An Interview with a Staffing Agency: Is it Really an Interview?
During my years in the staffing business, I’ve seen some curious things. I’ve seen my share of scribbled, hand written resumes, awkward behavior, inappropriate attire, and unrealistic expectations on behalf of both job seekers and employers. Some of these have been isolated incidents, but others seem to persist into patterns and trends. Recently, I’ve noticed a common job-seeker misunderstanding related to the role of the staffing firm in the hiring process.
Job seekers, allow me to clear this up once and for all: An interview with a staffing firm is a real interview.
The staffing firm acts as a gatekeeper, protecting the interests of a client company and screening potential candidates so the company can save time and resources. When you arrive for an interview with a staffing firm, you need to know that the application process has already begun. We’re on your side, but we’re also working to connect clients with the candidates most likely to shine. So bring your best self. Dress to impress. Take your coat off. Leave your coffee cup behind. And by all means, get rid of the gum.
Don’t save your confident eye contact, straight posture and firm handshake for another occasion. Use them now. In fact, use them all the time. These things are all part of your personal brand, and you’re likely to get more out of the job search process, and out of life, if you recognize that you’re almost always being observed and measured.
We can help you find a job you love, but you’ll need to help yourself first. So don’t slouch. Show up for your staffing firm interview five minutes early. Wear neat, professional clothes that suit the occasion, and remember your manners. If you’re offered a seat, take it. Smile when you enter a room. And don’t forget that every person you meet represents a new contact and a valuable opportunity. Your next great job may be right around the corner. Don’t misunderstand the process and let simple mistakes stand in your way.