Everyone who works in recruitment knows or will certainly realise after no time at all that this job is not about money, it’s about people and building relationships. Someone who knows this just too well, is Stescha Burks, Associate Account Manager at Progressive, part of Specialist Staffing Group, the US division of SThree plc, in Houston.

Here’s what she thinks about her job as a recruiter.

One of my personal recruitment highlights

One of Stescha’s favorite stories in her job as a recruiter was when she built a lasting relationship with a candidate who had once randomly called the office and asked if any new roles were available.

“One day a candidate called my team to see whether we had any job openings in his field. While we hadn’t anything for him at the time, I spent quite a while getting to know him to understand exactly what he was looking for. I got to know him as a friend, not just as a candidate,” explains Stescha.

In the following weeks, she called the candidate every Friday to see if there was any progress and if she could help him in any way.

“Then one day, he called me and told me he had great news. He had found a job and wanted to go through me as I had given him so much time and advice. He basically handed me the job and everything I needed to go with it,” says Stescha.

This candidate has continued to work with Stescha; just recently she even negotiated a raise on his behalf. And now, the Hiring Manager of the company she placed her candidate with is also reaching out directly to her regarding roles.

It’s about people and building relationships

What motivates Stescha to work hard and excel at recruitment is her passion for helping people.

“What gets me out of bed every morning is knowing I will talk to new candidates; I’m excited about getting to know new people. As part of my daily working routine, I try to find at least one positive thing to tell each of my candidates.”

Stescha continues, “I always make an effort to remain positive when talking to my candidates, even if it’s bad news. I try to motivate them and ensure they stay optimistic. This is especially important in the Oil and Gas industry, which I operate in, as it’s rather tough for my candidates at the moment.”

“If my candidate is happy, so am I”

But it’s not just about nurturing relationships and building trust for Stescha, it’s about one of the most important changes for her candidates: securing them a new job.

“I am very passionate about helping people find jobs. However, this goes deeper; I am passionate about building trust with my candidates."

"A lot of people think recruitment is just about placing a candidate in a job and earning commission, but I know that this is not true. I try to understand my candidates by recognizing their wants and needs, and helping them in achieving their goals. If my candidate is happy, so am I,” says Stescha.

Challenging at times…

Like every other recruiter, Stescha knows that recruitment also holds its fair share of challenges.

“As a recruiter I sometimes deal with rejections from managers and have to be the bearer of bad news to our candidates, while remaining positive at the same time.”

“While it’s difficult to meet everyone’s expectations, it’s important to remember to keep a balance between helping the candidate fulfil their goals and providing the clients with a candidate that will excel in their organisation,” says Stescha.

Get them what they really want

Stescha sees herself as a negotiator for her candidates and wants to support them in achieving their ambitions, whatever they might be.

“When I ask people what they want, they usually tell me about the job they are looking for, but that’s just one answer, what about the other aspects in their lives? Many of my candidates don’t think they can get what they want. However, I believe if you are great at your job, employers will be willing to meet your needs to ensure you excel in their organisation.”

“I don’t want any of my candidates to settle for a job that doesn’t meet their needs, it is my job to understand my candidates and ensure they get what they want,” Stescha concludes.