in recruitment with our 7 Reasons to Work in Recruitment.

Stuck in a job in sales, estate agency or customer service? Become a Trainee Recruitment Consultant and get trained by the best.

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